Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Succubus Heat by Richelle Mead

 Georgina has been going through the various stages of grieving for the loss of her relationship with Seth, and at the start of this book she appears to have settled for anger, and bad behavior. She has been "dating" Dante, the corrupt magician, who makes his living giving bogus Tarot and palm readings, and has been a bit of a pain in the rear to all of her immortal colleagues. Arch demon Jerome finally tires of this and gets her out of his hair by lending her out to a rival in Vancouver Canada, Cedric, who needs her to infiltrate and discourage a group of wannabe Satanists who are embarrassing his evil organization.

There's a deeper plot going on, though, and Georgina is once again stuck in the middle of divine and demonic intrigues.

In the midst of all of the intrigue, she keeps being thrust into situations where she must deal with Seth and Maddie's relationship, and she doesn't handle it well. When Jerome is summoned and imprisoned by a magician and an unknown demonic rival, she and all the other lesser immortals lose their powers - the vampires can walk around in daylight, and succubi cannot shape shift or sustain themselves on sexual energy, things get even more complicated, as the two of them realize that they can finally do what they could not do when they were openly in love - make love. Could this be happiness at last? Hell, no! Just more ways for them to screw things up.

I have to say that I really didn't see the identity of the villain coming until the final reveal. Mead did a great job of leaving the clues out there to see, but not in a way that made it too obvious.

One of the mysteries that has been hanging out there for a couple of books now is whether there was some sort of irregularity with Georgina's contract with Hell - and I think the readers have been holding out hope that if there was, she'd somehow be able to find a loophole to get out of her servitude. After doing a more powerful immortal a favor, the demon checks the archives and finds that the contract was clearly written, no way out. Drat! But I've thought of at least one circumstance which could void the contract, if it could ever be proven, and I'm sure Mead's got something up her sleeve for the day she's ready to end the series...which appears at least a few books away, at least.

Possibly one of the best plotted books Mead has written, this one moves the plot arc in an unexpected direction.

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