I've been a fan of Caitlin Diggs' intelligent, spiritual and compelling, kick-ass style since I started reading the series (which includes "Blood Web," published in 2007).
I was super eager to see what Starta did with his character, FBI agent Caitlin Diggs, when she traveled to a parallel universe.
Well, I certainly wasn't disappointed, as it's one step beyond the "Fringe" episodes, in my opinion, as the characters aren't as similar to their counterparts in the other dimension that Starta created. For instance, in the protagonist Caitlin's universe, Celeste is her domestic cat, who happens to be attuned to protecting Caitlin; whereas, in the other universe, Celeste is Bastet who is able to morph into a big, non-domestic cat, who actually attacks Caitlin at their first meeting.
Also, Starta has done a great job of showing different values in his alternate universes. For instance, in the universe the original Caitlin we're introduced to is not from, about six out of 10 beings is a demon.
Demons are classified as vamps, lycanthropes, incubi, goblins, etc. and most of them mind their own business, without causing harm to others. So, full-blooded humans are certainly the minority there, and therefore so are their values to some degree.
Aside from interesting plot lines, there is the attention to detail in his descriptions that Starta always manages to bring to the plate--even in a fictional world, and I can't help thinking that this may spring from his having been a journalist at one point. It probably also aids in his writing of believable, non-stilted dialogue.
Target Audience Reviews
From the Author
Age - 38
Eyes - Sapphire
Hair - Black
Ht - 5'11'
Wt - Negotiable
Disposition - Inquisitive, Suspicious, Doubtful
Work History: LA Field Office FBI, FBI Washington DC Bureau
Private Investigator - Salem, MASS
Fashion Sense - Conservative
Goals - Deal with my newly acquired paranormal abilities, decrease junk food, catch more villains, get over death my partner/boyfriend, make a new home in alternate universe...
BASTET - The Tonkinese Cat
AKA Celeste in other universe
Eyes - Blue
Fur - White
Wt - 1 lb. of fury
Favorite Food - Salmon
Conversation Starter - 'Food's Ready'
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Caitlin's encounter with the incubus (a male demon who feeds off women via sexual intercourse in dream-states) early in the book clearly describes an intense sexual scene on the astral plane, actually a hypnotic rape in which Caitlin is at odds with her mental self (which realizes she is being raped) and her physical self (who is enjoying the most spectacular sex she has ever had), the culmination of which would be her demise.
The faint voices of those who are trying to unsuccessfully "reach" her from both a waking and a paranormal state, are vaguely heard amidst her intense passion. Only Celeste, her cat, who ostensibly lies peacefully asleep, has entered Catlin's astral dream to directly attack the incubus (literally take the bull by the horn - the horn that protrudes from the head of the incubus) to break the eye contact that holds Caitlin captive.
The descriptives employed are so detailed that you are there with Caitlin, fighting for your life, in what may be a totally new realm for the reader.
This is an amazing read, not to be missed if you have any interest in the supernatural, Wicca, alternative universes, magic and science as an integrative possibility, and an actively creative mind.
Review of Demon Inhibitions by Gary Starta
A delightfully engrossing novel with much more than a hint of paranormal, "Demon Inhibitions" proved to be much more than I expected, and happily so. I enjoyed the book, but a few of the characters I found myself wanting to shake senseless; amazing our protagonist put up with them! Guess that's what makes for tension in fiction, though, and makes it more believable-certainly in real life everyone doesn't mesh smoothly. My irritation stems from these individuals' desire to hold their cards close and not reveal too much, in effect tricking protagonist Caitlin into situations that might otherwise have been potentially avoidable.
Author Gary Starta weaves multiple sub-genres into this story, including paranormal (witches-demons-off in the backstage, lycans and vamps) and science fiction (parallel universes, doppelgangers, alternate dimensions), plus mystery-but keeps it all balanced as he juggles several subplots and many characters. I appreciated the novel's revelation of bigotry as rooted in the human condition-as characters in the alternate reality both experience and discover, bigotry simply means denigration of any other group-including divergent species (including, in this case, demons).
The heroine, Caitlin is a tall sexy, independent woman willing to take on problems at the request of friends. A subplot of the story involves her exploration of her own sexuality after her prolonged period of mourning when it reasserts after she's introduced to a number of attractive men. She must decide what makes a man attractive as a partner and why. The story is told primarily from her point of view and the reader becomes familiar with her thought processes and her stumbling intuitive and often psychic uncovering of villains. As the story progresses, Caitlin has to face aspects of her abilities she had never known before.
In "Demonic Inhibitions" she faces down a demon who is killing real estate agents, only to find out the initial problem was simply the first act of a larger problem. Someone is out to kill a special person who has the ability to cure people of their affliction. Each step along the trail, Caitlin finds out the problem she is facing is considerably larger than she first thought, adding worlds, people, numerous potential villians, a conspiracy, political groups etcs. Underlying the whole tale is a question about the rights of individuals and the prejudice people may have about certain groups. It also shows how prejudice is often a result of our preconceived ideas about how people within a certain group behave without really going out and finding out the truth.
Readers that like imaginative fiction with strange beings, unusual worlds and fantastic abilities might like Gary Starta's Demonic Inhibitions. Those who like a good mystery will like this story, for one because a surprising turn happens in the first part of the book where the mystery solved adds additional layers of meaning and conflict in the mystery that arises out of the roots of that issue. It seems demons have many good and bad sides to them, but do they have a cure?
Ex-agent Diggs, private detective, falls into a dimension crossing adventure involving incubi, genetically engineered humans, were-beings, romance and loss. It is a very well done story in this genre. As some one who does not usually seek out this type of story even I am giving it three out of five units of satisfaction.
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Yet another winner.
Demon Inhibitions is the third book in the Caitlin Diggs series by Gay Starta and...Read more