Dark Around the Edges: Heaven’s On Fire by Cari Z.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Episode 1 of Cari Z’s new serial Cambion is an explosive start. Heavens on Fire is a quick introduction to a new world and set of characters. It’s short, filled with bite, and intriguing. It definitely left me wanting to read what happens next so this is a great first foray.
Devon is a cambion, the product of a union between an incubus and a human female. He works for a bodyguard agency that has a super secret agenda to find and remove all evidence of demons from the world. We’re not given much background on this agency other than one of the owners clearly has a grudge and hatred for all things demon. Devon is sent into an underground sadist club to find and capture a well-known demon summoner, Porter Grey. Devon (of course) acts pretty recklessly and somewhat childishly right from the get-go and gets himself captured, necessitating an explosive rescue by the elusive Rio.
The plot is very bare bones, information wise, and concentrates on setting up the main themes and important cast. No doubt more will weave in and out of the story, but so far Rio, Devon, Maria (their handler), and Porter are the important players. There’s some kind of relationship between Rio and Devon that’s not explained, though they’re fine having pretty hot sex together repeatedly. I’m pretty sure any information lacking in this opening short story will be given over the course of the entire series so it’s hard to criticize any weaker or still mysterious parts.
The writing is engaging and very dramatic right from the start. At times I found the prose overly indulgent, giving details and mental side trips that feel more clever than necessary. Also, Devon struck me right off as childish and annoying with his antics. He grew on me later in his moments of vulnerability. Rio on the other hand is tall, dark, sexy, and mysterious so what’s not to adore already? I’ll be interested to get more background on Rio and Devon’s relationship and more about each man individually. Grey so far feels like a cliché super villain but I have faith in the author that he’ll turn into something interesting.
As a first episode, Heavens on Fire did everything it should do. I was drawn into the world and the possibilities and honestly am excited to read more. It’s a little tough to wait for the next installment but here’s to hoping I can be patient. I’d recommend this to those readers who like their romance a little dark with a side of smoking hot supernatural.