Lord Demon's Delight
by Gia Dawn, historical/fantasy (2007)
Samhain Publishing, $5.50, ISBN 1-59998-388-5
In Gia Dawn's first ever published romance novel, Lord Demon's Delight, she introduces a hero who scratches his crotch as he thinks of the most important things in life: wine,
women whores, and song. Lord Llewelyn Dunmore is not going to win any congeniality contests anytime soon. As it is, he rides out one morning in pursuit of his usual pleasures only to end up marrying a red-haired hoyden Jessaline of the House of Nolan. What happens is that as he is passing the church in a town, he overhears her being shouted at and smacked by her mother for refusing to marry someone they have arranged to be her husband. Jassaline yells back that she will rather marry the Demon of Dunsmore than the man chosen for her. Since Llew is one of the Demons in question, he drops by to see what is going on. Next thing he knows, he's agreeing to marry Jessaline. However, as he and the new wife get acquainted, her father is a villain who will go some considerable lengths to get her back. Luckily for them, Jessaline has three guardian, er, angels for the want of a better word to give them a hand.
There isn't much of a story in Lord Demon's Delight, which can be somewhat a paradox really since Ms Dawn puts so many things in her stories from genealogy confusion to guardian angels to a ending more staged and showy than anything else. The bulk of the story is about Llew lusting after Jess while wondering whether to do the deed and Jess having a nice time at the Dunmore estate meeting Llew's brothers and playing with Llew. Because the plot is underdeveloped, I never get a clear idea as to why Jess' father will go the lengths he does in this story to ensure her marriage to the man of his choosing when Llew is a rich man in his own right. The plot is static, like a Looney Tunes cartoon where it's all about bad people wanting to break up the happy couple and making Jess unhappy.
While the story doesn't go much beyond the superficial, Ms Dawn manages to create a pretty appealing couple in her main characters. Llew rarely thinks beyond his immediate pleasures, it seems, and he's bawdy and crude at times, but he's like an adorable big mutt all the same. Jess is a pretty smart heroine who doesn't rely on the hero to remind her how to cross the street, although in the end she's nonetheless a damsel-in-distress for Llew to puff up his chest and play the hero for. They make a pretty good pair. However, with this story being in its current underdeveloped state, Lord Demon's Delight is too much of a forgettable fluff to make much of an impact on me.
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