La Crimson Femme
Review Unholy Murder by Candace Blevins
★★★★ @CandaceBlevins #UnholyMurder #Halloween
Ronnie and Josef are back in a Halloween special. For those who have not read the first book featuring Ronnie and Josef, might I suggest reading Unhallowed Murder first? If not, this book can still be read as a standalone. The focus in this book is more on the murders and worldbuilding than their romance. Never fear romance lovers, when the lights go out, Ronnie and Josef turn on the sexy times.
What I like about this story is the pace. The plot moves fast which keeps the tension up. This is because the murderer is shortening the time frame between each killing. This ratchets up the need to solve the murders as the inexplicable slayings put pressure on all the supernatural. Figuring out the who and why takes unexpected twists and turns. Ronnie brings in powerful heavy hitters in the supernatural world to help figure out the killer as well as capture and neutralize them. The gruesomeness of the killings is described in a way that delivers a serious tone without creating a gratuitous horror scene. I appreciate this from Ms. Blevins. It is almost clinical in how the victims are killed yet it tempers it with empathy and a sense of wrongness.
I am intrigued by the concepts of why the killings are occurring and I can only hope that is explored further down the line. Does this make me a sociopath? I am uncertain. I do find the method behind the madness a bit of genius sorcery. This concept also makes me think about one of the characters in Ilona Andrew's Kate Daniel series. I digress.
The suspense in this story is unended when a plan goes south and Ronnie ends up in a realm that shall not be spoken. Suffice to say, sexy X makes a guest appearance. I am mixed about X. He is a demon and he only has his own interests at heart. He does nothing out of the goodness of his heart and yet he makes such a riveting antihero. I am still not over my last interaction with him and it lingers in this story as I need to remind myself he is not the one we want to root for... but he is the Demon lord of lust... I mean, Ronnie's reaction to him shows her iron-clad control. Impressive! Thankfully she can channel all that horniness to her lover, Josef. Maybe Josef should send X a gift basket to thank him. Because the sexy times are going to be primal when you have a tiger in bed with you. (Pun intended)
This novella is recommended to suspense readers who enjoy a paranormal erotic twist.
* I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book.