Jun 24 2016

A Review of The Devil’s Sin by Carlton Lamberth

The Devil's Sin by Carlton Lamberth

The Devil’s Sin by Carlton Lamberth

I dislike stereotypical characters, particularly when it comes to succubi. I don’t quite understand why it is that, as a whole, so many authors see the word succubus and immediately write a character that is over the top in her sexuality, but as well in her “evil”. Even if the character must be evil, nasty or otherwise, there needs to be something more to them otherwise I just find them to be not that interesting, regardless of the events that they bring into being.

Some stories are meant to be tragic things, the ending not giving a resolution or something of hope to hold onto. There are reasons for that, of course, but the trap that needs to be avoided is using what amounts to a slasher/horror film ending and leaving things so very unresolved.

  • Title: The Devil’s Sin
  • Author: Carlton Lamberth
  • Length: 371 Pages
  • ASIN: B012PWXVTC
  • Publishing Date: July 27, 2015
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work’s summary is quite long, but tells almost everything of the plot:

Muriel Healy and her husband Thomas are in the process of moving their family from Richmond Virginia to Charleston, South Carolina. Muriel once believed she and her husband had the perfect life together. This belief is shattered when she discovers her husband is having an affair with one of his college students. Their relocation to Charleston is an agreed upon attempt to reconcile and save their marriage.

In the middle of this move Muriel’s world is further turned upside down by some grim news from her sisters concerning their father. Dying of cancer, Muriel’s father’s end is now near. Muriel and her family divert their travels from Charleston and rush to be by her father’s side during his final hours.

Her dad regains consciousnesses long enough to caution Muriel not to make the move to Charleston. He reveals to her a family secret concerning her mother when they too lived in Charleston many years ago. His revelation describes the demonic possession of her mother by the Demon of Lust — Asmodeus. Muriel’s father dies right after his startling disclosure.

Stunned by her father’s words, Muriel turns to Catholic priest Kevin Brennon for guidance. A family friend, Father Brennon confirms her dad’s fears and concerns. He also reveals his own involvement from the past in an unsanctioned exorcism of Muriel’s mother; an attempt to rid her of the evil possession from this lustful demon.

Future events will lead Brennon to fear his fiendish nemesis may be returning. He worries an evil, demonic cycle may continue through a new generation of this troubled family. He understands if he’s right, Muriel may be destined to become the next victim of the depraved, wicked debauchery known as The Devil’s Sin.

Muriel and her family make their move to Charleston despite her father’s warnings. She will face demonic possession and become a portal for the demon Asmodeus to enter the world of the living for his own decadent exploits of sexual and degenerate desire. Without help Muriel will continue to digress into the world of sinful lust and malevolent evil. Depraved violence, murder and sexual lust will abound as Muriel struggles to survive her own possession from one of Satan’s most powerful and perverted demons.

Muriel comes to find that her family has been cursed and she is the one now facing it alone. Temptations strike, her being is changed, and a succubus whispers the things that draw Muriel deeper into that which her family has been cursed with.

The single more focused theme in this work is that of loss. There’s so little hope throughout the work that from the very beginning the darkness hangs over every single character to the point that they seem not to be able to have a positive thought, expression or otherwise come to see that there are possibilities.

While much of that can be given to the curse upon Muriel’s family, it does’t quite explain why it is that so many others are drawn into it as well. The succubus of the work, here called a demon of lust, Asmodeus, is also quite disappointing as well. While they are evil and in some ways erotic, there’s an undercurrent of being stereotypically so. In many ways the means to which they act upon Muriel and all those around her, reads very much like a typical horror movie. I found that disappointing because the temptations and means to influence others really revolves around the use of sexuality and misdirection.

By the time the conclusion appears, it becomes really the expected horror movie ending and that I honestly expected from the rest of the work to that point. The story was just driving towards the nearest hint of redemption but, of course, there has to be a little twist in the ending and it isn’t anything other than stereotypical really.

For the length of this work, I expected some character development, some meaning to the story, perhaps one or two characters coming out the other side in some better way. I’m not really sure that came to pass because the horror aspects of the work smothered any real development overall. To be clear, this isn’t a work of erotica, nor was it meant to be. The erotica in the story is incidental at times and leads towards the moments of horror otherwise.

The writing is very good, the characters have clear voices. The plot is clear, at times however telegraphing the story to come. For me personally it is the sense of so much being stereotypical in its nature that brought about my disappointment. To tell the story of “evil”, whatever it may be, needs to have something different, something unique, to make the story stand out some. Falling back on tropes doesn’t make that happen. Especially when it comes to succubi.

Two and a half out of five pitchforks.

Really no hope to be found, a succubus that is all but stereotypically evil in her nature. An ending that is completely expected and almost rote in how things transpire. I didn’t find much to enjoy in this work, and I think most of that comes from the characters themselves. There’s so little positive aspects in them that the work is muddled with being concerned with how things fall apart and less so about what might be better.

 

Tera

Jun 23 2016

Succubi Image of the Week 440

While I like to believe that, as a whole, Succubi are not warriors, there are some images of Succubi in a warrioress role, or look, or pose, that I think very highly of. A lot of that comes to the character, how they look, the determination in their eyes. Sometimes wisdom and strength is seen within. Without is where the battle begins and, for some opponents, the battle is lost with the first look they are given…

White Haired Half Succubus - color by InputJack

White Haired Half Succubus – color by InputJack

This work is called White Haired Half Succubus and is by the artist InputJack on DeviantArt. You can find the original page on DeviantArt with this work here and this artist’s page can be found here as well.

The artist tells the story that this character is an Alu Demon, or “half Succubus”, whose human half was a traditional “White Haired Witch” from Chinese legends. While she is not named, the artist did note that besides her Succubus powers she can also manipulate and lengthen her hair.

I think this is an amazing character in many ways. Most striking to me is her pose, how she appears in the midst of being ready to attack, or defend. But beyond that here is a confidence, a strength in her expression that I think tells the better story. It seems to me that there is a real sense of honour in her, that she is sure of who she is, what she can do, and is not afraid to confront those that oppose her.

I love her hair, simply wonderful, her choice of weapon, the perfect mix of attire that she is wearing. Just a well thought out and created character that expresses, for me, the hidden strength that the best of the Succubi have within them…

 

Tera

Jun 22 2016

I think Dirty Devil isn’t the right name for this costume

Dirty Devil CostumeI wonder what possesses someone when they come up with names for costumes. Is it a need to be obvious? Blunt and to the point? Or is it simply that they threw darts at a board and looked to see what they hit? The sad thing is, in so many cases, the name they use doesn’t quite fit the costume all that much.

This is called the Dirty Devil Costume and it comes the red stretch metallic dress, the horn headband and also a tail. The gloves, earrings and pitchfork are not included. The costume sells for $50 US.

However, adding the gloves, the pitchfork and the boots the model is wearing will raise the price of this costume to $143 US.

Well… I like the boots. I will admit that I am being a bit awful with that comment. I don’t mind the horns, I do not like the pitchfork, The tail is so-so really as well. Compared to last week’s costume, I like the pattern and look of this slightly better. But the style and cute of the costume does not work for me.

Perhaps adding a wrap-around skirt would make me like this more with some heels rather than boots…

As for the boots… I have a costume in mind for them.

I’ll give this two out of five pitchforks.

Just average really, not a lot more than that.

 

Tera

Jun 21 2016

A Review of In Judgment of Della by Glen and Vivian Gilbert

In Judgment of Della by Glen and Vivian Gilbert

In Judgment of Della by Glen and Vivian Gilbert

There are some stories in which you must, always, be paying attention in order to try and define what is happening in the story, the characters and the world around them. Regardless of how convoluted the characters’ thoughts may be, to how odd the events might seem as they transpire, focus on understanding what matters is important.

The loss of a loved one can change you, your view of the world, and what everything means to you. Your wishes can, at times, get the best of you, and sometimes they get the better of you. In the end, what is real and what is your perception tells the real story.

  • Title: In Judgment of Della
  • Authors: Glen and Vivian Gilbert
  • Length: 47 Pages
  • ASIN: B019AHMW68
  • Publishing Date: December 11, 2015
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells of:

Widowed Irish Watchmaker copes with life during WW2. A customer disappears, his apprentice explodes and the spirit world beckons. Nature abhors a void–and so his long suppressed passions challenge his very soul.

Albert is making his way through a world that is at war. But that war isn’t just the world, but within himself and how the world is seen through him in the wake of tragedy. Events conspire to bring about the impossible and Albert is given a choice to make.

The work is focused upon Albert’s perceptions of the world around him in the wake of his wife’s passing and how much that has effected him. It isn’t just in how he seems himself, but more it is the way his desires and needs seem to be reflected in the world around him and how the events that he is drawn into change him slowly through the story.

At one point the need Albert has for his wife is expressed in an event which turns the story into something that is bit confusing at times, but regardless of that, the almost constant wishes that Albert reflects on push things onward.

There is a character who seems to be a succubus and likely is one, but isn’t quite expressed in the work as actually being one. But the signs of horns, a tail, and an overwhelming sexuality seem to point towards this conclusion. She draws Albert towards making a choice which has consequences, and in being so, makes the conclusion of the story very poignant.

There is no actual erotica in the work, there are moments of passion and need, but this is not an erotic tale, it is meant to tell of a loss and the events that come when the world is at odds with itself.

The writing is very complex and a reader needs to be paying attention throughout the work otherwise it is very easy to lose one’s way in the middle of the work and not be sure about what is going on. This is because Albert’s internal monologue and perceptions are twisted, changed, altered. There are moments where reality and fantasy become very blurred and it is very easy to be confused. Much in the same way, I felt, that Albert is throughout.

I think a bit more clarity in the story would have been nice, perhaps a longer, more involved ending as well. It was a little abrupt of an ending and I didn’t feel like it did the rest of the work well by being so.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

Possibly one of the most unique stories I have read in quite some time. A bit difficult to get into and to stay with at times, but that has more to do with How Albert’s perception twists events around him. The inherent overwhelming sadness sets the tone throughout, but the ending I think makes up for that to a large extent.

 

Tera

Jun 21 2016

A Review of The Incubus Journal: Chapters 3 & 4 by The Mad Hatter

The Incubus Journal: Chapter 3 by The Mad Hatter

The Incubus Journal: Chapter 3 by The Mad Hatter

Concluding a review of a rather short series about a man being transformed into an incubus and what happens to him. You can find my review of the first two works in the series here on the Tale, if you’d like to know my thoughts about the start of the series.

Editing matters. It isn’t enough to tell a story, the writing needs to flow, there needs to be some kind of structure. There shouldn’t be a need to retell the preceding parts of the series, over and over again. As well, there needs to be a clear plot, strong characters and some focus. Not having this, and having the underlying story being a good one is a problem.

The third work is:

  • Title: The Incubus Journal: Chapter 3
  • Author: The Mad Hatter
  • Length: 8 Pages
  • ASIN: B01HBXVNAO
  • Publishing Date: June 19, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells of:

Douglas’s powers continues to grow and so does the changes to his body. After spending a little time considering his powers, fate or something else, decides that he needs to use them again on some unsuspecting delinquents.

Chris continues to change, his powers and knowledge evolving as time goes on. An encounter with a mysterious woman leads to the discovery that the universe abhors a vacuum and Chris will be the one to fill it… in more than one way.

Much like the first and second works in the series, the third leaves a lot to be desired with regards to editing overall. There is a plot, but getting to it through the odd writing style, the uneven dialogue, and, yes, the actions of the main character at times, I found to be a problem.

Each work is so very short as to not allow for a lot of development, but irregardless of that, there is erotica. The problem is that the series seems to be so focused on the erotica that when the real background about what is going on appears, when there is a story to be told, it really isn’t. It’s also a good idea to remember what your main character’s name is as well.

The third work in the series has a number of issues, not the least of which is the appearance of Rose, a succubus, who speaks to the main character, touches him, but isn’t described. It’s unclear if she is actually there or not and this makes for a lot of confusion as to what exactly is going on.

That said, the writing needs a lot of editing because the story wanders aimlessly for the most part and when something does happen, there’s no focus and no direction. The main character’s voice seems to be dumbed down more and more as their transformation continues as well. There are a series of transformations as well, but they don’t make a lot of sense either.

While it’s clear that a measure of justice is done in what happens, the aftermath is confusing and unclear. I have the feeling that these are a series of moments vaguely tied together towards in trying to get back to the main story.

There isn’t any erotica to speak of really in the third work, which means that the story has to carry things along. But it really doesn’t. Spelling mistakes, grammar mistakes, and overall how the text reads just doesn’t work. There is a hint as to what’s going on, a direction for the series to go in. But this part of the series is as short as the rest, so there’s no time to have more than cardboard cutouts for the minor characters before the story ends with a question that leads to the fourth work in the series.

One out of five pitchforks.

The Incubus Journal: Chapter 4 by The Mad Hatter

The Incubus Journal: Chapter 4 by The Mad Hatter

I really want the author to go back and edit this entire series into a single volume. I’d like them to edit the story so that it flows better, reads better and there is, overall, as much story as there is erotica. There is a balance that’s needed to bring out what is, really, an interesting story, but it just can’t really come to the fore here.

The concluding work in the series needed to explain what’s been going on, try to draw the threads together and make sense of everything. While it did manage to explain some of that, it left a huge plot hole behind which needed to be filled.

The fourth work in the series is:

  • Title: The Incubus Journal: Chapter 4
  • Author: The Mad Hatter
  • Length: 13 Pages
  • ASIN: B01HFF6AKQ
  • Publishing Date: June 21, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells of:

Doug now has a sizeable harem forming. His four former attackers now sexy females who are enslaved to making his life better. Turns out one of them had been wealthy and what had once been hers is now his. Doug now wants to push his powers just a little more into the should be impossible, wanting to try out somethings he read in his hentai days. Rose finally explains what the hell is going on with him, and even gets some action.

Chris discovers that he is an incubus, that Rose is a succubus, and his life will never be the same again. Darkness calls within him now and what happens next will be by his hand or that of the darkness that is within him now.

Like the rest of the series, this work needs a serious editing. There’s no flow to the story, characters appear out of thin air, nothing is really explained. The focus is on the sex, which really isn’t so much erotica as it is a smattering of short moments tied together with vague commentary. The writing is very uneven, needs polish, and if that happened it would make this a far better read.

The appearance of Rose, the main succubus character, is, much like all of the other characters in the series, is told by glossing things over, offering a hint of her character and then tossing her aside for the sake of moving onto the next sex scene and transformation. There’s really nothing told about Rose, there’s nothing explained about her and even the singular point that matters the most to the main character isn’t explored.

Another issue is that the main character’s name changes as the story progresses. This is a huge problem and reflects the lack of editing on the author’s part. Telling a story is one thing, telling it well is something completely different. This work, like all of the rest of the series just doesn’t make the best of what is an interesting plot hook.

One and a half out of five pitchforks.

I’d like the series to continue, to get past the novelty of what Chris is now and move onto what that means. There’s something more going on, really that’s what I find interesting. Being able to transform others and use their lust is one thing. Explaining why is where the story is. I want to see that.

Erotica alone is not a story. Transformation alone is not a story. Calling someone a succubus, or incubus, is not a story. Connecting the dots is. If the author can do that, and do it well, then I think there’s something good here. But as it is now I just can’t find it.

 

Tera

Jun 20 2016

Quiet By TeraS

A story with at least somewhat of a connection to reality today. At some point along the way, we all need some sort of place to go and gather ourselves—a place to try, as one can, to find that calm, that missing part of oneself. Sometimes all any of us needs is a bit of …

 

Quiet
By TeraS

 

There is a place in the Realm which is known formally as the Realm Retreat. Few have been there, know of it, or, for that matter, really understand what is there. Some believe that it must be some kind of grand palace, fit for the Queen and her King, an estate at which they hold gatherings for important beings, tend to state business, and so on.

The truth is far more important.

There are a few places in the universe that intersect: points in space and time where two or more realities overlap, more or less. Where this happens, something special comes to be. That something can take many forms, many possibilities. Regardless of all else, that place is special to those that know of its existence.

Many years ago, two linked souls searched. They wanted to discover something special: a spot in which they could go, be away from the hustle and bustle of the city and their lives; a place for him to fish—for that was his only other passion; his soulmate came first—a place for her to rest, occasionally sunbathe, her own passions being more of a moment’s respite before continuing on with their lives. They had searched for quite some time, having seen many a place nestled in a wood, near a stream, over by some hills. Nothing really quite was right, called out to them, suggested that they had found what they had been looking for …

… until, of course, they found what they were looking for.

Many years ago, they signed the deed, agreed to the deal, and, in time, came to own that which they had been searching for. Over time, they brought into the world a family, one in which they all came to visit, doing the things that family do. The family grew, the children became adults and, in time, they married. They and their soulmates would visit, sometimes alone, sometimes with the other souls to whom they were linked.

Time passed, things change, as they do. But one thing never really changed very much: the place they all thought of as their sanctuary. It was a small, white cottage with red-trimmed windows, a single chimney to one side. A long pathway led from the water’s edge to the welcoming door. A dock at the water’s edge hosted a white boat bobbing in the waves. All of it formed the reality of a cottage, on the edge of a river, where a family grew.

In the Realm, there are many streams and rivers to be found. Some of these are set aside, never to have buildings beside them, so as not to disturb the tranquility. Others have a smattering of places where, at some point, someone thought they would be a nice spots to be.

Some distance from the Palace—at least a good three or four hours away by carriage, or car, or other such transport—stood a bridge, straddling a deep chasm. If one was so inclined, if they were travelling upon that road, and cared to look over the edge of the bridge, they would notice a river flowing beneath. Few knew the river had a name, fewer still knew that if one was to find themselves a boat, or canoe, or kayak, and travel in one particular direction, they would find themselves bobbing in the waters by an island with a cottage situated there. A small white cottage, by the way, with red-trimmed windows, a single chimney to one side, a long pathway leading from the water’s edge to the welcoming door, and a dock at the water’s edge, hosting a white boat bobbing in the waves. All of it forming the reality of a cottage, on the edge of a river, where a family’s dreams grew.

Each year the family would gather after the passing of the winter and make their way to the cottage, to the annual opening of their place of refuge—or, as some would say, retreat. This year, however, the time came and passed, the cottage not feeling the presence of those that normally came there. Time passed, the cottage still waiting. Then, finally, one day, the little white boat came around the bend, across the bay, and made its landing upon the sandy beach there.

Three souls were there. The fourth, who had been there from the first day, was not with them. The soul that was linked to the other for so long … seemed to be alone. Not alone in the sense of being there by himself, for he was accompanied by another pair of linked souls, while the echoes of the first two were very clearly felt.

They all set to work; there were things to be done. The dock was pushed into the waters, the boat tied up neatly there soon after. Windows were opened, the cottage aired out after the long winter’s nap. Linens were changed, dishes washed, all of the minutia of setting things out for the new season there undertaken.

The day continued on, some problems being addressed, notes made for things to do on the next visit. A pause for lunch, some memories shared, the cottage protecting those within as a single rain cloud made itself known for a time.

Afternoon came, with a father and his son gathering their things for a bit of fishing on the river. An embrace was shared and then they untied their boat, set out on the river, and disappeared from her view.

In both worlds, a ebon-haired woman came down to the dock soon after. In one world she had a pair of red horns in her hair; in the other, they were only visible to those who knew how to look. In both, she carried two chairs to a specific spot on the dock, setting them up there. In both, she returned to the cottage, then came back carrying two tall glasses of iced tea. She placed one on the chair to her left, then settled into her own chair, looking out over the river.

She began to speak, talking about the day, the travel to this sacred, important place. She mulled over her thoughts as the sun caused little diamonds of light to play over the river’s waves. She looked out towards the last place she had seen the little white boat disappear around the river’s point.

She continued to look there, sometimes sipping her iced tea, sometimes speaking again as the thoughts came to her. In one reality there was no one there beside her in the empty chair with its refreshment resting there. The other was slightly different.

As she looked over the waters, the outline of a woman came into view, the chair once empty now the resting place of a visitor. The visitor looked at the one beside her, listened to the stories. She smiled, frowned, sometimes shook her head, but said nothing as the red-tailed one continued to talk and sip at her iced tea.

The sun continued on its path across the sky, the day turning slowly towards the night. As the sun touched the horizon and began to set, the little white boat came into view once more. She remained where she was, watching them return, the small worry she had for them both leaving her. The boat glided to the dock, bumping against it.

“How was the fishing?”

The older soul replied: “Nothing this time. But it feels good, like we’re all here.”

The younger soul asked: “Had a good time?”

In both realities, the ebon-haired soul turned to look at the empty chair beside her, the glass there as empty as the one she held in her own hand.

“We had a quiet day together.”

Jun 19 2016

A Review of Devilish Desires by Monica-Jay Allen

Devilish Desires by Monica-Jay Allen

Devilish Desires by Monica-Jay Allen

Succubi can be used, and are quite often used, as the means to drive a story in a particular direction. The most common of these is, of course, to draw another character into some kind of sexual situation and then the story unfolds from there. Along with that, at least I hope, should be something about the succubus herself, what she wants and what her story is.

That doesn’t happen when the succubus seems to care only about the sex and nothing more. While that is a story point, and can be used to tell a larger story, it does tend to make the succubus be nothing special overall. Character development is important after all, but then so is telling the entire story and not leaving something behind untold.

  • Title: Devilish Desires
  • Author: Monica-Jay Allen
  • Length: 29 Pages
  • ASIN: B019AATXDK
  • Publishing Date: December 11, 2015
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells of:

Prince Leandro is living in a world where humans have to be wary of magical creatures, witches, and demon-like creatures. One such lives next to Leandro’s own castle. She is a succubus, a demon-like woman with a tail and horns and a sexual hunger that could kill. She is determined to take away everything that Leandro holds dear; his soon to be throne, his life and the lives of those whom he cares about most. Can anything be done to combat this evil temptress? Will Leandro simply fall prey to her clutches like many before him and allow her evil beauty to consume him?

Leandro finds himself confronted by a succubus that desires one thing from him. The encounter ends with neither of them getting what they want, exactly and Leandro’s life changes and not for the better. A long journey unfolds with the help of a dear friend and the interference of the succubus. But a gamble taken might tip the scales, but the cost may be more than Leandro is willing to pay.

The work is a mixture of an adventure, coming of age, hidden love, and questing which work well together overall. Leandro and Kylie, the two main characters, are really quite a lot of fun when they are together in that there is a connection between them, but neither of them are really quite able to express that. Leandro starts out being somewhat innocent, but his encounter with the succubus changes his life, his connection to those around him, and in doing so his personality changes. In some ways, the same can be said about Kylie, but from the perspective of her moving from being there to being something more. The twin paths as they unfold are really well done and I liked that aspect of the work.

The succubus, Rica, is somewhat of a stereotypical succubus in that all she seems to really care about is having sex with men, specifically Leandro. She’s “evil” but why, or how, really isn’t explored very much. Rica’s scenes are focused upon her sexuality, how Leandro responds to that, and then what her reactions are. There’s not much told about why Rica makes the decision that she wants Leandro save that he “made her feel different” and that seems a bit thin as a reason. I would have liked to know more about Rica, perhaps to see things from her perspective as the story unfolded more.

Save for her initial appearance, a fleeting tease, and once more at the climax of the work, Rica isn’t very present in the story, even if she is important to Leandro and Kylie’s stories. At times she seems a bit like an afterthought, though she really isn’t considering what she has done to Leandro and the decision that Kylie makes. The other missing part is at the end of the story, Kylie does something and it isn’t told what happens to Rica in the aftermath. Much else is told, but that dangling plot line isn’t and it is a rather strong presence in the conclusion.

The erotica is three hot flashes, the last I felt being more focused and enjoyable than the first two were. Considering what that last bit of erotica meant, it needed to be so and I was happy to see it unfold. The scenes with Rica are interesting, mainly for her comments and what happens to her, but there is a slight touch of succubus mind control that I would have liked to see brought out more than it was.

The writing is quite good, though there are a few minor spelling mistakes here and there, and at least one conversation is a little confusing as the words, if they were spoken out loud, just seemed odd. While the main story, that of Leandro is told, there are a number of subplots that started out, but didn’t come to their conclusion. The most telling one being about Rica herself. Perhaps the author might have been well served to just tie up that last loose end for the sake of completeness as the ending wraps up the story well otherwise.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

Overall a good coming of age story with two main characters that are told well and have their own stories to tell. There are some points in the story not tied up at the end, there’s one major question never answered as well. A story that reads very much like a anime series adventure in a way but also offers something more.

 

Tera

34/5151st...20...333435...4060...Lst