Mar 29 2016

A Review of Lighting the Fire by Carley Rose

Lighting the Fire by Carley Rose

Lighting the Fire by Carley Rose

The third review today of the Cravings series by Carley Rose. This work completes what seems to be the first book in the series, as it is followed by a compilation work which contains all of the prior works in the series, plus a “bonus story”. If you’d like to know my thoughts about the prior works, you can find my first review here and my second review can be found here.

There are some themes that I don’t really enjoy. While they can be completely understandable in why they happen, what may come from them, that doesn’t mean that I enjoy them much, if at all. The other thing that bothers me is when all else in the story is wonderful, but the editing leaves something to be desired.

Sometimes talking to yourself means talking to a darker side within. In doing so there comes a point where one can accept it, reject it, or, if one is so inclined, harness that darkness, not be controlled by it. All that takes is to believe in one small thing… in spite of yourself.

  • Title: Lighting the Fire
  • Author: Carley Rose
  • Length: 47 Pages
  • ASIN: B01DEAS93C
  • Publishing Date: March 23, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells the story of:

In the third part of this series, ‘Lighting the Fire’, Elle is captured by a rather unsavory character that has her chained up naked with spells restraining her Demon side. Even with her Demon locked away, she still has her cravings, and can’t help wanting, needing, to taste even just a bit of sexual energy from others.

With Gregor far away and her future looking bleak, Elle has to accept her Demon if she wants any chance to escape from her position as a sex slave.

Of course, maybe their impossible connection could be just the thing that saves Elle from herself.

Elle wakes up to find herself at the mercy of people that don’t think too highly of her as a succubus. That’s their first mistake. Then they decide to have some fun with her. That’s their second. They don’t get a third, and then Elle learns that being a succubus comes with strings attached. Not just the ones binding her body, but the ones in her mind, soul and heart.

The work revolves around Elle being kidnapped and then what happens to her at the hands of her kidnappers. Overall, that part of the work didn’t do much for me because Elle suffers a lot during that time. While there is a point to it all, and it allows an important connection to be made, it’s just a lot of abuse that didn’t sit well with me. There was no heat in it. nothing that I found enjoyable about it. It felt very much like a means to show that this new group of individuals were really bad people so that when things happen, one doesn’t exactly feel bad about it.

Elle’s inner demon makes her appearance in this work finally, but she’s not named, seems somewhat hidden about what she wants. She doesn’t really communicate with Elle so much as she points out a lot of things Elle can do, and then urges her onwards. She is, at least for the moment, very much the devil on Elle’s shoulder. That could be an investing thing to follow, assuming that the two personalities remain apart.

The ending is rather quick, there are a few haunting suggestions about the future to be told and how Elle is involved in that. It’s a lot of foreshadowing mixed with the only bit of erotica that I found had some heat, and heart, in it.

Much like the prior works in the series, there are several new characters that appear and then fade out again, some of them permanently so. However, there is a singular focus on this new group, the threat they are to succubi like Elle and other demons as well. From that perspective I liked the author managed to do that. I hope that continues.

Thera are a scattering of spelling mistakes, some grammar errors and, occasionally, the dialogue doesn’t quite read right. Setting aside those small issues, I think this work stands up as well as the first and is better than the second in the series. It gives direction towards the series, a purpose for Elle. I’m just hoping this doesn’t turn into a series where Elle is abused over and over again, because that will be a problem in a lot of ways for me. But the overall direction doesn’t seem to have purpose as yet and I’d like to see that happen.

Three out of five pitchforks.

I didn’t care for the abuse that Elle suffered, I’m somewhat concerned about the haunting threats that keep piling up around her. At some point the story needs to pick one “bad guy” and stick with it. Don’t make this a “evil villain” of the month club. Get things back to Elle dealing with herself and we’ll have something good to read.

Cravings: Parts 1-3 by Carley Rose

Cravings: Parts 1-3 by Carley Rose

As this is the final part of the first book in the series, I’m adding a short review about the series as a while so far. If one is inclined, the collected works are available with a bonus story attached about Gregor that reveals some interesting things about his past.

I think the first three works, seen as a single book, works relatively well, but there are a few things here and there that could be worked on to make things quite a lot better.

  • Title: Cravings: Parts 1-3
  • Author: Carley Rose
  • Length: 47 Pages
  • ASIN: B01DEAS93C
  • Publishing Date: March 23, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

The first book is, overall, rather scattered in the plot. There seems to be a lot of groups and characters that are parachuted into the series, and then vanish as quickly. That said, there is a thread running throughout that is interesting and I think will lead towards a point where Elle needs to make a choice within herself. That part of the series, her “other”, when she begins to make herself known begun well, but then peters out far too soon leaving only the emotional connection, a hint of how “bad” she is, but really not much more.

I’d like in the next part of the series that there be a singular focus on one opponent to Elle. There are at least four or five now, plus an unrevealed group or two, plus an ongoing threat to succubi in general. That’s a lot to push onto a young woman who’s trying to figure out what’s going on, and then deal with the idea she’s got a special relationship to deal with on top of it.

I think that’s the main problem with the series so far. There are a lot of good ideas and plots to explore, but they are all running along with each other or are seemingly abandoned for something else that comes along.

The other thing is that the series needs another pass over by an editor. There are quite a number of silly mistakes in words, spelling and grammar that pop up at the worst moments and that takes something away from the series that shouldn’t be.

I like Elle, I like her a lot, but taking her from innocence to full on sex fiend so fast I think left behind something that could have been explored at a better pace. Pushing her towards her “demon” and becoming her would be disappointing all things considered. There is such a thing as getting even of course, but that doesn’t have to come at the expense of who Elle is.

For the series to this point, I’ll give it three out of five pitchforks.

There’s promise here, I’d like to see that developed into something more than just Elle’s sexual needs. Elle is more than a succubus, so let’s see where that takes her please?

 

Tera

Mar 28 2016

Sometimes By TeraS

This past week was our anniversary, that is to say that of myself and my Eternal. I’ve written many stories about our other selves, some of which come very close to home, some of which are far more reality than fantasy, buried in the words. There are some moments when the Queen needs her King, and it is a lot more than …

 

Sometimes
By TeraS

 

There is a day which is important most of all to two of those that live in the Realm. They do not expect anyone else to celebrate it, mark it, or do anything special for it. The day is their own, even if the entire Realm knows what day it is, and how much it matters.

Tera would thank anyone that offered to have a party on that day, give a speech, or otherwise spend time and effort upon them, but then say she simply didn’t want a fuss made over them. In the same way, Keith would chuckle, thank whoever it was, and explain that they were quite fine and not to worry about them, thank you.

Sometimes their subjects would wonder about this, being that everyone knew what day it was and was sure that some sort of fuss was warranted. Sometimes the two Eternals would relent and allow something to be done on this day. But that was a rare thing.

However, in this particular year, something different was afoot, even if the two Eternals weren’t prepared for it in the least.

The evening before their special day, when they would normally just be resting on their couch in each other’s arms, things were a little bit different. Tera was curled up on a sofa by the fireplace, Keith across the way on another. Life had been overwrought for some time now, the needs of many others, of course, being put ahead of their own. They were drained, and, for the first time in a very long time, they had both put the significance of the next day out of their minds.

On the other side of the fence that marked the boundary between their Realm and that of their closest, dearest friends, however, a certain soul and his love were pondering their neighbours beyond the koi pond. They were resting in their own living room, sharing a bit of apple pie together, and talking about their neighbours, the light from their dear friends’ home being just visible from over top of the fence from where they both rested.

Pondering, or rather, perhaps, the more accurate term might be “scheming.”

“Holiday trip to Bora-Bora?”

He chuckled: “She’d never go. That place sounds boring, even if it wouldn’t be. Furthermore, she’d be … miffed … at anyone spending that kind of money on them.”

She tapped her fork against her plate: “It’s not about the money. But yes, I know, she cares more about everyone else than herself and I know he is exactly the same.”

Hugging her, he continued: “Yes, yes for both of them. As for giving them a gift, that’s not going work, either. Oh, she’ll be overwhelmed, in tears, but then she’ll be spending the next six months trying to figure out a way to repay it.”

“You know, I shudder to think what her husband goes through finding her a birthday present.”

He smiled, knowingly … and knowing his friend, Keith, was not alone in this: “He’s figured out that the giver is more important than the gift.”

Enjoying a bit more of the pie, she mused: “Hmm …”

“Hmm?”

“The pie is lovely.”

“That wasn’t the ‘Hmm’ of liking the pie. I know that ‘Hmm’ and you’re thinking of something.”

Pointing her fork across the room she noted: “I have a thought.”

He chuckled: “Oh? I’ll guess that, whatever it is, it’s an excellent thought.”

“Of course it is,” she smiled, winking.

Wisely, he just smiled and nibbled. Whether on his love or the pie, or both, was their secret.

The following morning dawned upon the home of the two Eternals whose day had arrived. It dawned like any other day one might imagine in the Realm, save there was a slight difference in this one.

Within the home, two souls awoke, kissed each other good morning and began their days. Tera gathered her things, checked her phone’s schedule, making note of the things that she needed to do. Keith finished making their breakfast before glancing at his own list of things to do. This was how they were: it was important for them to be there for their families, for those that called on them. It wasn’t time meant for them; they felt it was their place to give to others well before themselves.

At least, that that was their place on a normal day.

“I don’t have anything on my schedule today.”

“Oh?” There was a pause … a rather long one. “Seems like mine is the same.”

Tera shrugged, pocketed her phone, and made her way to the front door.

“It’s probably a mix-up at the Palace. The Receptionist will straighten it out for …” There was a pause as she opened the door, then called out: “Sweetheart? Could you come here for a moment?”

When Keith approached, he noticed that Tera was looking at a long red ribbon that had been thumbtacked to the top of the doorframe and hanging below was a small white envelope with their names written upon by a familiar pair of hands.

Keith carefully plucked the card from the ribbon and considered it.

“What do you think it is?”

“I know who it’s from.”

“So do I.”

Removing a card from within, Keith read the card, then gently took Tera’s hand and pulled her away from the door before closing it.

To Tera’s quizzical look, he explained: “You know, we forgot what today is.”

Her eyes became larger as she looked at the calendar they had pinned to the wall beside the door: “Oh, Goddess! I’m sorry …”

Hiding her close, their tails wrapping about them. He smiled: “Me, too. We both forgot something that we never should.”

Tilting her head to the right, she wondered: “What’s that card say?”

“Something about our friends giving us a gift.”

If there is one look that Keith cannot resist, it is when Tera’s bemused smile appears, and as it had been some time since he had last seen it, there was no hesitation.

Tera found herself cradled in her Eternal’s arms and being carried through their home. Passing through the kitchen, his tail snagged a can of RediWhip along the way. This was another thing that they hadn’t done in a while.

Then came a giggle that was long missed by them both: “I’ll bet that note says nothing about that.”

“You’ll see.”

Soon after, the neighbours across the yard heard a laugh from within a certain bedroom, as two souls that were always one celebrated that oneness again.

Later, entwined in each other’s arms, their love rekindled, the light about them brighter than it had been for some time, a small card rested upon their end table.

To our friends:

Sometimes finding you a gift is impossible … this took a whole Legion of help to manage it.
Sometimes the best gift is one of time.
Sometimes the world can wait … but your love never can.
Sometimes being together is the best gift of all.

Now take the day off, you two.
And you’d better not make this a sometime thing.

Happy Anniversary!

Mar 27 2016

A Review or The Succubus and The Incubus by Yonder

The Incubus by Yonder

The Incubus by Yonder

Two works for review today by the same author on the Tale. But there’s a bit of a problem in doing so. For the first I was able to read it. The second was… not so much so. The first is somewhat confused, has little focus, and overall is just a rather depressing story overall. The second I can’t even describe, because there was nothing to read.

Telling a story generally means having a plot, having characters that you want to know more about as a reader, and perhaps most importantly, there needs to be some kind of focus in the story. If that’s missing, then the overall work is lessened. Sometimes to an extent that leaves one wondering what they read when it ends.

  • Title: The Incubus
  • Author: Yonder
  • Length: 106 Pages
  • ASIN: B01C6JRUXC
  • Publishing Date: February 24, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

It tells the story of:

Meet the Incubus, seductive, strong, and sensual with all the other qualities you’re looking for in a man. He has it all ladies, and he is willing to please. He comes to you in a dream; being everything you need him to be. He will have you surrendering, giving in to his every whim, before you know it. Just be careful. Your first night with him may literally leave you breathless. Everyone is left in unbridled fear as bodies of young women are piling up throughout a small Arizona town. Many of the women are left in compromising positions as their bodies are drained of all life. Mynah Hill is hot on the case and she is resolute to solve it. The new Black Bird Detective, Mynah is a determined woman and a brilliant detective. With her cleverness and her knack for solving crimes, she has been lauded as one of the greatest Detectives in her small town of Glendale, Arizona. Will Mynah be able to solve the murder before it’s too late or will she end up with the worst fate? Find out inside.

An incubus stalks his prey as a detective tries to solve the murders that are rampant. But the truth takes her in an unexpected direction. Sometimes knowing the truth isn’t enough, not for the one responsible or for the one looking for justice.

The work is less about the incubus than it is about what happens to Mynah as the story unfolds. There’s so much more focus on all of the women that are involved in the story than the incubus himself and that’s a little disappointing.

There is but one short series of paragraphs when his true form is seen, a scattering of his past is told and then the story moves back into his finding pray, having sex with them, which has very little heat in it, and then their passing on. While from time to time his thoughts are heard, and they are somewhat remorseful, that just doesn’t ring true much of the time. It’s confusing as well, not really having focus, and being so there’s really not a lot to hold me into the story.

The work overall is morbid, sad, and depressing for all of the characters. There’s nothing of joy or being positive to be found. It’s just a slow downward spiral for Mynah and others, the incubus just appearing from time to time to add a bit to the story before vanishing again.

The story is confusing because it seems like there’s something going on around Mynah, but that’s not really focused on and when the ending arrives, that too doesn’t make a lot of sense overall. There’s a gap between the start of the work and where it ends that bothers me. It’s like there is a lot of missing information that was either left out or edited away.

The incubus himself seems to be quite stereotypical as well, what happens with him happens often, his appearance, his true one, at least as much as we are told of, seems to be stereotypical as well. He just wasn’t interesting as a character, being rather two-dimensional overall. Much the same can be said about a lot of the other characters as well, they fitting into a lot of roles that are familiar.

My overall problem was that I didn’t find my way into the story, I didn’t really care about any of the characters. There was no heat in the sex scenes, they really can’t be called erotica in all honesty. It’s just a work with no heart, no passion and nothing that I enjoyed. It’s a shame because the plot summary I thought offered something and it could have worked well. But it didn’t.

Two out of five pitchforks.

I just couldn’t get into the story, I didn’t care about what was happening all that much. There wasn’t a lot of time spent with the incubus himself, so he’s less of a character as a result. The ending didn’t connect well and the flow of the story felt much too scattered. I hoped for something more because of the plot summary, but in the end the plot summary was promising something not to be found really here.

The Succubus by Yonder

The Succubus by Yonder

The other work this author has published is about a succubus, and like the first work the plot summary seems to be interesting. It promised a lot, I wanted to read that story, to see what it was all about. But then I ran into a problem, one that has not been corrected by the time of this review, and as such I have little choice but to rate this work as I will be.

I have to expect that authors will do some checking to see if their work publishes correctly on Amazon, really that’s not a difficult thing to do. More so, I expect that when someone states there is a problem, it should be looked after.

  • Title: The Succubus
  • Author: Yonder
  • Length: 106 Pages
  • ASIN: B01C6JRUXC
  • Publishing Date: February 24, 2016
  • This work at Amazon.com

It tells the story of:

A high profile murder has the town of Cold Creek reeling with fear. With victims piling up, the pressure on Raven is heating up. Trying to prove that she is still a competent Detective, Raven is desperately trying to find the murderer who has their town by the throat. Her investigation reveals something so sinister and frightening, it leaves everyone questioning reality. Raven and Adrian are faced with something that they have never seen before. Leaving them with the burning question, “How do you arrest someone who is supernatural?”

I can’t tell you a thing about this work at all. The main reason is simply that I could not download anything more than the cover and one single page of the work. That single page consists of a short line of text and nothing more. I’ve tried repeatedly to get a copy of this work through Amazon which I can read, but to no avail.

When I manage to get a copy of this work, I will review it.

UPDATE (28/03/16): The second work was reuploaded by the author, but I still cannot read it. They have been in contact with me, I have emailed them, and I am hoping for a resolution to the issues i am having being able to read their work…

 

Tera

Mar 27 2016

A Review of Lilith by Paul Cavedaschi

Lilith by Paul Cavedaschi

Lilith by Paul Cavedaschi

There are some stories that, from the very beginning, make it impossible to like the main character. In doing so, that turns things from being ‘want’ to being ‘forced’ By that I mean there are unlikable characters, they are a part of storytelling and have to be there. But making every thought, action, expression, and concept that touches them something which only serves to make the reader wish the story would get to the point sooner isn’t really a good thing.

It’s also not a good thing when after all of the experiences, the character doesn’t change at all. As well, it’s not a reward for the reader to come to the end of the story, find all of the questions about another character are summed up in a single word and then the story closes. It feels like the reader is cheated somehow and that’s not an enjoyable thing.

  • Title: Lilith
  • Author: Paul Cavedaschi
  • Length: 202 Pages
  • ASIN: B00BE8SZMW
  • Publishing Date: February 10, 2013
  • This work at Amazon.com

The work tells the story of:

Men are bastards. Malcolm Scott, medical doctor, from Bangalow, Northern NSW, couldn’t agree more. After all he is one. At fifty, he has a midlife crisis, and goes on walkabout—no, he does not go bushwhacking in the hot outback of Australia: he surfs internet sex dating sites. He doesn’t just want an affair with a younger woman–that would be too clichéd. He wants to have sex with as many women as possible, to live an erotic life, to escape the humdrum reality of modern civilisation. He wants to live out all the erotic desires he has repressed his whole life. He wants to smash the whole misconception of monogamy altogether–and to do so without his wife finding out.

But online, He finds perhaps more than he bargained for—a woman who calls herself ‘Lilith’ and never shows her face grants him three erotic wishes—he can have whatever his heart desires, providing he can answer one simple question: what is it that women want?

The first thing I will note is that this work very much has the same tone as the summary given in that the main character Malcolm, is completely unlikable, has no redeeming features, has lost his humanity, cannot make a connection with anyone. What makes this unmistakeable is a single conversation with a patient of his, seeing his thoughts as that unfolds, and knowing that he has a heart of darkness which, no matter what the story accomplishes, will never change.

This then, more than all else which the story touches upon and tells about, serves to set Malcolm’s path in the story, how dark things become, now little love, if any, there is. At times he is amazingly stereotypical in his thinking and actions. As the main character of the story, his approach to things, his thoughts were, for me at least, the most difficult thing to get past. Even when the story finally turned in the direction of Lilith and her mystery, that fell pray to Malcolm’s darkness which consumes all here.

Lilith herself, throughout the work, isn’t really more than a shadow, a voice, a thought. She’s insistent, commanding, in a lot of ways, but in that comes the problem. The Lilith of his work is, in many ways, every bit as dark as Malcolm. She has very few redeeming qualities, and in being so, that adds another layer of indifference that is hard to get past. When she finally appears, fully, even then, at the climax, there’s nothing there to bring all of that came before into some sort of focus and bring a point to the work.

The work, as a whole, is difficult to read for the simple reason that listening to all of Malcolm’s negativity about himself, the world, and all that he once cared about, just gets old very fast. There’s not a whit of positiveness anywhere from any character and this just serves to drive Malcolm onwards into Lilith’s hands. Even where there is an inkling of erotica in the work it cannot overcome the blanket of darkness that exists throughout. There’s a need, a dire one, for a single bit of light to make things hopeful, at least for me, but that doesn’t happen here.

The work is a long read as a result, tending towards having to take breaks from it because the darkness of the characters emotionally is very draining. There is such a thing as being sarcastic of course, even a little dark, but when every single moment of one’s existence comes to that, and nothing more, it’s just sad.

The work does reflect an attitude that has become more prevalent over time, notably with the rise of the internet and dating sites and so on, which take up a good part of Malcolm’s journey. That of there being a barrier between souls, and that making the other not seen to matter so much. When we do so, we ourselves are lessened for it.

The end of the work, when it arrives, hints at much, could have given a lot, but instead, when the truth comes, the reader doesn’t see that, only Malcolm does and we are left with a single word that ends the story. It was disappointing because after all that transpired we are given a rote answer which leads to nothing and in which Malcolm has not changed at all. The answer as well, I don’t particularly agree with, but some might. Nonetheless, I was disappointed that after all of the journey the story is tossed away with a question and no real answers for anyone.

One and a half out of five pitchforks.

Too much internal strife and hurt for my liking, an ending that was a disappointment, and, as a result, one of the most difficult reads I have had in some time…

 

Tera

Mar 26 2016

Another neat Morrigan Aensland Speedpaint YouTube

A cute Morrigan Aensland speedpainting YouTube today on the Tale. Sometimes the neatest image of Morrigan are the ones that look so simple and yet have so much going on within them…

 

And if you cannot see this video here on the Tale, please try this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc-HsFvriGA

And, as always in case YouTube removes the video, here is an image of the completed artwork as well…

Morrigan Aensland by neeneejb1

Morrigan Aensland by neeneejb1

While this might look like a “simple” piece of Morrigan art, i think there’s quite a lot of detail as a whole. Beyond that, that expression of Morrigan’s really works well, shows her personality, and is the icing on the cake of some art that is wonderful.

A little sexy, a lot of cute, and just a lot of fun… All really good things…

 

Tera

Mar 25 2016

A Review of Sacrificed to the Succubus by Phoebe Yearns

Sacrificed to the Succubus by Phoebe Yearns

Sacrificed to the Succubus by Phoebe Yearns

A minor rant today about a work that, at least for me, I found to be uninteresting, lacking quite a lot of heat, a D/s story that really doesn’t understand what that means and, most of all, has a title that makes one expect something and then does not deliver.

When someone writes a work, and then titles it with the word “Succubus” a reader expects, at some point, there should be a succubus in the story. When there isn’t, that simply means there’s nothing of interest in it for me at least.

It tells the story of:

When Emma pledged to Sigma Eta Xi, she knew she was in for a wild ride. Especially when her first task as a new member is to sacrifice herself to Kade, the sexiest man she’s ever met. When the whip comes out, she’s not sure if she should run and hide or submit to what is sure to be the best sex of her life.

Emma pledges herself to her sorority and finds that she has to submit to the whims of the head of a fraternity on campus… and submit she does.

This isn’t a story about any kind of succubus whatsoever. There’s not a hint of one, not a suggestion that one might appear. What this story focuses on, when the build up is over, comes to a fantastical version of a D/s fantasy which, at least in my eyes, has not a clue what that means.

It’s extremely male dominant, which would be fine except I don’t care for how Kade acts, what happens to Emma in his hands, and more importantly, the entire wrongness of the scenes where Emma is forced to submit… over and over again.

What really gets me most of all is that there is a suggestion of a safe word and then Emma is silenced so she cannot say it, cannot express that she doesn’t like what is happening. This is a huge breaking of trust and it’s what completely turned me off of this story.

Any heat that had been building to that point was taken away and what came afterwards just didn’t sit right with me. While I understand that this is fiction, there are limits to what I can accept in any sort of BDSM story and in this case it goes too far for my own tastes.

Adding to this, as I noted, the complete lack of any sort of succubus appearing turned me off further still. There is a huge suggestion in the title, and for that matter the sub-title, that I expected someone to be a succubus in the story. That didn’t happen and as such this work is, sadly, a disappointment.

Zero out of five pitchforks.

Didn’t care for the story, didn’t care for the outcome, but most of all the thing that turned me off was the complete lack of anything succubus in nature within the story. Now, at least by the title, this might well be the first work in a series, and as such I’ll revisit this I’m sure when the next work appears, but if there isn’t a succubus in that work as there was in this one then I most certainly will not be reading further.

 

Tera

Mar 25 2016

A Review of Just Prey by C.P. McClennan

Just Prey by C.P. McClennan

Just Prey by C.P. McClennan

A review today of the first work in the Savannah series by C.P. McClennan. While this is a science-fiction adventure work, there’s an interesting undercurrent in what two of the characters are capable of. In some ways, they have a bit or a succubus or incubus nature, even if that mostly extends towards sex and what happens afterwards. But they are not, and yet they are.

There is a question which asks not why things are, but why you choose as you do. Nothing is constant, sometimes your choices do matter. Sometimes caring is the choice that matters most of all.

  • Title: Just Prey
  • Author: C.P. McClennan
  • Length: 181 Pages
  • ASIN: B00SF29LY6
  • Publishing Date: February 10, 2015
  • This work at Amazon.com

It is the story of:

Savannah was lied to. She didn’t want him killed. When she saw him again, in a Chicago sex club, she knew she couldn’t go through with it. In fact, she abandoned her mission to try and stop it. These humans were not supposed to be kind or passionate. They were supposed to be just prey.

Savannah isn’t a normal woman. It isn’t that she likes sex, and a lot of it. No, Savannah’s an alien on a mission. But not all missions go as planned. Love shouldn’t be part of it, but it only takes one human to get through to her and make her reconsider. But there are forces who care not about humanity, Earth, or for that matter, what Savannah wants. Savannah needs to choose and choose well.

Savannah, the main character in this work, is an alien, but there’s an interesting aspect to her in that she has, in some ways, similar abilities to a succubus. She possesses a little bit of mind control, she feeds from sex. She also kills those she is intimate with in a rather gruesome manner. There is another character who acts in a similar fashion, is male, and could be thought of as an incubus as being so.

The need for sex, both human and alien, is a constant point throughout the work, many times taking up entire chapters in what Savannah does with others. Thankfully the author doesn’t keep Savannah’s character development to the sex alone. Over time there’s a little bit of humanity that comes into her, changes her character to a point, and it is an important one.

While that story is told, parallel stories come about other characters, their lives interweaving together. To do so the work flashes back and forth in time on Earth, some of those moments causing moments in history to unfold in a rather unique perspective. This, overall, is where I have some problems with the work. The shifts in time also involve different characters, and occasionally events occur from one time and perspective, then a moment is told from another a day prior to that event. It becomes confusing very quickly and I found myself having to scroll back and forth in order to piece the story together, to understand why and what was happening.

The work ends in a rush, events spiral out of control and some of what happens is very sad and, overall, felt like an afterthought. It does lead into the next work in the series, in, again, a flashback method that seems a little odd. Still, it reveals something, offers a hint of what it to come and that seems to be interesting.

I am not sure the constant flipping back and forth through time worked for me. There were several points were I was confused about things and had to go back a chapter or three to figure out what was going on and why it matters. Some of the sex scenes were rather lukewarm in tone overall, occasionally the actions taken by Savannah and her quarry in the work just didn’t work as well. The feeling of coldness from quite a number of minor and major characters made it hard at times to actually care about what was happening to them.

There is a strong undercurrent of loss, of losing hope at times. There are some bright moments, Gerard, as a character, I thought was very interesting and character-wise was an equal to Savannah herself. The loss in the work comes from the lack of emotion, of caring at times, some of the actions that Savannah and her quarry take. While that can be said to reflect an alien view of things, the change in Savannah as the story unfolds didn’t quite get to her passions, save for one pivotal scene.

I think some more time spent on Savannah’s past, more than the fleeting moment told, would have helped a lot. I think her relationship with Gerard should have been explored more. The connection is there, but it gets glossed over in the rush to tell the story overall.

A bit more editing, there are a handful of spelling mistakes, a few bits of dialogue that don’t sound right somehow. A little more heart in Savannah than we are told about and I think I would have liked this a lot more. Good, interesting scifi with a little touch of succubus mythos and I thought that was rather unique. It’s just a very complex read with an ending that left me wanting.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

The shifting in time becomes a little confusing as it happens so frequently. While that is a means to telling the characters’ stories, there are so many questions left behind for the missing parts of the story not told. The work coming to follow this one, Darwin’s Sword, I hope will be some more time spent on background, fleshing out more about Savannah, about the universe around her. The work is interesting, but somewhere along the way a little hope in the ashes would be good.

 

Tera

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