Sunday, October 25, 2020

Review: Try As I Smite by Abigail Owen

Try As I Smite by Abigail Owen
Series: Brimstone Inc., Book 4
Publisher: Entangled: Amara
Genre: Paranormal Romance 
Try As I Smite cover
ISBN: 9781649370655
Release Date: October 26, 2020
Source: Publisher/Purchased by Reviewer
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Entangled

Alasdair Blakesley is the head of the Covens Syndicate. He shouldn't need to look beyond the witches and warlocks he governs, or his own abilities, to solve any problem. But a demon infestation means he can’t trust anyone who may be possessed. The last person he wants to ask for help is also the only person who can fix this, so he sucks up his pride and storms into her office.

And she turns him down cold.

As the owner of Brimstone Inc., Delilah’s passion is helping others with their supernatural problems. But Alasdair is the last man Delilah wants to tangle with. The infuriating man sees too much and demands even more. And did she mention the way he sets her body on fire?

Not that it matters—demons are the only things with which she cannot interfere. Too bad a higher power steps in and sends them both on a crash course of each others' pasts, presents, and futures.

How is a Christmas Carol nightmare supposed to solve his demon problem without breaking the rules she’s bound by?

The Brimstone Inc. series gets a Dickensian twist in Try As I Smite. I love the way author Abigail Owen brings together all kinds of supernatural beings, making each and every story in this series unique. And for Delilah’s story, Ms. Owen goes big.

Sparks flew the minute Delilah, the mysterious owner of Brimstone Inc., met warlock Alasdair Blakesley, the head of the Covens Syndicate. The two powerful beings clash from the start, but when widespread demonic possessions start occurring to witches and warlocks, Alasdair sucks it up and goes to Delilah for help… Only to be turned down. When it comes to demons, Delilah can’t get involved. Then someone even more powerful than the two of them sends Delilah and Alasdair on a joint Christmas Carol-type adventure. And the more the Alasdair and Delilah learn about each other, the harder it is for them to deny their mutual attraction. I loved the clashing and the simmering sexual tension in this story. Alasdair and Delilah are two strong, confident people and neither can cow the other. I also thoroughly enjoyed peeling back the layers of their characters and learning their pasts. Alasdair carries deep scars from childhood and they broke my heart. And Delilah… let’s just say learning about her mysterious abilities was worth the wait. Delilah’s past, present, and future are complicated and to say much more about this story would spoil it.

There is a lot going on in Try As I Smite, which is great, but also the story’s biggest weakness. Everything felt rushed, from the romance to Delilah’s history to other elements it would be major spoilers to discuss. If this had been a full-length novel, it would no doubt have been fantastic. But zipping through everything didn’t do the characters or the story any favors. Don’t get me wrong – I still liked Try As I Smite quite a bit. But when you go big in a story, it’s more engrossing if you also go deep, and that’s what this story was missing. But even falling short of its potential, Alasdair and Delilah’s story was interesting and entertaining. And as I am a really big fan of the Brimstone Inc. series, I’m looking forward to seeing who Delilah helps next.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I also purchased a copy of this book. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.