The twelfth review of the ongoing series called Lily Quinn written by Natalie and Eric Severine today on the Tale. You can find my first review here, the second here, the third here, the fourth here, and the fifth review here. The sixth review be found here and the review of the seventh work can be found here. The review of the eighth work in the series can be found here and my review of the ninth work is here with the tenth review here. My review of the prior work to this one can be found here on the Tale as well.
One of the core points of the series has been Lily’s thoughts about being partly succubus. Trying to put into words the conflict between her human side and her succubus side. There are differences, there’s no question, but there is also one singular thing that they both need. Perhaps in that comes a realization for both sides, an understanding that, for a succubus, some souls are worth far more than they can imagine.
Nothing can, regardless of bravado, dominance or need, overcome that point. The understanding of this, in all its forms, whether of lust or love, matters.
- Title: Spells of Binding
- Author: Natalie Severine and Eric Severine
- Length: 87 Pages
- ASIN: B01LIYVW8K
- IBSN: 9781370098675
- Publishing Date: September 30, 2016
- This work in Kindle Format at Amazon.com
- This work in Various Formats at Smashwords.com
It tells the story of:
Two months ago, everything went to hell. What should have been a routine monster hunt ended with a demon in my living room. He killed one of my best friends that night and I still don’t understand why.
Now I’ve got a lead on the wizard who summoned up my demonic trouble from the Nether and nothing in this world or any other will keep me from hunting him down. But the College has put the rest of the bounty hunters on the job and barred me from joining in!
This won’t be easy, but I like hard just fine. Even the little information I’ve been able to uncover is suspicious as hell. To find my answers and some measure of justice, I’ll have to face my own demons – and considering I’m half succubus, that’s saying something.
There comes a time when answers cannot be avoided or evaded. For Lily, the questions she has been carrying from the moment she was born have their answers. Whether the question of family, self or love, the answers are what they will be. Some answers come with a cost, some with pain and some, when the universe gives the gift, the ability for Lily to see within herself and face the one thing she’s never been able to. Herself.
I think, as a whole, this part of Lily’s story is, for me, the most captivating in many ways. That is mainly for one important reason: Lily gets some answers. Throughout the series Lily has been asked questions about herself, but never finding, or being allowed to see, the answers she wanted. While some are answered, one that I find the most telling for me wasn’t. The question of who, exactly, Lily’s mother is. We have the answer about her father, a resolution of which in this work that I felt was very true to the characters involved in how they reacted. It was a bit fleeting for me, I was hoping for a little more than what is, but, again, the character themselves simply makes that, as a whole, impossible.
Beyond the main plot, the events of the story both erotic and otherwise, there’s an interesting discussion about dominance and submission. It is a very rare thing for writers to understand the dynamics of such well. Speaking from my own past, my experiences, there are so many works that forget the single most important thing about such relationships. The encounter which Lily has, the lessons taught, was for me, one of the most erotic moments in the series. Not from any sort of sexual moments, but rather the teaching to Lily of what it means to be a Domme. What the rules are, but more so, what the most important thing is. That theme runs through all of the story that comes afterwards and is very telling to define the events that unfold. Some characters understand, but so many just do not.
Lily is drawn into an encounter with the “evil” of this series, who has been lurking in the shadows. Some characters are “evil” with no purpose, not having the tone, the presence to carry things well and make the plot stand on its own. Lily is forced to battle against her own sexuality as a result, and being made to, just how strong her will and character is shown to be I found delightful and, more to the point, made sense from all else that has come before in the series.
Having Lily deal with her own truths, the dark within her, was telling. It’s the core of this work, for me the strongest part of the series to date. To see both sides of Lily, to know what could be, what was, and what is, captures so much of the preceding works in the series. As an aside, to be able to put into words Lily’s soul, to then reveal the truth of the series, that was difficult at times to read. As bright as Lily is, her mirrored self is as dark. The one the suffers through this isn’t unexpected, but the truth given needed to be told.
The cost however, that’s the question. There is a cost to be paid. Lily’s been through so much, but not been able to deal with it. She’s carrying a lot within her, it would be nice to see her open her eyes and really see what’s always been there for her. Knowing what she does now, seeing the threat for what it is, things aren’t seemingly going to be better very soon in a lot of ways. Sometimes the resolution isn’t so much resisting as bending to the winds.
The erotica has a lovely scene between Max and Lily, which I laughed over. There’s a smattering of D/s moments which Lily isn’t part of, but tells a story of their own. I’ll admit that some of the more violent moments, BDSM-wise, didn’t do a lot for me, but they were core to the story, to set things up. There’s a fine line which the authors didn’t cross I felt, but when the story moved to another “level” it didn’t feel out of place what happened.
Lily’s character developed in this work more than any other by far. Max was central, needed, wasn’t left to the side when it mattered. His presence was telling, important. The two combined, the moments they had, both intimate and otherwise, were wonderfully hot and delicious. Their relationship, the truths of it, are there, Lily seems to know them, it’s a question of where that takes them both. I’m hoping for that to be all I have been waiting for.
The work tied up a lot of loose ends, made connections with past works in the series as well. Many of the questions that have I have been mulled over were answered, not all, but quite a few nonetheless. The heat was everything I expected, but more importantly, the lesson taught about dominance to Lily, that one thing along made this part of the series special for me.
Four and a half out of five pitchforks.
Telling a story about dominance and submission which does not neglect the singular most important point of all matters. Opening the door, telling what lurks within Lily matters. Revealing what Max has always known, but Lily has missed matters. Taking Lily’s past, explaining it, telling of why things are as they are matters. The main plot is revealed, the climax of the series comes soon.
One single work left, to appear on Halloween 2016. I have my hopes, some thoughts, but I’ll hold them close for the moment. Finding one’s self and coming to terms with them is hard. Sometimes that takes more than yourself to do.