Sunday, November 27, 2011

Early Review of The Demon Lover (Fairwick Chronicles, #1) by Juliet Dark (Carol Goodman)

     "...I saw him. The fairytale prince from my teenaged dreams. With him came the scent of honeysuckle and salt air I remembered from those dreams and the longing I'd always felt. He stood on the threshold between shadow and moonlight, where he always hesitated...
     He stepped forward into the moonlight." 

     "I could see the places the moonlight touched: the plane of one cheekbone as his head tilted sideways, a lock of his hair falling over his brow, the blade of his shoulder. Each piece of him took shape and weight as the moonlight touched it. It was as if he were made of shadow and the moonlight was the knife sculpting him into being, each stroke of the knife giving him form...and weight." 

She thought she'd dreamed him...
She thought things that go bump in the night weren't real...
Well, you know what they say--two wrongs don't make a right.

After graduating from college with a PHD, Cailleach (pronounced Kay - lex) McFay, was keeping her job options open. Unlike most new graduates, she had an ace up her sleeve. She'd written a book called 'Sex Lives of the Demon Lovers' and the book had caused her name to get out there. The book had been based off her thesis which had been entitled, 'The Demon Lover in Gothic Literature: Vampires, Beasts, and Incubi'. Fairwick College had a folklore department like no other, and that is what attracted Callie to it. When she went for the interview her plan was to hold off for an offer from her alma mater, New York University. Somehow, after one night in the tiny Catskill village of Fairwick, she'd made up her mind to stay. That was before she realized dreams can come true or should I say can be true???

This book wasn't at all what I expected--it was more. Juliet Dark did a great job of setting up the groundwork of the world which she is creating for the series. A small college, hidden away in the Catskills mountains has a big secret. It's populated not only by humans, but supernatural beings as well. Additionally, it contains the only doorway left to the world of Faerie. As this is the first book of the series, I'm hoping one of the next books will delve into the land of Faerie.

I loved the heat created between Callie and her demon lover. Some of those love scenes were extremely hot. I couldn't help but grin when Callie (aka Cailleach) tells him, "You've got a lot to learn about woman, pal. There's more to love than being good in the sack." His response equally had me grinning as she found the words 'What more?" written in salt. I found it interesting that while Callie would love to trust her dream lover, she finds it difficult to do so because of all the lies associated with incubi which exist in folklore. To get at the truth she'll have to cut through all the lies and will second guess herself. She'll have to figure out who to trust and what to believe.

While the relationship between Callie and her demon lover take center stage during a fair portion of the book, there is more to it than just a romance. There are many secondary characters in the book who are interesting as well. They range from a Faerie queen, to vampires, to a student from a cursed family. Callie's grandmother, who raised her after her parents died is also intriguing. It's seems nothing is as it appears, and the decision to work at the college will change Callie's life forever. She'll learn things about herself, her family, and the world she may never have known if she hadn't decided to go to the Fairwick.

I liked the secondary story which is about a fictitious author named Dahlia LaMotte. She lived in Honeysuckle House years before Callie did. One of the things that added to Callie's wish to live in Honeysuckle House was that fact she'd have access to all of Dahlia's papers, even those that were never published. Many of Dahlia's stories revolved around a demon lover. While going through Dahlia's papers she realizes her demon lover may have been around for a very long time.

Another thing included in the book that tickled my fancy were mentions of authors Mary Stewart and Victoria Holt. I used to read their books when I was younger. Victoria Holt, incidentally has a book entitled 'The Demon Lover'. Hmmm... Could these be authors that inspired Juliet Dark's own writing?

The demon lover is not at all what I expected. I liked him more than I would have thought and found myself wishing Callie would/could trust him. The only thing I didn't like was the ending. It came too soon, and I had so many unanswered questions. Luckily, this is the first book in a series. Yay! I hope the second book will include more of the demon lover. He had a story for which I'd like to find out more about. He was once human but captured and kept in Fairie.

On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earns a SHOWER rating - a cold shower is necessary (need I say more?). Some books should come with a warning - make sure your significant other is handy or your shower is in working order. lol Overall, I give it 4 out of 5 roses. I thoroughly enjoyed world Ms. Dark created and the story kept me enraptured from the moment I picked it up.

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