Read Devil's Punch Online

Authors: Ann Aguirre

Devil's Punch

BOOK: Devil's Punch
6.03Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Praise for the Novels
of Ann Aguirre

Shady Lady

“Aguirre has a gift for creating strong characters who keep her readers coming back for more.”

Publishers Weekly

“There is so much good stuff packed into this book. Surprise character transformations, rich world building, gorgeous writing, killer action scenes and hot romance…Urban fantasy fans will want to get drunk on this series.…[It] just keeps getting better.”

—All Things Urban Fantasy

“You'll be hooked from the very first sentence! This Corine Solomon novel is consistently awesome, from the first page to the very last. Not only is the plot riveting and relentless—the characters show true growth and development. Aguirre fashions an ending that is satisfying, while leaving readers wanting more.”

Romantic Times
(top pick)

“Kudos to [Ann] Aguirre for crafting one of the best paranormal series that I have had the pleasure of reading.”

—Night Owl Reviews

“A fabulous action-packed thriller that hooks grateful (except for the lack of sleep) subgenre fans from the moment Kel rushes into Corine's store, and never slows down until the final confrontation with the Montoya mob of hit men and magical mobsters.”

—Genre Go Round Reviews

Hell Fire

“Riveting.…Full of well-drawn characters, a nearly tangible setting, and the threat of death around every corner, this spine-chilling paranormal mystery is sure to keep readers turning pages—and glancing over their shoulders.”

Publishers Weekly
(starred review)

“A well-paced plot with a satisfying amount of suspense. Aguirre mixes the supernatural with real-life details and makes this well-crafted story feel authentic.”

Romantic Times

“Fans of the first book, never fear; this is a good, solid follow-up that left me hungry for more.”

—Calico Reaction

Hell Fire
is a completely sensory experience that would be half as immersive in the hands of a lesser writer.”

—All Things Urban Fantasy

“Sets a new bar for Ann Aguirre.”

—Fantasy Literature

Hell Fire
has a searing triangle romance, breathtaking paranormal elements, intimate adventure, mature point of view, and solid writing craft.”


Blue Diablo

“Ann Aguirre proves herself yet again in this gritty, steamy, and altogether wonderful urban fantasy. Outstanding and delicious. I can't wait to see what she comes up with next.”

New York Times
bestselling author Patricia Briggs

“An authentic Southwestern-flavored feast, filled with magic, revenge, and romance, spiced with memorable characters and page-turning action.
¡Muy caliente!

New York Times
bestselling author Rachel Caine

“Corine has a great narrative voice—snappy and full of interesting observations on everything around her.…[
Blue Diablo
is] fast-paced and entertaining.”

—Charles de Lint,
The Magazine of
Fantasy & Science Fiction

“The fast and furious pace combined with interesting characters, powerful antagonists, and the promise of romance make for a strong first entry in the series.”

—Monsters and Critics

“Ms. Aguirre plunges readers into a fast-paced tale where her human characters are enhanced by their extraordinary gifts.
Blue Diablo
delivers a strong start to the series with a well-defined heroine, intriguing paranormal elements, and an emotion-filled romance.”

—Darque Reviews

“Rising star Aguirre moves from outer space to the Southwest in this new first-person series. With murder, magic, and romance, this is an enticingly dangerous journey. Don't miss out!”

Romantic Times

“The first Corine Solomon urban detective fantasy is a great tale filled with magic, paranormal powers, demons, and spirits bound to the necro. The heat between the lead couple is palpable.…This is an enthralling romantic urban fantasy.”

Midwest Book Review

Also by Ann Aguirre

Blue Diablo
Hell Fire
Shady Lady





Published by New American Library, a division of

Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 375 Hudson Street,

New York, New York 10014, USA

Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto,

Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada (a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)

Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

Penguin Ireland, 25 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin 2,

Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)

Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124,

Australia (a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty. Ltd.)

Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd., 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park,

New Delhi - 110 017, India

Penguin Group (NZ), 67 Apollo Drive, Rosedale, Auckland 0632,

New Zealand (a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.)

Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue,

Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196, South Africa

Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices:

80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

First published by Roc, an imprint of New American Library,

a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

First Printing, April 2012
10    9    8    7    6    5    4    3    2    1

Copyright © Ann Aguirre, 2012

All rights reserved

ISBN: 978-1-101-57995-4


Printed in the United States of America

Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.


This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

The recipes contained in this book are to be followed exactly as written. The publisher is not responsible for your specific health or allergy needs that may require medical supervision. The publisher is not responsible for any adverse reactions to the recipes contained in this book.

The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party Web sites or their content.

If you purchased this book without a cover you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as “unsold and destroyed” to the publisher and neither the author nor the publisher has received any payment for this “stripped book.”

The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions, and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrighted materials. Your support of the author's rights is appreciated.

For Jen, who saw the beauty in the bones


Thanks to Laura Bradford, my shiny agent, who never tells me an idea is terrible. I also doff my hat to Anne Sowards, Kat Sherbo, and the Penguin team. (I don't actually wear hats, but it's an awesome image, right? Thought so.)

Jen, Bree, Lauren…and the PoP loop, of course. You're my go-to crew. You never let me down. *fist bump*

Next, there's my family. I love you guys so much. Thanks for everything. I feel like there are no words, which sucks, considering what I do for a living. Just know that every pot of veggie chili is chock-full of love. And beans.

Thumbs up to my fabulous proofreaders, Fedora Chen and Katy Sprinkel, and to my copy editor, Jan McInroy, who a did a terrific job on this book.

Finally, I thank caffeine, liquor, and chocolate—without which none of this would be possible.

And as always, I offer utmost appreciation to my readers. Y'all rock. Please keep writing; that's
[email protected]
. I love hearing from you.

Table of Contents

New Beginnings

Witchy Business

Bad News Travels Fast

Sweet Lethe

The Descent

Here There Be Demons

Maelstrom of Doom

The Deadliest Desire

Chasm of Despair

Balls to the Wall

Sweetness and Light

Dark City

Burn It Down

I'm Not Quite Dead Yet

Rock Steady

Club Hell

Hungry Like the Wolf

The Demon Queen

Best-Laid Plans

Death Match

No Mercy

Make It Quick

No Way Back

True Justice

The Court Convenes

The Spell of the Ball

Kiss Me Like You Mean It

All In

The Running Game

Pretty, Pretty Pain

My Sweetest Downfall

Exit, Stage Death

Collateral Damage

The Endless Unknown

Demon Castes

Author's Note

About the Author


New Beginnings

I carried the last of Chance's boxes up to the flat.

Mexico agreed with my ex, physically speaking. The constant sun was similar to Florida, though the weather was milder and more temperate in the mountains, the humidity lower, and so his skin glowed golden, a fine contrast to his inky hair. His features were sharp, feline, but sculpted in a way that you could stare for hours and never tire of marveling at the cut of his cheekbones or the curve of his mouth.

Looking at his impossible beauty, I was reminded again that he wasn't human. He didn't sweat or grow facial hair. Once I'd written that off as a unique genetic boon, but it was unquestionably more. While his mother, Min, was human, I was positive his father had been something else. I had no idea what.

Smiling at me, Chance was confident again, and I'd always loved that about him. Generally speaking, he didn't indulge in long moments of self-doubt. He brushed past me on the stairs, carrying a carton of linens; he smelled of lemon, carambola, and rosewood, top notes from his cologne, Versace Man Eau Fraîche. Less familiar than the Burberry he'd once sworn by, but I didn't smell of frangipani anymore either. By tacit agreement, we'd decided on a fresh start all the way.

BOOK: Devil's Punch
6.03Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Other books

The World at War by Richard Holmes
The Flame of Wrath by Christene Knight
A Canopy of Rose Leaves by Isobel Chace
B00724AICC EBOK by Gallant, A. J.
Winds of Fortune by Radclyffe
Fire in the Steppe by Henryk Sienkiewicz, Jeremiah Curtin
Open Country by Warner, Kaki