Sunday, November 21, 2010

Review: Mark of the Demon (Kara Gillian Book 1)

Mark of the Demon (Kara Gillian, Book 1)Product Description
Cop and conjurer of demons, she's a woman in danger of losing control—to a power that could kill....

Why me? Why now? That’s what Beaulac, Louisiana, detective Kara Gillian was asking herself when an angelic creature named Rhyzkahl unexpectedly appeared during a routine summoning. Kara was hoping to use her occult skills to catch a serial killer, but never had she conjured anything like this unearthly beautiful and unspeakably powerful being whose very touch set off exquisite new dimensions of pleasure. But can she enlist his aid in helping her stop a killer who’s already claimed the lives—and souls—of thirteen people? And should she? The Symbol Man is a nightmare that the city thought had ended three years ago. Now he’s back for an encore and leaving every indication on the flesh of his victims that he, too, is well versed in demonic lore.

Kara may be the only cop on Beaulac’s small force able to stop the killer, but it is her first homicide case. Yet with Rhyzkahl haunting her dreams, and a handsome yet disapproving FBI agent dogging her waking footsteps, she may be in way over her head...

When looking for something a little bit different from the more traditional urban fantasy I’ve read, I found this little gem.  The demons described here are not evil, they simply exist on another plane and can be summoned to our world but the summoner pays a price.  The demon is then honor-bound to do what the summoner requires.  It’s an interesting take on demons and the author did well with creating the world.
Kara is a fun character to read, seems normal except for  her ability to summon demons.  She grew up with her wacky aunt, who taught her summoning.  Now she’s a police detective, brand new to homicide, who landed a huge serial killer case.  We quickly meet several people on the force, some FBI guys and a demon lord.   The author did a pretty decent job fleshing out the characters and their relationship to Kara but still leaving room for further development.
The mystery part was pretty good; I had fun working out whodunit along with Kara.   I’d recommend this book because it’s a great combination of genres: urban fantasy, murder mystery, suspense, with just a hint of a romance in the wings. It probably wouldn’t interest younger teens, but I'm ready to read the next one!
Sensuality: one brief sex scene, not excessively graphic, and some sensual dreams
Rating: 4 stars

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