Book Review: Demon’s Fall by Karalynn Lee

Title: Demon’s Fa9318237ll
Author: Karalynn Lee
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Carina Press
Rating: 4 stars

She was an angel at the gates of Hell.

When Kenan, an incubus, finds a caged angel for sale in the Hellsgate marketplace, he sees her as a challenge. Certain that his skills in seduction will work as well on a heavenly creature as they do on mortal women, he buys Jahel, intent on having her soul as a novelty in his collection.

Knowing he must gain Jahel’s trust if she is to come to his bed willingly, Kenan treats her more as his guest than as his slave. When she reveals what brought her to the mouth of Hell in the first place—retrieving the soul of a young girl she was guarding—he even offers to help her complete her mission.

Though he has promised Jahel freedom, Kenan soon realizes she has captured his heart instead. And as their passion for one another grows, they find themselves caught in a struggle between Heaven and Hell, one that will lead them to the very edge of the apocalypse…

Trying to get back the lost soul of a girl she was supposed to protect, the angel Jahel gets captured in Hellsgate, a town right before Hell proper; caged and eventually sold to an incubus demon named Kenan. Although he initially only has intentions to capture Jahel’s soul, he comes to like the angel and eventually aids her on her mission to reclaim the lost soul of her protegée. As his feelings for Jahel are growing beyond simple attraction, he learns that Jahel is not the only angel who got lost in Hellsgate as of late…and the other one has plans to commence a war between Heaven and Hell.

I’m usually not a very big fan of novellas, as I tend to believe it is hard to do some decent world-building, create believable character-development and make the reader feel a bond with your characters in such a short amount of time. However, Karalynn Lee manages these three jobs quite well, much to my amazement. The world-building in this novella is impressive. In just under 80 pages, she creates a world existing of three planes: the mortal plane, Heaven and Hell, an obscure ‘third path’ for people who choose neither Heaven nor Hell, and some towns with mixed inhabitants, both mortal and angelic in Heavensgate (although angels only fly over it, and hardly stop to walk through it) and human and demons in Hellsgate. I really liked the world she created: nothing too complicated, but a decent and solid base to fall back upon.

The currency in this well-designed world is souls: Angels want to save them, whereas Demons trade them for other goods. Kenan, one of two main characters, is used to collecting souls from his victims, who give him their full name and soul willingly once he seduces them – which is quite easy, considering he’s an incubus. Initially the only reason why he buys the Angel Jahel, is so he can secude her and then claim her soul. I loved how the dynamics between Kenan and Jahel slowly changed once he had taken her back to his home, and goes to great lengths to earn her trust and respect. The attraction between the two of them is clear from the start, but their affections towards each other develop slowly throughout the story – which was great, because I hate it when a romance blossoms too fast and then you lose every interest in the characters or their further relationship. This is definately not the case here.

The story is very action-driven, from reclaiming a Princess’ soul from a Hellhound, secuding a wicked queen and trying to prevent a war between Heaven and Hell, a lot of things are happening and sometimes it’s just too much. Had all of this taken place in a 400 page novel, it would have been fun and entertaining, but to push all of that in a 70 page novella is a bit too ambitious. It left a lot of questions unanswered (for instance: Why use souls as a currency? Why would an angel want to start a war between Heaven and Hell? What actually happens when you lose your soul?), and little room for details. All in all, this left me a bit dissapointed. There were things I wanted to know more about, and things I think could have easily been left out, for example the whole Snow White sidestory. To be honest, I was a bit confused about all that: when you have a novel with a great storyline and interesting characters, then why suddenly fall back upon a well-known fairytale? It just seemed out of place.

All in all, Karalynn Lee was perhaps a bit too ambitious considering all the things she wanted to include in the novel, but on the other hand she did do a great job writing her novella. I loved the characters and their relationship, the fast-paced action and upcoming Apocalyps/War Between Heaven and Hell backstory. The ending really left me impressed, although I won’t get into more detail about that. 😉 I would love to read more from her, and can’t wait until she writes another book. Perhaps a novel this time?

You can visit the author’s website here.

Comments

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed this book when I got it, but I agree that there were things I wanted to know. Perhaps a full-length novel would have done that!

  2. http://www.featherbookseries.com says:

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