Cop and conjurer of demons, she's a woman in danger of losing control - to a power that could kill....
"Why me? Why now?" That’s what Beaulac, Louisiana, detective Kara Gillian was asking herself when an angelic creature named Rhyzkahl unexpectedly appeared during a routine summoning. Kara was hoping to use her occult skills to catch a serial killer, but never had she conjured anything like this unearthly beautiful and unspeakably powerful being whose very touch set off exquisite new dimensions of pleasure. But can she enlist his aid in helping her stop a killer who’s already claimed the lives - and souls - of 13 people? And should she?
The Symbol Man is a nightmare that the city thought had ended three years ago. Now he's back for an encore and leaving every indication on the flesh of his victims that he, too, is well versed in demonic lore. Kara may be the only cop on Beaulac’s small force able to stop the killer, but it is her first homicide case. Yet with Rhyzkahl haunting her dreams, and a handsome yet disapproving FBI agent dogging her waking footsteps, she may be in way over her head.
©2009 Diana Rowland (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
This book makes me think of Eve Dallas (In Death series by JD Robb), gone paranormal. I've enjoyed the story and the narrator's performance so much that I've downloaded the whole series in the last 5 days.
The story isn't complex, but the vocabulary level is slightly above average when compared to similar others in this genre. At the same time, the "F word" is used frequently. I found that a strange but charming paradox.
I think this is my first experience with narrator, Liv Anderson, but her voice is calm and well-paced.
I would say within my top ten. This is my first book by Diana Rowland so I am really looking forward to continuing the story.
Oh wow, I'd say when Kara is attacked by the demon towards the end of the book
I really loved the part where we got to see the other realm.
Don't judge the demon by the cover
Definitely a great first book to the series. I am looking forward to the next in the line. Well worth a credit!!!!
More like a 3.5. I am conflicted about how I felt about this book. I enjoyed it for the most part. I really did. But it wasn't what I was expecting, wanting, desiring to read at the moment.
I have read/listened to Diana Rowland's White Trash Zombie books. I was hoping for something like those but with a different heroine, if you. Think about that for a moment. We all hate when an author writes the same book but with a different heroine. So my premise was all wrong to begin with.
Anyhoo, don't be looking for Angel in Kara. Are there similarities? Yes. But the Kara Gillian book was darker. There was not as much humor. Kara is not as disingenuous as our zombie gal Angel, nor is she all that worldly wise. But she knows what she is from day 1. There is no fumbling around, in humorous ways, to figure out how to deal with her situation.
I have told you what it is not. Now I will share what it is.
Kara Gillian is a cop. But she is a cop with an outside life that includes her being a summoner. She summons demons. Now, these demons will do stuff for summoners, but there are different levels of demons one can summon. If you summon a demon that is not of a mind to be summoned, you could be opening up a can of demonic worms you really don't want to open.
And Kara does just that. But Kara can't figure out why or how she did it. She didn't want to. But she did. And of course, the demon doesn't shed any light on the situation for her.
So what we have is a cop with an unwanted demon. And then next thing you know, we have a cop with serial killer on her hands. Coincidence? I think not.
So the story takes us through the machinations of the serial killer, and the machinations of a demon lord with an agenda. Kara is the focal point of both.
There are a lot of red herrings in this book. Red herrings that you can smell. That is not my favorite plot device. They did seem a bit heavy handed.
I also had some issues with Kara's initial meeting with the demon. I didn't "approve" of what happened, nor did I approve when it happened again. But it is all explained away in a PC kind of way so I decided not to get my panties in a twist.
I listened to the Audible version. The narrator is Liv Anderson. I can't remember listening to her before, but I will now seek out books she has narrated. I thought she did a wonderful job.
Say something about yourself!
Read/Listened for Fun (Audible/Paperback)
Tracking Books Read Review (Short)
Overall Rating: 4.00
Story Rating: 4.00
Character Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating: 4.00 (not part of overall rating)
First Thought when Finished: I was thrilled to see that Mark of the Demon was a little bit Urban Fantasy and Mystery/Thriller! Glad I have 3 more of the series ready to go!
Overall Thoughts: I love Diana Rowland's White Trash Zombie series and have owned these forever. I was not disappointed. I really liked Kara--she was smart, interesting, quirky, and can kick butt. I loved that she was cop and has a past that makes her a better cop. The mystery was strong. I am very interested to see how things play out with Kara and all the craziness that is going on in her world. I have to say that last little bit about the naked pictures on the internet made me laugh out loud. You will just have to read it to figure out what that refers too!
Narrated By Liv Anderson / Length: 12 hrs and 26 mins
Liv did an excellent job with Mark of the Demon. I have never listened to her narrate a book before but I was impressed. I will be watching for books narrated by her in the future.
Final Thought: Need to squeeze book 2 in soon!
A girl can't have too many book boyfriends!
This is a fantastic read! I enjoyed this first book so much that I went ahead and bought the whole series. It's so well read by Liv Anderson, that I was instantly sucked into the world. It's gritty and dark at times, and several secondary characters die -- but that's to be expected since it deals with demon summoning as a practice of magic. I was riveted from the start!
The series revolves around a female cop who is also a secret student of demon summoning. She's the only one who senses the magic around several crime scenes, and is therefore the only one with any chance of solving the crimes. She goes up against a bad guy summoner who's trying to bring on Armageddon for the usual twisted reasons.
Our hero is not extra tough, nor does she use a handy magic wand. She does use her wits to find out who the psycho is. While occasionally summoning a demon or two to help out, she does this reluctantly since demons are strong and unpredictable and if she loses control of them she's toast.
So yeah, it's dark, but it's also funny at times and it feels fully fleshed out. Some of the demons she summons are nearly mindless beasts, while others are sexy angel like gods. There is a little romance, some sex and a great plot.
While I don't get the negative reviews, and I won't speculate on why they seem so harsh, I will say that the negatives noted seem to be based on the kinds of things that books of this type usually contain. I just wonder what these readers were expecting from a Urban Fantasy about demons.
I enjoyed this book very much and look forward to more books in the series.
P.S. I've noted a troubling trend in reviews where people are using the word "heroin" when they mean "heroine." I don't want to be the spelling police, but come on people -- those are two very different words!
Interesting concept, a little slow to get started but after that it was a wild ride! Fantastic story, a little demon love mixed in… And a very cool female heroine! The narration was some of the best!
Nicely executed urban fantasy. Solid characters with a real plot that is engaging, sexy and unpredictable in the most interesting way
Most comparable to Faith Hunter and Patricia Briggs at their best. The creation of a believable world populated by demons and people with her mature views on good and evil make for an entertaining and thoughtful read or listen Liv Anderson did a great job.
Liv does a very professional job of narration with this project. Her voice is pleasing and warm with a range that makes the characters distinct.
It's noteworthy that while the first in a series this book reads as a complete book with no cliff hangers or sinister underlying plots to presage the next book. I will read the next book because the characters and storyline are engaging and I want to see how they develop.
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