Book Review: Keri Arthur’s Dancing with the Devil

Posted October 9, 2013 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Keri Arthur’s Dancing with the Devil

Dancing with the Devil


Keri Arthur

urban fantasy that was published by ImaJinn Books on March 1, 2001 and has 230 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Mercy Burns, Darkness Unbound, Darkness Rising, Darkness Devours, Darkness Hunts, Darkness Unmasked, Fireborn, Hearts in Darkness, Wicked Embers, Flameout

First in the Nikki and Michael urban fantasy series based in Lyndhurst, America, and revolving around a psychic who wields energy and an avenging vampire.

My Take

This was so bad that I kept hoping the heroine would die. How sad is that? Too much melodrama for me with a “ooh, I gotta prove myself” heroine willing to take the stupidest risks. Gag. Actually, to be fair, there are chunks of “real”, I just wish the chunks of melodrama were in someone else’s story.

Monica’s walked out of the morgue and Nikki knows it’s her fault. That she has to fix this. So, naturally, when Michael tells her to wait for him — you know, the man who told her what would happen and whom she refused to believe? — that she has no idea what can happen or how to deal with the new Monica, she just has to ignore him and rush in. ‘Cause it’ll be so much more fun and dramatic…ggggaaaaggggggggg…

Yeah, let’s rush into the tunnel, rush off to hunt down Monica, rush off to track down the dream. The one that she refused to tell Michael and Jake about to teach him a lesson. Yup, on-the-job training for dummies. They should get T-shirts. They could each say “I’m with Stupid”.

Arthur does all this lead-up about how awful Nikki feels because someone she knew died. That she allowed to die, and it’s why she can’t not follow Monica now. Yet, when we learn about the past incident that affects her so badly, I’m thinking WTF? WHY does she feel any guilt? Well, other than what Arthur believes is necessary to establish that Nikki is a sweet, bleeding heart idiot?

The obligatory love scene in which one party wants it and the other party is trying to be noble. Snore…

Nikki needs to make up her mind. She doesn’t want to live, she does want to live, she doesn’t want eternity, she’s worried he’ll die and so will she. She would have died if he hadn’t done what he did. So she’s already living on borrowed time. Every day she has now is a gift. Shut up already! Hmmm, why is it we (I) claim to want reality, but when I get it, I whine? It’s perfectly natural for Nikki to be confused at this point. Really. And still, it’s annoying. A bit of reality to keep in mind when you’re writing your own stories.

The Story

It’s a rock and a hard place as Nikki realizes her prey knows she’s there. That she’s leading Nikki onward for a purpose. It’s one lamb leading another to the slaughter for the vampire who has “acquired” Monica desires her assets and those that are peculiar to Nikki.

He wants power and if he can achieve it by torturing and killing…all the better.

The Characters

Nikki James manipulates kinetic energy. After her mother died, her family refused to take her in, unable to deal with her abilities. Jake Morgan is her private investigator boss; Mary is his wife.

Michael Kelly is a psychic vampire assigned to guard Nikki James. He’s employed by the Damask Circle to hunt down evil. Elizabeth is the vampire who turned him, leaving behind a father, mother, brother Patrick, and four sisters in an Ireland of several hundred years ago. Seline is a psychic witch and Michael’s supervisor.

Detective Col MacEwan used to arrest Nikki during her street years; now he’s almost a friend on the force.

Monica Trevgard is a spoiled little rich girl always getting into trouble and expecting her long-suffering daddy, John Trevgard, to bail her out.

Jasper Harding and his twin brother were both vampire and animator, able to raise the dead. He was a psychopath even before he was turned after the earthquake of 1906 in San Francisco.

The psychic Tommy led the street gang that took Nikki in.

The Cover and Title

The cover is red with a drifting fog and Nikki crouched before a wrought iron fence.

The title is true enough for Nikki finds herself Dancing With the Devil.


2 responses to “Book Review: Keri Arthur’s Dancing with the Devil

  1. Hahaha I read this ages ago and you’ve just reminded me how bad it was! I think I even read the second book…who knows why!