Where There's Smoke

Where There's Smoke

Paperback - 2012
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The Devil Went Down to Texas... Sexy wannabe demon Destiny Carter has pissed off the people downstairs and has been kicked out of hell. Now she's in Ft. Worth, Texas with one week to corrupt a soul. Or else. Lookin' For Just One Soul to Steal... When smokin' hot Destiny strolls into the Stompin' Ground bar in a slinky red dress, she has a feeling her assignment might not be so bad. The cowboy at the bar looks pretty darn delciious and oh-so-corruptible. But Chance Bellew is no ordinary cowboy, and Destiny gets away more than she bargained for when she rubs up against the sexy dark angel perched on a barstool like sin just waiting to happen... Praise for Karen Kelley: "The sex is steamy and the pacing gallops along."- Publishers Weekly "A perfect blend of humor... and sexy intimacy."- Booklist "Explosive!... This story astonds at every level. Karen Kelley is an author not to be missed."- Fallen Angel Reviews
Publisher: Naperville, Illinois : Sourcebooks Casablanca, 2012
ISBN: 9781402263866
1402263864
Branch Call Number: Fic
Characteristics: 297 p. ; 21 cm

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Sarah1984
Aug 30, 2012

After spending her 26 years of life being "bad," as Destiny Carter puts it, she died in 1959. As she lay dying a demon offered to take away all her pain and give her everything she never had while she was alive. Of course she agreed. That's what leads us to the beginning of Where There's Smoke.
Seeing as Destiny went to hell back in 1959 her definition of "bad" is a lot tamer than today's definition is. But she believed she deserved to go to hell for the things she did leading up to her death. She is now a "demon-in-training" using all her seductive moves to grab another soul to take back to her demon bosses before she gets kicked out of hell for under-performing in the soul stealing department. Plus one more soul means she gets promoted to full-time demon, which is not going to be as much fun as Destiny was lead to believe (the demon lied to her, of course because that's what they do).
Destiny is spat out of hell and lands in a backwoods town in Texas right outside a bar. She goes inside hoping to find that last problematic soul. As she walks through the bar she scans the room, discarding the other patrons for one weak reason after another; the hookers were too easy, they wouldn't impress her demon bosses; two married guys would be too much trouble, plus they had their wives with them; the drunk college guys drooled too much and then just as she was about to start on the bartender the hero (a nephilim, also known as the children of angel/human matings) caught her eye. Obviously she has to pick the hero, but her excuses for NOT luring the rest of the people in the bar were dreadful and very undemonlike, even for one who's still in training and therefore maybe not as evil as a full-blood demon.
Ok, so there are some VERY hot scenes in this book and within the first 10 pages or so (Kelley certainly doesn't make you wait for the 'action' to get started).
Despite Destiny's lack of motivation in not picking anyone else in the bar (or on the street or anywhere else) and the occasional lame piece of dialogue I have so far really enjoyed Where There's Smoke. Update when I finish the book.

Ok, so I finished the book last night. I spent most of the last 100 pages wondering how Kelley was going to fix it so that Destiny the demon-in-training ends up with Chance the nephilim. Because either she got her soul quota and was promoted to demon and therefore was sent to the fires of hell until all her humanity was burned out of her; she didn't get her soul quota and was sent to the fires of hell for all eternity as punishment; or Chance is able to save her soul and she is reborn to live her life again and Chance is not allowed to have contact with her ever again, only to watch her as a guardian angel. I couldn't see a happy ending option. Fortunately Kelley could, it involved an appearance by Chance's father from the heavens and a surprise familial link between Chance and the demon, Retis, who took Destiny's soul.
When she realised she couldn't get Chance's soul it looked like Destiny was going to lure her new best friend, innocent LeAnn, the wannabe singer to hell instead. I was very pleased to see that Destiny wasn't evil enough to take such a low step, as I felt it would have been out of character. As I said earlier, her reasons for believing she belonged in hell were pretty tame, I means she wasn't a serial killer or a paedophile, and so if she had taken such an innocent person's soul that would suddenly have made her seem much more horrible and evil than she had been in any of the previous story. Even if you got charged with all of the crimes in the one trial you would probably only get a few years in jail, but I suppose in 1959 breaking and entering and small time drug dealing was a bigger deal than it is now (not that I don't think it's a big deal, but that our courts don't).

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