Review: Demons Are Forever by Julie KennerFriday, June 27, 2008 16:00
Liviania‘s review of Demon’s are Forever (Confessions of a Demon-Hunting Soccer Mom, Book 3) by Julie Kenner
Paranormal romance released by Berkley 3 Jul 07
A couple of years ago, Julie Kenner’s Carpe Demon caught my eye in the bookstore due to its cute tagline and cover. I enjoyed the novel and I have continued reading the series. Demons Are Forever is her third novel to feature demon-hunting soccer mom Kate Connor.
Kate used to be a full-time Hunter for the Catholic organization Forza Scura before she decided to settle down with her husband Eric (also a Hunter) and have children. Eric died a few years later, in what Kate learned to be a murder rather than a mugging in the last novel. Now she’s not only returned to hunting demons, her daughter knows about her past and she has to uncover the secrets of Eric’s death while caring for a toddler and keeping everything a secret from her current husband. Oh, and Eric just might have stolen the body of one of their daughter’s teachers.Demons Are Forever entertained me, but it felt less fun than the first two. I’m not entirely sure why that was. Kate still struggles to balance her life as a suburban house wife with the fight against evil. But it felt less fresh. There’s a limit to how many times a character can hide a body in the shed during a social event. She encountered one demon in front of Stuart and it felt like a lawyer should be asking more questions and be more concerned about having her press charges or something. He just seems so blind to Kate, particularly when her best friend and teenage daughter have already managed to discover her secret.
Once more demons are after an artifact in San Diablo. Why demons are suddenly popping out of the woodwork of the city still seems unexplained, as the demons are always after something that’s been in San Diablo for years. As Kate tries to find the jewel before the minions of Andramelech, she comes close to discovering the truth about Eric’s death. Connect to both the jewel and Eric is Nadia, a Hunter presumed dead by Forza Scura. She’s your classic leather-clad wild woman, and some of her antics are pretty entertaining. Unfortunately, Kenner never gives her much depth and she remains a one-note character even as her importance to the plot increases.
My favorite character almost never appears. Cutter, Kate’s sparring partner, has little more than a bit part. He’s always been a minor character, but his scenes are always fun. Plus he, unlike Stuart, realizes Kate has secrets and tries to get her to open up. It felt odd that Father Ben, her alimentore, never seemed to be onscreen. It seems pointless for her to have a guide/mentor/researcher if she only calls him a few times for advice.
While I focused on many points that disappointed me, I still enjoyed Demons Are Forever. I can recall one scene involving Kate accidentally threatening a young neighborhood boy with an ice pick that is hilarious. The series is breezy, relaxing urban fantasy with an unconventional heroine. The minor characters tend to have distinct, unannoying personalities. The series’ mythology is easy to follow and makes sense. Despite the fact I liked the novel, it felt like a stumble while I was reading it.
It isn’t easy when your daughter’s figured out that her mom’s a demon hunter—and wants to grow up to be just like her.
Or when you suspect your dead husband used the forces of darkness to filch the body of another human. And your living husband has shifted into such political overdrive that he doesn’t seem to be the man you married either.
Moreover, Kate’s acquired a precious—but deadly—item that every demon within commuting distance is seething to get hold of. With husband woes playing havoc with her emotions, an ambitious teenage protégée at her heels, and hell to pay, this stay-at-home mom’s putting in a lot of overtime…