Desire Unchained (Demonica, #2)

Desire Unchained (Demonica,  #2) - Larissa Ione I liked this book enough to finish it, but it didn't engage me the way the first book in the series did. Firstly, I couldn't really get into Shade's head - I think he's my least favorite of the Seminus brothers. He's not a bad guy; I think he's a little too goody-goody for me to relate to.

Runa reminds me of a lot of the women I know, or rather she could, but she was drawn as such a caricature that I really couldn't see her as a dimensional person. Also, I'm not into the werewolf thing. I'm not a big fan of dogs and pack-politics and alphaism, so that whole plot complication felt wearisome to me.

The relationship between Shade and Runa seemed forced and contrived. There was so much room to sketch both of their feelings in more detail, and provide more depth for their motivations, but Larissa never took advantage of this space. Given the emotional background of both the characters, I felt they could have related to each other in a number of different ways, but it was never clarified why they chose to behave as they did.

The mystery wasn't very mysterious, and because I didn't feel involved with the characters the sex didn't seem nearly as hot as it did in the first books. The action was pretty good, and as the real standout aspect of the book I would've liked to have seen more of it.

The subplot between Kynan and Gem was interesting, but it's never been explained why Gem is carrying such a torch for Ky. I really like Gem, except for the part about her being so batshit crazy for Ky that she had never been with a man. I've been hanging out in goth/rivethead circles for twenty years; I think everyone I know from these circles lost their virginity by the time they were sixteen. Virgin sex is squicky for me too, and as much as I liked Gem and the first sex scene with her, the second was a turnoff and I'm trying very hard to hold some affection for her.

All in all, I felt like I was pushing myself through this book so I could continue on with the series. I like Wraith, and the denoument indicates the next book is about him, so I'm glad I finished it. If this book hadn't been part of a series I'm interested in, I'm not sure I would have finished it.