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Keys to the Coven

(Hellfire Universe #1)

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  240 ratings  ·  45 reviews
Welcome to "Keys to the Coven" a witty, tightly plotted, sometimes very dark, (adult) urban fantasy/romance set in an original universe where karma is power, sex is karma, and it's not who you know but whose soul you own that matters.

To become a demon, you must die in complete and utter despair. Three hundred years ago, Max passed that test with flying colors and joined th
Paperback, 362 pages
Published November 26th 2012 by Createspace Independent Publishing Platform (first published June 21st 2012)
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Average rating 3.54  · 
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 ·  240 ratings  ·  45 reviews

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Start your review of Keys to the Coven (Hellfire Universe, #1)
First, I HAVE to say, I LOVE the concept! I even sort of liked Max, he had his own 'charm'- Felicity had a tough time of it growing up, but, it seemed she whined about her good intentions being misunderstood by overly self-absorbed siblings just a little too much.

I don't care about perfect editing, I can usually read through any issues, but the story itself rambled left and right, often being rather confusing and leaving too many half explanations. I'm not sure if it was me, because there are ma
Amanda Lyn
[Copy of KEYS TO THE COVEN provided by author in exchange for an honest review.]

Demons, witches, the laws governing hell, and– bowling alleys?

Here comes the first gem from Vicky Loebel’s complicated universe, “where karma is power, sex is karma, and it’s not who you know but whose soul you own that matters.”

Now, I have to say that I love reading outside of my genre and taking chances on books I would normally not pick up on my own. Vicky is in the same RWA chapter I am and when I heard about her
Oct 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Keys to the Coven mixes dark, almost absurd, humor with hot romance and a battle between good and evil to create a surprisingly tense and thrilling novel. Felicity's mom has died and she must go back to her hometown in Arizona to sort out the estate so she can get money to finish putting her sister through college. The problem is, Felicity's mom was a witch who controlled a coven housed in a bowling alley. Felicity's mom was also the consort to a powerful demon called Roxashael. Max is a demon c ...more
Gail Gibbs
Apr 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: paranormal romance readers
Shelves: fantasy, humor
In a world where the handsome demon/hero recharges his powers through sex, you know it's going to be a sexy read. What you don't know is that Keys to the Coven is also hilarious, with wisecracking dialog and clever characters. Some patience is required, since the reader learns the complex demon-world rules along with the human heroine, but eventually all is explained. After that, hang on for a wild and funny ride.
Note - my copy was free, received during the book-launching giveaway.
My original Keys to the Coven audiobook review and many others can be found at Audiobook Reviewer.

Keys to the Coven by Vicky Loebel is an urban fantasy novel with a touch of romance set in current time. Max is a demon. Hundreds of years ago when he died in utter despair, instead of his soul leaving in the beyond, he became the demon that he is today. As a demon, his job is to intervene in magical cases to prevent situations from breaking the rules of the underworld. His latest task is to break a
Trish R.
Jun 19, 2016 rated it it was ok

At 23% I have no idea WTH is going on. The first stupid thing to happen is when Felicity was on the phone and KNEW the phone wires were causing a fire in the wall and just didn’t care. Then when Max jumped through the window to put out the fire, and Felicity was still mad at her fiancé, she felt the need to slap Max across the face then tried again 2 more times. Huh? Then Max goes to Mr. Wu’s shop so he can listen to the will being read, a shop labeled “Mr. Wu’s Fine Advices.” Really? And,
Kym Grosso
Aug 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Felicity's mother dies leaving her to settle the estate. Max, a demon, is looking for an amulet that belonged to Felicity's mother; one that he needs to give to his boss. Felicity is unwillingly drawn into a world she never believed in filled with witches and demons. She finds out she is a witch who is wanted by a very bad arch demon. This is a complicated and involved plot but very interesting with lots of action and suspense. During the adventure, Felicity and Max fall in love. :-) But it isn' ...more
Merissa (Archaeolibrarian)
This book was ......... interesting. Trust me when I say there is a whole lot going on most of the time so if you skim you will miss. But at other times it just seems to be main female complaining/whining about all the sacrifices she has made for her family. Her fiance gets a couple of sentences even though she's supposedly sacrificed for him too.

It takes a while to get used to the play of 'karma' and how it would affect the demons/demis etc but once you get that sorted, you roughly know what's
Sep 18, 2014 rated it liked it
I won a copy through the Goodreads: First Reads program.

Pros: Good story, great (and witty) dialogue, plenty of the sexy times for those who want that. Interesting enough that I'd be willing to read the next in the series.

Both pro and con: Characters. While the female characters are mostly cardboard cut-outs, there are a few that do have three dimensions. I'm still a bit meh about most of them, but at least a few of them do have some personality. The men, on the other hand, are very well-written
Deb Smith
Dec 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A resounding 5 plus for this quirky, love story.

As a new reader I was not sure what to expect. But I was gloriously surprised that it was just different enough to peak, then maintain my interest. If you enjoy a bit of humor with a story with twists and turns right up to the end then this is for you. I kept trying to see where the story was going but could not. The characters, a demon named Max and a young woman named Felicity meet when Felicity comes home to take care of her mother's estate. Fro
Beth ~~Just One More Chapter I Swear~~
I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
That being said, OH BOY is she going to be ticked about that!! This book was a HUGE disappointment! It not only was incredibly confusing but disjointed and lackluster to boot. I had no affinity to ANY of the characters and the writing was spectacularly Meh. I tried to read it 3 times and all three times my attention repeatedly drifted elsewhere (what should I make for dinner? Did I put out an outfit for my daughter to wear tomorrow
Jul 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Keys to the Coven, author Vicky Loebel’s debut novel, is a fast paced urban fantasy featuring a hot romance between Max and Felicity. The dialogue is seamlessly written, and Ms. Loebel shows great skill in world building. I enjoyed every word of this book and anxiously await another from this new talent.
Aug 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Could not put it down!
Lauren Jones
Oct 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Learning that you are actually a witch can be frightening, but also empowering. What if you learned that your whole family, generations before you, were all witches and sorcerers? It would be very difficult to cope with because that would mean that your life would change forever, possibly even putting your life in danger. Loebel has a peculiar, but highly compelling paranormal story that will leave readers entertained.

Felicity meets Max after having it out about Greg, her lying cheating no good
Tango With Text
Oct 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
Perhaps a little complicated, the plot nevertheless moves from A to B culminating in an oddly satisfying ending.  Ms Loebel has devised a unique magic system for the world she has built around modern day America.  The use of karma is intriguing and once the reader understands and buys into this, the story is a joy to read.

The characters are interesting and quirky and the humor is enjoyable.  I found myself egging Felicity on during her quest to understand the new world she finds herself in.

Jan 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I freely chose to review this book on my own and all I can say is WOW WHAT A FANTASTIC BOOK! I was so captured by the determination with Felicity and Max to stop Roxashael, a Arch Demon who's a wants his charm back, but a Max had vowed to felicity's mother a favor and his boss wanted him find it and bring it to her to be destroyed. Felicity only thought of Max as a demon with sex always on his mind. And A HUGE explosion as forces collide! ...more
Mar 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Looking at the other reviews, I am struck -- again -- by how people can see the same book differently.

I LOVED IT. It never got predictable for me. And it was one hell of a fun ride. Loved the ending.

This is my first book from this author and it's on Kindle Unlimited at the moment -- I am definitely going to seek out other book by Vicky Loebel.
Todd Oliver
Mar 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Have you ever read a book and wished it were true? Well, parts of it anyways lol. The life of a demon doesn't sound too bad in this book! Lots of sex and sex gets you karma. Wow! Excellent erotic love story with witches and demons. Both narrators did an excellent job. I love how it switches perspective from Max to Felicity. Definitely looking forward to book 2! ...more
Flint Reviews
Jun 09, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Warning! This book will cause you to lose sleep.
Jun 09, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An arsenal of attack drones in different sizes, powered by gamers.
Keys to the Coven by Vicky Loebel Set in Arizona, this adult urban fantasy is full of surprises! Felicity, a dog trainer, recently lost her mother and is going through a messy divorce. She’s the oldest of three children, having mostly raised her baby-sister Hannah, who is now in college. Her brother, Alton, isn’t so grateful of her efforts to ‘mother’ her younger siblings. Then in steps Max, a demon on assignment to recover a magical relic, the Minsk Homunculus. It’s been in Felicity’s family fo ...more
◌⑅⃝●♡⋆♡ "The Girl's Guide to Demons" ♡⋆♡●⑅◌

That was amazing!! (。’▽’。)♡ I must say, at the end I was impressed with this Audiobook. Paranormal Demonic Romance with lots of humor, suspense thought, twists and turns, and dark moments. This book was deliciously written. I loved how it switched characters from Felicity to Max. The non-predictable plot, shocking at times, complicated, intriguing, and interesting bewitching characters. With all the crazy turns, I was grossly engaged in the story. Glori
Oct 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Keys to the Coven: Demonic Intervention Series is a very entertaining story about Demon, Karma,Witchcraft, and Corruption. Max is a demon, hired to retrieve the Minsk Homunculus for destruction. The Minsk Homunculus belonged to Rose Woodsen. After her passing, the Minsk Homunculus will seek Felicity Woodsen as the next demon consort for Roxashael, an arch-demon.

Felicity has never trusted her mother after being molested by Roxashael when she was five. She has denied herself of being a witch and n
Sep 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: calibre-library, 2016
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This book showed me a completely new way to look at demons and demon hierarchy. In a crowded genre of paranormal romance, this one really stood out as a unique creation.

Max is a demon, but he's not really a bad demon. He collects karma, which fuels all sorts of things, and eventually pushes you up the ranks from demon, to arch-demon, to angel. It seems a little strange, but is explained beautifully. I was immediately rooting for the
This book, ugh. It just left me feeling underwhelmed, and while I was reading I kept wanting to speed it up and kept losing my focus. The audiobook was great – both narrators are good voice actors and are enjoyable to listen to. I actually couldn’t speed it up because the voices were already at a comfortably fast pace (which is how I like it). I also liked the “A Girl’s Guide to Demons” intros for each chapter – clever and fun. Another pro: I liked all the hellfire and dealing in Karma as curren ...more
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was given a FREE copy of this book in exchange for a HONEST review.
When i get a book like this i prefer not to read blurbs and like to go in completely blind. Just looking at the cover i thought hmmm this is going to be a cute book. BOY WAS I WRONG!
This book had me giggling at the beginning. I want his jacket by the way.
The world of demons i guess kinda like heaven and hell works on karma. It is a bit confusing so i had to backtrack a few times. SO READ IT CAREFULLY.
I loved the characters. The
Aug 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I first read this book back in 2012 and just now finished the audio version. The work contains love, magic, demons and the eternal quest for power. I enjoyed reading it but listening elevated the experience greatly. The narrator brought each character to life in a way that my minds eye hadn't while reading. Listening also allowed me to pick up on little things that I had missed before. If you have already read the book, don't hesitate to give the audio version a listen too, you won't regret it. ...more
Oct 05, 2015 rated it really liked it

Good story. Interesting concept for a story. The story is exciting, original,fast-paced, compelling, gripping, addictive, unique and totally unexpected. The dialog is smart, well written and flows smoothly. The characters are fascinating, captivating, quirky, engaging and well developed. I couldn't stop listening to it.


I found the narrator to be very good at reading the book as well as giving the characters life and voice. A well as attitude and humor. This m
Dec 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
** I was given a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review **

I was hooked in the first hour and did not want to put this down! I like a good witch book, and this had witches and plus plus!! Felicity goes to settle her mothers estate after her passing, not knowing there was more then meets the eye going on there. Turns out her mother had deep dealings with the underworld and Felicity's soul has been sold to a demon names Max is not a bad guy, and as she gets to
Dec 07, 2016 rated it liked it
Maybe 3.5 stars... Parts of this book worked for me, and parts didn't.

I got bogged down early on in this book, and set it aside for quite a while, and when I picked it up again it made as much sense as it ever did. There's a lot of dealing by a lot of people, and the clashing motivations make the plot twisty and complicated. It's also very dark and adult, with a whole heap of people being forced into bad situations because they have no choice. Somehow all the deviousness and backstabbing didn't
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Vicky Loebel began her professional life as a systems programmer for NASA and moved through successively more challenging careers before settling in as a writer of tightly-plotted, romantic fiction. She lives on the slopes of Mt. Lemmon, AZ with her sister, three dogs, a rotating assortment of children, and a husband who has the patience of a saint.

Other books in the series

Hellfire Universe (2 books)
  • Speakeasy Dead (Hellfire Universe, #2)

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“It was all very well to drag humans to Hell once in a while, but any demon who made a habit of it had to expect to bear part of the cost.” 0 likes
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