And so continues my love-hate relationship with Anne Bishop’s The Others series. Although, to be honest, it’s really more of a guilty pleasure-outright disgust hookup, but that’s always more complicated to explain. Mimi gets it. And I’ve expounded before on the reasons why the series can be so satisfying, but also why it can fill me with self-loathing for once again giving in.
Unfortunately, Crowbones is in the same setting as Lake Silence, leading Bishop to include the terribly squicky and immature child-like voice of that main character, Vicki, among her ensemble cast of narrators [Feminist carol: you ever notice how her mcs are these developmentally impaired, male-abused women with a touch of the magical who are rescued and subsequently monitored by physically big, strong and wild men? The epitome of romance distress-damsel tropes.] It’s slightly better this time around, since Vicki is not nearly as focused on potential romantic feelings with Julian (aside from overly cutesy discussions about cold feet) as she is about feeding her hostile guests and selling books to The Very Scary Others.
Seriously, why is Bishop so plot-impaired? I should give her credit: this time we switch out greed as motivation and take on Emotional Manipulators and Bullies (look at Bishop join the #movement!) The good guys remain incredibly stupid, but it’s all really okay, because we know that the Super-Scary Others are lurking in the background, ready to pounce. There will literally be no escape. Which is, after all, the satisfaction of the series: there’s something out there, and it will protect us.