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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written Gothic Tale
I was captivated from the word go by this fantasy tale which has very gothic overtones. The author really understands the concept that less can be more so the plot develops at a relatively gentle pace which can never be thought of as frenetic until the final part. However, the scenes are very skillfully set with just enough description to get a real feel for the...
Published on 28 Jun 2011 by Brett H

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars incubus (fairwick chronicals )
The book took a while to get into, but once it did I enjoyed it . Could have expanded the incubus idea more as was a bit more reserved than I normally read but not sure what age it is aimed at .
Published 17 months ago by custardcabs


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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written Gothic Tale, 28 Jun 2011
By 
Brett H "pentangle" (Brighton) - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
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I was captivated from the word go by this fantasy tale which has very gothic overtones. The author really understands the concept that less can be more so the plot develops at a relatively gentle pace which can never be thought of as frenetic until the final part. However, the scenes are very skillfully set with just enough description to get a real feel for the surroundings and to get a strong atmospheric hint of the supernatural elements at work behind the scenes. The story flows well and keeps moving forward and at no point do you feel that more action would be an improvement. The dream love scenes with the incubus are also relatively understated and are, as a result, far more erotic than the effect which would have been produced by a less subtle and more heavy handed description.

The story is narrated in the first person by Dr Calleach McFay, who is the principle character and who is a college lecturer in supernatural topics at Fairwick which proves to be quite an unusual college. Often the result of writing in this medium can be awkward and the character speaking can seem quite wooden and lacking character. However, this format works really well here and we gradually learn a great deal about Callie, her hopes and fears and what makes her tick. One feels quite a lot of empathy towards her as the plot develops and as she learns much more about herself and her ancestry.

This is a fantasy tale so the appearance of witches, daemons, fey people and other supernatural characters is not unexpected and the author introduces these elements into the story so that they blend in seamlessly as a natural development of the plot. I did feel that at the point that all these exotic entities enter the story a certain amount of momentum is lost for a little while, but happily it picked up again as the narrative continued. The climax seemed a satisfactory conclusion and tied up some loose ends while clearly leaving the way open for one or more sequels.

To summarise I thoroughly enjoyed this supernatural tale which is beautifully written. It is not an expression I have used often in reviews, but personally I thought this book was outstanding. I am really looking forward to the next installment in the Fairwick Chronicles.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is where all stories start, on the edge of a dark wood..., 31 July 2011
By 
Amanda (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
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Professor Cailleach "Callie" McFay travels to the small, mountain-base town of Fairwick in New York State for a job interview at Fairwick College. Despite the fact that she has her heart set on lecturing at NYU, she soon finds herself mysteriously drawn into buying a Victorian house that used to belong to a reclusive author in the town and accepting a job offer to gives classes within the Folklore Department at the college.

Callie's long term partner - Paul - is currently living in California as he earns his own doctorate, so when she has increasingly realistic erotic dreams she just chalks it up to sexual frustration and the fact that the faceless man in the dreams bears a strong resemblance to the 'shadow man' who haunted her childhood dreams must be a coincidence.

But when Callie uncovers the unedited drafts of the author's novels, it becomes clear that the author was also being visited by the same presence. And Callie realises that her colleagues and the majority of Fairwick's residents aren't quite human, so uh oh - her midnight stalker may not just be a harmless dream.

This is one of those books that I didn't think that I'd like so I didn't bother reading for a few weeks, only to flick through a few pages cautiously and not put down again until I'd finished it.

Normally I wouldn't be a fan of the incubus/succubi angle in fantasy books: it's an excuse for having the hero/heroine jump in out of bed with multiple partners and creating the ever-dreaded 'love triangle' sub-plot, which I hate as most of the series I read tend to use this over-worn plot device. And lets not forget that the human equivalent of a incubus visitation is someone breaking into your house, tying you to the bed, gagging you and having their way which you - not in the slightest bit appealing.

INCUBUS is part Gothic romance, part fantasy and part mystery.

Yes, I know. Thinking about it now, it's creepy as hell - not romantic. But when I'm actually reading the book I get caught up in it and one of my first thoughts was "it's beautiful".

Cassie is a refreshing change from all of the gun-toting, wise cracking, 'sassy' heroines that are constantly thrust upon us in this types of book, as she's 'normal' for the most part. I can't go into to much detail about the rest of the cast without spoiling some of the subplots, but everyone is well developed and they have interesting back stories of their own.

There is one exception; Paul. By the end of the book we still know very little about him. It's not really the author's fault as he is living in a different state to Cassie and we're supposed to feel her detachment from him here. But Cassie is [unintentionally] cheating on him and I don't really feel bad for him, in fact it is very easy to forget that she even has a boyfriend.

The explanation behind the setting of Fairwick itself is obvious to readers before it becomes so to Callie and it gives this series infinite plots and characters for future books, so this series isn't going to repeat itself and become predictable in the foreseeable future.

Any pitfalls? It's only minor, but the way that the author quickly shoved two plot devices for future books into the final chapter was abrupt and happened too close together to be seen as anything else other then as the plot devices that they clearly are.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magically Gothic Tale, 29 July 2013
This book was recommended to me by my local librarian, so it was a total non heard of for me, the cover is beautiful, so it would have grabbed my attention, the synopsis would have made me read it anyway, I was not sorry.....It was a wonderfully magical gothic fantasy story. Explicit at times, dream love sessions with her Incubus. You do not expect all the magical creatures to appear as they do, I was shocked, it really is a SECRET world living within this town Callie goes to work in.

So beautifully written, I love a descriptive book, i could picture every detail of the house, the setting of it, the landscape, the wood itself, the layout of the town, the college... A wonderful place. All the characters too, the book takes on a movie projector playing in my head, so even now i can see the living room, the attic with the boxes of notes, the beautiful desk (which i want) those cute little mice....everything written to take the reader into the story and not just remain on the outside reading in. Thank goodness there is more books to follow......and other books by Carol Goodman as i have just become a Fan!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful characters, amazing setting and great mythology. A really enjoyable read., 14 Dec 2012
This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
Alison for [...]

Should be noted that I obtained this book from Netgalley under the title of `The Demon Lover' by Juliet Dark, a pen name of Carol Goodman.

Callie lost her parents at a very young age, sent to live with her cold distant Grandmother she finds solace in an `imaginary' prince who tells her folktales at night. Fast forward a number of years, Callie is now a lecturer in folk law, she has an interview with a small university in the back of beyond. She knows the job could spell professional suicide yet she is drawn to the place, and then she finds the old house by the woods.....

Both the covers for this book are quite deceptive with both appearing to be trying to appeal to the YA market. In fact I bought it for the school library and quickly had to move it to the Sixth Form and Staff library. It is definitely a more adult book and is everything that you would expect from a paranormal romance novel.

This is a rare foray into books for adults for me, and despite the above I was aware that this was for adults when I picked it up. It did make a very welcome change and I have gone on to read the second book in the series since. It has everything that I love in a book. Supernatural and gothic themes, setting described so well that you can picture them and very strong believable characters. It was a book that reminded me strongly of `A Discovery of Witches' by Deborah Harkness and `The Witching Hour' by Anne Rice and I would thoroughly recommend this to anyone who enjoyed these books. Witchcraft, gothic houses and family secrets are all themes that run through each book.

The supernatural has been done to death in recent years. I liked that the mythology of it all was original in this book, something that is hard to do with the proliferation of books lately. I dearly love anything to do with the fey so their inclusion was very welcome.

Callie was a very strong central character, but this wasn't to the expense of other characters in the book. As a reader you got to know them all. This was through Callie, as the book is told from her perspective, but she was on the whole quite perceptive and even when she wasn't the plot strongly pointed out how you should feel about a character. There was a `twist' at the end of the book that I found fairly obvious. But I did get the impression that this was done on purpose by the author; that the reader should know what was likely to happen, even if the main characters didn't. There was also a second twist that I saw coming a mile off which wasn't perhaps meant to be quite so obvious. I have a feeling that it was my hopelessly romantic side that wanted the result, rather than me actually being able to predict.

A very strong feature of this book is the setting. The town, the house, university buildings and the woods nearly become a character all of their own. They are described in such detail that it is almost cinematic. In many way the old house, with it's history and eccentricities becomes a character outside of its description.
Overall I really did want to carry on reading and was quite disappointed when the book finished and quickly moved onto the next book. I can't wait for the third to come out. It has also made me investigate the author further and I will be reading more of her other books. I now have a taste for books for `grown-ups' which will make a nice change.

Verdict: Wonderful characters, amazing setting and great mythology. A really enjoyable read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid start to a supernatural series, 15 Nov 2012
By 
Rowena Hoseason "Hooligween" (Kernow, Great Britain) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
Although `Incubus' isn't exactly perfect, it's certainly an excellent start to a new supernatural series about the witches and other weird folk of univeristy town Fairwick in New England. Author Carol Goodman has crafted a solid tale with its own beginning, middle and a satisfactory end - unlike many first books in this genre which tend to pause after introducing the characters without resolving any of the plot lines. So you can start reading `Incubus' secure in the knowledge that you're getting a whole, stand-alone story in its own right, as well as the intro to a new alternative world populated by faeries, demons, vampires, shifters and such.
'Incubus' is definitely a book of two halves: the first part is packed full of sensual adventures and frisky bedroom fantasies. These taper away as the heroine becomes aware of the hidden world and its secrets are revealed to her. So if you've found some of the erotic content of, say, Anita Blake's adventures, to be a little hardcore for your tastes then you should be pretty safe with 'Incubus'. It's sexy, but not XXX-rated, and the action diverts towards the supernatural and away from naked entwinement as the book progresses. The narrative also concentrates on the plot and action, and doesn't dally too much with simpering domesticity (which does tend to bore me, after a while). The pace and timescale of the story was a little confusing, however; it took me a while to realise that months were supposed to have passed in what felt like just a couple of pages.
'Incubus' is very easy to read - I galloped through it in one night - and thoroughly entertaining. It comes close to rivalling the early Sookie Stackhouse or Rachel Morgan books; fans of Kelley Armstrong should enjoy it too. And it's good enough that I'll look out for the next instalment and may well try others from the same author.

7/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars incubus (fairwick chronicals ), 8 Nov 2012
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The book took a while to get into, but once it did I enjoyed it . Could have expanded the incubus idea more as was a bit more reserved than I normally read but not sure what age it is aimed at .
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Overblown prose, underwritten characters, 27 Oct 2011
By 
Seren Ade (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
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I thought this sounded like quite an interesting book from an author I hadn't come across before, so ordered it. Unfortunately, the book really doesn't live up to either its description or the rather Gothic-inspired literary fiction styling of the cover. There's a lot of academic pretentiousness involved, and Callie doesn't come across as a credible lecturer.

Given the subject matter, I suppose it would be hard to avoid sex scenes - and Carol Goodman definitely doesn't seek to. The prose descends into soft core porn territory with plentiful and detailed interludes between Callie and the incubus preying on her dreams.

Overall, this is a long-winded, rather tedious book with plot twists that prove predictable from a long way off. Disappointing and certainly no inducement to look for a second entry in the Fairwick Chronicles.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing - a real contender for 'Sookie Stackhouse' series, 9 Oct 2011
This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
After reading previous reviews, I was wondering if I had made a mistake buying this book...but it turned out to be AMAZING!! Yes it does straddle a few genres (i.e. urban fantasy, gothic, romance etc) and doesn't fit neatly into one type - but guess what - so does life, and this is about the goings-on in Callie's life.

The book follows Callie as she takes on a new job in the strange town of Fairwick at a university. Like layers of an onion the author (Carol Goodman) draws the reader deeper and deeper into the unexpected and unknown elements of the magical Fairwick. Callie is so likable because she isn't perfect, doesn't always get everything right, but tries to get through the best she can with what she knows at the time.

The other characters are well described and brought to life brilliantly throughout the book as Carol Goodman adds depth and background to the Fairwick folk. There are lots of references to modern culture (Charlaine Harris etc), but even if you have never read the books or films mentioned in this book, you would still be able to thoroughly enjoy it. My only gripe is Callie's apparently long distance 'wishy-washy' and unrealistic relationship with her boyfriend. I found myself persevering through the pages where these two characters interacted just so I could get back to the more gripping events.

Finally, the most brilliant thing about the book is the suspense. Every page had me clamouring to read the next. Even in the final chapters of the book - what I had presumed was going on was turned on it's head. Very clever plot twists! Anyway, as explained in the first pages of the book, this book is the start of the Fairwick Chronicles series. So I look forward to future events in the magical town of Fairwick.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars loved it, 13 Sep 2011
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This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
I really enjoyed reading this book, if you love books about fey, deamons, vampires & all the rest of the supernatural stuff with dark romance sprinkled through, then this is the book for you!
I hope that Carol goodman is going to continue this story in some way.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great start to a new series, 11 Sep 2011
This review is from: Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) (Paperback)
I've enjoyed Carol Goodman's previous books, so was excited when I found this one at the airport. Wasn't disappointed! Really enjoyable read with a sense of faery throughout. This is some uneveness throughout the book, but am really looking forward to the next one as I think that there is a lot more of this world to explore.
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Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1)
Incubus (Fairwick Chronicles 1) by Carol Goodman (Paperback - 21 July 2011)
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