Demon from the Dark
by Kresley Cole
Release Date: August 24, 2010
Publisher: Pocket Books
Book #9 in the Immortals After Dark series
Number of Pages: 384
Paranormal Romance M/F
Read 5/17/21 to 5/19/21
A DANGEROUS DEMON SHE CAN’T RESIST . . .
Malkom Slaine: tormented by his sordid past and racked by vampiric hungers, he’s pushed to the brink by the green-eyed beauty under his guard.
A MADDENING WITCH HE ACHES TO CLAIM . . .
Carrow Graie: hiding her own sorrows, she lives only for the next party or prank. Until she meets a tortured warrior worth saving.
TRAPPED TOGETHER IN A SAVAGE PRISON . . .
In order for Malkom and Carrow to survive, he must unleash both the demon and vampire inside him. When Malkom becomes the nightmare his own people feared, will he lose the woman he craves body and soul?
Way back in book one of this series, A Hunger Like No Other, the main character had to deal with the fact that he’d been a prisoner for so long that the world had moved on without him. He wasn’t around for the advent of planes, trains, and automobiles. It was disorienting for him and a joy for me, as a reader, to see his fascination and distaste war with one another. With this story, Malkom is at an even bigger disadvantage.
It has been at least a thousand years since Malkom has held any type of conversation with anyone. Before he escaped his imprisonment, he had lost his only friend and ally. Malkom was changed by his enemies into something he abhors and, as time passed, willfully made himself forget their language. To top it off, he’s from a different plane of existence than that where the majority of these stories take place. He is aware of that fact and that there are portals that are opened once in a while, usually to banish somebody or something to his desert hell world. But he knows nothing of what things are like on the other side of those portals.
This all means that when the other main character, Carrow, arrives on his world he is fierce and uncivilized. Which makes for some scenes that vary from very intense to extremely comical. One thing is for certain, Malkom immediately knew Carrow to be his mate before he even set eyes on her. As soon as she arrived through the portal, he was all in on protecting and claiming her. As you may imagine, those things don’t hold a lot of water for a strong, independent woman from the 21st century in our world. Especially when there is a communication barrier. Boy, these two were a lot of fun.
There are plenty of times where I felt Malkom crossed a line. At the same time, I was trying to see things through his eyes and know how he had grown up and the beliefs of his people, especially when eons have passed. And while there were iffy lines of consent in things he did along the way, he learned from Carrow’s reactions and set out to do better each time he made a mistake. His intent was never to harm Carrow, he truly didn’t understand that she didn’t have the same visceral reaction to him as her mate or that she wouldn’t follow the same customs as he was used to. Through all of his baser instincts, he wanted to protect Carrow above all other things, even if he had to protect her from himself.
I’ve been reading these stories along with listening to the podcast Fated Mates and was pre-warned that this book kicks off what the hosts call “Torture Island”. There is a lot to take in when it comes to Carrow’s captivity, why she goes after Malkom in the first place, who is behind the disappearance of creatures from the lore, etc. This is our first peek at the island and who is being held there. Things are crazy and terrible and intense. In other words, not for the faint of heart.
As for Malkom and Carrow, they have their ups and downs as all couples do. They each make questionable decisions and assumptions without bothering to fully understand the other’s motivations. Yet they also have great chemistry and a need to make sure the other is happy and satisfied.
With this “Torture Island” arc of the series and what we’ve learned so far, I find it hard to believe the next book will be able to redeem a certain character. But I’m sure Kresley Cole will make me fall in love with the Regin’s love match. It should be interesting.