Mark of the Demon, by Diana Rowland
Kara Gillian is a police detective and summoner of demons. While performing a routine ritual to summon a minor demon, Kara somehow accidentally brings forth a beautiful but deadly demon lord. But Kara just may need his help with her latest case. The Symbol Man is a serial killer who leaves his victims with strange ritualistic symbols on their bodies. This is Kara’s first homicide case, and she’s definitely going to be put through the fire.
Rowland’s urban fantasy world of arcane magic and demons is fresh and original. The demons of her world are not the well-known evil creatures from hell, but honorable and still deadly. Kara is a smart and tough cop with a dark past. Rowland’s characters are well-developed and distinct.
Blending police procedure and fantasy, this debut is a great start to a fascinating series. The plot is complex and suspenseful. And the mystery is a whodunit with a surprising, climactic ending. There are mild romantic elements, but the plot certainly focuses more on the mystery and magic. This urban fantasy novel is dark, fast-paced, and gripping. Fans of the genre should not miss this series.
Blood of the Demon is the recent sequel, and I’ll be jumping into it right away.