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Topic: Vampire Huntress-Opinions?(La Banks)

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Subject: Vampire Huntress-Opinions?(La Banks)
Date Posted: 10/6/2008 10:58 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2006
Posts: 133
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I am wondering if I should get this series? Any opinions on it?

Date Posted: 10/7/2008 12:59 AM ET
Member Since: 1/19/2008
Posts: 14,749
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i had collected several books in this series, but after reading the first one, i couldn't make myself read any more of them and got rid of them all.  i know there are many who share that opinion, though some people do like the series.  the whole 'street speak' thing just got on my nerves.  if you can, i'd suggest trying out the first part of the first book at a bookstore and see if you think you'll like it.  or just order the first one, and not any of the rest until you give it a try.

however, i did very much enjoy Bad Blood by L.A. Banks, and am looking forward to getting the new one in that series.

Date Posted: 10/7/2008 8:14 AM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
Posts: 3,730
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I couldn't stand them. The writing is atrocious, I could not get past it.

Date Posted: 10/7/2008 9:50 AM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2006
Posts: 133
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Thanks girls, I have plenty of books for now so I will look for a different series until I can get a sneak peek at the first book.

Date Posted: 10/7/2008 9:53 AM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2008
Posts: 1,051
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I have a few of these books that I have yet to read. Sounds like I shouldn't bother with them. lol

Date Posted: 10/7/2008 9:39 PM ET
Member Since: 11/10/2006
Posts: 46
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I was so bummed, because I read a short story by her that I really enjoyed. I then got the first book in the series, and couldn't even finish it. That rarely happens to me. I couldn't get into the writing, the main character or even the supporting characters. :(
Date Posted: 10/7/2008 10:04 PM ET
Member Since: 2/4/2008
Posts: 5,639
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I couldn't get past the first one either.  I have the second  one in that book, and another of her books and I can't bring myself to read them.  I should just post them and send them to someone else who may like them more. 

Date Posted: 10/8/2008 4:33 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2006
Posts: 133
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Thanks girls lol I decided to go with a different series. I am so glad I found this forum. It's nice to be able to get opinions before I waste all my credits on crap lol.

Date Posted: 10/8/2008 9:25 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2007
Posts: 22
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I beg to differ.  True the first one was verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry difficult to get past, but once I did, it was well worth it.  L.A. Banks is deep.  The characters that are depicted in this series isn't for the faint of heart.  Nor would I consider this series strictly entertainment.  This series is off the chain, and at the same time it makes one think.  As you read each book in the series, she introduces more and more complex elements and characters, numerology, biblical characters, were-everything, demons, seers, all sorts of powers, of course vampires, and  the list goes on and on.  I would recommend LA Banks to those who are past the teen reader series.  I mean those are good too, but LA Banks Vampire Huntress is definitely for adults.

Date Posted: 10/9/2008 7:02 AM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2007
Posts: 1,140
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I couldn't get past the first one either.  I gave up after maybe 20-50 pages...the reviews I read were inline with what I felt. 

Date Posted: 10/9/2008 8:54 AM ET
Member Since: 6/6/2008
Posts: 4,596
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I can't deal with the writing style. Alot  of popular authors do this especially in the more modern african american category and the ebonics for lack of a better word just irritates me-future teacher here.  I grew up in the Bronx so ym "street sppeak" is different than my writing voice and I can turn it ona nd off depending on the situation. When writers chosoe that route as their voice thats their personal choice. I won't judge it but I won't read it either. If you're writing in English I think ti should follow the basic rules of the language.

It was dissapointing because the premise seemed very promising-I like that it was multicultural, something you dont see often in paranormals.I was really hoping to find a good strong voice that would give a new look at these paranormals but I was left wanting more than was given.



Last Edited on: 10/9/08 8:56 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/9/2008 3:39 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2008
Posts: 42
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Wow, I am a bit surprised by the negative reviews on this series - I love it! Banks is good, she offers a interesting twist on the whole vampires and their creation world, getting very biblical with it, with a well thought perspective of the good v/s evil, and who's to say who is which, paradigm. It is not light and fluffy reading. I found it pretty thought provoking.

You would think the whole series was written in straight ebonics from the way some of you have replied. It isn't. Considering that the main characters are black and hispanic, the voices used are black and hispanic English. It seemed natural/honest to the characters to me - and a little refreshing. It's not like proper English is spoken by anyone in America anymore, not on tv, not in the movies, and certainly not by any of the authors of books in this genre. 

Heidi, I would recommend that you read at least the first book and form your own opinion as to whether to continue on with the series - if you like it you have many more books to look forward to, and if not, well, it's only one book, swap it out.

 

Date Posted: 10/9/2008 5:00 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2006
Posts: 133
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I may get it after I finish the other series I am working on reading. I'm kinda funny, I have to have the entire series in hand, or know I can pick it up at Walmart when I am ready lol. After I get the other 20 or so books, I know I want I may check it out. Thanks for the different perspective on it :)

Date Posted: 10/9/2008 6:11 PM ET
Member Since: 8/13/2007
Posts: 22
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I couldn't have put it more clearly then JustEyez.  I whole heartedly agree, and would suggest that you read the 1st book and have the 2nd one within easy reach.  With each book, the series gets better and better.

Date Posted: 10/9/2008 9:19 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
Posts: 3,730
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It's a book, and it should be written in a way that doesn't require some readers to need a translator....it's too annoying to have to read a sentence and then figure out what the hell was said. BTW, I haven't read any books that use proper english, cept maybe a historical....there is a difference between proper and just plain old understandable english. I read the first 3 books and it wasn't worth the trouble anymore.

Date Posted: 10/10/2008 6:14 AM ET
Member Since: 6/6/2008
Posts: 4,596
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I do not want to turn this into a combative situation, so I am going to try to word this as clearly as possible and hope it doesn't cause offense. But I personally have to raise my eyebrows a little at the whole "Considering that the main characters are black and Hispanic, the voices used are black and Hispanic English."

There is no such thing. I am Hispanic and there is no such thing as black or Hispanic English. There is ENGLISH period and yes I am looking at it from a teacher's standpoint as well as a Latina's.

Yes people may have accents if they come from another country that makes the language sound different. I also believe, and this is stretching it a little, that there are dialectal changes in the language, such as the difference between English spoken in the south and English spoken in urban areas. That does make sense. From a learning perspective, we develop our speech patterns by mimicking what we hear when we are children and developing that auditory and oral connection to the language. If we grow up in an area that ahs a particular flavor to their speech patterns like Queens vs. Staten Island Vs the South or the Midwest, you definitely can tell that we don't all sound like one another.

However, we are all speaking English, and to make a broad statement like "Hispanics speak Spanish and black English" is a little offensive because that’s putting us in a box.  Maybe you were referring to the accent? I would call that "Urban English" and blacks, Hispanics, whites, Asians etc., all use it if they are living in urban areas and are adopting that vibe. I grew up in NYC and heard it from people of all nationalities and walks of life. It’s more of a cultural phenomenon.

The majority of my friends are black and Hispanic (I grew up in the "ghetto") and we speak English period, no matter what flavor we add to it. I personally speak perfect unaccented English, yet I love my arroz con habichuelas and I dance salsa and when my temper gets fired up my husband RUNS! lol. I am totally a Latina but I am also American and speak the language that is our countries.

Yes, some of the people I know including my brother and members of my family definitely speak with a definitive hint of "urban dialect" in their voice, but the fact remains that although the English spoken in the USA differs from England’s accepted tongue, the rules for the English spoken here are pretty standard. When you go to school, you get taught the rules of the English language and if you handed your teacher a paper written the way you speak to your friends, you'd get it back with red mark.

On TV and in movies yes people may speak with the accents of their neighborhood. I have a friend from Queens that you can barely understand lol. LOVE HER TO DEATH but I'm always saying "Slow it DOWN Ro!" But she is still speaking English as it is taught in schools. It just sounds different because of her neighborhood and the local dialect. But when it comes to writing, the English is standard. Even our emails here back and forth, some people on these forums may have strong accents when they speak or do so with a more urban sound but you can't tell in the writing because we are all following the standard English rules.

I am not saying you cannot speak with the urban edge elsewhere-I do it. My friends do it. That’s fine. HOWEVER if you are going to publish a book for the masses, and you want it to speak to everyone as I am sure Ms. Banks intends since she does do a good job of really incorporating that multicultural aspect, then you need to be a little broader with the language choices. Otherwise it becomes a niche rather than mainstream which can be fine in certain capacities but I am sure she would rather be put into the main paranormal and romance section than the smaller and sometimes unfortunately overlooked "Black and Spanish special interest" sections.

Having worked in a  bookstore, I know how important it can be for authors to mainstream if they want to target larger audiences, especially in states and cities where there might not be such a large urban population. Laurell K Hamilton for instance who isn't a fave of mine anymore but who is very popular, her books could be read here in the US or across the country no matter where as long as the person reading understood standard English. But Ms. Banks might not be able to reach as many because a black or Spanish person living in Africa or South America for instance, who understands the basics of standard English, might be confused by the urban inflection because that’s cultural here but not in other places.

As far as saying that no authors in this genre (referring to paranormal) are writing in English, that’s also not true. Are they writing in England's English? No way. That’s true. But are they writing in the way that is grammatically correct and accepted by editors who are following the standard English rules and patterns? Oh yes. If you pick up a Katie Macalister or Anya Bast novel (both paranormal romance) and compare it to a Tess Gerritsen (suspense) or Stephen King novel to use a broader example, the grammatical rules are all the same. There might be more inflection used in one or the other, different kinds of prose, some more rambling than others, but it’s all still understandable. Someone from the Midwest or someone from the Bronx could easily pick up all 4 authors and read straight through, no problems. I think that’s what people are trying to get at when they mention that they couldn't understand the characters in Ms. Bank's novels-not everyone is acquainted with the way some people in urban areas can speak because it is dialectal and not "standard English."

Sorry to ramble and again, I mean no offense. I just needed to say my piece there because as a teacher it's a peeve of mine and I really find it damaging when young people in the urban areas I am in refer to "Spanish English' or "black English" because there is no such thing. There is dialect which again is ok but if you don’t know how to turn it off or know the difference, it makes it harder to get on in the world.

Getting back to the book, to the OP I would say try one and see how you like it personally.  You might love it. All about personal taste. Not good or bad either way.

 *BTW sorry about the crazy number of edits-I was rewriting and then kept missing typos. LOL I can write not type.

 



Last Edited on: 10/10/08 9:05 AM ET - Total times edited: 5
Date Posted: 10/11/2008 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2006
Posts: 1,099
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I could never get into the Vampire Huntress stuff but I do highly recommend Bad Blood, the first in her next series.  I think the writing style will appeal to those that had issues with Vampire Huntress.

Date Posted: 10/12/2008 9:56 PM ET
Member Since: 7/25/2005
Posts: 24,552
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Some friends of mine for my birthday a few years ago met LA Banks at a writers retreat  and got the first three books inscribed for me as a birthday present.  I'd never read her and, unfortunately, that hasn't changed.  I have three books with very nice, very personal inscriptions and they sit there...on the bookshelf...mocking me.

 

 

Date Posted: 10/13/2008 8:29 AM ET
Member Since: 6/6/2008
Posts: 4,596
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Susan how many books are out in the new series BAD BLOOD? I like to start series when they are a few books in so I dont get desperate waiting for the next book lol.

Date Posted: 10/13/2008 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2008
Posts: 1,051
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For anyone interested, I currently have Minion ISBN: 0312987013 that has a small amount of water damage for free with any order from my shelf (for those interested The Awakening ISBN: 0312987021 is on my shelf). :D



Last Edited on: 10/13/08 9:06 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/13/2008 10:23 AM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2006
Posts: 1,099
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Jennifer - the 2nd book in the series just came out at the end of Sept (Bite The Bullet).  Now I've got to get that one myself!

 

Date Posted: 10/17/2008 3:23 PM ET
Member Since: 6/6/2008
Posts: 4,596
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Awesome Susan Thank you! And who is that CUTE baby in your avatar?!

Date Posted: 10/17/2008 6:19 PM ET
Member Since: 11/29/2005
Posts: 953
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Whew! I learned a lot in this thread. lol I have the first book but haven't read it yet. I had a few friends that didn't like it but I like to form my own opinion. Normally I will buy as many in a series I think I will like before reading it, but with this one, I held off.

Now I'm really interested in reading it. I have read a couple of stories, from other authors,  with the "urban" feel to them and it was really different reading. I found that I just have to adjust, just like reading Outlander with all of the Scottish accents. I'll have to bump it up in the tbr pile. :D

Thanks ladies for an entertaining thread on this boring Friday afternoon. ; )