[Review] PERSONAL DEMON by Kelley Armstrong

[This is the eighth in a series of posts counting down to the last in Kelley Armstrong’s Otherworld series, THIRTEEN, set for release July 24, 2012. ~~ 1.BITTEN; 2. STOLEN; 3. DIME STORE MAGIC; 4. INDUSTRIAL MAGIC; 5. HAUNTED; 6. BROKEN; 7. NO HUMANS INVOLVED]

PERSONAL DEMON was originally reviewed April 29, 2008:

PERSONAL DEMON
Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld, Book 8
Bantam Spectra [March 25, 2008]

In Personal Demon, Hope Adams, a tabloid reporter for supernaturals, has been recruited by Benicio Cortez to infiltrate a gang that he believes presents a problem to his cabal. Benicio is the head of the Cortez Cabal and by enlisting Hope is calling in a favor she owes to him. The Cabals are akin to the Mafia, so it’s an offer she really can’t refuse. Hope is unique in that she is an Expisco half-demon who can read thoughts and see events that happen as a result of chaos. But the energy rush she receives from these events can become addicting and when she is in the midst of a chaotic situation, her world narrows down to the sensation of the emotions caused by the events, which is Hope’s Personal Demon. Benecio hopes to use her unique talents to find out what the gang is ultimately planning and if it involves his cabal.

When Karl Marsten, werewolf, jewel thief and sort of ex-boyfriend hears Hope is in Florida investigating this gang, he high-tails it down there to pull her out and escort her home asap. When she refuses to end her involvement in the investigation and he refuses to leave her unprotected, Karl becomes involved in the investigation, as well as stirring up the emotional pot for Hope.

The situation becomes even more convoluted when members of the gang turn up missing and events occur that point to the Cortez Cabal becoming an even larger target than Benicio originally thought.

Lucas Cortez, Benicio’s youngest son, comes down to help as well and the POV switches between Lucas and Hope as the story unfolds. At first, this switch was rather jarring and pulled me out of the story as it wasn’t evident as to why the POV switch was necessary. But as events unfolded, I saw how it was important to the plot to have both views and it became less intrusive as the story moved along. Readers of Ms. Armstrong’s other works will be pleased with the inclusion of the familiar faces of Lucas and Paige along with the further development of Hope and Karl. It is possible to read this book as a stand alone but of course for the best sense of Ms. Armstrong’s careful world building and characters one should read the whole series.

While the pacing of Personal Demon is bogged down in places, it is still a very worthwhile read and integral to the development of the series. After the events in Personal Demon, things are forever changed for some of the characters and I am interested to see how the future unfolds for them. The next installment in the Women of the Otherworld Series, Living with the Dead, is due in November, 2008.

Rating: B
Kelley Armstrong Website
Review by Lisa Trevethan

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