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Demon's Grip (Diamond Peak) Paperback – February 16, 2014
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
"A most exemplary work, a real joy to read. The colour, depth and vitality of both the writing and the narrative is stunningly good: the exploration of motives, outlooks and hopes of the characters quite intoxicating. It ranks as a true work of literary accomplishment." Clive S Johnson, AIA reviewer. "'Demon's Grip' is more than a standard YA fantasy story; the characters' internalisations and dialogue, and the progression of the plot itself, lead the reader to be more contemplative, even meditative, about the emotional issues involved. Overall, a nicely-paced novel, well-written, with memorable characters and the chance, perhaps, to reflect more deeply on life while enjoying the story." Kevin Berry, author, editor.
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Top customer reviews
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I have reviewed all three books as they were published. My early enthusiasm has not been diminished by subsequent reading, which isn't something I can say of several better known series. I hope that Tahlia Newland has a strong vision of where she is going. There is a lot of promise that needs a very dynamic conclusion in the next book. Finishing what she has started is the trick that still has to be proven.
I started reading book three happy that Ariel's Mum was already safe. Oh my, that lady has had a tough life. Like mother, like daughter?
It took me 12 days to finish this book. Some of that delay was craziness in my life, but most of the reason it took so long was because this book is a slow burn, peppered with small constant struggles, but no real 'climax'.
Other reviewers have said this book is one of huge personal growth for the protagonist, Ariel, and that is 100% true. The down side to this book being so much about her maturity is that it's not as exciting and adventurous as the previous two books.
The struggles Ariel faces mirror similar issues any young teen would face. The question of lust and losing oneself in daydreams and cravings are just the tip of the iceberg.
In this way, I feel this book delivers something that the first two books don't, and that is a realistic, albeit fantastically tinged, look at what goes on in a teens mind.
Once again, I felt the balance between the story and all the 'inner light' stuff was a little too focused on the inner light, which further removed me from an already slower read.
This issue aside, the story offers interesting insights into demons and the complexity of the world Tahlia has built here.
I particularly enjoyed Emot Sai in this one. His character evoked a strong emotional response from me. I hated him in one chapter and felt empathy for him in another. This takes considerable writing skill. Well done!
His particularly menacing physical appearance, coupled with manipulation and greed all wrapped up in one wicked package. A great antagonist if ever I read one.
Overall, I liked the story and I will finish the series, but it might take me a while.
I am happy to report that little Spud makes a cameo appearance and I was very excited to see him resurface, even if it was only for a short while :)
One thing I noticed:
10% Kelee's waistcoat changes from purple to blue.
This book leaves no doubts as to the direness of our protagonists' situation.
In the midst of death and sacrifice, Nick and Ariel finally arrive at the Sheldra university, but of course, all is not well. The good news: Ariel has finally stopped her mad streak of denial and admitted she loves and needs Nick. (And Ruthanne does a happy dance.) The bad news: Nick no longer has time to wait for her to make up her mind, and the evil forces pursuing her have only gotten more clever.
This book is definitely the best of the three. Tahlia's style really bloomed somewhere between book two and three, and the flow in this book is a huge jump toward awesomeness.
Now, remember: this world and its powers depend entirely on the transforming force of negative and positive emotions. So with Ariel finally realizing she's in love but unable to act on it, she has become vulnerable to insidious and intimate attacks... which is exactly what the demon does. Even lust can be a problem.
Ariel is growing up. With that maturing comes new problems and difficulties, and new ways for the serpentine to attack her. With this in mind, Tahlia tackles the tricky topic of addiction in this story, sorta-kinda with hints of rape. Ariel's struggle is part of the core of this book, and I suspect essential to her development as the heroine of this series.
Addiction is a spooky topic to touch, very much part of real life and not just this story.
I won't say more lest there be spoilers. Suffice it to say this book focuses on the internal war more than the external, balancing out the extensive battles of the previous book. I still kind of want to throttle Nick and Ariel both, just a little, but I am at this point convinced I'll be completely satisfied with the way their relationship grows.
I'm definitely looking forward to reading the last of the series. It's a delight to watch this author grow.