Review: My Dangerous Pleasure by Carolyn Jewel

May 20, 2011

My Dangerous Pleasure

Author: Carolyn Jewel
Series: My Immortal, Book 4
Publisher: Forever
ISBN: 978-0446563871
Date Released: May 31, 2011
Format Reviewed: ePub ebook
Source: Arc provided by publisher for review
Length: Novel (384 pages in paperback / 495 KB in Kindle format)
Genre: Fiction, Romance, Paranormal Romance
Rating:

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Online blurb:
TEMPT THE DARKNESS

Strong-willed and independent, Paisley Nichols is used to taking care of herself. But when an insane mage begins tracking her every move and threatening her at every turn, she has no choice but to put her life in the hands of a demon.

RISK THE PASSION

Burned by betrayal, demon assassin Iskander won’t get too close to anyone. He spends his days serving his warlord and his nights indulging in carnal pleasures . . . and that’s exactly how he likes it. But when a mage wages a wrenching psychic assault on his beautiful tenant Paisley, Iskander must defend her. Under his protection, she will be drawn irresistibly into his life and learn about her own mysterious powers. And not a moment too soon. The mage haunting her isn’t acting alone-and he won’t rest until he destroys both Paisley and Iskander. (from Amazon.com)

My opinion:
Paisley Nichols has spent much of her life trying to not be like her hippy-dippy mother who saw portents in every cloud and gloom and doom around every corner. Instead she parlayed her love of baking and hard work into her business as owner of a small but growing bakery. Too bad her bakery is the sole focus of her passions ever since she’d broken up with her lackluster lover several years previously. When a fascinating man enters her bakery, her libido springs to life and she decides to take a chance and maybe ask him out for coffee. Instead he becomes her stalker, a magical one at that, and Paisley’s entire life is turned on its head with no safe harbor in sight.

Iskander is happy renting his small spare apartment to a true human. Paisley never bothers him, never interrupts his constant string of women guests and keeps to herself. That is until first she’s injured by a magical assault and then her stalker follows her home. Iskander places her under his protection but is forced to reveal that he’s far from human and, now, she’s not really human either. As Iskander and Paisley get to know each other, they still have to navigate the danger poised by the insane mage stalking Paisley – and whoever is controlling him.

This is the first book I’ve read in Ms. Jewel’s My Immortal series and, because of that, I was a bit confused about the world at first. The complexity of the world is impressive, though, and I was soon caught up in the uneasy relationship between the mages and the kin, with the humans as (mostly) unaware bystanders. Ms. Jewel has created a fascinating magical world where nothing is quite what it seems and there are no clear victors.

For the most part I liked the two main characters but at times they seemed a bit too simplistic, a bit too lacking in self-awareness or introspection. This was especially true of Iskander. I was a bit impatient with his consistent use of “hot” when referring to Paisley. Paisley was a character I sympathized with more but she seemed almost too willing to take a lot of the magical world in stride, despite the multiple mentions of her mother being a bit overboard on the psychic theories. That said, they were very much likeable characters and I did love Iskander’s endless thrill with food and Paisley’s desire to feed and care for him. That was a terrific touch.

My Dangerous Pleasure started out a bit slowly for me. There were several chapters of almost complete narrative which didn’t capture my attention but the book picked up considerably about one quarter of the way in and I read the rest in one sitting. I believe the over-use of narrative was an effort to introduce a reader new to the series (like I am) to the world but I would have preferred to have the really, absolutely necessary facts sprinkled throughout the story. Honestly, that’s the only thing that kept this book from being at least a 4 star book for me.

Ms. Jewel’s world has me intrigued enough that I have the first three books in this series on my wishlist, just waiting for budget to buy them with. I really want to see more of this world and the characters I’ve caught glimpses of so far. I’m hoping this is not the last book in this series, though, because there are other characters in the wings I’d love to hear more about.

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