Title: Hell is in the Details
Author: Angela Benedetti
Length: 8,500 words (36 pdf pages)
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: m/m paranormal
Benioth, the Demon of Laziness, is behind on his memos and has just found out he needs to corrupt a soul by midnight to make quota. Luckily the Demon of Sodomy doesn’t mind sharing the fun, and Benioth runs into Andy, who’s still innocent but eager to have someone fix that for him. It sounds like a perfect situation, but somehow things never go right for poor Benioth.
As a rule I enjoy demon and/or angel stories, and I especially enjoy them when they don’t take themselves too seriously. That is definitely the case here. Hell is pretty much like earth. Crappy jobs with bosses who ride you, forgotten deadlines, a loss of the passion for your work, an inbox full of unread e-mails … life can be as dull in Hell as anywhere else, despite all the fun of torture and mayhem. When Benioth’s boss lets him have it for not bringing the Big Boss his quota of souls, he is finally forced out of his apathy and decides that since he only has a few hours, debauching a young man into the ways of gay sex would be perfect. It’s fairly easy and bingo, he’s got his soul for the quota and can not think about it for another decade or two.
It’s a little harder than he plans. He’s a bit confused about things as he hasn’t been topside in decades so he’s a bit out of the know about pop culture, but he keeps persevering. Even though Andy is more than eager, they keep running into interference that makes him wonder if he’s going to be successful before his midnight deadline, and to top it off, he kind of likes Andy. When he finally completes his task with the ever so eager Andy, his boss is furious to find that Benioth has not been reading his e-mails and that gay sex stopped being sin twenty years ago, so his evening’s work was all for naught. There has to be a penalty for that, although whether he’ll find it a punishment or not remains to be seen.
I loved Benioth and Andy. Benioth is kind of apathetic about life and Andy is all youthful exuberance and wide-eyed excitement. The contrast was nice to read and I felt it kind of woke Benny up again. He’d forgotten what that was like, and he wasn’t sure if it was because he was the Demon of Laziness or was it something more. He was really well drawn and his apathy came through loud and clear. What Andy was thinking and feeling was less clear as this is told from Benioth’s point of view, but his enthusiasm for life was evident. The sex had a nice mix of Benioth’s centuries of experience, combined with Andy’s uncertainty and eagerness, sweet and yet steamy too. This is a great light read, perfect as a pick-you-up between more serious fare or just something fun for a quick read before bed or at lunch time.