Rianne despises her husband, Vankor, the striking, ruthless
Demon Master. He has sacrificed her for years, keeping her
as his prisoner with a binding spell. She lives in daily
torment until one day everything changes. Rianne wants to
avenge the wrongs Vankor has committed against her, going as
far as seeking the old gods to mete out justice. But does
she truly know her own heart? Is what she feels for Vankor
hatred, or some other stronger emotion? Who is this
stranger that looks like Vankor courting her with passion
and sweet words?
There’s a thin line between love and hate. Demon
Master crosses to the other side, and skillfully
ties it all together. Sometimes love isn’t necessarily
expressed as gentle affection, and the dynamic between
Rianne and Vankor gives new meaning to another expression,
“You always hurt the one you love.” The motivations that
drive Rianne and Vankor engulfed me in their complexity.
This is a story with a mesmerizing affect, and the more I
continued to read, the more engrossed I became. There’s
substance and intelligence that shifts to subtlety and
blatant unleashed sexuality.
This tale captures the nuances of old school dark fantasy.
The author is very skilled in exploring the layers of her
characters in the traditional sense of early sword and
sorcery fiction. There is an eroticism and complexity in
her writing that reminded me of CL Moore’s short story,
Black God’s Kiss. Rianne brought to mind the heroine,
Jirel of Joiry, and that’s a strong compliment to Ms. Bern’s
writing. Even if you’re not familiar with CL Moore’s work,
there’s no time like the present to try Demon Master
on for size. It’s an excellent example of writing that
early women authors like Ms. Moore helped to pave the way