Infinite Squee

Ben January #15(?): Murder in July

So, although I think I knew this at one point, I COMPLETELY forgot the publish date on this book changed from December to October after I pre-ordered it. So this was a lovely surprise to find on my doorstep! Magic books from heaven! (Or from Amazon and UPS, anyway.)

I love this series so much. My problem with the last few books is that they haven't really been delivering the found-family feels that are what I'm reading this series for (murder, shmurder) - every book has had its moments, but the only one since The Shirt on His Back that really did it for me was the Haiti book ... up until this point, because oh, this one delivered. ♥

Everything with Ben's people assembling to help him get Rose and the kids back was just ... oh my heart, my heart. I loved in that entire section how Ben is Really Not Okay and his narration reflects his trying-to-hold-it-togetherness while everyone around him can see just exactly how Not Okay he really is. And just ... everyone working together, Olympe OF ALL PEOPLE telling Shaw he can stay for dinner if he wants to (and this after her kids were kidnapped by white Americans!). Actually, this was one of my favorite Olympe appearances in any of the books; everything with her being a mom and a pillar of community strength was so gorgeous, and then showing her claws with the poison at the end.

And then Rose naming their second son after Hannibal(!!) and Hannibal's reaction to that ...

I have many, many feels about this book. I haven't enjoyed most of the books since the series rebooted with a new publisher quite as much as the early ones, but this one was wonderful. Even though I still don't really care about Ben's Paris backstory -- I mean, I like Ayasha and I like that Hambly writes about the diverse side of Paris in a way that few historical writers do, but I'm still in it for Ben's New Orleans family. Though I did like the wistfulness of his memories of Paris and the continued refrain about not being able to go back to the past; you can only move forward.


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