Duncan’s Descent by Marie Harte
Ethereal Foes Book 2
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (95 Pages)
Other: M/F, BDSM, Anal Sex/Play
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by Foxglove
‘Tis far better to love in hell than to live in heaven.
Ethereal Foes, Book 1
As a demon of the Ethereal, it’s Duncan Sinclair’s job to sway humans toward the path to hell. Duncan is very good at his job–until a prank gone wrong lands him in the upper realm doing penance. Now he’s being bombarded with love, kindness, and affectionate sex…and it’s killing him. The only way out is to agree to sway souls for heaven, with an angel as his partner, by all that’s unholy.
Sapphira may be an angel of the upper realm, but she chafes in a bland existence where everything is so pure. It’s hard to hide her secret yearning for sin. Even harder with Duncan, who’s everything the dark core of her soul craves: handsome, sexy and refreshingly naughty.
Confronted with an angel who drinks, swears, and takes him to bliss with her sinfully delightful body, Duncan finds himself at risk of losing his heart to the enemy.
Loving this angel could land him right where he doesn’t want to be–heaven. But what’s a demon to do when he’s falling?
When a prank goes wrong, Duncan Sinclair has to face his father’s punishment for endangering his sister, even if it did result in her finding her mate. Duncan’s punishment…seven days in the custody of Uriel, the angel in charge who wants nothing more than to convert Duncan to the side of good.
As a demon in charge of swaying souls to the other side, Duncan is determined to endure the punishment and spoil Uriel’s plans. But when Uriel pairs Duncan with the lovely Sapphira and sends them to the human realm, things become complicated. Sapphira may be an angel, but she hates the rules and regulations she has to follow, and James is stunned when he finds that he is attracted to this confusing but beautiful angel. When these two work together to sway souls, James realizes that there is something intriguing and different about ‘his angel’ and decides to explore the connection he feels. Can these two find a way to fulfill Duncan’s penance and not change the rules? Will the secret behind Sapphira’s true nature be revealed? Will Duncan and Sapphira have a Happy Ever After away from the Heavenly realm, foiling Uriel’s plans?
Duncan’s Descent is the second offering in the Ethereal Foes series from Marie Harte. It is a world filled with all sorts of paranormal beings: demons, angels and other interesting characters existing alongside human kind. I like that, even for demons, there are certain rules that must be followed, and family is the first priority to most beings. I like the world Ms Harte has created, and the characters that inhabit this unique place.
Duncan Sinclair has just one job: sway souls to Hell. He is very good at his job, but when he and his brother cause a major upheaval and cause problems for Heaven, he has to pay the price for bad judgment. Duncan is strong and determined not to succumb to the ‘tortures’ administered by Uriel…love and kindness that causes him physical pain. When Uriel assigns an angel to work with him on the earthly realm to sway souls to Heaven, Duncan finds that he is drawn to the angel like never before in his life. I like Duncan, with his sarcastic wit and his strength and determination.
Sapphira is a beautiful angel, but there are secrets surrounding her that not even she is aware of. She hates the rules that she has to live by in Heaven, and is happiest when she is on the earthly plain, where she has some freedom to do many un-angelic things…drink, swear and enjoy earthly pleasures. When she is partnered with Duncan, she sees the other side of the coin, and finds that not all souls should be sent Heavenward. I like Sapphira, with her smart mouth and her attitude, and her willingness to see both sides of an issue. When she finds herself drawn to Duncan, I like that she was willing to explore the feelings between them, and I liked that she was willing to stop him when he seemed to be ready to turn ‘good’ for her.
There are some intriguing twists to this story, especially the big secret of Sapphira’s true nature. There is a buildup of passion, and when these two finally get together, it explodes like fireworks and leaves them both a bit stunned at it all. The behind the scenes manipulation of Uriel and the secret revealed by Sapphira’s mother are subtly done, and well thought out. I really loved the misdirection by Asael (Duncan’s father) about Sapphira and her possible parentage, and how it affected the principals in the story. I recommend this one be read while in air conditioned comfort, because it does get hot and steamy on its on merits.