The story picks up not too long after The Demon's Lexicon leaves off; Mae becomes worried about her brother Jamie being targeted by magicians from the Obsidian Circle, so she contacts magician fighting brothers Alan and Nick to come help her pull him away from the evil influence. Along the way, we discover that Nick wants to learn about human emotions and he enlists Mae to help him; Alan, frightened of what his brother is capable of, decides the wiser course might be to betray him; the Goblin Market becomes the scene of many confrontations; and Mae finds herself torn between Alan and Seb, a boy at school. There are no easy choices in The Demon's Covenant.
Rant time: What is up with that cover? Besides the fact that it features a minor character, it's just plain ugly. It makes Sin look like she's in her forties, not to mention those big feet. Whoever okayed that one needs to be pummeled repeatedly.
The rant aside, I was pleasantly surprised that a sequel could maintain the intrigue and depth of the first book. With its devastating wit and action, its relationship issues and the magic, The Demon's Covenant works on so many levels. I loved seeing the relationship between Jamie and Mae, and I loved that Jamie knows who he is and doesn't shy away from it. The world Brennan has created is intricate and compelling, and I'm already on board for book number three. Dark and disturbing at times, there's gore and menacing situations that put everyone in peril but will keep you turning the pages quickly. This one garners a solid 4.75 stars, kept from the full 5 by a couple of chapters that meandered just a bit. Excellent reading!