Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Carpe Demon - Julie Kenner

Carpe Demon
Julie Kenner


To all outward appearances, Kate Conner is your average suburban mom, living in San Diablo, CA, with her husband, teenaged daughter, and toddler son. Fourteen years ago, Kate retired (for good, she thought) from a very demanding career. She was a Demon Hunter.

Imagine her surprise when, after fourteen years of nothing, and in the middle of getting ready to host a dinner party, a demon comes crashing through the kitchen window. Using reflexes she’d almost forgotten she had, Kate manages to dispatch the demon. A late night call to one of her old contacts reveals that there’s something big going on in San Diablo.

The coastal city of San Diablo, with its huge cathedral, has always been pretty much demon-free. Thus, the reason Kate lives there. Clearly, times are changing. According to Kate’s contact, Goramesh the Decimator is active in the area. He’s looking for something, but no one is clear on what that might be. Since he’s not corporeal at the moment, Kate can't fight him, and will have to resort to figuring out what he wants and finding it first. And, while she’s at it, she’ll have to keep her life as a Demon Hunter secret from her husband, children, and friends. No problem.

This is the first novel in a new series, and while it will invite inevitable comparisons to Buffy, in all fairness, Buffy never had to come up with a way to get a husband, a teenager, and a toddler out of the house in order to quietly dispose of the dead demon hidden in the pantry. Readers who don’t appreciate strong violence or gore, fear not. This is pretty much Buffy Lite. It’s a fun story, and Kate is an engaging and sympathetic character. My preference is for a bit more paranormal and a bit less domesticity, but the author manages to blend the two aspects of Kate’s life quite believably. It’s a fast, fluffy read, great for a paranormal fix. The sequel, CALIFORNIA DEMON is already available, so watch this space.

Rating: 7
July 2005 (mass market pb coming in October 2006)
ISBN# 0-425-20252-6 (trade paperback)

Rating Scale = 1-10


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