'Writing for me is not about speeling, grammar or punctuation – that’s why we have editors.... No, writing for me is the ability to capture a story and put it in words.' - Fantasy Muse

Monday, 4 November 2013

Red Moon Demon (Demon Lord series)

Continuing on my craving for urban fantasy, I want to write about another one that caught my interest, Red Moon Demon by Morgan Blayde. Actually I've already finished the second instalment  of the series, Green Flame Assassin,  so I'll be talking about both books. 

Front Cover




Blurb


Because sometimes you have to fight fire with hellfire, there’s Caine Deathwalker: raised as a demon, armed like a gun merchant, and fuelled by booze. Nice is a dirty word and killing is what he does best. Make a contract with hell, and he could be on your side, God help you. 
Caine signs onto guarding the beautiful daughter of a leading Japanese industrialist. Protecting is harder than indiscriminate murder and mayhem, but gold is gold, and the prize of a mystic demon sword is dangled over his head as added incentive. Haruka will make an interesting bonus if he can get her out of her kimono—and the damn living zombies will leave them alone long enough for him to bang her. 
A powerful succubus is playing cat to Caine’s mouse, but he has a cat of his own; a black leopard spirit beast from the Amazon jungle that’s taken a liking to him—and his booze. And then there’s his “father”, an ancient Atlantean demon with a code of honor. Formidable back-up, but Caine senses a greater threat lurking in the shadows, something primal, hungry, and possibly more evil than himself.
He shakes his head. Nah, couldn’t be.


My Opinion


The main character of the Demon lord series is Caine Deathwalker (yeah I know what a name). He had a rather unusual upbringing in that he was raised by his adopted father. Which isn't that unusual you're probably thinking. Until I mention the fact that his adopted father is an ancient demon lord, feared by many and was responsible for drowning Atlantis. Just to give you a taste of Caine upbringing, he was pushed of a cliff by his demon dad so that it would toughen him up. 

Caine is your typical anti-hero. He makes questionable moral decisions, he's crude, he treats woman as objects and he likes to kill. But under that tough, carbyne exterior, hints of a softer inner nucleus are present. There is a rather thin line between writing an anti-hero that readers can relate to and like and one that they abhor. I've read books in the past - Prince of Thorns and The Left Hand of God - that have stepped over that line, and Morgan Blayde has done a terrific job in staying in line. There is also the cliche enigma surrounding Caine past as he is only half-human. The other half is shrouded in mystery and acts as a hook to maintain readers interest. 

The first book, Red Demon Blood, follows Caine as he is assigned to protect a Japanese businessman daughter from a Succubi. The book premise is based in L.A as Caine is the master of the city, and I enjoyed the trials and tribulations he experienced from other supernatural beings. There's vampires, werewolves, fairies, zombies, a leopard which can vanish at will and much more. At times the book was like an encyclopedia of the supernatural.

The pace of the book was frantic and the gas pedal never left the car floor. From beginning to the end, there was never a lull in action. There was always something happening or someone to kill. 

The book is self published and the The Red Demon does fall into the same indie trap that many other self published books fall into - bad editing. The book suffers from typos and grammatical mistakes, but not as badly as feared. They are noticeable, but easily ignorable. I'm pleased to say that the second book Green Flame Assassin was much more polished and refined. I hardly noticed any mistakes in the sequel and the sentences were far more crisper and purposeful. 

The second book continues the series and I enjoyed it more than the first. The storyline was more compelling and it read easier. I could clearly see that Morgan Blayde writing became more astute and confident in the sequel, which isn't surprising really as a authors writing develops with experience. The Green Flame Assassin follows the same story structure as the first, in that Caine is sent on another mission, but this time he has to recover a powerful stone and return it to the fey Oracle, all whilst avoiding the careful attention of a green flamed assassin.

Ok, some of the bad:

As much as I enjoyed the storyline, I didn't like the part about the mystery of who Caine is. As he's only half human, the author dropped subtle clues about what his other half is in the form of dreams, but then after Caine wakes up he forgets everything, which only brings it back to square one.
  The ending of the second book also had me frustrated. What Caine is is finally revealed (not that it was hard to work out) but then guess what? He wakes up from passing out and forgets everything that happened to him. Hopefully in the next book the author stops with these silly bouts of convenient amnesia and gets on with the story.

Conclusion


The Red Demon and the sequel Green Flamed Assassin are two hugely enjoyable, fun action packed books. 

Caine Deathwalker is a rather unique character, and one that was definitely entertaining to read. If you're looking for a rather profound storyline that delves deep into emotions and characterisation then look elsewhere. But if you want fun, lively, boisterous books to read then give the Demon Lord series a try. 


Out of 10 Stars:


8 Stars

Buy the first book here:





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