Wednesday, 2 June 2010

URBAN FANTASY REVIEW: The Devil's Playground - Jenna Black


No one ever wants to serve in Hell...The Seven Deadlies, a demon club in Philadelphia, has always catered to the most attractive and desirable hosts. Recently, though, more and more of the lower dregs of society have been showing up with demons of their own - in alarming numbers. Morgan is sure that Dougal is behind this, but isn't sure why. Is Dougal building an army to snatch the throne of the demons from Lugh? If there's one person who can get to the bottom of this, it's Morgan Kingsley, but caught between her mortal lover Brian and the demon she lusts for, Lugh, it's going to take everything she has to keep her head - and heart - in the game.


Having read and enjoyed the other titles in this series, I was a little apprehensive as to how the author was going to conclude so many threads in so short a time. Back that up with the previous offering that felt like it had stalled slightly, to allow the author a tad more time to reach the epic finale that the readers have been demanding will make this a make or break title for her as a writer.

What unfurls within this offering is a title that really felt that it was a bit of a let down, as if the last part of the bake on a superb soufflé was giving great promise only to go flat in the final part. The character as you’d come to expect was just as strong but rather than an explosive ending it felt more like a sad little poof instead of the bang you’d expect after such careful sculpting in the previous offerings.

That said however the writing is as engaging as ever, the dialogue just as haunting but above all it’s the character ménage a trios interaction that is the piece that really will keep you hooked. With a ton of threads still left to conclude this may not be the final title as has previously been claimed and I for one hope that Jenna will reexplore these in the future to give all the readers the ending that they not only demand but deserve for their expectations.

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