If you haven’t read book one you should probably stop reading now. There are spoilers in all aspects of this review for book one and I can’t help that as the twist in book one is the main story for book two. Also, if you are a person of devout Catholic faith, you should probably know that this book contains a storyline which plays with traditional scripture. If neither of these things bother you, this book is a definite winner.
Hope feels that her life is over. For years, she has searched for her missing sister Charity, only to have all her dreams of a reunion shattered by the discovery of her belongings abandoned in a stream. Devastated, she does the only thing she thinks she can do; she tries to kill herself. During her last moment she calls out to the darkness and the darkness answers in the form of Sammy Devine. Sammy Devine, AKA the Devil, gives her the news she’s been waiting to hear; her sister is alive and well. Then he gives her the bad news; she’s nearly succeeded in trying to kill herself. Forcing her to do his bidding in return for a chance to reunite with her sister, he then thrusts her into the path of his brother Gabriel (the Archangel) in the hopes of teaching his brother that temptation is often very hard to resist.
Gabriel has tried to save his brother more times than he can count. Ever faithful to his maker, he scours the world to eradicate evil and when he sees the Evil surrounding Hope, he tries his hardest to intervene. She is the purest soul he has ever found and she tempts him as the man, not just as the Angel. He knows it’s forbidden to involve himself with a human, knows that he could be grounded for it, and never has he had to struggle so hard to stick to the rules. When he finds out what she has been asked to do, he realises that protecting her will be the hardest thing he has had to do. The question is, can he do it and protect his heart?
Sammy Devine has been bitter for what seems like an eternity. Banished from Heaven for falling for a woman, he has reigned over the Damned ever since. Then appeared a surprise on his doorstep, a son that he never knew that he had sired. Cain is a child running round Hell with all his creatures, playing with his heart and making him question his character. Will the son teach the Father a thing or two about himself? And will the son survive until the end of the book with his complete disregard for his own personal safety?
This is the second alt-religion book I’ve read this year and I’ve loved them both. I’ve waited for this book ever since I read the first one and it didn’t disappoint. I have to admit, I’ve never read the Nicki Styx novels, and I read the first book for the cover alone (I know, I’m a perv :D). I loved it. Sammy Divine is the reason I read these books as he is the constant in the series. In this book, he is struggling with his new role of Dad to Cain, the rambunctious little tyke J I loved this storyline, loved the humour and emotion behind the whole thing. Sammy has been pretty devoid of emotion ever since his untimely exit from Heaven. When Cain arrives, he doesn’t know what to do with a boy that wants his love and approval. His protective instincts rear up when the boy starts running around the recesses of Hell. Some of the conversations made me laugh out loud; I’ve heard and had similar conversations with kids and putting them into this context lead to some fabulous scenes! I particularly enjoyed when Pandora of the deadly sins fame (AKA Aunt Pandy) arrives to help Sammy shape himself into a father. She was a fricking scream!
The main storyline is that of Gabriel and Hope. They are both such good and pure people and they both have their outlooks on life tested by the events of this tale. Neither of them come out of the book the same but I do believe they came out a lot stronger. Parts of their tale made me tear up and parts made me laugh. When Hope mistakes Gabriel as one of Sammy’s minions and douses him in peppermint I cried with laughter; it was just the most bizarre thing to do! I was torn between wanting their HEA and not because I knew what the implications would be for Gabriel. I liked Gabriel and didn’t want to see him upset. Also, kiss of death for any relationship dontcha think :O I didn’t like either of them at the start of the tale. Hope was a weak person who chose to kill herself rather than continue living without her sister. I didn’t see why she made this decision as she’s been living without her just fine for a few years! Gabriel was an idealist who judged anyone who made decisions that he didn’t agree with. By the end of the book, events had changed them into real people with real outlooks on life. I really did like them.
Overall this was a book that was better than the first. With themes of PNR and UF, it has something for everyone. With laugh out loud moments littered with tense moments and buckets of emotion, this is a series that I recommend for everyone. Loved it. Now when do I get Sammy’s book?