Oct 16 2016

A Review of Kissed by Temptation by Deanna Chase

Kissed by Temptation by Deanna Chase

Kissed by Temptation by Deanna Chase

The second of two reviews of works in the Coven Pointe series by Deanna Chase, and you can find my first review here on the Tale. One thing I noticed was that this second work in the series appeared almost a full two years after the premiere work did. Now, in the meantime, the author continued their Bourbon Street series, releasing a number of works in that series.

Continuity between works in a series is an important thing. Reading one work and finding a character has come into their powers, with seemingly no understanding of them sets up a certain expectation. Moving into the next work and finding that character has a sudden mastery of what they can do is a bit jarring.

While that can be overlooked by the story they appear in, another trap can be creating a force of evil that is, sadly, stereotypical in their nature and their actions. While that can just be a means for telling the larger story, if that stereotypical character is exactly that and nothing more, it becomes rather disappointing.

The second work in the series is:

  • Title: Kissed by Temptation
  • Author: Deanna Chase
  • Length: 32 Pages
  • ASIN: B01DRZSXQW
  • Publishing Date: April 2, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

It tells the story of:

The last place sex-witch Mati Ballintine wants to be is at a holiday sorority party. But when the high angel from the council orders her to protect a new angel recruit, she has no choice but to go and grit her teeth through the frat boys’ advances.

The night turns from bad to worse when a demon appears and is hell-bent on taking the angel to Hell. Mati and her incubus boyfriend Vaughn will need to combine forces to not only save the angel, but everyone else the demon leaves in his wake.

Matt’s list of problems has gotten longer. Now responsible for an angel, working for her sister, and then getting invited to a sorority party held by witches is painful enough. When an incubus appears, and it isn’t her boyfriend, then trouble is brewing. When her boyfriend does appear, then things turn to a boil.

Being that this work was released almost two years after the first in the series, there’s a feeling of a lot of time passing, a lot of events going on with both Mati and Vaughn, but the problem comes in that the author doesn’t really delve into what’s happened between the end of the prior work and this one. References are made that hint at things, but not in a detailed way. For Mati, that’s more of a question of how she got into the situation she’s in, and why it happened. For Vaughn it’s quite a lot more confusing as he’s moved from “just becoming” an incubus into being one that has a lot of power, is part of a larger group, and seems to be more mature and developed a character than he was in the first work.

And there’s the problem. The shifting is jarring, confusing, and having not read the main series by this author in which I assume that all of this is explained, things didn’t quite ring true. As well, the popping up of characters from the other series in passing, the dropping in of other characters that Mati knows out of hand, but the reader doesn’t leads to more confusion.

That then brings me to the “main evil” in this work, which is the appearance of another, unnamed incubus. I don’t like characters that seemingly have no plan, no real personality, and seem to be in the story as cannon fodder, or a means to an end. An incubus that only seems to care about having sex with another character, and being singularly focused on that, is boring. Such characters are doomed to fail and that’s clear from the moment this one makes his presence known. Everything is pretty much expected, there’s nothing which shows some sort of intelligence, planning, or even a semblance of a scheme. As such, while some of the scenes are cute, occasionally funny, and have just enough to keep my interest, the unnamed incubus really doesn’t amount to very much and I wish they had.

There’s really not much in the way of erotica in this work, though there are some wonderful romantic moments that I adored. The work is mainly an adventure/mystery and it manages to make that work overall. The issue for me comes from the disconnect from the first work to this one and the threat, which wasn’t more than it appeared to be.

The writing is stellar in how scenes are described, Mati’s thoughts and actions, and overall there’s quite a lot to enjoy overall. I just wish there was more to be found in the main plot, how it was resolved, and, most of all, a better connection with the first work in the series. Explaining Vaughn’s shift, or perhaps more on an explanation of how time has passed would have made the difference.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

I wanted to like this work more than I do, but the unnamed incubus being so very stereotypical took away so much from the work for me. Mixed into that the sudden unexplained shifting in Vaughn’s abilities and my confusion grew. Then putting Mati’s new situation into things, and not really explaining much about that save in passing, left me lost and at a point where I had to push all of that aside before it overwhelmed the story for me.

Again, much like the first work in this series, the author is assuming that someone is familiar with their main series and I think that’s a bit of a mistake. Sometimes a story is interesting on its own and it needs to stand on its own merits. There shouldn’t be a need to read another entire series to gain understanding. A little more exposition in setting up the moment would have helped me to get past the changes from the first work. A stronger incubus as an opposing force, one with a mind, a scheme, and a plan other than just “being evil” would have helped too.

 

Tera

Oct 15 2016

The Dance of the Succubus – A Bellydance YouTube

Occasionally on YouTube, there are dance videos shared that have somewhat of a succubus theme to them. Some of the most sensual and mesmerizing are those created by bellydancers. I’ve always been fascinated by how succubus-like, at least in my mind, some of the sinuous movements are. I found this particular video some time ago, and I wanted to share what I felt was something quite special…

 

If you cannot see this video on the Tale, please try this link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_47UjF27eY

As well, here is an image of the artist herself, Elizabeth Stuardo in the midst of her dance…

Elizabeth Stuardo Succubus Dance

I feel the dance captures the essence of the seductive qualities of a succubus, the power she has to hold the eye, the imagination, and more. I mentioned the sinuous feel of her dance and there’s a bit more than that here. There’s a simmering of the sensual, but also there’s a level of control, of holding her powers tightly within herself, allowing them to tease and tug at those watching.

It is quite the talent to be able to do so, and that makes this dance a bit more than I expected it to be. I’ll also add that her appearance, horns and all, lend themselves to the dance in the most perfect way and, for me, was a joy to see…

 

Tera

Oct 14 2016

A Review of Guilty Pleasures by Alana Church

Guilty Pleasures by Alana Church

Guilty Pleasures by Alana Church

A review today of the penultimate work in The Succubus series by Alana Church, the seventh work, and for me, one that answers many questions that have been simmering within the series so far. My first review is here, the second is here and my third review cab be found here. The fourth review can be found here on the Tale with the fifth review being here. The review of the prior, sixth work in the series, can be found here.

The past matters. Whether that is the past of the universe, Goddess herself or one particular succubus named Althea, it haunts. But it also allows for reflection, the finding of purpose, and the memories of the words and actions of those we hold dear in our moments of crisis.

The answers, after all, are within each of us. We just need to listen to them.

The work tells the story of:

The tides of fate are swirling. Althea, the immortal succubus, knows the time for the final confrontation with the demon-spawn is nigh. As she prepares herself, she is haunted by memories of the past. Will the love of her new family sustain her? Or will she succumb to despair? No matter what happens, there is still time to indulge in some…Guilty Pleasures!

Althea knows three things. Duty, family and light. Combined within her, they are what grounds her, gives her purpose, drives her onwards. But there’s something else which is the hidden fourth cornerstone within her. Her past, her experiences. What she’s lost, who she’s lost. We all have burdens that play upon our souls. Facing them can be freeing, but also can be more, if given the chance.

The work is best described as a pause in the series. A means for the characters to catch up with all that has been, what they face. Throughout the series, each character has been developing a piece at a time, and in doing so that development has been reflected against all of the other characters. But even so, the one character who’s thoughts have been somewhat blurred has been Althea herself. We know what she is, we know her purpose, but the telling of her past, of her family hasn’t been really delved into deeply.

The telling of some, not all by far, of Althea’s past revealed depths within her that, for me, brought Althea to being one of the most captivating succubi characters I have encountered. The mixture of religion, theology and history, all of which I enjoy, was wonderfully wrapped together and made it possible for Althea’s past to be more than being told in rote. She relives her past, recalls the pains and joys. The emotional void that has been simmering within her finds a means to be expressed, to be formed fully and when it comes together, that changes Althea for the better.

There’s a difference in her by the time this work closes. A sense that she’s opened not her mind, but rather the heart and love she’s kept hidden for so long, to being able to live again. That turning point brings with it a change in tone for her. There’s been hints, at least within Althea’s mind, that something hasn’t been quite right. She finds the key and then what I think of as the true Althea comes to the fore.

The depths of theology than come out appealed to me, in many cases I couldn’t help the smile I had when Althea’s thoughts were expressed to other characters. Some moments of joy, outside of passion and pleasure, were delights and gave that little extra push to Althea’s own transformation.

While the work pauses, setting up the next, and sadly for me, final work in the series, there’s no lack of story telling. All of the characters have their moments, their realizations. There are passions, but also understanding and acceptance among them all. Story matters here, dearly so, but hand in hand comes some light erotica which simmers along the way. It doesn’t overcome the story, rather adding that little bit of heat which makes some of the revelations that much more delicious.

I do wish there would have been more told about Althea’s parents, her past, perhaps telling of her first encounters with humans and otherwise. But what is revealed tells something important that has always been with Althea, whether said or not. She needs. More than pleasure, she needs the emotional connection of having someone close. That then, is the point. Coming to see the truth and accepting it completely.

A needed pause for all that has been in the series so far, but not leaving out the heat and story. The story offers much to ponder, which I loved, but also it gave rise to some very important questions about Althea, Rachel’s family and most of all, where Yasna fits into things as a whole. Yasna’s presence, her thoughts, suggest something vital and where that goes I think will be telling for all involved.

Lovely writing, the characters are everything that I expect them to be. The heat is there, the story is told. The moments of collecting one’s thoughts have come and gone, now what comes next is the question to be answered.

Four and a half out of five pitchforks.

A well thought out pause in the series which allows the characters to reflect, but also to find themselves. It develops all of the characters into being more than they have been, opening them towards a stronger and brighter whole. For me, that development, being able to fit the pieces of their lives together and see a path forwards was as captivating as the erotica, if not more so.

Being able to see inside of Althea, to know what she is thinking, reflecting on, gives depth to her character that I think brought her more fully into the story. Not from the perspective of acting within it, but rather in expressing her motivations, her fears and her needs. She might not have revealed everything, but a piece of her was missing and now she’s whole.

The family is gathered, they look forward with concern, worry. They know the future is uncertain, but in spit of this, they also know that there is hope. That in itself is a powerful thing and should never be discounted by those that cannot see that themselves. Not all weapons are those of being physical. Many times the ones within our own minds are the sharpest of all.

The final work in the series, Passion’s Price, appears today… The story of Althea approaches the climax… I’ve dearly loved every work in this series and I have every expectation that what comes next will be as wonderfully written by far…

 

Tera

Oct 14 2016

A Review of Marked by Temptation by Deanna Chase

Marked by Temptation by Deanna Chase

Marked by Temptation by Deanna Chase

The first of two reviews of works in the Coven Pointe series by Deanna Chase, the second will follow in this Sunday’s book reviews. The author has published another series and this one runs parallel with the first, and, overall, that works for the most part.

There is such a thing as giving some basic information when doing so, to lay out how things work. While the story is well done, there is quite a lot of good here, for someone that had not read this author’s other series before this one, I found myself lost for much of the work, more so towards the end of it. They say knowledge is power. Perhaps the same can be said of understanding.

In each soul there is a missing piece, something which calls out to another, to draw them close and, with luck, hope and sometimes misunderstanding, makes them whole. The problem sometimes is that in being so, what you are isn’t what you expected.

The first work in the series is:

  • Title: Marked by Temptation
  • Author: Deanna Chase
  • Length: 144 Pages
  • ASIN: B00K1MNB0I
  • Publishing Date: April 29, 2014
  • This work at Amazon.com

It tells the story of:

Mati Ballintine is a sex witch looking for a hot one-night stand to bolster her power, and sexy Vaughn Paxton is cocky enough to make her work for it. But when their one night turns into more than they bargained for, one life is changed, another threatened, and suddenly there’s a whole lot more than lust at stake.

Mati’s powers as a sex witch are fuelled by sex. Quite a lot of it in fact, if she didn’t know better she might think she was a succubus. An encounter with Vaughn leads towards something more, and when that turns unexpected, neither of them will escape unscathed.

Overall I liked the story, the characters and the overall themes in this work. Both of the main characters, Mati and Vaughn are complex, interesting, and they do mesh together so very well as the story unfolds. There’s some delicious erotica mixed into the telling of an overarching series of mysteries that didn’t overcome the story to be told.

Some of the minor characters are quite unlikeable however, that being part of the plots of course, and one particular instant where Vaughn comes in contact with a group was, at least for me, rather uneven, odd, and confusing. More so was Mati’s family, there reactions to Vaughn and the seemingly single mindedness of many of the minor characters and how that drives a wedge between them.

What’s more confusing, at least to me, is that the author seems to assume that someone picking up this work will be familiar with their other series Bourbon Street and thus simply know what’s going on with other characters from that series that drop into this one. As much as I liked this work, that for me was where the story lost me entirely. There’s little in the way of explaining about how things work, who certain groups are, why this universe is shaped as it is. Events unfold and I couldn’t quite understand some of the references made, which matter it seemed to the characters themselves.

Getting back to this work in isolation, the questions that came up from Vaughn’s true nature, the questions about what incubi are, and how all of things links together really isn’t expanded on. For example, a character is said to have opened a portal, but not much more. Mati is said to have quite a lot of power, but not really how that works. There are moments when I felt I was groping around for answers and I didn’t quite find them.

While it is explained that Vaughn is an incubus, at least partly so, and Mati is responsible for his transformation, that event is difficult to sort out, not the least of which comes from a group rushing in to pull the two lovers apart. What follows from that moment was, for me, the weakest part of the work. The work moved from a hot, passionate story about two soulmates into what I can only describe as in-fighting within a family, misunderstanding all around, and a horrid lack of trying to find answers.

This all leads into a bit of a train wreck for Mati, and then, suddenly, with the help of a certain character from the author’s other series, everything gets straightened out and the work resolves in a lovely way. It’s a bit too pat, too quick however and considering all that came before, and Mati’s personality, I expected more from the ending.

Written well, the main characters are wonderful, the plot is complex and interesting. The need to lean on a reader having read the author’s other series and being familiar with this universe is a bit of a problem and perhaps the author needs to give more background to things than they did here. The heat is delicious, Mati and Vaughn as a couple seem almost a perfect match. But this series needs to stand on its own, to bring new readers into a new series.

Four out of five pitchforks.

I rather liked with work as a whole, how the characters intermixed and how things came together and fell apart. There’s quite a lot of plot and atmosphere to build on, but really this work is an adjunct to the author’s main series. That seems to come out in the second work which was released almost two years after this one and, like this work, has one important thing missing. Understanding. Save that point in this work, I would have liked this a lot more than I do.

 

Tera

Oct 13 2016

Succubi Image of the Week 456

One of the more rare images for the Succubi of the Week are those Succubi that have blue tinted skin. Red of course is the most common, but there is a bit more blue appearing here and there from time to time. I found one image that I thought was interesting, and as there hasn’t been any blue for some time…

(SUCUBO) naomi by DOM STYLE X

(SUCUBO) naomi by DOM STYLE X

This work is called (SUCUBO) naomi and is by the artist DOM STYLE X on Pixiv. You can find the original page on Pixiv where I found this art here.

I think there’s a bit of a warrior succubus vibe to this character in a few ways, mostly in her expression, those bracers on her wrists and just her overall look. Perhaps she’s a wrestler of some sort? That in itself brings a smile to me as I think the match would be over fairly quickly all things considered.

Setting aside the questions about her, I like her look, it’s nice to see her tail and horns match. I also think that having her outfit match her hair in a neat thing too.

Just something that made me smile, and wonder…

 

Tera

Oct 12 2016

It’s not exactly vile as a costume, regardless of the name…

Vile Vixen CostumeCloser by the day to Halloween, the costumes are appearing here and there as they do. Sometimes those costumes are slightly more adult than most. That’s not a bad thing, and sometimes the costume isn’t all that bad… or vile as some think it to be.

This is called the Vile Vixen Costume and it comes with the catsuit, with mesh cutouts and the horns the model is wearing. The whip and shoes are not included and it sells for $85 US.

It’s… well… not exactly vile, and really the costume name is atrocious, but someone thought it was a good idea. The horns are nothing special, the whip is a bit much and the shoes are not inspiring really.

However, for some reason, I am curiously wondering what this would look like with thigh-high boots. For that matter, a decent pair of horns and the right sort of pitchfork as well.

It has a little bit of a fetish vibe, which sort of works, it’s not completely trashy, though it is sort of close to that I suppose.

If nothing else, there’s a bit of a Domme vibe to this. Perhaps that might make for an interesting evening at a more adult Halloween party?

Something to think about…

Three out of five pitchforks.

It’s not awful, it at least gave me pause to think.

Perhaps that’s a good thing?

 

Tera

Oct 11 2016

A Review of Pact of a Succubus by Leona D. Reish

Pact of a Succubus by Leona D. Reish

Pact of a Succubus by Leona D. Reish

One of the authors that I follow is Leona D. Reish who has written quite a number of stories in which succubi appear in various forms. You can find two of my previous review of their works here and here on the Tale. What I find particularly interesting is this author’s use of succubus mind control and seduction in their stories. The characters have depth, the story is told well. But sometimes there are points where the things the succubus character does that are, at least for me, a little bit too far over the top.

Making a deal with a succubus is a very tentative thing. Not all deals are those spoken, some are the deals within one’s own will, desires and fantasies. When one summons a succubus, one’s true nature is that which makes the deal.

 

It is the story of:

Mark was a man feeling the pressure of the world bear down on his shoulders. Fears of both finding work and satisfying his lover in bed hunted him until that one fateful night. Under pale moonlight in the seclusion of their utility shed, Mark succeeds in calling the aid he so desperately hopes for.

What comes to stand before him in the occult circle is no angel above, but a voluptuous demon – a succubus has answered his call. With her uplifting power, Mark finds success and satisfaction, but what price has the pact truly come at? One should always be careful what they wish for, and just whom they dance with, lest they be dancing alone in the palm of a devil.

Mark found himself needing a way to be more than he was. A deal struck with the succubus Sofi’avez seemed to be all that he wished for. But then, the deal was everything that Sofi’avez wanted as well. The truth will come, when the time is right and when it does, then the price will be paid and in more ways than Mark could imagine.

While Mark is the main character of this story, really it’s more about Sofi’avez and her powers, her guile, her seduction that takes over the story soon after it begins. Sofi’avez is, in some respects, a somewhat stereotypical succubus in some of her aspects, but in many other ways she’s quite a lot more than that. While she does have wings, hooves, and all else that one might expect a succubus to have. it isn’t do much her physical form that matters as it is her personality and her powers.

There’s a very strong underlying succubus mind control aspect to this work which mixes seduction, a bit of ensnarement and a touch of submission. Sofi’avez projects herself as being in one moment submissive to Mark, as their pact seems to say, but in the next her tone shifts slightly, her powers come into play and Mark, along with another soul, are made to dance to what Sofi’avez desires.

The heat in this work came, for me at least, Sofi’avez’s use of mind control on her prey. There are other aspects, such as some transformations, gender swapping, and futa themes, but really they don’t have the same heat as Sofi’avez using her powers in ways that the other characters do not realize what’s happening until it is far too late. That makes for lovely heat and it gave Sofi’avez, her personality, something that was very interesting.

The erotica is a series of scenes that are part of the story, not outside of it. They build on the story, they transform the characters and push Sofi’avez to develop more than just being a succubus. While I enjoyed much of that aspect of the erotica, there were moments which, for me, pushed a little too far into the realm of pain and that I didn’t enjoy very much. The transformations are hot, the binding of souls to Sofi’avez is deliciously hot. While I understand that the more violent and painful parts of the erotica are connected to who Sofi’avez is, I’m not sure they worked as well as similar themes did in other works by this author.

One of the things that was missing, I felt, was telling more about Sofi’avez herself. There’s a lot about Mark, but for Sofi’avez herself, there’s nothing really told about her in depth and I was a little disappointed in that. When the work came to the climax, Sofi’avez seemed to slip into being an “evil” succubus with not a lot of character in her. Once past that, and the last parts of the story came, there was hints she’s more than she appears. It would be nice to know what that was. I think that’s just as interesting a story as that of Mark’s temptations and his falling to Sofi’avez and her seduction.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

I liked Sofi’avez as a succubus, as she was very seductive, manipulative and most of all, used the sexual needs of those around her to her advantage. While Mark doesn’t see the power she has until very late in the story, it’s there in her words, her poise and her temptations. The creation of her character, her dialogue and more was well done. The succubus mind control was some of the best I’ve read this year. Where my problem comes is that the erotica moved over a line into something that’s more pain than pleasure and I didn’t enjoy that when it happened.

I’d like to see a follow-on work, to tell more about Sofi’avez herself, what drives her and what she wants from Mark and otherwise. That interests me, and I can even manage to overlook her hooves because of that. The ending offers something to think about, and I’d like to know whether I’m right or wrong about Sofi’avez herself.

 

Tera

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