Saturday, February 23, 2013

White Tiger by Kylie Chan

This was a real stinker.  It's urban fantasy or paranormal romance, in which an Australian woman working in Hong Kong gets hired on as the full time nanny to the precocious four-year-old child of a handsome and wealthy man who turns out to be the incarnated form of a Chinese god.

We tromp through Chinese mythology as Emma yells at people a lot and talks her boss into training her in martial arts.  She turns out to be the best human student he's ever had, picking it up easily and wonderfully, and she's fast and talented and smart and powerful and incredibly, obnoxiously pushy.  And everyone in the household loves her, and she holds her own against various immortal creatures, and everyone wants her, including her hunky boss, but no, they cannot be together, so they're just going to pine away like 16 year olds.  Aargh.

Meanwhile Emma has two female friends, both stupid in different ways, and I couldn't believe in either friendship, as there appeared to be no real chemistry or warmth between them, and nearly all they talked about was men.  It was especially bad with her Chinese friend, as the two Australian girls both kind of looked down on the poor, stupid, deluded thing.  After all, we wouldn't want to have any admirable Chinese humans in a novel set mostly in China, now, would we?  Anyway, there aren't any to be found.  The good characters are all Anglophones or immortals.

So her immortal employer decides to make her the guardian of his child for when he is unable to remain on the mortal plane, and basically makes her a princess, and holds a big reception for all the immortals to bow down and proclaim their loyalty to his chosen woman, and some day they hope they can be together, but not now, sob.  Because she's just so damn special.

Yuck.  Yuck.  Yuck.  Yuck.  This was so troubling in so many ways.  Yuck.