It is 2986 and the world is now inhabited by an uneasy alliance of witches, demons, angels and the poor, unimportant and weak humans. The city of Shabeah is ruled, with an iron fist and ruthless violence by the Lord Demon himself, Lord Haymen. Until her death, Vivian Lair was a simple, fun-loving human who was deeply in love with her partner, but now she has been reborn, she is contracted to no less than seven demons who reside inside her and she is one of Haymen’s elite Guardians whose ultimate job is to do whatever their master bids. This is the violent, evil and terrifying world presented to us by author Kia Carrington-Russell in her fantasy The Shadow Minds Journal. Vivian’s job is to help maintain the uneasy alliance between the demons and the angels and to destroy demons who have been determined to have broken that treaty. When she is accused of murdering an Angel, she comes into contact with the powerful Angel of War, Gabe, and begins a journey that will ultimately allow her to discover who she really is.
This is the second Carrington-Russell book I have had the pleasure of reading and this author is definitely one who grows on you. In The Shadow Minds Journal, there is a noticeably darker and more sinister tone than the first book of hers that I read. Vivian, as a lead character is beautifully drawn, with her extreme confidence and arrogance, perfectly softened by her beginning realisation of who she may actually be. The sexual tension in the story was definitely a highlight, as a reader, and the actual sex scenes themselves were realistic, exciting and satisfying. The conflict in Vivian’s mind between her fealty to Haymen and her unexpected and unwanted connection to the angel Gabe, creates excellent tension in the narrative, which the author exploits to the fullest. The ending allows for the next iteration of The Shadow Minds Journal and a short preview of the next book in the series just teases the reader to want to explore more. Demons, Witches, Angels, have all been done to death in recent years, but I found Carrington-Russell to have a new, fresh and exciting handle on the genre. Well worth a read, this one.