Forest of Demons in the first book in the Sleeping God series by Debbie Cassidy.
The author says the book was inspired by her father's love of Hindu mythology and I found the story very interesting. Priya is a young woman, living with her parents and a little old by the standards of her village to be unmarried. The reason she is unmarried is because she is in love with her friend who is engaged to her other friend. Demons live in the forest all around the village and occasionally, one of the inhabitants is killed by them. This is what happens to Priya's friend who is engaged to marry the man Priya loves.
Meanwhile, the blacksmith Ravi looks out for Priya also and wants to marry her. The story is entertaining and the characters introduced are interesting, each with their own secrets that are discovered as the book proceeds.
Then the book suddenly switches to another culture and lead character, Aryan, a warrior in a militarized city. Again, the myths told and the customs of the new city are interesting though for most of this part of the story, I didn't understand the connection with the first part of the book. Eventually, the stories mesh and some of the background is made clear.
Forest of Demons is good story-telling. I would have liked something up front that hinted at the divergent stories; it was disconcerting to suddenly switch. I also am a person who is not fond of cliffhangers, though I deal with them better if I know upfront. While the paperback apparently indicates this is Book 1, I couldn't tell from the ebook edition until I reached the end and saw the author's note about Book 2. However, this is my own personal quirk and it probably won't bother most people.
I will read the next book because the story is good and the culture and mythology engrossing.
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