Jerry is not just a regular guy. He’s also Prince Jerricho, demon royalty, and as the prince of the Anzuni clan, he has no choice but to marry a man his parents have chosen for him and carry the man’s child. But Jerry is in love with a human, Rex Callaghan, and Jerry has only ever wanted freedom. But he knows his place, and he knows he can’t be with Rex, so he goes back home to fulfill his duty.
But the man his parents have chosen is awful and Jerry runs again. A night with Rex is more than he can ever imagine, but he knows he can’t stay. When he turns up pregnant from his night with Rex, everything changes. No longer having to marry his intended, Jerry is free. But he has to tell Rex that not only is he a demon, but he’s carrying Rex’s child. Rex actually accepts the truth easier than Jerry fears. But what should be a happy time is marred with strife and when the men are taken, all hell breaks loose. Nothing is as it seems and Jerry and Rex are held and tortured, used for their blood. The entire situation get worse and worse, as new plots are revealed, more sinister forces come to the fore, and escape attempts are thwarted. Hope is lost and it’ll take a miracle to make it out alive.
Okay, so I purposefully got a little vague up there, because there is just so much going on in this novel, and to reveal anymore would make it one big spoiler. A lot of this story hangs on the twists and turns, the lies and misdirection, as the plot thickens and new bad guys are revealed. There is a lot going on in this story. Almost too much at times. But I’ll get to that in a minute.
First I want to talk about the characters, because this is where I’ve always thought this author excels. I loved Jerry from the beginning. He’s the perfect mix of resigned to his fate while wanting to have his own life. He has a backbone, but he doesn’t always use it, and he’s well balanced in how he act and thinks. This kind of character could easily turn tedious, but Wallace handles him perfectly. As Jerry is the POV character, this works especially well. He’s the perfect character to bring us the story, at once knowledgeable and naïve, and my heart went out to him as the perilous situation mounted and with each new danger he faced.
Rex was a little less defined, and I would have liked to know him better. He seemed to accept things very easily, and while a passing mention as to why was provided, I would have really liked to see this explored more in depth. I would have liked to see more of their romance as well. The MCs certainly had chemistry from word one, and I absolutely believed their commitment to one another. But things moved really fast between them, and then a majority of the book was spent with them apart or dealing his heinous things. So while I definitely enjoyed them together, and believed their connection, if it had been explored and expanded more, it would have worked a bit better for me.
So the biggest plot line here dealt with Jerry and Rex’s abduction and the sinister plot surrounding it. Again, I’m not going to say too much here, but I will say this: I felt like there was way too much going on here. One sinister plot after another, lies and secrets, and no one was who they seemed. While I enjoyed not quite knowing who was bad and who could be trusted, I felt like the constant shifting went over the top. I won’t say it was exactly confusing—though there were a lot of side characters, and at times I had to take a minute and remember who everyone was—but I would say it went too far. There came a point where I just wanted to get through it, and as yet another bombshell fell, I wasn’t as emotionally invested as at the start. For me, toning this down and tightening it up, would have made for a more impactful read.
Wallace is an excellent world builder, and he succeeds here again, creating a whole other society of demons with their own sets of rules and laws. The characters were engaging and relatable. But the over the top danger and constantly shifting antagonists worked against the book. I’d cautiously recommend this one to anyone who likes a twist on demons, and a solidly built world.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.