Friday, October 26, 2012

Review: Starved for Love by Annie Nicholas

I’ve never read a book about a succubus before, so I’m not familiar with their traits or background. I don’t know the typical living arrangements or habits. In Annie Nicholas’ Starved for Love, Pia, a succubus, still lives at home with her sisters, father and his three wives. The sister wives (and yes, they are called sister wives in the book) and the very controlling, powerful father all felt a little too Big Love for me. I was never much of a Big Love fan because I was bothered by the way the women allowed men to control their lives, which is exactly what I disliked about this story.

Pia’s in her mid-twenties, but she behaves very much like a child. She’s dependent on her three moms, still needs them to cook for her and take care of her. There are scenes in the book in which she’s playing around with her sisters, teasing and punching each other as if they are little girls. One of her favorite things to do is chase frogs, and mentions her father having to help her out of the swamp after she fell in a few weeks — not years — ago. She doesn’t have a real job, but gets paid to sing in a club owned by Sin, her vampire lover – or rather, suitor, as she refers to the men who provide her with orgasms to keep up her energy. But worst of all, she seems to be completely controlled by her father. He plays a role in selecting her suitors, he has the final word with regard to her finding a husband, and she “feeds” him with her energy.

When her father isn’t telling her what to do, she’s taking orders from Sin. It’s because of Sin that she meets Val, who wants to make her his sixth wife. Her father doesn’t approve, but Pia insists on allowing Val to court her. I didn’t find their relationship to be all that romantic. Val is yet another controlling male, telling her what she should and shouldn’t do. She’s simply exchanging one dominant male (her father), for another.

I don’t enjoy reading about weak, childlike women. Pia wants to fall in love, but her needs as a succubus make that difficult. She thinks she may be falling in love with Val, but she’s only known him for three days. I didn’t find that to be very convincing. There was never any sort of explanation that made their attraction to each other believable. They are certainly attracted to each other physcially, but I got the impression early on that Pia is physcially attracted to most men.

Also, I expected a book about woman who needed orgasms to survive to have hotter and more sex. There are a couple of interesting scenes, but not until toward the end of the book. They weren’t enough to make the rest of the story worth it. Much of the book felt like a big tease. There are so many characters in this story: Pia’s other suitors, Sin’s employees, the fallen angel that worked for Val. I was expecting these other characters to have bigger parts in the story, but in the end most of them were irrelevant. I kept reading, expecting something exciting to happen, maybe a big surprise ending that would redeem the story, but when the story was finished, it all felt like a bit of a letdown.

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