Monday, September 7, 2015

ds Daemon Seer by Mary Maddox | Rating: ★★☆☆☆ (2.5)

I had no power. Not as long as he and the others nested inside my head. I needed a way of shielding my thoughts. Talion said daemons couldn't possess Rad and Psycho Cop because their nature prevented it. Both men were psychopaths who enjoyed hurting people. It was their nature. What if I smothered my conscience? Maybe the daemons wouldn't be able to hurt me anymore.

As a note, an e-galley of this novel was sent to me via NetGalley by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not effect my opinions in any way.

Going into Daemon Seer, I had high hopes–the summary showed promise of mystery, danger and intrigue just as much as the lingering remains of tragedy from the past. I looked forward to meeting Luanda and Lisa; seeing just how much the past had changed them and what danger remains.

I can’t image the pain and trauma the two girls suffered as teenagers by the hands of a sadistic serial killer named Rad.

Daemon Seer will seem familiar in all its horror and fantasy; these characters have been around before in a story telling the tales of their time having been captive and their first experiences with the darkness that follows. I haven’t read the novel in question, so I cannot speak on that one.


In spite of this, it’s perfectly easy to follow; it’s a short but violent read that can be read as a standalone or beginning to this new chapter. As an added bonus, Mary Maddox’s writing shows just how creative and good at story telling she is.

That being said, I was interested in seeing how they coped through the years. You don’t go through such circumstances and remain unchanged, this much we know; I felt like before I even read the novel I was sympathetic towards them and wanted the best for both. I still do. I was interested in their connection, in more ways than one.

Although Luanda, known as Lu, is an interesting and complex character I wasn’t sure what to think of her at times. We see into her mind, we see her struggles and the life she leads but here and there, there’s something missing from her narration. I felt like in spite of seeing her innermost thoughts, her sympathetic troubles, I didn’t really know her.

And that bugged me.

A lot.

Because we see Lu’s strength, we see Lisa’s strength and how deep their friendship is due to their struggles, we see their troubles and their romantic entanglements and how they escape again and again, but it doesn’t quite make the impact I would hope.

For me, the biggest saving grace is the amount of strength that prevails in even the darkest, most horrific moments in time. Maddox captures this all beautifully and can make your eyes well up fondly just as easily as she can make your skin crawl or your stomach turn.

Watching both Lu and Lisa’s struggles was painful. It was upsetting and I kept saying things like, ‘haven’t these two been through enough?’ because life is consistently putting the two in danger. It’s a horrifying truth and it’s been really, really well developed by Mary.

When Lisa shows up at Lu’s unexpectedly, finding herself in a horrifying situation back home, and from then on out a whole world of danger opens up for both girls.

And then, not long afterwards, Talion appears and things only get more and more action packed. We watch as control is lost, the stakes are higher, an innocent man could be sacrificed and the level of thrills go up a notch. We see from Talion, Chama and Black Claw.

I will say of all things, I’m interested to see what happens with these chilling, violent, sinister characters. And what comes next in Lu’s life being tied to daemons; what will come of Lisa’s addiction, of Adam’s blame, of Galen’s fate and the way in which both he and Lu are trapped. My curiosity was at an all time high during a certain ceremony.

So, it isn’t that I though Daemon Seer was horrible, it is that I just felt pretty unattached to a lot of things. What started off promising and thrilling quickly evaporated into wasted potential. I though that Mary Maddox has the skill, she has some great ideas, but I wasn’t sure I enjoyed how everything was executed.

Because it would pick up and then drop off again and again to the point of annoyance beyond repair. As a whole I thought it was okay, a bit forgetful, and I’m not sure it was enough to make me want to continue on with any potential releases in the series.

I’m intrigued in some ways but utterly bored in others.

I definitely wanted more–more plot, more characteristics, more explanations, more history–and maybe because of this I’m missing what would make this novel otherwise enjoyable to others.

Fans of the genre will surely enjoy its fast paced look into this world but I’m afraid it won’t be for everyone. Its grotesque and crazed manner will be a trigger for a lot of people, so you need to be careful with this one.

Daemon Seer can be read rather quickly, in one sitting, and that is both a good and bad thing.

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