Synopsis: Jael has always felt like a freak. She’s never kissed a boy, she never knew her mom, and her dad’s always been superstrict—but that’s probably because her mom was a demon, which makes Jael half demon and most definitely not a normal sophomore girl. On her sixteenth birthday, a mysterious present unlocks her family’s dangerous history and Jael’s untapped potential. What was merely an embarrassing secret before becomes a terrifying reality. Jael must learn to master her demon side in order to take on a vindictive Duke of Hell while also dealing with a twisted priest, best-friend drama, and a spacey blond skater boy who may have hidden depths..(Goodreads)
Review: Jael was a very likeable character. She had me on her side from the get-go. Her father has been moving her from town to town all her life, trying to keep her away from demons. Being half-demon herself, she's very confused about what's going on. Her father refuses to talk about her mother at all, telling her only that she was a demon. Everything goes to hell in a handbasket on her sixteenth birthday when she finally learns what it means to be half-demon. I loved the mythology. Demons are really the gods and goddesses of times past, they are molded by the beliefs of humankind. When Christianity started taking over, they were morphed into something that would fit into the new belief system. This made for some very interesting, unpredictable demons. There were scenes woven in from the past, showing what her parents went through (how they met, how they went on the run, just exactly what happened to her mother.) There were just enough such scenes to fill out the story without overwhelming it. (Although I feel like their story could be a series on its own.) Some of the lingo the kids were using seemed a bit weird to me, but maybe I'm just out of touch. There are about a million little subcultures in america, so I'm sure that I wouldn't recognize half of the slang that's used. It just bugged me a bit, not enough to interrupt the story. I love that The Church is playing a role in all of this, as well. She goes to a religious school, her father is an EX-MONK, and her best friend is a devout (mostly) Catholic. Being surrounded by religion makes the fact that she is a demon much more interesting. I kept waiting for things to blow up. It's one thing for a neighbor to realize you're a demon, quite another for a priest to realize you're a demon. They can whip out some holy water and a bible and take you down (presumably. Can half-demons be exorcised?) The story is far from over. After one major obstacle is overcome, we come to learn that there are tons more. She's going to have to defeat all of Hell, basically, which sounds like a hell of a lot of fun to this reader. Looking forward to the sequel!