A young police detective named Kara Gillian is learning the ropes of her new job, a homicide detective. Her first case, the murders of a serial killer called "The Symbol Man" due to the symbols he leaves on his victims’ bodies. The reason she is given the case is due to the fact that in her preparation to while she waited for a case she read and reread the Symbol Man case. During all of this she fights a demon she didn't summon, the attraction she feels for an FBI agent, and the disgust of the Chief of the entire department.
The beginning of this was a little tedious and long, all describing one scene in which Kara is summoning a demon, and an intruder breaks into her house. I will admit by writing this I am not giving anything away, so don't worry about spoilers because it isn't one. Throughout the novel Kara has lots of moments where she is supposed to be summoning a demon, or thinking about summoning a demon, or dreaming about demons, or being hurt by demons, but there is not much of a backstory into how she knows all of this except her aunt is a summoner as well. I wanted more backstory, how she started, what happened to her parents, why she was living with her aunts, why she didn't have many friends growing up, and how she went from being on the police force for seven years to becoming a homicide detective?
The rest of the book drifted from one killing to the next, with a few people understanding and knowing what Kara is, and what the "arcane" is. Which frankly annoyed me because the "arcane" was not really described for the rest of us, and a writer can describe things in several different ways. Another thing that annoyed me was, why would a brand new homicide detective be given a cold case once a new body turns up, even if she has read through all of the files available more recently than anyone else in the department? It wasn't believable.
Now, I didn't hate the book, I felt it was a little too back and forth, a little too focused on the bodies being found and how often they were, and the demons that weren't really involved in the story. The ending was a little abrupt, and the bad guy seemed a little far-fetched, but I feel that some of the writing was solid. It just didn't keep me interested. It also didn't make me care who was the killer, plus it didn't give me a reason to care about the people who were being killed.
I probably won't read the next in this series, as I thought the White Trash Zombie series was better, but I don't think I will read any more of those novels either. Sometimes, after you read a series for even a few books you get tired of the characters doing the same things over and over. This is the reason I've stopped reading the Alex Cross series by James Patterson, the character is no longer growing.