Destruction and demons follow 17-year-old Riley Blackthorne as she trudges across Atlanta seeking her father’s recently re-animated corpse and the Geo-Fiend who killed him.
Picking up moments after the climactic battle of Demon Trapper’s Daughter (2011), this book sees the Guild slowly recovering from a catastrophic demon attack. With many Trappers dead or injured, Riley sees little official action—there’s more detecting than butt-kicking in this slow-paced sequel. Riley ventures into the shadowy world of zombie summoners and witches, unproductively investigates a holy-water counterfeiting ring and takes occasional hot-cocoa breaks. The innovative and amusing demons of the first book take a back seat to stereotypical romantic entanglements, parent drama and politics. Though her boyfriend Simon grows distant, hottie Ori seeks her company—and so much more—as does her father’s former apprentice, Beck. Profligate passions don’t necessarily lead to rampant sex, but the few hookups come off as arbitrary and awkward. Oliver’s occasional exposition dumps fail to establish a coherent reason for the sudden demonic interest in Riley or for Lucifer’s involvement in the mortal world. Despite the too-frequent switches between narrators Riley, Ori and Beck, the absence of a substantial plot results in a relatively simple read.
A fallen-angel story that never truly takes off. (Paranormal romance. 14 & up)