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(Maeren Reverse Harem Series – Volume 1)
by Mercedes Jade
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Slow Burn, RH Fantasy
Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited
Down and Dirty
A bit confusing, but might be worth it if you’ve got the time. Free on Kindle Unlimited.
What is it about?
(Blurb from GoodReads)
There is no such thing as a lightning witch.
Elizabeth Norwood has been hiding in the human realm most of her life, filling a niche as a vampire slayer that isn’t quite as secret as her magic. Staking demons wasn’t part of the deal. The only way to keep hell from following her hidden family and ruining their happily ever after is to confront the demons from her old life and do what she’s trained for her whole life, defeat the monster.
Seems simple enough until she accidentally stabs Prince Daemon in the back. It was the spiked punch, honest! Only wounding the dark demon of her dreams has put him on her scent and the hunt she had planned changes into a chase with nowhere to run. Her sister is busy facing her own demons. Her mother will tear hell apart to save her, even if the rest of their world comes crumbling down in penance. Elizabeth has no choice but to grab the prince by his fangs and cast the biggest illusion her lightning magic ever conjured.
Daemon won’t be easily tricked. He has grown up in a dark court full of intrigues and assassins. The thorny path to the throne is strewn with his fiery siblings, blood-harem rights and a little dragon problem that’s got the villagers in an uproar. Now, Elizabeth is attracting interest that a witch with a secret cannot afford. She will need more than a few, sweet kisses to pull Daemon away from it all and under her spell. He is the most dangerous monster she’s faced, a true match to her singular magic in ways she can’t parry without revealing her secrets. They’ll dance until one of them is caught and she is forced into a terrible dilemma.
There’s only one rule about slaying that matters.
The stake goes in the heart.
Give it time
This was a confusing story that still caught and entrapped me the longer I read. Instead of explanations to ease or coax you into this world, you are quite literally dropped into a pit of intrigue, magic, shifters and vampires. The rules are a mess, the universe baffling and the goal unclear – yet there is something undeniably compelling about the narrative and the picture being painted.
Witches and Vampires are compatible by blood and magic, and the Vampires that rule Maeren… (which is, I guess Hell?) keep Harems of willing witches to sate their blood and magic needs. It’s a bit messed up, made even more complicated by the greeting balls that are held to introduce eligible witches to needful Vampires. Yet some of those Vampires can also become Demons, if they have drained a witch of all her magic…. are you starting to see a bit of the confusion here? Then there are dragons, protectors, the Royal family, too many intrigues, an exiled Queen, an ineffective King, jealous witches and a secret that must be kept at all costs.
I closed the book, shook my head, rattled my brain and tried to make sense of it all. Still going to read Book 2 though, I kinda NEED to know what the hell is going on here.
Note: There is a Glossary of Terms in the front…. READ THIS! Your Kindle will skip it and start you off on page 1 of the prologue – back track, find it and read it. It’s an orientation of sorts and rather needful to make this diabolical world a little bit less flummoxing.
Third Person, Multiple POV with flashback, though main tale is via her eyes.
Steamy but not on fire – there is more teasing, though I wondered if it actually treaded on DubCon a time or two. Vampires seem to make the decisions in this world, and the witches, uh, just go along with it?
- Very interesting.
- Unique world building.
- Buffy references galore.
- Who to trust? Really, no one knows.
- Playing catch up and missing the point.
- Chapters flip through time with misplaced flashbacks.
- Seriously confusing.
- That cover. Not a fan.
Her swindle sense tingled. It was like a spidey sense but tuned for assholes. (29%)
I had to give it 4 stars, because no matter how convoluted this world, it IS VERY interesting and left me with a solid need to find out what happens next. A bit frustrating, really.
Published November 15th, 2018
Please note, the author states this will be a Reverse Harem Series. This means it will feature scenes or sexual themes more suited to an old audience. 17+?
If you enjoyed this review, please consider checking out a few of my other articles.
- Bonds of the Mazza by Blake Blessing – A Book Review
- White Raven by J.L. Weil – A Book Review
- Marks of the Mazza by Blake Blessing – A Book Review
What are you reading today? Have you read this? What did you think? Leave a comment, I would love to talk!