“With a little editorial guidance this could have been a good story. The premise was great but I have to say that I was confused from the very beginning. The cover blurb features Catherine Marais and her vampire hero, but the story starts with Julie Buchanan and Catherine’s partner in the werewolf killing business, Paul DuJardin. This pulled me out of the story from the start as I kept referring to the back cover trying to figure out if I was reading the same book. For a better summary refer to Ms. Morel’s website, not the cover blurb.
The story begins at Chateau Montfort in Touraine, France. This is the ancestral home of the Montfort Werewolves. This is where Paul DuJardin, werewolf killer meets Julie Buchanan, NYC college professor. The Chateau interests her for a different reason as her ancestry traces back to the family who once lived there. Coincidence? Not at all.
This is where the vampire comes in.
At the time of the French Revolution Chateau Montfort was the scene of a great love and a great tragedy. It is said that in 1789 Count Jean de Montfort turned werewolf and killed his beautiful and beloved young countess Marie-Jeanne. Julie is descended from Marie-Jeanne’s sister Manon who with the rest of the family fled to England to avoid the Revolution. Manon had married a Buchanan and her eldest son immigrated to America founding Julie’s branch of the family. At least this is what she believes to be true.
[We later discover that Ian Morgan is in fact the poor maligned count. Falsely accused and not caring what happened to him after such a great loss he allowed himself to be turned by a vampire in order to seek his revenge. His immortality gives him the opportunity to watch over what remains of his family, appearing to aid the female members in times of need, and endowing the eldest daughter of each generation with a unique dowry.]
Paul has just written a book about the Montfort Werewolves. Julie is fluent in French and Paul commissions her to translate the book, L’Affaire Montfort into English for the American Market. It appears that the last remaining werewolf of the Montfort line is alive and well and killing in NYC, were Julie makes her home. The plan is to use the book release to sniff out the werewolf and so we move ahead two years.
The Monfort werewolf has reached maturity. All the players are in place in NYC. The publicity for the book has done its job to provoke Pierre de Montfort, a highly respected jeweler, into showing his true nature which he revels in.
Julie has a crush on Paul although nothing serious has developed between them as yet. Paul is concerned for Julie, hoping her role as translator doesn’t draw the beast’s attention to her. Catherine is having an affair with Ian. Paul isn’t sure if he approves.
Paul and Catherine must await the results of a DNA sample from the Institut in Geneva before going in for the kill. The DNA is confirmed, Pierre is the last Monfort werewolf. But in a shocking turn of events, the Institut wants him brought back alive! Paul refuses to consider the idea, but Catherine is intrigued. And that takes us to the middle of the book.
Sounds interesting, right? Unfortunately a plethora of superfluous details and stilted conversation really get in the way of the story here. With so many relationships, Paul and Catherine, Paul and Julie, Ian and Catherine, Ian and Julie, Pierre and his girlfriend Marianne, Marianne and her coworker Jim, Pierre and Jim - the story is all over the place. It is difficult to get to know any of the characters well enough to care what happens to them. Yes, the right people get together, and yes the villain gets what’s coming to him, but I feel that the story would be better classified as urban romantic fantasy rather than paranormal romance as the spine indicates.
Overall the entire cover is misleading. The focus of the story is Paul and Catherine’s quest to bring down the werewolf. Paul, Catherine and Pierre are the main characters; the vampire and Julie play very secondary roles in this plot. Besides their familial connection to each other, these two are left on the sidelines as the action takes place.
If you enjoy urban fantasy in which the paranormal entity plays the villain you may enjoy Devour, if you are looking for paranormal romance you may want to look elsewhere. ~ Reviewed for PNR Reviews”