This supernatural adventure is set in a world where Latin is the language used for international communication, “official” magic is strictly licensed, and only a few have the talent to become mages. A wonderfully creepy hotel in Prague is the location for the beginning of this spooky tale about Tristan, an unlicensed mage who has become a “private investigator of paranormal incidents” after he was cast out by the official guild of mages. Three years later he is sort of making a living, but he is full of self-hate and loathing. The reasons only emerge slowly, but it’s a fascinating concept! Tristan fears confronting his past and, as it turns out, with good reason. I can’t say too much about it because the back story is at the core of what this series will be about, but it’s very creative and somewhat different from previous supernatural worlds I have encountered. Jarek is a demon and he is full of his own secrets – and an agenda he is unwilling to reveal to Tristan at this point. The lusty encounter he shares with Tristan feels like the beginning of something bigger, but this story ends too soon for me to find out. If you like somewhat creepy supernatural stories, if two men with secrets “using” each other are your thing, and if you don’t mind reading a tale in smaller installments, then you might like this short story that feels like part of a longer book. DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Evernight Publishing for the purpose of a review.
The Sons of Gomorrah, 1
Tristan Todorov, formerly one of the best scholars at the legendary and sinister Scholomance school of magic, was cast out and now travels alone through Eastern Europe offering discreet services as an unlicensed magician. In a luxurious hotel in Prague where he’s been invited to investigate a suspicious series of suicides, he’s about to meet someone who will make him remember the darkest secret of his past.
Will a night of lust soothe Tristan—or will it stir up something evil and dangerous, something he’s tried so desperately to forget?
Be Warned: m/m sex, bondage
Jarek slid off the bed, the coverlet still loosely draped over his shoulders and trailing behind him like a king’s cloak. In the gap between the folds, Tristan could see everything he wanted to. Jarek was a better version of him, unscarred, untainted. His erection, rising from a thatch of pubes, mirrored Tristan’s. What would it feel like, touching it? It must be like reaching out for a reflection—and finding warm flesh instead of cold glass…
“Don’t move,” Jarek told him softly. “Keep your hands to your sides.”
And Tristan obeyed.
“Interesting,” Jarek mused, trailing a finger along his collarbone.
Tristan sucked in a deep shuddering breath, but stayed still. It felt odd, letting this happen. Jarek slipped his hand lower, casually brushed it across Tristan’s perked nipple on the way, and then traced a path down his chest and over the muscles of his abdomen. Tristan’s abs went taut at the feather light touch, and Jarek laughed quietly.
“Sensitive.” Jarek stated the obvious. He let the coverlet slip from his shoulders—an effortlessly seductive gesture, probably well-practiced, like Tristan’s trick with snapping his fingers. A slow, crooked smile made the expression on Jarek’s face all the more lascivious, which was most certainly the intention. “I think I know what you need.”
Tristan looked down pointedly and then up, with a hint of sarcasm. “Well, that’s kind of apparent.”
He still felt nervous, but not as much as when he’d thought of being pitied or rejected.
Jarek quirked an eyebrow at him. “Is it? Hmm. We’ll definitely come to that, but why rush things? I’m here to take care of your wishes, even the ones you’re not sure you have. Why not try something new, something unusual?” He leaned in, very close, and Tristan felt Jarek’s warm breath on his lips when he whispered, “Just let me take control for a while, and you’ll see how good I can make you feel.”
The next moment, Jarek backed off, to Tristan’s disappointment, but maintained eye contact, and Tristan felt unable to look away, as if mesmerized. The tips of Jarek’s fingers now rested lightly on his hipbones, almost where Tristan wanted them most but not moving closer.
“Say yes,” Jarek coaxed him in a low voice. “Say you give in to me tonight. It’s easy, giving in.”
“Yes,” Tristan breathed out, not sure what he’s agreeing to and not caring in the least.
I don’t like giving out 5* ratings, as it feels disingenuine somehow, but I have to hand it to Katerina Ross. She had me hooked in this elaborate extravagant world from the very first pages. Her world building is excellent without making the reader suffer through a huge info dump, which is a rare skill that I truly appreciated. The world is complex and multi-layered and in this short story we get a glimpse at a deeper mythos without making me feel like I was missing the important parts of it! The writing is elegant and clean, with enough dry humor blended in to keep it down to earth. Tristan is a wonderful character that is intriguing from the moment he gets on the page until the moment he gets off the page. Yes, pun very much intended, because the sex is hot, graphic and detailed and woven perfectly into the story line. The way Jarek comes in, and helps both us and Tristan on a trip to discovery and explanation is beautifully crafted and holy hell, I have to respect someone that in the last 5 pages grabs back to tie the whole mythos together. It is a masterful and refreshing take on incubi, mages, magic and I cannot stress the beauty of this world Katerina has crafted enough. I couldn’t give a more glowing review, and as I was given a free copy for an honest review, I hadn’t expected to like the story as much as I did.
I loved this story! It is just a short, but it's amazing how many unexpected twists Ms Ross managed to put in it, without the narrative appearing overly compressed. The main character, Tristan, is appealing and sensitive. His conterpart Jarek is... surprising. They make a very intriguing couple! Even if the story is short, there is a wonderfully interwoven tapestry of world-building, emotional connection, backstory and (hot) action. Vastly recommended.
Harry Potter meets the m/m romance genre. Tristan is an unlicensed magician investigating a series of suspicious suicides. Jarek is an incubus with secrets and a serious attraction to Tristan. As magic unfolds around them, can they find love in each other’s arms? This has so much freaking potential! Wonderful, unique plot and amazing characters. I love Tristan, he is so lost and down. I want to hug him tight. Jarek is a sexy incubus that is drawn to Tristan. I like them together. Their romance is too quick though, maybe that had something to do with the length of the book. I really wish the story is longer so we can really explore the magical world and hot characters. I want to read more in this series but only if the story is more fleshed out/longer. If you’re looking for a sexy but quick magical read check out Soul Infection!
This is the 1st book of a series the set up was perfect. It gave you enough to want more. The premise is new to me which I loved the parasitic nature of magic and demons so much goodness. Incubis as oneself so devious and the scene so sex. Well worth the read and I will be looking for the next.
I was given the chance to read this book by the author. I love books with magic. This story is about Tristan, a mage who is an outcast. He's lost and alone and I felt for him. While he's exorcising a demon from a hotel he encounters an incubus who takes on the same image as Tristan. He succumbs to a night of passion with Jarek, the incubus, and in return tells him his biggest secret. I hope there is more to the story. Both characters hope to have more then this one night. I found the world created very intriguing and I was fascinated by it. A good beginning to what will hopefully be a series!
A interesting short story which is a brilliant introduction to the upcoming series