Holzner is back with the fourth installment in the adventures of her Boston-based demon slayer, Victory Vaughn. Part of what makes the Deadtown novels so compelling is how Holzner employs themes of discrimination and fear. Vicky’s determination and stubbornness are alternately her greatest asset and her most dangerous weakness. Holzner generates complications and tension with grace.
Vicky’s demon-slaying business has ground to a halt, as it appears Boston’s demons are disappearing. As Vicky investigates both the disappearances and the theft of an ancient Celtic cauldron, she starts to suspect her cousin Pryce is involved. Vicky had managed to strip Pryce of his demon shadow and abilities — and Pryce will take extreme measures to get those powers back. To stop him, Vicky will have to face extraordinary dangers and the realm of the dead itself. (ACE, Aug., 336 pp., $7.99)