[Book Review & TBBR Rant] Under Grand Hotel: Kiss & Kill

i191199Under Grand Hotel: Kiss & Kill

(Under Grand Hotel sequel)

Mika Sadahiro (Oh my goddess!!)

What rating would you give it?
4 of 5 Stars

What did you think of the book?

FAIR WARNING! THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS  FOR KISS AND KILL * AND* THE ORIGINAL UNDER GRAND HOTEL  SERIES.
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!   🙂

I’ll be honest – This is yet another favourite author of mine. Pretty much anything she writes/draws/creates I’m all for in seconds. I love her especially for telling dark, gritty, nasty, dirty stories where everything isn’t sunshine and roses. I love her art style, her eroticism, her diversity of characters, and her unabashed nature to write and draw whatever the fuck she wants, likes, or feels like.

And for that, I have the utmost respect and admiration for her. Most of the time, her characters aren’t “the good guys” or “the innocent types.” They’re rough around the edges. Straight-up fucked up at best. Completely jack-rabbit crazy at worst. They’ve been through hard times, and are often STILL GOING THROUGH hard times as the story begins, and CONTINUE TO GO THROUGH THEM right up to the story’s end. [Sometimes it gets ugly, but that’s what makes it so perfect to me.]

These aren’t the heroes everyone roots for. They’re criminals through and through (although that generally never bothers me none anyhow…) In fact, some of them could have done some REALLY nasty shit that even *I* can’t stand.

But she (the one and only Mika Sadahiro-sama) gives them a story. And makes them REAL. And makes us hate to love them or love to hate them—

Or both.

And this is where Kiss & Kill comes in. In fact, where the whole Under Grand Hotel series comes into play.

These people (for the most part) are all criminals, deviants, rapists, murderers, and downright basterds. And yet… she makes their gritty, lawless little world a believable (although, at times, improbable) reality that sucks the reader in—if for no other reason than to know how it will all end.

Because it can’t possibly end well.

…right?

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Well. Maybe not in Kiss & Kill, but in the original UGH series? Let’s just say surprises happen every day. Hur hur >3

But enough of that! Back to this very long TBBR~

I read the original UGH series years ago (and occasionally reread it every now and then whenever the mood fancies) and only up to this year(? last year? idk?) did I learn the gracious Mika Sadahiro-sama, continued the UGH storyline with a brand new sequel Kiss & Kill: following the events of the last novel, but featuring the supporting and minor characters as the new pro- and antagonists. Here the new shut-call is Erie Chersi (a face we only briefly encountered in the last book of UGH) who has his sights set on Norman (remember him? Our crazy motherfucker who was the last shut-call’s “woman” before Sen came along? Tried to kill Sen to get Swordfish back? Eventually fell in love with another new inmate [who ended up being someone COMPLETELY different from who he pretended to be]? You know. That guy? Yeah, well, he’s our new protagonist. I know. *is just as surprised and shocked as you are* O___o;;; ).

Norman’s kinda gone batshit crazy (and I mean real CRAY-CRAY now, as he is constantly trying to commit suicide in any way possible). And it gets weirder still! Erie (who, I’m just gonna come out and say it now, is the one who stabbed Norman and shoved him in one of those washers in the laundry room a.k.a. TRIED TO KILL HIM AND LEAVE HIM TO DIE)  is now the one constantly looking out for him and thwarting his suicide attempts.

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Moving right along to the prison doctor who also keeps saving Norman’s ass life, and it would seem the whole world is out to make sure his ass stays ALIVE.

But to what end?

To Norman, there’s really nothing worth living for and Erie, who seems obsessed with him, is not helping things in the slightest. This guy means to die and it seems like everyone and their dog is taking great pains to ensure that doesn’t happen.

Welcome to UGH.

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So the stage is set. This sort of messed up scenario is right up my alley. I am enjoying it and immediately know it’s going to get a “5” or “5 to infinity” star rating from me because—this IS Mika Sadahiro we’re talking about here. This IS UGH. How could it get anything BUT?!

Then I get to the end. And I am le upset.

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CAN SOMEBODY SAY “INCONCLUSIVE ENDING?!?!” BECAUSE WHY AND HOW COULD YOU DO THAT TO ME?!?!

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I don’t know who I wanted Norman to end up with. I don’t even know if I wanted him to end up with ANYONE. I don’t even know if I liked him (I certainly didn’t in UGH…) AND YET I DON’T… I MEAN HE DIDN’T DESERVE that kinda ending! NONE of them did. Especially Erie (now that was one twisted fucker I did like).

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Kinda wanted them all to die at the end though.

And I’m not say that because I hated them or anything… I’m actually saying it out of love.

They just deserved to die, that’s all. And they didn’t. So… UPSET. /DNAUYHRI

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This is why the book gets a 4. Or maybe even a 4.5, but definitely not a perfect score.

YOU DO NOT SCORE WITH AN ENDING LIKE THAT, OKAY?!?!

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This might just be the only good bit of news to come out of this:

CLICK TO REVEAL SPOILER

 

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Would you recommend this book?

Are you kidding? Of COURSE I’d recommend this! Although, I would warn any who might think this is just your average, everyday “sorta twisted” yaoi. Some of the things in here are quite dark and explicit, so that would certainly be a thing to mention before recommending to anyone. There is much sex. Some violent and non-con. You have been warned. Also, remember this shit takes place IN A PRISON.

If that doesn’t scare you off right away, then please. By all means, make yourself at home.

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Reviewed by AMS (amomentsilence)

Publisher: Daitosha
Publication Date: January 2013
Format: paperback (Japanese)
Pages: ??
Genre: Yaoi Manga, M/M, Psychological,
Abuse, Suicide, Lust, Prison, Dark & Twisted,
Inconclusive Ending
Age: Adult (EXPLICIT & MATURE)
Reviewer: AMS (amomentsilence)
Source: Bought
Challenge: 2014 Good Reads Reading Challenge (100)
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