"The Devil Inside" by Jenna Black

I wanted to like this one. I really, really did. A professional exorcist who discovers she's been possessed by a demon of her own for months... a demon that drags her into his war of succession to the throne of Hell... what's not to like, right? Well, I'll tell you what. There seems to be this movement of oversexed, unnecessarily kinky novels in the paranormal genres and I rather wish it would stop. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate a sexy book as much as the next person. But riding on the coattails of certain authors many paranormal/dark fantasy writers seem to think it's not edgy if it ain't got whips, threesomes, and bestiality in it. Judging by "Devil Inside," Black appears to be among those ranks. The set-up was great, the main character -- Morgan Kingsley -- was an interesting balance of strengths and flaws. I should have been more suspicious when said character is getting it on in some phone sex with her boyfriend in the second chapter. Chapter 2! for crying out loud. We barely even know this chick, and we're already getting front-row seats to her sex life. I feel like the author owes me dinner. As for the rest of the plot, everything -- including, oh, say, a hunky demon king who happens to be possessing her -- gets eclipsed by Morgan's interactions with a cop possessed by a gay, sadistic demon. The whole story becomes about how Morgan is squicked yet oddly compelled by Adam's extra-curricular activities in the bedroom. What's a little thing like warring for control of Hell compared to that, right? Now, Black has three or so other books published and it may be that this one was an aberration. But I really don't think I'll be picking up the sequel.

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