Personal Demon (Women of the Otherworld Book 8) by Kelley Armstrong


“Your own..personal…demon”  Okay that’s not quite how Depeche Mode wrote the song, but I would rather have a personal demon than a personal jesus any day.  In the eighth book in the Women of the Otherworld series, Personal Demon is from Hope Adams point of view.  She and Karl Marsten owed Benicio Cortez (Lucas’ father) a favor, and he came to collect.  Though he really just wanted to snag Hope as a full time employee.  He came to her knowing full well that Karl was out of the country.  The job was infiltrating a local gang that may or may not have anti-Cabal activity.

When she got to Miami, she got straight to work, contacting a man in a tent for some “girls gone wild” type video production.  He thought she was there to try out for that job, in his defense she was wearing a bikini.  When he found out it was for the gang, he told her she could have the job if she stripped in front of him and sexually gratified her self.  She said no, and he told her that she had competition that had an hour head start.  She had to retrieve a conk shell from a shop.  Sounded easy enough.  However, it wasn’t for sale and there was only one in existence.  It had to be stolen.  Once she got it, a witch tried to take it from her.  She got rid of her competition easy enough and returned the shell.  Hope went to the gang’s night club right away.

At the front door, she was greeted by a guy that she was interested in immediately.  His name was Jaz.  Prior to this we find out that Hope is really in love with Karl Marsten, as if that’s a surprise.  However, he came to an event her mother was having to introduce himself and they ended up having sex.  Afterward, he freaked out and told her she should date men her own age, then left for Europe.  Obviously at this point, Hope was very hurt and looking to move on.

The second in command was a woman, and she showed Hope around.  She was using an alias.  They were excited to have a half-demon of her type in their group.  They were thieves.  She quickly became close to Jaz, and he got more attached to her than she was of him.  Then Karl showed up, and she forgot all about Jaz.  Unfortunately Jaz did not forget about her.  Jaz and his best friend Stephen went missing.  After that, bodies started stacking up.  Lucas and Paige came to Miami to help them with the case since it seemed Hope was in danger.  Karl realized that he loved Hope and didn’t want to be without her.

They realized that whoever was committing these crimes was after the Cabal, so they went to check on Lucas’ father.  He said it was impossible for someone to get into the house, but they needed to be sure.  Once they got there, they realized someone had indeed gotten into the house.  Lucas remembered there was a panic room, and when he opened it he found his father holding his body guard Troy.  Troy had been shot.  They realized that it had to be someone they knew because Troy was shot at close range and one of the other security guards had been poisoned.  So he accepted a drink from someone he must have known.

Benicio went to the private hospital to stay with Troy.  They spent nearly every second of the day together.  Troy had to have surgery, meanwhile the others went to check on Lucas’ brothers.  Paige and Lucas went to Hector’s house.  His mousy wife had no idea who they were and trembled at the mention of Benicio Cortez.  She said Hector was in his study and was not to be disturbed.  Lucas went in anyway only to find his brother dead on the floor.   Karl and Hope went to check on William at the office, and he too was dead.  They went to find Carlos, he survived.  Lucas suspected he was behind the whole thing.  They took him into custody, but Lucas said nothing of his suspicions to anyone other than Paige.

While they were doing more research of the Cabal employees, Karl and Hope were investigating outside the office.  As Paige and Lucas discovered that Jaz and Stephen were the nephews of Armen Haig, the man that Elena befriended in Stolen, Hope was kidnapped by the two.  Armen Haig had the ability to change his appearance.  His nephews had the ability to look like anyone.  They planned on killing Paige, then Lucas.  Then Jaz was going to become Lucas, and he thought marry Hope.  They had Hope call Paige to a meeting.  Hope did it thinking that they would see it was a trap and rescue her.

Paige showed up without a SWAT team and Jaz killed her.  Hope attacked Jaz in an effort to protect Paige, but she got shot in the head anyway.  Then Jaz drugged her.  When she woke up, they were in the car.  Stephen went to steal another car, leaving Hope with Jaz.  She heard Karl yelling, and realized he was below.  He snapped Stephen’s neck and Jaz dropped to the ground in disbelief and grief.  He asked Hope to kill him so he wouldn’t be a guinea pig to the Cabal.  Karl showed up in wolf form and Hope had the gun pointed at Jaz.  The SWAT team surrounded her and made her drop the gun.  After killing two of his sons and him, and planning on killing the other two sons, the Cabal didn’t want to kill him.  He wanted to study him.

Lucas and Paige showed up when the SWAT team did, yes Paige was alive.  They used a woman who had been sentenced to death, and told her if she survived this that she could go free.  They put a spell on her to look like Paige.  This made Lucas see his father in a new light.  He realized he had done the very thing he condemned his father for doing all these years.  In the end it seemed Lucas would become Cabal just as his father planned all along.


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