Schoolteacher Kerrigan is haunted by recurring dreams of a man she’s never met, but whose erotic presence torments her and prevents her from forming a lasting relationship with any other man. Even when she moves to a small town in West Virginia, she still can’t free herself of these dreams. A trip to Ireland seems to hold the answer to her mystery. Here, she learns the centuries-old story of hero Finn, a demon hunter who lost the love of his life, Caoilinn, to an incubus that assumed his form and repeatedly visited her bed in Finn’s absence.
Demon Azar has spent seven hundred years feasting on the life force of women who he stalks in their dreams, sleeping with them and binding them to him till they waste away, consumed by their need for him. He’s been watching Kerrigan for a while, but somehow he can’t bring himself to take her, instinctively knowing she’s different from any of his other victims. His feelings of regret for his actions grow stronger as he gradually comes to realise he was once Finn, the demon hunter, and Kerrigan is the reincarnation of Caoilinn. Linked in dreams with Kerrigan, he begins to believe he can find a way to revisit the past and prevent his lover from flinging herself to her death when she learns she’s slept with an incubus. But can Finn really defeat the demon within himself, as well as those who plague his country?
Reading the above outline, it’ll quickly become apparent that this is really Azar/Finn’s tale, rather than Kerrigan’s. Indeed, she is purely the conduit between past and present, a way to reunite Finn with Caoilinn. The sex scenes are passionate and breathlessly described (though be warned that one encounter between Caoilinn and the demon masquerading as Finn contains a strong element of force) and the whole story is wrapped up with a neat, satisfying epilogue. However, the mingling of past and present becomes a little confusing to follow, and Shiloh Walker’s writing style is rather repetitive, both in terms of rehashing the events that have led Finn to become Azar, and in some of her turns of phrase (smiles always curve someone’s lips, for example). Ms Walker’s fans will lap this up, as there’s an intriguing, wildly romantic storyline at its heart, but unlike some novellas, which cry out to be expanded, Nebulous feels as though it could have benefited from much tauter editing.
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