FROM THE BOOKCOVER:The Demon King and I is the first in a new paranormal series featuring the Carruthers Sisters. From the cover blurb this would seem to be a light-hearted fun para-rom-com. Unfortunately the actual reading experience fell quite short of the mark.
The four Caruthers sisters are heiresses with privilege, wealth, beauty, and brains. But these party girls have something extra as well. As the Guardian Keys, possessors of an ancient family secret, they also hold the fate of the world in their hands—between cocktails.
Gallery owner Gillian Caruthers is a sensation in the art world—in this world, that is. In her other world she's called the Assassin, a real knockout with an affinity for snuffing out dimension-jumpers who foul up her personal space. She never expected to join forces with one. But when a plague of murderous demons plunges the earth into darkness, she has no choice but to get a little help from a being who knows his stuff.
Arath, the demon king, isn't quite the scaly thing she expected. In fact, he's kind of hot—and a bit of an enigma, if his strange past is any indication. In solving that riddle, as well as finding the cause for the sudden influx of mystical creatures on Earth; Gillian may just have to work more closely with Arath than she'd anticipated. And somewhere between the light and the darkness they might discover they have more in common than they imagined...
My enjoyment of the story was diluted by a wide range of issues that left me dissatisfied and disappointed including -
- The characters all sound the same are lacking in distinctive personality. The sisters sound the same, supporting guys the same – very one-dimensional. Flat dialogue doesn’t help.
- There is an uneasy mix of fantasy and science. Plasma guns and swords. Magical portals and black holes. Much of the action is nonsensical. Plasma guns mow down twenty enemies at a time yet a Guardian will still bring out a sword. Why bother? Despite the ability to teleport, Gillian takes a lengthy plane journey in the middle of a crisis because she needs to ‘be seen’ arriving in the normal manner (and appropriate time delay) to protect her secret identity. Why not have the plane fly to the destination and simply teleport into the plane 5 minutes after it arrives?
- All the interesting action takes place off stage and is told through character infodumps. Show me, don’t tell me.
- The central mystery of who the murders and conspirators are is revealed towards the end in a conversation not as a result of character action and plotting. The dark force threatening the universe is never sufficiently described or elaborated upon to provide the necessary sense of menace.
- Romance novels often place barriers in the way of the main characters to effectively raise the romantic tension. Here Gillian flits about for chapters between joint scenes with Arath constantly deflating any romantic build up between them. The romantic pay off when it does happen is minimal and lacking in spark and chemistry.
- In several scenes there is no real feeling that key characters were truly at risk so no emotional connection was possible.
- Gillian as the central character is supposed to be an art expert, celebrity, lawyer, Guardian and more, but her behaviour is superficial at best when she should be complex.
- Fight scenes are lacking in excitement and dynamics consisting mostly of green goo and blood.
Recognizing that my review of The Demon King and I is very likely a minority opinion, you may wish to check out some of these alternate reviews of the book.
Bitten By Books
Wild On Books
Errant Dreams Reviews
AUTHOR AND BOOK SHOWCASEOfficial Candace Havens Website
No excerpt available.