This book first hit me with that bad boy on the cover, and then with the second chance at love theme that seems to be my fascination in romance latelyThis book first hit me with that bad boy on the cover, and then with the second chance at love theme that seems to be my fascination in romance lately. I’m beginning to think I like a challenge when it comes to these books, and what better challenge than a man and a woman who loved and lost a common person? For Evan, it was his wife, the mother of his son, and for Charlie, it was her best friend, her sister from another mister, so to speak.
Since I somehow like the angst these kind of stories bring into my life, I liked the beginning of this book, with our introduction to Charlie and Evan, and their memories involving Rae, Evan’s late wife. It was particularly Charlie to helped bring the emotion through those flashbacks, and in those scenes I was affected. I liked-and you can believe I use that term loosely here- that Rae was a common loss between Evan and Charlie, and that they both missed her and connected over her memory. It must be very difficult experiencing that kind of pain and I felt it. By the time we meet with Evan and Charlie, it’s already been years since Rae is gone, so we know it only makes sense for two people who’ve known each other for so long, and who’ve enjoyed each other’s company, to get together. The two of them had a somewhat of a friendship going on for the years after their loss, Evan even had an endearing nickname for Charlie, but I felt like I personally could’ve used more time to delve into their years long friendship and camaraderie. Perhaps a few more flashbacks to those times after Evan’s wife’s death, more moments shared by the two of them to bond them the way they seemed to be by the time we meet with them. And after things started to heat up, they were hot, they made me go a little crazy and start considering stalking tattoo parlors, but there was a back and forth thing going on especially on Charlie’s side that crippled the story just a tad for me. I imagine her situation to be a tough one to be in, falling in love with your best friend’s widow, and I was okay with her inner dilemma over her guilt for that very situation and her own undeniable feelings for the man she was slowly coming to love, but I could do well without her self doubt for as long as I did. She had a strength in her that not only had her move on from a bad relationship, but also from the loss of her friend, and support Evan and his as well. I thought that strength seemed to falter a bit with these parts where she doubted so much, over and over.
I know I talked more Charlie than Evan, but that’s because I felt like she was the one who made the biggest progress, rather than Evan who seemed to properly mourn his wife and move on together with his son. He was more open and ready for the relationship than Charlie was from the beginning. He was what you could expect from the story, a sexy artistic man who had a teasing and caring side that came from being a family man. Well, maybe not your one hundred percent regular family man, but his own tweaked version of it. And he was creative too, what this bad boy could do with his paint. Yep, you’re going to have to read it to know what I’m talking about.
I gotta say, I was very intrigued by the side characters, and possibly future couples, too. I see more challenges awaiting in the upcoming books which I’m looking forward to. Give me couples who have to fight to get what they want, and let me watch them struggle. Evil reader here, I know, but hey, I made my peace with that.
A nice start to a new series, where bad boys get their good girls, and good girls get their happy endings....more
I’ve been waiting for this book for a long time. Ever since his first appearance, Dmitri both intrigued and seduced me with his no nonsense characterI’ve been waiting for this book for a long time. Ever since his first appearance, Dmitri both intrigued and seduced me with his no nonsense character and dark and silent demeanor. Over the years I’ve come to realize, if done right, these are the characters that are most explosive in their own books. Dmitri? Wait, is there more explosive than most explosive? Because he was that. I skimmed through the first half of the book without even realizing, and stopped only when my eyes wouldn’t open any more or I found myself reading the same sentences over and over. I simply didn’t want to lose one moment of Dmitri and Gwen’s experience.
Those who are familiar with this series will know that these guys and gals are reapers. Working for Fate, they capture the souls of the departed and lead them on to the next leg of their journey. Those who haven’t read though, please do so starting from the first book so you don’t miss the great previous reading experience. When summarizing like this, it all sounds like drama unfolding between reapers and their human charges, but it’s far from that. They have to battle some supernatural creatures and other miscreants as well. And let’s not forget about the romance. They have to battle evil, reap souls, try to stay in one piece and find and keep their one and only after all.
There aren’t enough words to describe how I felt for Dmitri. So far, he was tough, cold, completely immersed in the work he had to do in order to redeem his soul, and working alone while doing it. There isn’t much to tell about who he was as a reaper, since it was all pretty straightforward. But who he used to be, and who he became when he was around Gwen is another matter, and most definitely worth the read. When he was with Gwen, he was surly only a little, but mostly he let us see the man he pushed back inside. And what a man. Not only was he passionate and caring, but the hurt he bottled up inside really tore at my heart. The way he loved Gwen and warred with the shadow of both their pasts played a good long melody with my heartstrings I tell you. And Gwen. A tortured soul through and through, she was more open than Dmitri. We discovered more about her before Dmitri could finally open up, and seeing the emotional woman inside the kickass heroine really made me love her all the more. When it came to no nonsense, she was the same as Dmitri, and coming from the opposite sides of the same past made their connection even stronger. Plus, the way they became reapers, call me weird but, I thought was romantic as hell. Yeah, I have a twisted idea of romance. There are a lot more I want to talk about these two but there’s no way I can do that without spoiling this story and I can’t be that cruel to you guys.
But I can talk a bit more about the plot. As much as I love a good romance-and Dmitri and Gwen give us that- there’s a good amount of action in there too. This book was also a turning point for the plotline, one I can’t wait to see resolve. I’m just glad to know there are more reapers to go around whose stories I can still anxiously await, and believe me when I say I do. I so do.
A top notch addition to Lori Sjoberg’s Grave series that I recommend to everyone who wishes for a fresh look at the concept of death, and who would love to try something new in paranormal romance. I know I’m not supposed to be shallow, but I can’t help but point out the covers too. Would you look at them? Aren’t they so pretty sexy that you wish you were the model?...more
It’s been a long time since I was this riveted by a story. And not just any story, but a mystery thriller involving an FBI agent who tries to do the rIt’s been a long time since I was this riveted by a story. And not just any story, but a mystery thriller involving an FBI agent who tries to do the right thing, and a female serial killer who is his to catch. Sounds vague and too general I know, but once you start the story, believe me, you get sucked right in. What drew me to this book was the author. Although I’ve only read one book by her so far-and that was a ghost story- it affected me. It kept me up at night just like this one did, it scared me and made me think of it long after I’ve finished it. And that’s how I picked this one up.
This was a good, solid, captivating story. It is told in both the FBI agent Matthew Roarke’s and the female killer’s points of view, and different conjugations are used to tell their stories. While Roarke speaks in the commonly used third person past tense, the female killer-I’m referring to her this way for a reason- has a more urgent voice-at least that’s how it felt like to me- where she speaks in present tense.
The characters come off the pages. You start reading and there they are, in front of you while you read their story unfold. From the moment they both first appear, you get a sense they’ll have big things coming for them, either good or bad is unclear. But you know it’ll be big, and explosive, and it’ll probably change their lives. I liked them both. Roarke was the voice of reason and the female killer was a mystery. But as the story unfolded, I got different sides, different dimensions to both of them. They were faulty, broken in their own ways, wrong on so many levels but also right in so many more. Whether that makes any sense, I have no idea, but once you start reading, I have no doubt you’ll understand what I’m talking about. The two of them, and the little boy and his father who get included in the story later on, Roarke’s man Epps-who happens to have a way about him- his whole team, they are all connected in such a way that I can’t talk about them separately. Everything’s connected. Everything’s a mystery, everything is ugly, but all is also beautiful.
Alexandra Sokoloff has a way with her when telling a story. It becomes an engaging piece of work that you can easily visualize in your head, and then you become one with the characters but also a spectator holding your breath. It’s most certainly a worthwhile experience for a reader.
I recommend this book strongly. To those who love a good thriller, those who love compelling characters, a solid plotline, a mystery filled backdrop and to those who don’t mind being disconnected with the world around them for the period of time it takes for them to finish it....more