Okay, first – a disclaimer: This is the second book in Ms. Devlin’s Dark Realm series. Perhaps if I had read the first part, my impressions would have been different.
***This is a spoiler-free review.***
The story had lots of interesting elements: a vampire hero who was previously a Templar Knight; a captive demon escaped from its mausoleum prison because of a hurricane; the chaos and devastation that ensue after said hurricane; a vampiric, jaded but closet submissive heroine, who is also a New Orleans cop.
Overall, if you are looking for a quick, very steamy read – this book does the trick. Ms. Devlin has a gift for keeping the sex scenes from feeling monotonous, and the writing direct and well-paced.
The prose was clean, and the characterizations were good – though I have to say that Chessa’s issues were enraging at times as an obstacle to her acceptance of Nic. And Nic’s accent and pet-names for her switched from the old cliche ‘ma petite’ to a cowboy drawl, to some sorta Cajun-ish feel too often for my tastes. The antagonist started with a bang, very creepy and sinister, but I was a bit disappointed with the resolution. The book was left wide open for the story to continue.
There was a lot of potential here, and while I was interested to see how it all came together, the story left me with an ‘unfinished’ feeling that irks. Erotica is not my usual genre of choice, but paranormal romance is. For paranormal romance, this book is a stretch. It falls much easier into the erotic romance/erotica category. The sex scenes dominate most of the book, and while they do drive the relationship plot forward, I found them distracting from the battle against the main antagonist, which had the potential to engage me much further.
Even though my reaction was luke-warm, the book did keep me turning the pages. I think it’s a testament to Ms. Devlin’s skills at pacing and writing scenes that demand attention, even if the action-driven plot took a very secondary position.
I don’t have an erotica scale to grade it, but on my paranormal romance scale, I gave it two and a half bleeding hearts out of five.