Sunday, September 13, 2015

Georgina Kincaid Series—Richelle Mead

 


 
In the last few months, I'd found nicotine was one of the essential things helping me cope. Other things on the essential list: vodka, Nine Inch Nails, a steady supply of moral men, and an all-purpose bitchy attitude. (Succubus Heat, 1)

I read Succubus Blues, the first book in this series, for VF Rewind, and it was so quick and interesting that I immediately read the remaining five books in the series. (The fact that it's partially set in a bookstore in Seattle had nothing to do with it...said the liar.)

Boy, was I disappointed by the time I finished the series.

The second and third books were okay, but it was pretty much downhill from there, with a book that was entirely useless to the overall plotline of the series.

In the second book, Succubus on Top, Georgina and Seth are making a go at a relationship. A few caveats: they can't actually have sex because she'll steal parts of his soul, and on top of that, she still has to have sex with other people in order to gain energy and fulfill her responsibilities to Hell. But even with those obstacles, things are going okay until Georgina's old incubus friend Bastien comes to town. She's known Bastien for centuries, and now he needs her help to corrupt a local conservative radio show host in order to get him back in Hell's good graces. Unbeknownst to Bastien, that host has no interest to him and will never succumb to his incubus charms, because she's actually a closet lesbian. But you'll never guess who does succumb to Bastien's incubus charms? Georgina. When he morphs himself into Seth, she just can't resist. And you know who's totally cool with the whole situation? Seth. Because he's not a human person, he's actually an android without human emotions, like jealousy or anger. (That last part's not true. Seth is totally a human. He just seems to be the perfect man for Georgina.) There's also a B story line about a god who's in town and is spreading drugs in order to...do something nefarious, and Georgina's friend Doug gets caught up in the drug situation, leading Georgina to try and find the god and destroy him. The battle is over in about two seconds. You finish it and think to yourself, "Wait, what? It was really that easy?"

So that was an interesting follow up to Succubus Blues, which I really loved. I think in this second book, I had already gotten used to Georgina and didn't find her quite as charming or lovably flawed as I did in the first book. Instead, I found her kind of selfish and awful, which is kind of how I felt about her for the rest of the series. But Mead did something really smart, teasing small bits of Georgina's past throughout the remainder of the series so that you're compelled to keep reading to find out what is actually going on with her, and why we get all of that back story to begin with.

In Succubus Dreams, Seth has forgiven Georgina for sleeping with Bastien (in Seth's form) in the past book, and they're doing well. Georgina even says that she likes to think that Seth has "improved a bit since we got together, but he had a long way to go." (22) Not insulting at all. In this book we got more about Seth and Georgina's relationship, which I honestly do not understand at all. (Okay, maybe now that I know the ending, I understand why they were drawn to each other so much, but really? Saw no reason for it until that point.) There's this quote from the book: "Seth pressed another kiss to my forehead. 'I'm sweet because you make it easy to be sweet.'" (117) I mean, I like Georgina and all, I think she's interesting, but in what way does she make it easy to be sweet? I don't even see what she contributes to this relationship. And it doesn't even have to do with being a succubus or not being able to have sex. I'm talking about all of her secrets, her lack of trust in Seth, the focus on pretty much everything above Seth. I just don't get it.

Anyway, in this book, there's somebody around who is messing with people's dreams, including Georgina's. She's not pleased, especially considering the dreams seem to leave her completely drained of energy, even if she's just had an erotic refill. Add to that there's a new succubus in town, and Georgina's having a hard time. The dreams did serve to give us more insight into Georgina's background and history, which is essential to the endgame. But other than that, this one felt like a bit of filler.

At the end, Georgina and Seth decide to break up—more Georgina decides to break up with him because she wants him to have a normal life—and Seth decides to do what Georgina has been encouraging him to do the entire time, which is sleep with somebody else in order to basically even the score for all of the (job-required) sleeping around that she's been doing. Of course, Georgina didn't anticipate that he'd sleep, and start a relationship with, one of her dearest friends Maddie, so that's a bit awkward.

Then we're on to the fourth book, Succubus Heat. This book is basically wish fulfillment for Georgina. Jerome, her resident demon, gets kidnapped and taken out of his main area, which means that all of the supernatural beings under his purview are temporarily mortal and have no powers. Too bad that Seth has started a relationship with Maddie, otherwise he and Georgina could finally consummate their relationship. Oh wait, Maddie doesn't matter. Georgina and Seth are going to get it on anyway. Because that's not at all out of character for Seth. Also, Georgina just happened to have been dating a guy, a fortune teller Dante, but that doesn't matter either because she doesn't actually have any feelings for him and he ends up being the bad guy, so who cares, really? We also get the return of Damon, who was the bad guy in the first book, and Jerome's bastard nephilim son. I was excited about that. Although I found Damon creepy in the first book, that was because he was creepy because he was trying to hide his evil-ness. But once he comes back to town and *spoiler* starts living with Georgina, I actually really liked their friendship. Eventually they find Jerome and it was his second in command that helped to facilitate the kidnapping, and all the supernatural baddies get their powers back, but that's incidental to the entanglements of personalities in this book.

Then, of course, Seth feels badly about cheating on Maddie—coincidentally, he starts to feel bad right around the time that he can no longer bone Georgina without having his soul slowly stolen from him—and so he overreacts to that guilt and proposes to Maddie. Because of course he does.

Succubus Shadows was entirely a bridge book if I've ever read one. Georgina is helping Maddie to plan her wedding to Georgina's ex (who she's still in love with). Meanwhile, Georgina is living with Damon and attempting to have something resembling a normal life, but she keeps getting pulled into bodies of water by siren songs that she can't seem to avoid. That's literally all I remember about this book, other than the big save, because there's nothing that happens. Eventually, they realize that it's Nyx's kids who are mad because of something Georgina once did to their mom, and so they're attempting to destroy her. Georgina gets taken into the shadow lands, and Seth is the only one who can save her. Even though nobody should be able to reach her, let alone a human. What?! What is happening?! Don't worry, all will be revealed in...

Succubus Revealed! Yeah, kind of an on-the-nose title...

In this final installment of the series, we finally find out why Georgina and Seth have felt so drawn to each other and it's because...drum roll...he's actually the reincarnation of her husband from her original life. And also the young man she loved in Paris. And during World War II. And basically every other man that she's loved during the course of her long life. Turns out, he remembered that there was something missing from his life after she made her deal with Hell, and made his own deal that he'd get ten lifetimes to try and find her and be together with her again.

Ugh. Gag me. I thought it was actually going to be something interesting. I was really hoping that she'd get together with the angel, Carter, because I liked their relationship, and found it much more interesting than the "soul mates destined to be together" thing that ended up being Seth and Georgina's relationship. Of course, everything ends happily ever after because Georgina's deal with Hell was that nobody remember her from her old life, and since her husband obviously remembered her enough to make his deal, it made her deal null and void. So they both get to be free of Hell and live together, and try again. Maybe this time, she won't cheat on him with his best friend.

Ugh. I was so excited to see where this ended up going after reading the first book, and it just felt like such a let down. But even so, I didn't give any of the books in this series less than three stars, which is sort of saying something. And I kept reading them, so there was obviously something drawing me back. And they were quick to read, I finished all of them in four days, so I don't feel like I completely wasted my time. But just...ugh.