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Demon's Curse (Imnada Brotherhood) by Alexa…
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Demon's Curse (Imnada Brotherhood) (edition 2012)

by Alexa Egan

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275402,159 (2.94)None
Member:vampiregirl76
Title:Demon's Curse (Imnada Brotherhood)
Authors:Alexa Egan
Info:Pocket Books (2012), Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:historical paranormal romance

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Demon's Curse by Alexa Egan

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Showing 5 of 5
Originally Reviewed At:Mother/Gamer/Writer
Rating: 3 out of 5 Controllers
Review Source: Publisher
Reviewer: Ariel


Demon’s Curse, the first novel from Alexa Egan and the first novel in the Imnada Brotherhood series was not a bad first novel, but it wasn’t great either.

Demon’s Curse tells the tale of Mac Flannery, a shapeshifter from a race called the Imnada and Bianca Parrino, a beautiful actress. Mac, along with three other Imnada, Adam, Gray, and David, participated in Waterloo, where Adam slaughtered a Fey-blood, magical beings that have been at odds with the Imnada since the days of King Arthur. The Fey placed a curse on the four soldiers, forcing them to shift every night rather than them shifting by choice. A year later, Adam is murdered and now Mac is convinced that someone is after the Imnada.

I can’t quite put my finger on it, but this novel really just didn’t grab me. To begin with, the pacing is really odd. Some parts felt really speedy and other parts felt as though they dragged on forever. Because Egan has created a world of Imnada, I expected there to be a little more explanation as to the race and some of the terminology used, but I had to pick up most of it from context. I did find out at the end that there’s a glossary, so definitely look back to that if you ever get confused. The few battle scenes that were in the novel I expected to be really drawn out and detailed, and they weren’t, which is good or bad depending on how much you care about the battle scenes.

The relationship between Mac and Bianca just seemed random to me. They initially come together because Mac hears the rumors that Bianca was Adam’s mistress, and Mac assumes she knows something about Adam’s death. It was clear that they were going to be together, because they’re the hero and heroine of the story, but other than that, I didn’t necessarily feel the chemistry there.

Since the prologue of the novel began with the four shifters, I kind of assumed that the friendship between the three remaining men would be a main focus of the novel. I was wrong. They weave in and out of the novel, but I wouldn’t call Gray and David main characters at all. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, it just isn’t what I expected based on the prologue.

One of my main problems with the novel (other than the weird pacing) was that towards the end of the novel, there were some new terms and new types of people (Realings). It just seemed thrown in close to the end, and I know it’s a series, so the Realings might become a bigger part of the novel later on, but it just seemed odd to throw in a Realing so close to the end of the novel without any real explanation.

All of that being said, there were good things about the book. The interesting parts of the novel were really interesting and kept my attention. The ending was intense, and I had a hard time putting the book down once I got to the last few chapters. I loved that the demons were shapeshifters, because I feel as though shapeshifters aren’t done as often, so that was different.

Overall, I give Demon’s Curse 3 out of 5 controllers. It wasn’t anywhere close to being the worst thing I’ve ever read, and the concept of the story is really interesting, but it just didn’t grab me.

( )
  momgamerwriter | Feb 6, 2014 |
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales.

Quick & Dirty: A good concept for a historical paranormal, but didn’t deliver in the way that would keep my interest.

Opening Sentence: One of the mythical race of shape-shifting Imnada and a member of an elite military unit, Captain Mac Flannery suffers under a ruthless curse.

The Review:

Demon’s Curse by Alexa Egan is the first book in the Imnada Brotherhood series. Set in a historical setting, Egan tells the tale of a secret race of shape-shifters who demand secrecy in order to survive. With a life long rival with the Fae Blood, the Imnada Brotherhood must do what they can to protect their race from the Other and from human knowledge.

Captain Mac Flannery and his Imnada brothers have gathered at the funeral of their late brother, Adam. In a brutal and public murder, Mac and his brothers gather for the first time since their banishment from their clans. Mac must find Adam’s murderer, and he needs to start with the rising actress, Bianca Parrino. Bianca is an actress on stage and off. She brings forth a persona to keep others at bay. Bianca feels she has her independence and her wealth, and that is more than enough to keep her life content. When her close friend Adam is murdered, Bianca is one of the main suspects. She must prove her innocence, and depend on the one man she least expected.

Set in historical England, in a regency era, Bianca is independent and a free thinker. She survived an abusive marriage, is a successful and sought after actress, and is coveted by many eligible bachelors. Bianca built up a wall, shutting off her heart from the rest of the world. My connection to Bianca was a little slow. For one thing, she didn’t stand out. In the beginning of Demon’s Curse, I kept mistaking her for the antagonist, and that is never a good thing.

Mac was a difficult man to get to know. One minute he was tough and against his current life, and the next he couldn’t stay away fast enough. I didn’t think the transition between his feelings were smooth enough. It wasn’t realistic for me to accept. Mac was so focused on the murder and the curse that it wasn’t easy to accept that he could love a woman so easily. At least not to me.

I couldn’t connect to a lot of things within Demon’s Curse, but what I couldn’t connect to could be the thing that you do. It was a little difficult for me to engage with the characters. I felt the way they were introduced, there wasn’t anything tangible for me to grab on to. The details that I did grab onto wasn’t enough to keep me engaged.

The history of the Imnada was a little confusing, and I felt that the message was lost in translation. There wasn’t a simple laid out backstory of the Imnada brotherhood and their culture. I felt myself skimming through the pages looking for little bits of information. The culture of the clans, the shape-shifters, and the Imnada is what really intriguied me, and I couldn’t get enough of it. Everything was detailed, maybe too much to a point. It seemed like Demon’s Curse had too much of everything.

With so much information and events taking place, I felt the pacing was a little slow. The first half of the book seemed to drag for me. A lot of my personal preferences kept me from connecting, often times feeling that I was bored with the page. It was a little disappointing, mostly because the idea of the Imnada and the curse was different and interesting.

In the end, this wasn’t for me. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t for you.

Notable Scene:

He stepped behind her, close enough that his breath tingled against her neck. His desire lighting the deep ocean blue of his gaze. Her own passion flared, and she leaned her head back for a moment against him, closing her eyes as his hand took up the silver necklace, his fingers on her skin sending shivers down her spine to pool wet and hot between her legs.

Their eyes met in the glass as he lowered the necklace into her open palm, understanding passing with a physical shock between them. With a smile cold as a blade, she closed her fingers around the silver links as if they might burn her, but only coolness met her fingers. “Silver. Who knew such a beautiful weapon could bring down such mighty beasts?”

FTC Advisory: Simon & Schuster/Pocket Books provided me with a copy of Demon’s Curse. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | May 1, 2013 |
I love a good Regency romance every once in a while and so I couldn't wait to give Alexa Egan's series a try. On the whole, I enjoyed it, though it did have some flaws.

To start with the good stuff, though, I have to say how much I loved the setting and world building. Alexa Egan has created a very cool world and the mythology is nicely explored without overloading the reader. In this world, there are the Imnada, a race of shapechangers decended from aliens, and there are the Others, who are fey (at least as far as I can tell). The Imnada and Others are engaged in an ancient blood feud which have forced the Imnada to live in secret. Mac Flannery and three fellow Imnada and soldiers in the British military are cursed by a dying Other, and are forced to shift every evening, as soon as night falls. As a result, they've been exiled from their people because they're considered tainted. It's a pretty crappy lifestyle and they've all dealt with it in the own ways. They come back together after one of their number, Adam, is murdered, and learn that Adam has found a cure for the curse. Mystery, danger, and romance ensue, in ways that really kept me interested.

There's also a really interesting subplot that revolves around the politics between the Imnada and Others. The Imnada have been in hiding for generations but there are some Imnada who want to reveal themselves and make a truce with the Others. It's a divisive topic and I really got into this plot line. I hope there's more of it in future novels in the series.

In terms of characters, things are less well done. I thought Bianca was an excellent heroine. She's smart, a bit battered by life but still plucky. I instantly empathized with her and really enjoyed how her story was revealed. I also liked Mac, though not as much as Bianca. He's a damaged guy with a ton of baggage, mostly having to do with being exiled. He deals with some of his problems over the course of the novel but some of this resolution felt a bit forced to me. Some of the supporting characters were also quite memorable but others were a bit murky. For example, I had some difficulty separating Mac fellow exiles from one another for a large part of the novel because they felt underdeveloped, though this was generally resolved towards the end as they accrued more page time. There are also some reveals about certain characters (who shall remain unnamed to avoid spoilers) that were big surprises, which I usually love. Except in this case, I felt like I'd missed out on a really good chunk of story, to the point where I started wondering if there was another novel before this one involving these characters. I also found the main baddy to be a bit flat. We're told her motivation, we're shown her bad deeds, but I didn't find her to be a compelling foe.

Despite my issues with some of the characters, I did enjoy DEMON'S CURSE and plan to try AWAKEN THE CURSE, an e-prequel that's available now. If you're looking for a Regency romance with a brave heroine and an interesting supernatural landscape, you should keep DEMON'S CURSE in mind.

http://www.tyngasreviews.com
http://ireadgood.wordpress.com ( )
  jthorburn | Feb 20, 2013 |
Read for Review (Edelweiss)
Overall Rating: 3.50
Story Rating: 3.25
Character Rating: 3.75

First Thought When Finished: Really strong ending with some great characters (Primary & Secondary) make this a series that I will be giving another go!

Story Talk: I am going to admit up front that the first time I started this book I got a little lost and set it down. I just couldn't pinpoint exactly what was losing me. I am glad I came back to Demon's Curse because the second half of the story was very strong. I think the problem was to much was being introduced in the first part and it just couldn't sink in. However, once the book hit it's stride the story flowed very well. I love the world and the story was a nice mix of historical/paranormal. Very nice balance!

Character Talk: Bianca stole the show! I love strong independent women in historical stories and Bianca was brilliant. She had issues (legitimate ones) and really was a well-rounded character. I had a harder time warming up to Mac but by the end (though I think he was a bit of an ass), I was glad they were together. The secondary characters were brilliant and make me want to read the rest of the series.

Final Thought: This is a series that I will continue to read. Now that the world has been introduced, I think we will get more of the brilliant storytelling from the 2nd half of Demons Curse. ( )
  thehistorychic | Feb 7, 2013 |
Mac Flannery is an Imnada shape-shifter and part of an elite military unit. Both he and his fellow men are cursed to spend the night time hours in their animal forms. One of them has been murdered. Mac fears their secret has been discovered, which could put them in grave danger.

Good read! Set in 1816 with a wonderful meshing of fantasy and paranormal elements. It wasn't my favorite of shapeshifter reads - but it was definitely enjoyable. Demon's Curse is a fun read with interesting mythology. A sweet romance between Mac and Bianca, both scarred.. they deserve to have a happy ever after. Shapeshifter fans will want to check this one out. ( )
  vampiregirl76 | Dec 13, 2012 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 145167290X, Mass Market Paperback)

She holds the key . . .

One of the mythical race of shape-shifting Imnada and a member of an elite military unit, Captain Mac Flannery suffers under a ruthless curse. As the result of a savage massacre on the eve of Waterloo, he and the men he served with are forced to live the hours of darkness trapped as their animal aspects. Now one of them has been murdered, and Mac suspects the existence of the Imnada may finally have been discovered. His only link to unearthing the truth—Bianca Parrino, the beautiful actress whom every man desires.

. . . to his forbidden desires

Forging a new life for herself after escaping the clutches of her abusive husband, Bianca is again drawn into violence when a dear friend is brutally murdered and she becomes a suspect. Forced to place her trust and her life in Mac’s hands as they flee a determined killer, Bianca cannot deny she is falling for the mysterious soldier. But will his dark secrets tear them asunder? Or will love be the key to breaking even the cruelest of spells?

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:13 -0400)

"One of the mythical race of shape-shifting Imnada and a member of an elite military unit, Captain Mac Flannery suffers under a ruthless curse. As the result of a savage massacre on the eve of Waterloo, he and the men he served with are forced to live the hours of darkness trapped as their animal aspects. Now one of them has been murdered, and Mac suspects the existence of the Imnada may finally have been discovered. His only link to unearthing the truth-Bianca Parrino, the beautiful actress whom every man desires. Forging a new life for herself after escaping the clutches of her abusive husband, Bianca is again drawn into violence when a dear friend is brutally murdered and she becomes a suspect. Forced to place her trust and her life in Mac's hands as they flee a determined killer, Bianca cannot deny she is falling for the mysterious soldier. But will his dark secrets tear them asunder? Or will love be the key to breaking even the cruelest of spells?"--P. [4] of cover.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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