In Kessler's newest, Daunuan, master seducer and incubus, returns badder than ever. Pan, the new king of lust, wants to appoint Daunuan his second in command, but Daunuan must first prove himself by seducing a woman destined for heaven, claiming her soul for hell. Daunuan thinks this will be an easy assignment, but he doesn't expect to fall in love with Virginia, his target, and be willing to give up hell to ensure that she doesn't get damned for all eternity. Complicating his mission is that someone in hell has it in for him and has sicced a crew of demons on him. Daunuan also cannot come to terms with his feelings for Jezebel, a succubus. The plot is sexy and bold, and the atypical ending-a happily ever after pairing is not in the cards-is satisfying, even if the unconventional conclusion may rub some readers the wrong way. (Aug.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Hotter Than Hell (Hell on Earth Series #3)by Jackie Kessler
Daunuan was never the ambitious type. There's so much to love about his job just the way it is--mind-blowing sexual prowess, the power to seduce any human, excellent dental plan. But now Pan, the King of Lust, has offered to make Daun his right-hand incubus. All he has to do is entice a soul/b>
So whose soul do you have to damn to get a promotion around here?
Daunuan was never the ambitious type. There's so much to love about his job just the way it is--mind-blowing sexual prowess, the power to seduce any human, excellent dental plan. But now Pan, the King of Lust, has offered to make Daun his right-hand incubus. All he has to do is entice a soul destined for heaven into a damnable act of lust. Should take, oh, seven minutes, tops.
Then he meets his target, Virginia Reed. She's cute. Funny. Smart. And unfathomably resistant to his charms. But Daun has centuries of seduction to his credit. Sooner or later he'll transform this polar icecap of a female into a pool of molten desire. Meanwhile, he has to deal with a plague of rogue demons Hell-bent on taking him down. And one other problem: he's falling in love--that unholiest of four-letter words--with the woman he's about to doom for all eternity. . .
Praise for Jackie Kessler
"Funny, sexy, and utterly original! Kessler will seduce you." --Gena Showalter, New York Times bestselling author
"A demonic thrill ride with heart and soul. Kessler is one of a kind!" --Jaci Burton, author of Hunting the Demon
Read an Excerpt
HOTTER THAN HELL
By JACKIE KESSLER
ZEBRA BOOKSCopyright © 2008 Jackie Kessler
All right reserved.
Chapter OneCoitus Interruptus
Anyone in my position would've thought the buzzing in my head was anticipation. Five minutes to go, then the client would be eating from my hand. Literally. I had the grapes ready and waiting in the ice bucket, chilling. She liked it when I let the cluster dangle over her lips-she'd poke out her tongue, sinewy and slick against the ripe fruit, darting pink flesh over purple. Sweetness on sweetness, both begging to be sucked. Plucked. My blood pounded through me, boom boom, boom boom, sending happy signals to my brain and my balls, getting my body primed. T-minus five minutes, and counting. Small talk until then-light touches here, knowing smiles there, lying about her job and mine. Thinking about sex. Killing time.
So it sort of wasn't my fault that I didn't sense the demon approaching.
The client had moved some things around in the bedroom since my last visit. Now her wedding photo was missing ("Getting it reframed") and the threadbare pink comforter had been replaced with one that was red and advertised sin. We sprawled on the bed, clothing still on, intentions thick in the air. She was decked out in a white silk sheath and pearls and lacy thigh highs. I was a study of blacks. A bit cliché, but Tall, Dark, and Handsome was all the rage. She liked it, and I aimed to please.
"I got a new perfume," my client said. "Envy Me."
"I'd prefer to ravish you."
Her smile pulled into a grin-white teeth flashing in a lipstick sea of red. "The perfume, I mean. It's Gucci." She leaned forward, offering me her neck as she pressed her breasts against my chest, rubbed. Looking for a quick feel through the silk. My kind of woman. She purred, "Like it, baby?"
Inhaling deeply, I took in the peony and jasmine and other scents blending together with her eager sweat, her underlying smell of female in heat. "Nice," I lied. Me, I preferred the musk of her sex alone, without the cloying flowery scent over it. "You smell good enough to eat." No lie there.
"Yeah?" She was playful, almost kittenish. "You going to ... eat me?"
Heh. Sex kittenish. "Oh, yeah, doll. Eat you alive." Among other things.
"My big bad wolf."
That made me chuckle. Brushing her hair away from her face, I asked, "You my Little Red Riding Hood?"
"Depends, baby. You want me to ride you?"
I smiled, wistful. "Like you would not believe."
My head buzzed, hummed as she oozed sex, her body practically begging me to climb on top of her. Soon, doll. Soon. She jiggled against me once more, reached her hand out toward my thigh-stroked once, lushly, then pulled back. She knew the dance by now: only teasing at first, quick-fingered taunts. Nothing overt. Not yet.
Seduction, after all, had its rules. Date Number One had been all about getting her to kiss me. Number Two had been pleasing her like no other man or woman ever had before. Three had been making her want me more than anything else. (One thing about us Seducers: we always put our clients' desires ahead of our own. If not for the rules, I would've fucked her silly after I introduced myself.)
Here we were at Date Number Four: D-day, the Big One. Otherwise known as The Payoff. It set my blood to boil just thinking about it.
But first things first: I had to get her revving-ready, steady, go-on the first real touch. Thus a five-minute warm-up of sexual tension. Seduction 101. Child's play. And never mind how that single stroke of hers on my leg had rippled up my back, settled into my stomach. I shifted; the front of my pants was too damn tight.
Sometimes the rules really sucked.
"Don," she said, her voice a low purr that went straight to my crotch. That's all she said: my name, or her version of my name. That's all she needed to say. Her hand again, now on my stomach. I wagged a no-no-no with my finger as I grinned, thinking about how she'd taste like candy. Thinking about how she'd call my name.
"I've been waiting for this all week," she whispered.
"I couldn't stop thinking about you." She dropped her gaze to my fly, where she saw just how much I was thinking about her. Her desire filled the air, thick and pungent, as she begged me, "Come on, baby, let's get started already."
But damn, how I wanted to. Oh, the things I wanted to do. Would do. Four minutes-no, less now. Three and counting. I said her name, put just the right amount of foreplay into my voice.
She looked up at me through her makeup-crusted lashes, slowly ran her tongue over her fuck-me lips. Bedroom eyes; blowjob mouth. Intoxicating. Boom boom, boom boom.
"Now, baby," she said, her voice a throaty growl. The woman was giving way to the animal, to the instinct that tingled deep inside her. Giving way to lust. And all with no nudging from me. Sweet. She said again: "Now." Insistent. Demanding.
A hum again, this time strong enough to make me sit up. Frowning, I felt the buzz resonate through me, pitched high in warning. No, this wasn't just anticipation. This was-
-her mouth on mine, her tongue jabbing through my lips and running against my teeth. My momentary caution faded into bemused surprise. She usually wasn't so direct, but who gave a damn? Screw the countdown to bliss. She was ready. Steady.
Heat rolled over me, bathed me in fire from head to toe. I opened my mouth to hers, pushed that heat into her. She said, "Mmmmmm," melted into the kiss like chocolate over flame. I washed my hands over the silk of her body, and the buzzing in my head sputtered, died.
Oh, doll, how I'm going to make you scream ...
She groaned against me, and my tongue lapped up the sound. I left her mouth to kiss up her jaw, now playing by the lobe of her ear. She squirmed against me, all soft and delicious, delectable, making contented sounds that told me I hit one of her sweet spots. Her hand clenched on my shoulder, then pushed. With a hungry rrrrr she rolled me onto my back, straddled my hips. The hem of her dress rode up, exposing the fullness of her upper thighs, the flash of white satin panties.
"This is different," I murmured, my hands on her waist.
"You're always so good to me, baby." Her voice was thick with need, her eyes dark and brimming. Leaning down, she poured herself over me to whisper in my ear, "I want to ride you. Now."
Maybe I ditched the countdown, but other rules had to stay in place. Clients first, even on D-day. That was ever the rule. So I ignored the ache in my groin and said, "Ladies first, doll."
"Maybe I'll take the grapes, run them over your naked body. Nibble them off your skin."
"I don't want grapes. I want you."
"You got me."
"No, I don't. You never let me do you, bring you there." She gyrated over my crotch, a slow dry hump that did maddening things to me. "It's always been about me."
"I'm a giving sort of guy," I said, my voice husky.
"Your turn, baby," she said, punctuating her promise with wet kisses down my neck. Her fingers played by my crotch, and over the buzzing in my head and the pounding of my heart, I heard her unzip my fly. "I'm going to love you so fine," she said, "you're going to sing my name. I'm going to make you explode."
Down she kissed, down my chest, my stomach, my-
Okay, maybe the customer was always right ...
In the midst of mind-blowing pleasure, a deafening crash, followed by a man's shout: "What the fuck are you doing with my wife?"
Louder than the man's words, the buzzing screamed its warning in my head.
Getting interrupted in the middle of sex is bad enough. Worse is when the cause of coitus interruptus is a demon.
A glance told me all I needed to know: he was obscenely muscled, and his eyes glowed with malefic presence. Definitely not a Seducer; I would've felt the psychic connection. Sloth was out of the question. Pride, maybe, or Envy ...
Between my legs, the client was still going to town. Side effect of entrancing the clientele over the course of four Dates: they wound up being a bit one-track minded. Usually it was anything but a problem; at the moment, though, the pleasure was a tad ... distracting. Not that I was complaining.
Because my client didn't seem to be one to talk with her mouth full, I put on my charming face and said to her husband, "Your wife's told me so much about you."
He roared, a wordless cry of pure rage. Terrific-one of the Berserkers was riding his body. They weren't exactly known for their reasoning skills. How was I supposed to convince a demon of Wrath that the client was mine? Hell knew I had all the paperwork to prove it ...
The husband cocked back a fist. The flesh burned red, and energy sizzled off his skin.
Whoops. I grabbed my client by her shoulders and pulled her off of me, then rolled with her to the floor. She landed on top of me, her mouth working like a landed fish. Sandwiched between the wall and the bed, we were trapped. Last Stand at the Sealy Corral.
From the other side of the bed: "I'll kill the both of you!"
The haze of passion began to clear from my client's eyes. Before the fear took hold, I ran a finger over her brow, pushing a command into her mind. She crumpled on my chest, dead asleep. I nudged her to the ground. Back in a second, doll.
Far over my head, a bolt of magic slammed into the wall. Smoking plaster fluttered down, singeing my face with tiny kisses. Maybe the man was possessed, but he was also a lousy shot.
He bellowed, "Think you can sleep with my wife?"
"Actually," I called back, "sleeping wasn't what I had in mind."
He screamed his fury, then the wall behind me exploded. I threw myself over the unconscious woman, shielding her from the smoking debris. I'd be blessed if I let another demon claim her. I'd been on her case for a month; she didn't die until I said so.
Sometimes, I was as possessive as a Coveter.
Pieces of the ruined wall crashed on me and around me, covered me in filth and soot. Dust made me sneeze, and sneezing during a fight was both dangerous and rather lame, so I stopped breathing. The stench of smoke lingered in my nostrils. Nice. Reminded me of home. Not including the part about getting buried by a falling wall. The wreckage hadn't killed me-when I was on a collection, the only thing human about me was my appearance-but getting slammed with it hurt like a bastard. My own fault; I should have known better than to taunt a Berserker.
Over the sound of the settling rubble, he shouted, "You dead yet, asshole?"
"Hate to break it to you, chuckles, but you missed."
Couldn't help it. For demons, Berserkers were just so fucking stupid.
"Seducer!" The man's voice deepened to that of a constipated buffalo's bellow. "I'm going to rip you apart!"
"Some nefarious just talk, talk, talk." I shot my arm out and leveled a blast overhead. The light fixture overhead shattered, crashed down to the floor. I heard the man jump clear and land heavily in the far end of the room. Recharging my power as the man regained his footing, I reviewed the possibilities. It came down to three options.
One: I could kill the possessed human.
No, the paperwork involved in the accidental slaying of a mortal would kill my sex drive for the better part of a decade.
Two: I could run.
Hah, as if.
Three: I could banish the demon, leave the human alive.
Ding, ding, ding, we have a winner. Banishing, sans killing. That meant attacking him directly with my magic was out. And that meant I had to figure out what its weakness was and kick-start the exorcism.
It occurred to me that priests had other uses besides between-meal snacks. Live and learn.
The sound of clumping footfalls, along with labored breathing. Some mortals just couldn't take a hint. I scrambled to the foot of the bed and yanked on the baseboard until I pried the wood free. Shouting to do the banshees proud, I leapt up and hurled the makeshift weapon at the human.
And ... bull's-eye! The wood splintered against his torso with a satisfying crack. He staggered back three steps, blinked stupidly at the slivers embedded in his flesh. Then he snarled something about my parentage and aimed another blast my way. I hit the carpet two seconds before it rained plaster again.
Wood was a big no. What else? I didn't have any iron on hand ...
He shouted, "Come out and fight like a man!"
"I'm not a man." I reached out blindly, found the ice bucket, heavy with grapes and melted ice. The rim and handle on the black lacquered wood gleamed with a silver sheen. Yes, maybe silver would do the trick. Come a little closer, chuckles. Give me a hug.
"Fight me!" Two voices spoke the same command-the mortal's ire blending with the demon's innate wrath.
I gripped the bucket, getting ready for the windup. "Don't you think two on one is a bit unfair?"
"Come here and make me."
He shrieked his unholy rage, and then I heard him stomp toward me. Charge of the Dark Brigade. I popped up and pitched the ice bucket at the ballistic human, catching him full in the face. The silver handle bonked him about a second before the melted ice and chilled fruit splattered on his skin ... skin that immediately bubbled and smoked. He roared in either fury or agony, and then he swatted madly at his face.
I took a moment to zip up my fly. Then I stepped around the wreckage strewn almost artfully through the ruins of the bedroom to approach the wounded demon. Under my feet, a collage of shattered glass sparkled amidst the chunks of smoking plaster and plywood. Love really was a battlefield.
The man had fallen to the floor, clutching at his steaming face and gibbering in pain. Interesting. The silver handle was nowhere near him, yet he was still reacting so strongly ... Ah. Smiling, I scooped up a handful of stray ice cubes. Allergic to water, my, my. If I had any feelings, I would have felt sorry for the creature; having such an elemental sensitivity would crimp any demon's style. But I've never been accused of being compassionate.
Water pooling in my hand, I squatted over the squirming form. "Need a towel?"
Beneath his clawed fingers, the flesh of the man's face looked rather spongy. Hmm. Hope that's not permanent. I didn't think the human would be long on the mortal coil with his face slipping off his skull. The thought of all the red tape associated with accidental slaughter made my stomach roil. Damned bureaucracy would be the death of me.
He snarled, "Bless yourself, asshole!"
"Don't suppose it'll help to tell you there's been a mix-up," I said, juggling the ice from hand to hand.
Lowering his fingers, the Berserker glared up at me through the human's red-rimmed eyes. "No mix-up, whoremaster."
"That's 'Mister Whoremaster' to you."
He spat at me, but the thick glob sizzled and vanished before it touched my skin. Company perk: adjustable heat aura.
"Now, now," I said, dangling a sweating cube over his face. "Play nice, kitty, or you get a bath. What do you mean, no mix-up?"
For a long moment, he stared his hatred at me, charged the air with fury so brutally raw that my flesh should have been flayed from my bones. Finally he said, "I was sent on purpose."
"A snafu, then. I've got all the paperwork. She's mine, chuckles."
Oh, really? "Explain yourself."
"Killers, the man and woman both."
I'd known about the woman; there was a reason she was a client, after all. The man, though, was a surprise. Then again, I hadn't bothered to research him. He wasn't the one I was supposed to fuck to death. "What, they get off on the murder?"
"Thrill of the bloodshed." His eyes gleamed, and a smile unfurled on his softening face. "The gospel of butchery. The ecstasy of violence."
"Uh-huh." I'd heard the Wrath party line before. "That's lovely. But she's still mine."
"No, whoremonger." He bared his teeth in a parody of a grin. "The flesh puppets, they were to kill you."
Jaw clenched, I asked, "Kill me?" Humans, attacking a demon? Outside of some wildly popular television shows, that was unheard of. There had to have been a mistake.
Excerpted from HOTTER THAN HELL by JACKIE KESSLER Copyright © 2008 by Jackie Kessler. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Meet the Author
Jackie Kessler lives with her family in Upstate New York, with her husband, two sons, two cats, and 9,000 comic books.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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This is my favorite in the Hell on Earth series. It's not all hearts and flowers but has a nice mischievous edge to it. Daun gets the lead and he is so hot! Jezzie appears a couple times but this book was all about Daun. Daun's world gets shaken-up when the King of Lust gives him an impossible assignment. The stakes are high and failure is not an option. He has to convince someone slated for heaven to commit a sin. I loved how Jackie included some alternative-history. It gave the book a bit of depth. This book is not about guy gets the girl in the end. The ending is totally unpredictable but I loved it. I really hope we see more of Daun in the near future. My favorite authors and books are Kim Harrison-Rachel Morgan series, Jenna Black-Morgan Kingsley series what an innovative concept, Ilona Andrews- Kate Daniels series this character is tough tough tough, Caitlin Kittredge- love her Noctune City series, Rachel Caine- Weather Warden series, Larissa Ione- Demonica series, Richelle Mead- Georgina Kinkaid series and Dark Swan Series, Audra and Stella Price- Eververse series, Yasmine Galenorn- Sisters of the Moon series, Vicki Pettersson- Zodiac series T.A. Pratt- Marla Mason series Mark Henry- Happy Hour of the Damned
I hate it when a book is written by an author that writes romances gets placed in the romance section and is not a romance. If u want a book that the man love woman woman love man everyone LIVES happy ever after, THIS IS NOT FOR YOU!! Jump to the back before u buy it. Interesting read but not what i wanted.
Daun the Incubus is superb at seducing evil women they cannot help but sleep with him and lose their soul that he brings to the King of Lust in Hell. However, he is stunned by his former Succubus Jezebel leaving Hell and seduction behind her for an appalling wretched human (see HELLS BELLES and THE ROAD TO HELL). Jezebel demands her former Incubus Daun stay away from her and her Paul. Feeling like a dog in heat, Daun obsesses with lust for his Jezebel. ---- The King of Lust assigns Daun with bringing the soul of Virginia Reed to Hell, if he succeeds, which the literally cocky Daun knows is a foregone conclusion, he will become The First Principal of Lust, second in line to the Lust monarch. However when Daun sees his victim, he is shocked. She is Jezebel¿s doppelganger and worse heaven bound as she is a kind hearted innocent who deserves to go on that path. Still Daun tries to charm her though to his consternation for the first time he meets failure. Virginia wants him, but she refuses her need as she knows men leave and she cannot deal with Daun leaving so why start. ---- With demons exposing him while trying to kill Daun and his victim thwarting him, fans will enjoy this amusing third erotic member from hell¿s struggle with love and job security. Daun goes from demon war to demon lust as he has met his match in pure Virginia (right name for this woman). The story line is lighthearted and thin, but so much fun from start to finish as Daun has to choose between earthly mortal love and hellish royal rule. ---- Harriet Klausner