The Devil's Cove by R.C. Matthews

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Shrouded in unspeakable horror and spoken of only in whispers, the abandoned Devil's Cove Manor lures Captain Devlin Limmerick and his unquenchable thirst for revenge to its doors. Feared as the Devil on the high seas, the pirate’s desire to avenge his past is matched only by his hunger for the powerful young medium he has coerced to aid him in his nefarious quest.

Blinded from youth and touched with an ability to communicate beyond the grave, Grace is both feared and revered by the uneasy town folk. Yet she is powerless against the unrest brewing within the manor walls and finds herself drawn to the Devil's darkness. Still, she refuses to sacrifice her soul to set Devlin’s unspeakable plans in motion.

But an evil lurks within these walls, and their very souls are in jeopardy. Grace’s presence at the manor spurs inexplicable happenings, forcing Devlin to believe nothing is as dead as it seems—not even his heart. Plunged into the throes of passion and danger, they discover the only way out is to search deep within and summon the courage to believe in true love.

This was a very interesting shift in genre for this author. An intriguing gothic tale full of dark and interesting characters set in Devil's Cove in a haunted mansion. The opening scene sucked me in with the half woman/half serpent who has her heart set on revenge. A demon named Josephine who holds the key to the gates of hell.
The tale that follows is a suspenseful journey of a Pirate named Devlin and a blind Medium named Grace. Devlin hired Grace to rid the mansion of the spirits that are lurking in it's walls. But, there is so much more to the mission than Grace was led to believe. Devlin has a much more deceitful mission in which she refuses to participate. Will Devlin choose to follow his heart and his growing love for Grace. Or, follow his desire for revenge?
Josephine the demon enjoys toying with Grace and encouraging her to embrace her dark side as a medium. Grace is being pulled between light and dark and isn't sure who she can trust. Josephine often comes to her in her dreams and toys with her sexual desires.
This is a dark but also spiritual journey for the characters as they attempt to help save the souls of the lost in the mansion. And, also their own. If you are not fond of stories that have a spiritual undertone then this is not the book for you! This is a book in which the characters rely heavily on their faith and prayer and use these tools in helping spirits find peace so they can cross over into heaven. I mention this only because some other reviewers gave this book a very low rating because of this theme. So, just an FYI if this is something you like to know about in advance.
There are also some scenes involving Male/Male and Female/Female encounters which are not entirely consensual so one or both may elicit negative triggers for some. If you do not like this type of content then proceed with caution. I have read many books with dark content so this was not an issue for me.
This was an intriguing and fast paced read that I would recommend to fans of gothic/Victorian romance and those who do not have a problem with spiritual undertones. An entertaining and suspenseful read and definitely hit the spot for me... I was definitely in the mood for something a little different.

4 chilling stars!

Many thanks to the author for the Advanced copy!

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