Master of the Game (Demons of Elysium #3) by Jane Kindred-Review and Blog Tour

Master of the Game (Demons of Elysium #3) by Jane Kindred-Review and Blog Tour

Masters of the Game

Master of The Game
Demons of Elysium #3
by Jane Kindred
Release Date: August 5, 2014
Genre:paranormal, M/M, fantasy, BDSM, erotic romance

Master of the Game Aug 14jpg

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 5, 2014

Love is the ultimate game changer…and this time it’s winner take all.

Demons of Elysium, Book 3

Now that his lover is back in his arms, Belphagor is taking his own sweet time to say the words Vasily longs to hear: “You’re my boy.” And savoring the sweet torture of driving the firespirit into a frenzy of unfulfilled need.

As the undisputed master of Heaven’s gaming tables, Belphagor never plays unless he’s certain of winning. But this time, political machinations send the game—and Vasily—tumbling to the brink of even his formidable control.

Vasily can’t deny enjoying their delightfully edgy play—until the airspirit auctions him off for a night to the one demon with a gift for taking things too far. Seductive Silk, tight-lipped about the end of his relationship with the sweet submissive Phaleg, may also be involved with a new faction threatening the pregnant queen of Heaven.

Belphagor couldn’t be less interested in the games angels play, but when angelic and demonic intrigues overlap, he’s drawn in against his will. And forced to break his one inviolable rule: Never gamble what you can’t afford to lose.

Warning: Contains more than a mouthful of m/m ménage, with intense D/s situations featuring intricate rope work, balaklavas, and a flurry of snow.

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REVIEW: MASTER OF THE GAME is the third instalment in Jane Kindred’s erotic M/M fantasy series-Demons of Elysium-a prequel spin off series from her House of Arkhangel’sk Trilogy -focusing on airspirit demon and Dominant Belphagor, and the love of his life firespirit demon Vasily. MASTER OF THE GAME and the Demons of Elysium series is a sexually graphic, M/M series where nothing is off limits as long as all of the acts are consensual between all parties involved-and sometimes, consent is questionable.

The focus of the storyline finds Heaven on the verge of a revolution. Similar to the early twentieth century Russian uprising against Czar Nicholas and his family, Heaven’s angels and demons are at odds when it comes to the ruling political party. Enter Belphagor and Vasily who will be caught up in a game of ‘spy vs spy’ when Heaven’s ruling family are targeted for destruction.

The relationship between Belphagor and Vasily is one of domination and submission although Vasily is not one to consider himself submissive. Throughout the storyline our couple is involved in numerous sexual situations –together, with others, and in precariously dangerous situations. There were times when humiliation and degradation were a means to an end, and in this a fine line was crossed as to whether consent had been given. Belphagor is a demon whose love for Vasily is beyond measure but his actions are questionable –time and again. The secondary storyline finds former rentboy Silk and General Phaleg’s relationship easily crossing the line on several occasions. Phaleg’s need for Silk finds the Angel fighting his urges and his position within the Royal army; and Silk’s need to dominate pushes the boundaries of control.

I found this particular storyline more sexually graphic and disturbing due to the indignity and condescension of some of the acts. MASTER OF THE GAME (and the series) is a storyline where D/s is the overriding theme throughout –not just between our leading couple-but also between angels and demons; the haves and the have nots. The upcoming rebellion and revolution took a back seat to the sexual exploits of the demons and angels.

Jane Kindred has a talent for pulling the reader into a world that crosses between fantasy and reality. Many of the events in the world of the Arkhangel’sk parallel a number of similar events during the Russian Revolution and the Demons of Elysium series is the build up to the fall of Heaven’s Royal family.

MASTER OF THE GAME is an imaginative and infinitely detailed storyline that is both sexually graphic and staggeringly intense. Jane Kindred’s characters are sensual, emotional, heartbreakingly passionate but in the end are as fallible and idealistic as any human (or demon) can be. Heaven’s political system is incredibly abrasive, provocatively abusive, and intensely corrupt such that espionage, abuse and murder are part of the political system and hierarchy.

Copy supplied by the tour promoter.

Reviewed by Sandy

Series Spotlight

Prince of Tricks
Demons of Elysium #1
by Jane Kindred
Release Date: January 7, 2014
Genre: adult, fantasy, erotic, M/M

Prince of TricksABOUT THE BOOK: Release January 7, 2014

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

Over the past century, Belphagor has made a name for himself in Heaven’s Demon District as a cardsharp, thief, and charming rogue.

Though the airspirit is content with his own company, he enjoys applying the sweet sting of discipline to a willing backside. Angel, demon, even the occasional human. He’s not particular. Until a hotheaded young firespirit steals his purse—and his heart. Now he’s not sure who owns whom.

A former rent boy and cutpurse from the streets of Raqia, Vasily has never felt safer than in the arms—and at the feet—of the Prince of Tricks. He’s just not sure if Belphagor returns those feelings. There’s only one way to find out, but using a handsome, angelic duke to stir Belphagor’s jealousy backfires on them both.

When the duke frames Vasily for an attempted assassination as part of a revolutionary conspiracy, Belphagor will do whatever it takes to clear his boy’s name and expose the real traitor. Because for the first time in his life, the Prince of Tricks has something to lose.

Product Warnings
Contains erotic sex: m/m, m/m/m, m/m/m/m…oh hell. Let’s just say “mmmmmm!” and be done with it. Also one m/f scene. Smart discipline meted out with a great deal of love and charm. Erotic sex acts requiring copious amounts of elbow grease.

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King of Thieves
Demons of Elysium #2
by Jane Kindred
Release Date: April 29, 2014
Genre: adult, fantasy, erotic, M/M

Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Cover by: Kanaxa

King of ThievesABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date April 29, 2014

Amazon.com / Amazon.ca / Amazon.uk/ Barnes and Noble / KOBO /

“There are worse things to lose than one s good name. “

“Demons of Elysium, Book 2”

Belphagor can seduce demons with a look and bring angels to their knees with a single motion, but when it comes to being in love, the Prince of Tricks is out of his element.

At every turn, Vasily rebels against the discipline he claims to want, even refusing to use his safe word. But when Belphagor uses a scheme to shut down an underage brothel to test Vasily s limits, he loses Vasily s trust along with the boys he intended to set free.

Uncovering a smuggling ring that spans two worlds, Belphagor calls on a team of Nephilim mercenaries to rescue the Lost Boys from earthly gangsters. But his relationship seems beyond repair and a heartbroken Vasily beyond his reach in the arms of a sensual demon named Silk.

Belphagor has more than enough grand schemes up his sleeve to bring down the smuggling ring for good. But when it comes to putting things right with Vasily, his bag of tricks is empty. Except for trust and a plan to teach his boy a lesson neither will soon forget.

Warning: Contains two strong-willed lovers who will test the theory that without air, there can be no fire. Expect plenty of smoke, more than a few mirrors, and an old-fashioned Russian duel. You may need a shot of vodka when you re done reading this one!

Guest Post

The Heart of a Demon

If you’ve read the first two books in the series, you know that in Demons of Elysium, the traditional expectation of demons=evil and angels=good goes right out the window. The hero of the series, Belphagor, is a tattooed, pierced, leather-daddy demon. He’s also a gambler, a conman, a thief, a brothel owner, and a member of the Russian mob. Like the word demon, none of these things scream “hero.”

But what Belphagor has is a good heart. And it’s another demon, his “boy” Vasily, who brings it out in him. Before Vasily came along, Belphagor was accustomed to looking out for himself and no one else. He’s had to; being a demon in Elysium—where the pure-blooded angels are considered the superior race of Host, while those of mixed-blood belong to the peasant class of the Fallen—isn’t easy.

Starting out as a rent boy in Heaven’s Demon District, he fell to the world of Man for the first time when he was still in his teens, where he encountered the mad monk Rasputin and fell in love with a Russian prince. Unfortunately, this first love was in Petrograd (St. Petersburg) in autumn 1917, just weeks before the Bolshevik Revolution.

Belphagor spent the next few months in a Russian prison for soliciting. Then, as now, being a man who loved men in Russia wasn’t something one wanted to advertise, and being one in the Russian prison system made him a target. In and out of Russian gulags over the next several years, Belphagor managed to fight his way from downcast to respected thief, which his tattoos can attest to—except for the ones he received involuntarily before earning the fear and respect of others in the system.

For the better part of a century, between adventures in the world of Man, Belphagor honed his skills at the wingcasting table in Elysium, using his airspirit tricks to keep the other players on their toes, never certain if they were playing a master gambler or a consummate cheat. He made a name for himself in two worlds and shared the beds of demons, men, and angels without ever needing anyone. Until a young firespirit rent boy with a chip on his shoulder tried to pick his pocket, and instead, stole his heart.

Read about Belphagor’s “boy” elsewhere on the tour, along with the other boys of Elysium, and enter my giveaway at each stop to win a diamond accent winged demon heart necklace and a $25 gift card.

Excerpt

The angel had been avoiding his eyes, but he met them now, and his blue ones—the color of the supernal celestine stone in the signet rings the nobles wore etched with the symbols of their houses—were full of heartache. “You said we were not to see one another again…after. And I accepted that. I understood your reasons. It was wise counsel. But then you summoned me and brought me back into your world, and I came. For you. You must have known I could never refuse you.”
“Phaleg—”
“I don’t regret it. It may not have been wise, my agreeing to be the front man in your enterprises, but I accepted with full knowledge of the risk. The Celestial Silk Road had to be closed. The fletchers needed to be stopped and brought to justice. But it was very difficult seeing you again.”
Belphagor rose and came close to the table. “I’m sorry. I’m a selfish demon. I thought perhaps I could keep you near without doing you harm so long as there was no intimacy between us. But I saw how cut off you were from what you needed and desired, and I thought perhaps Silk could give that to you. I made a mistake.”
“No.” Phaleg gave him a sad smile. “Nyet, ser. It wasn’t a mistake. It’s not your fault things didn’t work out between us. But I thought it meant…” The charming blush had risen once more in his cheeks. “I thought you wanted him to use me.”
“You went to him to please me?” He’d never wanted that. Damn, he’d screwed this up.
“No. No, not that exactly.” The blush deepened, and Phaleg looked down at the table with the bashfulness of a young ingénue. “Though I would. If you told me to let anyone use me, demon or angel, because it pleased you…I would. But I desired Silk. He’s—he’s beautiful and complicated. And a bit cruel. Like you. I couldn’t help but desire him. It’s just that I thought it was your way of telling me you…released me.”
Belphagor reached his hand across the table, and Phaleg took it, his own trembling. “It was, sweet boy. I had to release you. You deserve to be free. To love and be loved by someone who desires to make you suffer because you desire to be made to suffer by him. Someone who will cherish that suffering and that hunger for it. Someone who needs to use you just as desperately as you need to be used by him. You deserve what Vasily and I have, and I can’t give it to you.”
“And yet you speak of a bond.”
“Of course there’s a bond.” He closed his fingers tightly around Phaleg’s hand until the angel made a soft, involuntary sound of pain.
“Heaven help me,” the angel moaned, the very words he’d uttered in his desperation while Belphagor had sundered him. He knew if he ordered the angel to, right here and now, Phaleg would strip and climb onto the table to be used and degraded in whatever fashion Belphagor took a fancy to, regardless of the fear of discovery. He was sorely tempted. But even he wasn’t that much of a bastard.
He loosened his grip. “There will always be a bond,” he said in a gentler tone. “But I will do my best never to abuse it.”
Phaleg nodded as Belphagor released his hand, his throat working for a moment as if he couldn’t get any air through it. “Then you’ll help me?” he managed at last.
“Of course I’ll help. All you had to do was ask.” He tried to remember exactly what Phaleg had asked him. His imagined violation of the angel had given him a rather distracting erection. “You said you want me to stop the principality from signing the Liberation Decree.”
“I don’t want you to, but someone must, or this next attempt upon the principality’s life will succeed. Heaven isn’t ready for liberation, as much as it pains me to admit. It’s not the right time. And the only way Helison will see that is if he understands the extent of demonic sedition going on right under his nose.”
“Even if it implicates Silk.”
Phaleg paled. “That isn’t what I want. But if he’s plotting against my principality…Belphagor…I cannot ignore it.” And there was the difference between them. Belphagor hadn’t given a fig whether the beautiful Russian prince he’d spied upon had been plotting against the tsar.

 

About The author

Jane-Kindred-200x300Jane Kindred is the author of The House of Arkhangel’sk trilogy, the Demons of Elysium series, and The Devil’s Garden. Born in Billings, Montana, she spent her formative years ruining her eyes reading romance novels in the Tucson sun and watching Star Trek marathons in the dark. She now writes to the sound of San Francisco foghorns while two cats slowly but surely edge her off the side of the bed.

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giveaway

Jane is giving away a Diamond Accent Devil Heart with Wings Pendant in Sterling Silver and a $25.00 Amazon Gift Card at the end of the tour.

NOTE: The Reading Cafe is NOT responsible for the giveaway. If you have any questions, please contact the tour promoter.

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12 thoughts on “Master of the Game (Demons of Elysium #3) by Jane Kindred-Review and Blog Tour

  1. Excellent review and series. I have this series on my TBR pile. Will get to it eventually 😉 Congratulations to Jane on the new release. Sounds great!

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