Review: Fade Out by Rachel Caine
In a Glance: This time it’s the human’s causing trouble, will there ever be a normal week in Morganville?
Title: Fade Out
Author: Rachel Caine
Publisher: Allison and Busby
Format: My own paperback
Pages: 345 Pages
ISBN #: 978-0-7490-0749-2
Morganville is pretty normal in this visit for a change as it's human drama, rather than vampire drama that dominates. Eve's been cast in the town play, alongside Oliver and an annoying new character called Kim who instantly rubs Claire up the wrong way. Events continue to unfurl and in time it's clear that Kim's little video project is not all it's cracked up to be, in fact, it's a lot more! Throw in a crazy vampire computer out for revenge and it is, on balance, a pretty normal few weeks in Morganville.
I must be totally honest, and I think my rating reflects this, but I don't much like this book. Partly it's due to the new characters (Ada and Kim both rile me something rotten) but mostly it's because it's back to the shoddy writing we endured in Glass Houses. This book is entirely pure filler. The story doesn't move forward, the characters don't develop and I kind of feel that it is a pretty pointless waste of time reading it.
Let's start with the characters. Ada goes crazy and tries to kill Claire multiple times, but she never goes and resets her? Come on, that premise is just dragged out too many times so that by the final time when it's actually serious you've got a bit of 'boy who cried wolf' syndrome going on. It's just poor story telling. Throw in Kim to that mix, a crazy computer and film geek intent on ruining everyone's lives and it just feels like Caine is venting some of her own angers in this book.
Next you've got the fact that the book is just filler and plot holes. As with 'Glass Houses', there are so many holes you would think it was a crochet blanket or something! Amelie's angst, Kim's ambition, Ada's homicidal thoughts, Oliver's power plays; the events just don't flow and gel together. If you've read my other reviews in this series you'll know I really do love the books and very rarely find fault with anything in them, but with this one the faults just glare at me and I can't ignore them.
Why then, I hear you wondering, did you bother to finish it? The one redeeming factor in this book it the fact that Caine is pretty good at writing in humour. Without the witty banter, Myrnin's bunny slippers and Shane's one liners this book would be nigh on unbearable. Instead, it reads like what it is, filler. And the other reason I completed it was because I know (from having read the series before) that events from this book crop up later in the series, and I know the series get better from here on in. If it hadn't been for that I probably wouldn't bother with it.
Overall, I'm keeping it short and sweet. I'm not bashing Caine as I know every author has to put some filler in from time to time, it's part of padding out a book. However, I find the whole of this book lacking in meaningful content and feel like the momentum of the last few books has truly been halted by a brick wall. But trust me guys, work through this one and you will be rewarded because the only way is up from here!
‘I like a good bunny slipper. I’m surprised you didn’t get the ones with fangs,’ she said, and scanned the room. ‘Wow, this place looks fantastic.’ Myrnin’s eyes brightened. ‘They have some with fangs? Excellent.’ He got a faraway look for a moment, then snapped back to the here and now.
It’s mainly filler, and not the most thrilling read in the series.
Plot: 15/20 – A bit limp and lacking in most places.
Characters: 15/20 – Some new ones, but the ‘old’ ones don’t seem to make any progress.
Writing: 16/20 – Ok, but just not grabbing your attention as much in this book.
Creativity: 15/20 – Just a bit boring in parts, a shame really.
Ending: 7/10 – It’s ok, but not edge of seat stuff that makes you want to read the next book straight away.
Cover: 7/10 – Same style, which is ok but not amazing.
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Evil Across Time by Roy Askham is another book I’ve been asked to review and is something that looks very interesting – a girl time travelling and transporting evil through time sounds like a pretty good read to me!