Thursday, February 28, 2013

Bookish Thoughts: The Demon Lover by Juliet Dark


The Demon Lover by Juliet Dark
Ballantine Books, 2011
Romance (Paranormal); 448 pgs

I loved this book. My husband's been giving me a hard time for liking it at all, but it was so good!  Juliet Dark (also known by the name Carol Goodman) is a master of description, weaving a tale that pulled me in and has me craving more.  I was reminded of how I felt when I read Karen Marie Moning's Darkfever, although the books are very different.
From the Publisher: 
Since accepting a teaching position at remote Fairwick College in upstate New York, Callie McFay has experienced the same disturbingly erotic dream every night: A mist enters her bedroom, then takes the shape of a virile, seductive stranger who proceeds to ravish her in the most toe-curling, wholly satisfying ways possible. Perhaps these dreams are the result of her having written the bestselling book The Sex Lives of Demon Lovers. Callie’s lifelong passion is the intersection of lurid fairy tales and Gothic literature—which is why she’s found herself at Fairwick’s renowned folklore department, living in a once-stately Victorian house that, at first sight, seemed to call her name.

But Callie soon realizes that her dreams are alarmingly real. She has a demon lover—an incubus—and he will seduce her, pleasure her, and eventually suck the very life from her. Then Callie makes another startling discovery: Her incubus is not the only mythical creature in Fairwick. As the tenured witches of the college and the resident fairies in the surrounding woods prepare to cast out the demon, Callie must accomplish something infinitely more difficult—banishing this supernatural lover from her heart.

I actually picked up this book to read only because I liked the sound of the second book in the series.  I admit to being a bit turned off by the description of this book, afraid it would be more sex than story.  And while there was a lot of sex, there was also quite a good story.

When Callie first visits Fairwick, she has no real interest in taking the job there.  She and her boyfriend had long ago agreed to settle in New York City once they finished school.  But Callie is drawn to the town, particularly an old Victorian house once owned by a famous author.  She buys the home and accepts the position even despite all her reasons not to.  As Callie will soon discover, both she and the town of Fairwick are more than they at first appear.

I loved the setting of the novel.  From the old Victorian house and the woods behind with all its secrets to the university and its eclectic staff to the small town itself, with its charm and unique townsfolk.  This is a place I would love to explore further, getting to know the people and taking in the beauty and heart of my surroundings.

Callie is the typical heroine, strong and intelligent.  Her students are important to her, and it shows in her teaching and in her interactions with her students.  Callie is practical, but a romantic at heart.  She doesn't want to believe the man who comes to her in her dreams is real, can't imagine he could be, but as the evidence mounts, she struggles with what to do.  Callie's emotions are at war with what she knows is right.  It's an age old dilemma, but one many of us can relate to on some level.

The incubus haunting Callie isn't the only trouble she faces in The Demon Lover.  There's also the curse on one of her student's family and a mysterious illness going around.  There is also her grandmother, a formidable woman with her own agenda.

The book has a distinct Gothic feel to it, which makes it all the more appealing.  It is beautiful and intense.  And I loved every word.  I hated to leave the world Juliet Dark created and am anxious to jump into the second book of the Fairwick Chronicles, Water Witch.


Rating: * (Very Good +)

To learn more about Carol Goodman/Juliet Dark and her books, please visit the author's website.

Source: I received an e-copy of this book for review from the publisher via NetGalley.


© 2013, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

16 comments:

  1. I still need to read the Darkfever series, but you have definitely intrigued me by your review with this one. I am definitely going to have to check it out now as I haven't read a good, sexy paranormal novel in too long.

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    1. Michelle - I hope you like this one if you do read it. I am so glad I took a chance on it.

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  2. For the gothic atmosphere I'd love to read it. The story sounds ok but the gothicness and strong heroine are what appeals.

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    1. Charlie - I really liked the book's atmosphere and mood. It was one of those books that stayed with me even when I wasn't reading it.

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  3. Sounds good but then give me a Victorian house as a setting and I'm generally happy.

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    1. Tracy - Haha! I know what you mean. Same here.

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  4. I accidentally read the second book before I read the first one, but I liked it! I clearly need to backtrack and read this too.

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    1. Meghan - I can't wait to read the second book. I hope you like this one!

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  5. I JUST read Meghan's review of the second novel, and now this good review of the first - this is not normally my genre, but I think I might just give it a try.

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    1. Elizabeth - I was pleasantly surprised with this one as I didn't think it would be my cup of tea. At least not from the description. Once I began reading though, I realized it was exactly the type of book I like to read.

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  6. Silly husbands!!! LOL!! Now you have me wanting to read this one! I love the gothic tone you described..I'm attracted to those types of stories big time!!!

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    1. Staci - Right?! Silly husbands, indeed! I hope you do read it, Staci. I'd love to know what you think of this one.

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  7. This sounds like one I need to add to my ever growing TBR...

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    1. Kathleen - As hard as I try not to build on my own TBR pile, it still seems to grow just about every day.

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  8. I loved this book, too! For all the same reasons. Your review has made me start anticipating the second in the series again!

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    1. Becca - I really need to read that second book. I am glad you loved this one too!

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