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Confronting the Demon (The Seven Circles of Hell #1)

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4.37  ·  Rating details ·  59 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
For lovers of Jacqueline Carey, Brent Weeks and Storm Constantine - fantasy with mystery, romance and a paranormal twist.

The powerful wizard, Alloran, lurks in the stinking muck of the back alleys of the city of Ehsan. Posing as a common labourer, he struggles to hide from his lover, his best friend, the authorities – and his past.

But beneath the garbage of the backstreets
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Paperback, 1, 110 pages
Published August 24th 2013 by Ciara Ballintyne
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Satarupa
I got this book from the author, free of cost, in exchange of an honest review from my side.

Firstly I would like to thank Ciara Ballintyne, author of Confronting the Demon for giving me this wonderful opportunity of reading and reviewing this awesome book.

I was really amazed by this book. It's so great and totally a different concept than the love stricken star crossed lovers and their journey which nowadays plague all most all the books in different genres, don't worry this story has a pure lov
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Tonja Drecker
Sep 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story wasn’t quite what I expected; it was better! The first pages surprised me, reminding strongly of THE WAY OF SHADOWS by Brent Weeks (the scenes, setting and story feel). I was immediately drawn in and found myself having to concentrate not to miss a beat in the quickly developing plot.

The world built here is intricate and complex. It has the feeling of a full-fledged novel concentrated as tight as possible into a novella. A little voice in the back of my head wished (during the first
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Shawn Wickersheim
This is a beautifully written, well-crafted, suspenseful fantasy novel. I would love to read more about these characters and the world they inhabit.
Barb Shuler
I came across the author Ciara Ballintyne as I was searching on Goodreads for another author. What did I notice about her first.... that she was Australian. Yes I am that kind of dork. It made me go O.o hell yes! I blame my fiance for that because... just she's an Aussie so I fan girl at that fact. But the title of this novella did catch my attention as well. I mean it has Demon in the title. Demons interest me; for that I happily blame Kim Harrison and the Hollows Series... but I digress.

Before
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Dianne
When a powerful wizard discovers his best friend has betrayed him out of jealousy, he is forced to perform dark magic or lose everyone he has ever cared about as the gates of hell are opened and the world is in danger. When past loves are being brutally and methodically murdered by demons brought forth with the help of his stolen tome of spells, Alloran must overcome his reticence to believe what is before his very eyes to save the woman he truly loves. Will he be strong enough? Will he be in ti ...more
S. Policar
Oct 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

*I received this book from the author via The Finishing Fairies in exchange for an Honest Review*


This had to be the most engaging story I've read this month. The description was alive and the characters vibrant. The storyline had a pulse to it. The reader truly is whisked away into Alloran's world for the brief time it takes to read the story.
Alloran's story is heartbreaking. Accused of horrendous crimes he didn't committed, running for his very life while those he knows and love die all aroun

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Cinta
Sep 24, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This high fantasy novella was well written, and it is easy to see that the author put a lot of care in the wording of the sentences. However, sometimes the feeling I got as a reader is that she was trying too hard to make her words sound like high fantasy. We don't need to pack the pages with lots of difficult and old-fashioned words to make the reader know that the book belongs to the fantasy genre. Do those old-fashioned words hav
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a_tiffyfit
I admit to being a paranormal junkie, so I jumped at the chance to read this short novel when offered an ARC. I'm not usually a short novel person as they rarely leave me satisfied, burning with a bunch of unanswered questions.

This book was not that kind of short novel.

Author Ciara Ballintyne's writing paints a world and characters so vivid that I could picture the streets and alleys, practically smelling the rank, sweet yet foul rotting smell of the body Alloran discovers. The pace is phenome
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Bella Doerres
Sep 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Confronting the Demon
By Ciara Ballintyne


Alloran, a man of mystery, a sorcerer, a controller of demons, and hunted for his life. With such a man you would think he would run and never look back but Alloran is also a man of honor. When it is found out he practices the dark arts and seeks to control demons deaths occur. He runs for his life and hides within plain sight until the messages start. The delivery of bodies of those he was close to opens up his visibility and vulnerability and he finds h
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Rebecca Fyfe
Sep 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Alloran is wrongly accused of a terrible crime and being stalked by a former friend who has been driven insane through the use of dark magic and influenced by jealousy. Can Alloran clear his name, save the woman he loves and keep the city safe? (You'll have to read the book to find out!)

I absolutely loved the book. It is in my favorite genre and the pace is quick. You learn enough about Alloran from the very first page to start rooting for him, and, as the bodies start turning up, the suspense h
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Justin Bog
Sep 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read the kindle version and enjoyed the story and the writing. I do know Ciara so this is not a formal review. . . more of a happy turn of events being able to recommend the book. I don't read many fantasy novels (except for some of the big icons in the field like The Lord of the Rings, most of The Wheel of Time series) so this novella was a delight because it beat every expectation . . . If you like fantasy, you'll enjoy this short novella. It has some gruesome descriptions of the remains lef ...more
Danielle
Sep 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alloran is a wizard on the run. Because of his dark past, when murders start occurring around town, he's the first they blame. Too bad the killer is actually an old friend of Alloran's who has gotten corrupted by dark magic. When he runs into an old flame that is a sword sorceress, chaos and a little heat ensue.

I'm not usually much of an epic fantasy reader, but this one kept me gripped. While it is a short read, you will find yourself completely engrossed until you finish it. Team Alloran all t
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Lynette Jones
Sep 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Magic, love and jealousy

An exceptional wizard who made a mistake. A friend who
takes his place as a wizard who explores new magic. A beautiful woman. This story takes passion and friendship among wizards and weaves a fast paced tale of magic. Well written, fast paced. A different take on traditional magic. An enjoyable read.
Tracy Riva
Oct 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed Confronting the Demon by Ciara Ballintyne. Ballintyne is a masterful storyteller who manages to get you caught up in the book almost instantaneously. Her beleaguered hero, Alloran, is a wizard who has been accused of the heinous crime of calling forth a demon that killed many wizards and sorceresses before it disappeared. Alloran didn’t commit the crime, but he is the natural suspect because quite a long time ago he brought forth a demon while experimenting, that killed his lab ...more
S.L. Saboviec
Oct 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Confronting the Demon is an impressive debut fantasy novella that feels as though it’s part of a larger body of work. It was short but action-packed, and the short story “A Magical Melody” included at the end was a fun bonus. And this from a cynical grump who doesn’t usually like bonus material.

I loved the thoroughness of the world building. The summoned demons, the opulent citadel, and the fleshed out sorcery hinted at more going on beyond the pages of the story. I enjoyed the twists and turns
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Michael
Dec 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You know what I appreciate about Confronting the Demon almost more than anything else? That it is geared toward a mature adult reader. It seems like everything coming out these days in the fantasy genre are YA and well…that is just not my thing so I don’t read them…usually. Sorry (not really). This novella by Ciara Ballintyne had me moving and shaking from page 1 and I was saddened when I had to put it down while reading it so could deal with finals at GVSU.

World building from scratch, especiall
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M. Joseph Murphy
SYNPOSIS
The gates to hell are thrown wide when Alloran is betrayed by his best friend, Ladanyon, and framed for forbidden magic. He is hunted by the guards and the wizards both, tormented by the gruesome murder of his friends and loved ones, and crippled by fear for the living. Now Alloran must face his demons, or damn the woman he loves.

WHAT WORKS
Lots. Worldbuilding is handled perfectly giving the reader a sense of a complex, well-thought-out world. Confronting the Demon creates a world that is
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J.C. Harker
Sep 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to J.C. by: Kriss Morton
I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. My rating is 4.5 stars.

I have to admit, the story pulled me in from the very beginning. The writing was vivid with rich vocabulary and fun dialogue. Alloran undercover as a sculptor faking an accent was brilliant.

Both main characters were interesting and had distinct voices and quirks. I really liked the pace and how the bits of the back story for each of the major characters were delivered. There's a little bit of romanc
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Kim
Sep 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This is my first time reading reading a book by this author, I Will be reading more. Alloran used to live very comfortably inside the Citadel, a place where wizards, sorcerers and other magical entities lived. He's forced to live in the dirtiest place down by the docks because his best friend turned demon and brought a demon into the citadel. Because Alloran made a huge mistake and summoned the first demon imp, they thought it was he who brought this one who killed inside the citadel. Alloran le
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Joseph Picard
Sep 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: High magic lovers
Recommended to Joseph by: Kriss Morton
It's not my kind of book in many ways. It's dripping with magic. Frankly, that turned me off at first. I for one don't write magic often because I find it too easy to toss in a new rule for no reason, and blame magic. But then, I appear to do the same thing with nanites through the Lifehack books. I justify it by means of plausibility, blah blah...

But y'know what, Joe? Suck it up, keep reading.. I had myself convinced that I didn't like it at first. I forced myself onward. Aaaand, the world star
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Rebecca Fyfe
Sep 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alloran is wrongly accused of a terrible crime and being stalked by a former friend who has been driven insane through the use of dark magic and influenced by jealousy. Can Alloran clear his name, save the woman he loves and keep the city safe? (You'll have to read the book to find out!)

I absolutely loved the book. It is in my favorite genre and the pace is quick. You learn enough about Alloran from the very first page to start rooting for him, and, as the bodies start turning up, the suspense h
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Kelsey Jordan
Sep 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have to first say that this is a bit out of my normal reading genre, but I found it very easy to read. There were moments where I felt the author could have cut some things out. In general, the author's attention to detail was admirable. I liked the romantic element between Alloran and Gisayne. Being that my preference is romance, I would have liked it to be more defined, but that's my hang-up and is no fault of the author.
Overall, I was glad for the escape into Ballintyne's well-detailed worl
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Heidi Tieman
Oct 09, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: misc
Here is my honest review in exchange for the ARC I received from the author.

Based on writing prose, I would give it 3.5-4 Stars but storyline is more of a 3. Alloran is a Sorcerer on the run, accused of summoning a demon from the Circles of Hell. Three people know what truly happened that night: Alloran, Gisayne and Ladanyon. Framed by someone he once thought of as a friend, he has been hiding from the Citadel's judgement. Now people from his past are turning up dead with messages he can no lon
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Jacqueline Smith
Oct 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book thoroughly. I'm giving it a four-star rating solely because I wish it had been longer! I am a wordy person and I enjoy getting to know characters and really understanding the background and what is going on in the story, getting involved in the world, etc... Ciara does a fantastic job in this novella, but still, I wanted more... which is never a bad thing!!! Aside from that, I felt sympathy for the protagonist, the Wizard, Alloran, who has been betrayed and framed by his best ...more
Jessica
Oct 09, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was glad for the opportunity to review this book. Its not my normal read so I was unsure but really got into the story once I started. The characters are well written as is the difficult situation that Alloran finds himself in. On the run, betrayed by his best friend out of spite and jealousy and with dead bodies piling up he has to face his situation instead of continuing to hide from it.

The relationship between Alloran and Gisayne felt right and Ciara sure made us hate Ladanyon.
The demons de
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Anita Kearney
Sep 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Of all the things that he is, sorcerer, controller of demons and a man who is being hunted with a dead or alive clause, you would think he would go into hiding and never raise his head again. Alloran is a man who takes honor seriously and it is this honor that keeps him from doing it. He chooses to hide in plain sight and to use this ruse to ferret out the person who is trying to ruin him by destroying those who are close to him. He and his lady love have only a short window of time to uncover t ...more
Teresa Garcia
I was offered the chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review. Since this is in my usual reading genre I very happily applied. I had been hearing good things about the story, so I was excited.

Part of me wishes this book were longer and part of me thinks that the length is about right for the story. I really liked the way that fantasy/magic adventure was combined with mystery. I thought that it brought some fresh air to the mage subgenre. I also felt that description was well used f
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Lucy Pireel
Sep 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all lovers of demons and magic
Confronting the Demon by Ciara Ballintyne
Reviewed by Lucy Pireel

Demons and magic, betrayal and love, and a mystery as the cherry on top. This short story, or is it a novella, was well rounded, but so well written I wanted more when I reached the end.
I rooted for the characters almost from the start. The world and scenes were all very skilled written and had me imagining how it would all look. The Demon, now that was a surprise, and from now on I’ll not be able to eat a certain kind of seafood wi
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Leanne Herrera
Oct 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book a lot. It gave me a side of the paranormal I am not accustomed to reading about. I loved the characters and the way they struggled. I would really love it if this was the first of many novellas, because I would love more of the little bits of the world and life that we experienced through the eyes of the characters. The details and fleshing out of the environment that the author offers us in each scene takes us to the trash filled alleys and the dusty streets that this story ...more
Miranda Wood
Oct 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Accused of a horrible crime, and knowing that his best friend is the one who set him up, Alloran is running for his life by not running at all. Things seem to be going well with his new life, right under the noses of the people searching for him. That is until the people that he knew in the past start turning up dead. The taunting notes left with the bodies make it clear that he will have to stand and fight in order to keep the woman he loves from being next on the list.
With imagination and det
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Ciara Ballintyne was born in 1981 in Sydney, Australia, where she lives with her husband, two daughters, one masochistic cat, and one cat with a god complex. She holds degrees in law and accounting, and has been a practising financial services lawyer since 2004. She is both an idealist and a cynic.

She started reading epic fantasy at the age of nine, when she kidnapped Castle of Wizardry by David E
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More about Ciara Ballintyne

Other books in the series

The Seven Circles of Hell (2 books)
  • Stalking the Demon (The Seven Circles of Hell, #2)