on Aug. 18, 2016 :
Althea is herself once more and with that comes some difficulties to deal with. Being a succubus, being who she is, sex to her is like breathing. She loves unconditionally, she watches Rachel and her family work out their own relationships, but Althea has her own needs as well. But among the desires comes the knowledge that there is a threat to them all and defences must be made. Even if some of them happen to be difficult ones to accept for some.
This work in the series is a complex telling of the shifting of of the family dynamic with Althea’s return to her own body. That’s not to say that things change drastically, it’s more of the shift of focus from Rachel alone to both Rachel and Althea. How Althea deals with the family, with those that have been drawn into events is quite telling about her. She does make amends with regards to one specific character, which then leads towards some very deep and painful moments for them. Opening old wounds, even if unintended, does cause harm.
Rachel’s force of will is still strong, she holds her own with Althea and she’s clear in her being who she is. There are moments of Rachel and Althea pleasuring each other, which has some lovely heat, but the more interesting dynamic is that between Josh and Althea. With that came an interesting little tidbit about succubi tails in this universe, one that I hadn’t thought of, but makes perfect sense. I’m looking forward to seeing what Rachel does with hers sometime.
There are several pieces of erotica in this part of the series, all of the couples have their moments together as well as some of them having moments with Althea as well. There’s a glaring omission of one character in all of this, but the reason for that makes sense and having something happen in this moment of the series would have felt, by far, wrong. The heat in each passage is very good, the need and desires are well brought out in each character. There’s also quite a lot of sexual tension that remains unfulfilled which makes for some very good moments of dialogue between the characters that I enjoyed.
As an aside, there’s a teeny little passage that happens to mention Althea’s sisters… one of them happens to have red horns and dark hair. That, along with a certain exclamation of Althea’s about her sister’s “titties” made me smile and wondering about her. She might never appear, but knowing that she’s there was a wonderful moment for me. It was a really nice moment to have Althea talk about her past, her family and while that was but a small part of the overall story, it added a lot to her character and a bit about something she longs about.
The characters develop further, the story moves onwards towards the next crescendo. But in this work the time spent in piecing together what everyone is thinking, settling some of their thoughts and concerns is important. After the action of the prior work, the thoughtfulness of this part of the series worked well. A pause before things take a turn is a good thing and in this case that time isn’t wasted by simple introspection. There’s a point to it, there’s need and it helps to redefine the relationships which the series needed to do.
Written as well as always, the author’s grip on the characters allows for exploration of them. I’ll admit to having wanted a bit more seen of Kincaid, the glimpse allows for knowing his plans for the future, but I feel like there’s more about him that needs to be said. Beyond that, the only other thing I would have liked is a bit more time within Althea’s thoughts and her focusing upon the effects she’s having on those around her. She sees some of them, but might be a little blind to the important one.
Four and a half out of five pitchforks.
A lovely interlude which adds quite a lot to who Althea is, what is going on around her and more. The blending of the lives around Althea is leading towards a bit of strife, a bit of thought, but that also leads to understanding. That’s the most powerful thing of all. Knowing their own strengths and being able to face what is coming is difficult, but that’s nothing compared to trying to figure out what’s going on within themselves.
(reviewed 11 days after purchase)