Kensington / May 28, 2013 / $11.20 print / $8.69 digital
It's called Sin City for a reason. Nowhere else are the temptations so great, the sex so good, and the demons so bad. . .
By day, Monica is a barista in a local café. It doesn't pay a lot but it puts her up close and personal with her sexy boss, Drew. Unfortunately that's as far as a succubus can go unless she wants to take his soul. Monica needs mind blowing sex to sustain her and she finds her victims every night at a local strip club where she's an exotic dancer. But when her powers begin to diminish and her fellow succubi start turning up dead, all bets are off. Monica realizes she's the one immortal who has a chance in hell of making things right. . .
Succubi aren’t as popular as vampires in romance, but these immortals do make appearances. One succubus in particular, Monica—a fallen-angel turned succubus—is the focus of a new paranormal series by Katana Collins that launches with the book Soul Stripper. Monica works as a barista by day and a stripper by night, trolling for non-heavenly men whose souls she can steal by having powerful sex with them. As a succubus, it is her job to steal souls for Saetan, and of course Saetan prefers good souls to evil ones. After all, he already owns the evil ones.
Monica, however, is a succubus with a conscience. She can’t take the souls of men that she knows are heaven-bound. Her work as a stripper gives her access to men who already possess a more deviant side. When not stealing souls, she juggles several men: Drew, the owner of the coffee shop where she works on whom she has a major crush; Julian, her one-time heavenly mentor with whom she has unfinished business; Lucien, the ArchDemon who gets bad marks when Monica refuses to steal good souls; and Wills, her one-time love who returns in demon form.
In Monica’s owns words: “I used to be an angel and am apparently the only angel-turned succubus known within the demon realm. I guess this sort of makes me a celebrity. They call me the golden succubus…” And Monica certainly is popular. She has powers that allow her to shift her appearance at will in order to become any man’s fantasy. She can’t help but flirt with every man she runs across—and can seemingly seduce anyone she wants. She needs the energy she receives from sex and stealing souls to keep her powers strong and will get weak if she goes too long without.
But something strange happens when Monica begins to lose her powers. Suddenly, she can’t shift; she actually needs stitches when she cuts herself; she starts getting tired; and she even needs to eat—all unheard of when her powers are at full strength. Unfortunately, Monica is not the first succubus to have this happen. All the others were soon dead after mysteriously losing their power, the victim of a succubi serial killer. Her men, along with Kayce, her best friend and fellow succubus, rally around Monica to keep her safe.
Soul Stripper provides only an introduction to the immortal world of succubi and angels. There are hints that the world may be more complicated. Monica isn’t particularly happy being a succubus and at one point complains to Lucien that “There has to be a loophole, Lucien. There has to be some way to regain the magic that allowed succubi to enter a man’s dream and steal his life that way.” This was before Saeten realized that having them steal souls with sex was quicker and more effective. Monica seems to long for something else because she isn’t free to have sex with men she cares about, like Drew, without stealing parts of their soul.
Additionally, there are hints that Monica’s powers might be stronger than she thinks. She’s heard the rumors, but never paid them any mind. After all, she knew her powers were fairly standard for a succubus. Yet, Monica seems to be on everybody’s radar, including that of a serial killer. While the serial killer arc is resolved, Monica’s story is just beginning. To learn more about Monica and the succubi, we will have to keep reading her story when the next installment, Soul Survivor, is released.
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