Book Review: Prince of Demons Part One by Victoria Danann

Prince of Demons Cover

4.5 tantalizing Stars

Prince of Demons is the 8th book in The Order of the Black Swan series. By now, its faithful readers have gotten to know the universe in which this series operates (and all of the dimensions therein) relatively well. We’ve taken the characters, new and old, and happily made them at home in our hearts and minds, tucking them in and making sure their favorite things are in the fridge.

Even though each book is written as a stand alone, they all flow gorgeously into one another. Building upon the last until you’ve got this spectacular vista laid out in front of you, making you yearn to chase the horizon. And this book is no different.

Atalanta Ravin just got left at the altar. She spends more than enough time perfectly content to exist in an ice-cream induced coma before she finally decides that a complete break from her current circumstances is needed for her to regain the joy her fiancée sucked out of her life when he bolted from the chapel on their wedding day. She buys a boat, oversees its renovations and happily moves to Boston, ready to spend her days grinning at the skyline and the sunset. Until she finds herself trapped in a fog that delivers her right onto the doorstep of an alternate dimension.

Cal Magnus is an adventurer. He works for Black Swan retrieving demon artifacts and loves his job. Recovering from an unfortunate side effect of the job, he is put directly in Lana’s path when he’s sent to discover if she’s telling the truth or truly deserves the padded cell for which she might be destined. He’s funny and authentic and is confident in a way that makes you believe that he’s holding the big picture in the palm of his hand.

Lana and Cal play off of each other beautifully. They are sweet and sassy and they push each other to their very best. I have no idea if they’re going to get a happy ending, but just based off of their interactions in this book, I surely hope so.

Prince of Demons give the reader a couple of really fun things that none of the other books do. The first of which is a glance at The Order of the Black Swan through the eyes of someone new. After seven books, I found myself kind of taking it for granted. It had lost some of the awe and spectacle with which it originally bubbled, simply because I know it so well. But seeing it through Lana’s eyes, renewed my deep appreciation for what an amazing organization it is. The second of which is a sense of suspense based purely in the fact that this book is being written and released as a serial.  I’m so accustomed to getting a hold of a new Black Swan book and knowing I have a complete story in my hands. Knowing that I was holding just one part of the bigger story infused in me a sense of urgency that I don’t necessarily have and while I know that may translate to frustration for some, for me it was invigorating and I am now perched firmly on the edge of my seat, anxiously awaiting the next installment.

Victoria Danann doesn’t know how to disappoint. She tells a story like she’s singing her favorite song – drawing a deep breath from her toes and letting the notes flow effortlessly from her fingertips. This book made me laugh out loud, drew out of me a deep sigh of contentment and made me grin with anticipation for what’s to come. I’m madly smitten with Lana’s character; her grit, savvy, confidence and utterly authentic nature drew me in immediately. And I’d very much like to curl up into Cal’s arms and have him read me a bedtime story, knowing that the comfort and safety will be balanced by his wit and sense of adventure.

Just like with all Order of the Black Swan books, I’m all in. Fully invested. And ready and waiting for the next piece in this wonderful story, unfolding before my eyes.

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