Requiem For A Queen
by Kaylin McFarren
Creative Edge Publishing

"She wanted to find a way to survive on her own, just as she had planned to do before being discovered by Onoskelis."

In a fascinating concoction combining the realms of magic and Hell, McFarren delivers scintillating commentary on the quandary that is power: the more one has, the more one wants until the individual's true essence is so consumed by their hunger that they become mere puppets of that power, going to any and all lengths to attain it. Upon severing ties with the Nexus Institute, Samara Daemonium is the object of a wild goose chase featuring everyone from a former Nexus lover to Hell personified—Lucifer himself. Chaos ensues, yet like a phoenix, Samara attempts to rise from it and experience her own journey of introspection and self-realization.

In this third installment of McFarren's Gehenna series, the story opens up with powerful imagery of sand caves and a shapeshifter, Onoskelis, who comes to Samara's aid as she is on the verge of delivering her baby. While the work revolves around her, the characters in the world that McFarren has created are largely interested in retrieving her son and returning him to his father, Lucifer. Of course, earning Lucifer's wrath adds tremendous intrigue to Samara's character arc. After all, what would prompt an individual to make Lucifer an enemy and perhaps earn an eternity in Hell's prison? The answer becomes apparent very early on: Samara neither strives for her child to be a warrior nor to be exposed to the inferno of sins that is Hell. As Lucifer and others look for Samara, however, it is Queen Lucinda, Lucifer's daughter, who is on a mission to wreak havoc in Samara's life after her ambitions to rule the underworld take a major hit with Lucifer fancying Samara.

Samara's unyielding spirit and maternal instincts for her son, Papillon, named after the liberating nature of the butterfly, are on an inevitable collision course with Lucinda's irrational desire to destroy Samara, her child, and everything and everyone responsible for her escape from Hell. With the Red War in full force and Lucinda determined to eliminate her heir to the throne, the storyline integrates a tantalizing array of sprites, demon slayers, goblin witches, and even a fire-breathing dragon to create obstacles and provide allies for Samara and Papillon. Throughout it all, Samara recognizes she has innate abilities like telekinesis that haven't had a chance to be cultivated. Every ounce of energy and power will be needed to repel Lucinda while simultaneously keeping the birth of her son a secret.

In this tale of erotic romance and dark fantasy, there are numerous mind-numbing and convoluted choices that Samara is forced to make for her son. At the top of it all is deciding whether she can place her trust in Lucifer, the evil incarnate, when it comes to being reunited with her son and throttling Lucinda's heinous vision. Led by spectacular character development and an intriguing storyline, the novel delves deep into dark paranormal romance while retaining the themes of mesmerizing storytelling—a central character in dire straits who must think and act beyond that which she is capable of in order to preserve what is most meaningful for her. Fans of this fantasy subgenre may discover a new world to relish in this novel.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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