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A Touch of Crimson by Sylvia Day
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Favorite Quote: “When she was gone, the world was dead to him.”

Adrian Mitchell, a powerful angel, has waited over two hundred years for his lover’s soul to reincarnate. He made the mistake of falling for his enemy’s daughter and pays for it each time she dies. When he finds her soul again in a mortal woman named Lindsey Graham, he knows instinctively that this time around he and she will have to change in order for their love to survive.

Lindsey has always been a little “different” but it isn’t until she meets Adrian does she realize how different she is and how her life is going to change forever. She is implacably drawn to Adrian for reasons unknown to her. When she finally uncovers her past, Lindsey has to make a choice that will either save them or destroy them both.

Sylvia Day’s A Touch Of Crimson, the the first in her Renegade Angels trilogy, brings us a dark convoluted paranormal romance that speaks of love, sacrifice, and redemption. Angels, the Seraphim, are the higher power who track and punish the Fallen- angels who have become vampires. Lycans are bred and forced into involuntary servitude to be used as the angels bodyguards. As we enter into their lives, we find that things are changing on the battlefield. Vampires are bring increasingly unstable, the Lycans are showing signs of mutiny, and angels are beginning to want the forbidden.

Adrian Mitchell is the ultimate alpha. The captain of an elite Special Ops force, he has spent his life making the most difficult decisions and having to live with them. In the beginning you find him cold and focused in a single minded way. When he first realizes Lindsey is his beloved “Shadoe”, he claims her with no regard to her feelings. She will be his and that is it. Yet, as time passes, Lindsey begins to humanize him and he starts to look at his life and the ones around him in a different light.

Lindsey is a nice heroine. She is kind, intelligent, and a worthy mate to an angel. She knows something isn’t right about her attraction to Adrian and sets her mind to figuring out exactly where she fits in his grand scheme of things.

With the beginning of any series, the first book is often a geyser of information as the arc is slowly set up and characters are introduced and defined. I found this book starts out very slowly. We are inundated with information concerning the angels, vampires, lycans and all their back stories. It wasn’t until about 50% through I was finally able to sink into and stay with the story. There are two main story lines with multiple subplots that intertwine and elevate one another. Each powerful in their own right; it’s not until towards the end when they combine do you get the full effect of Ms. Day’s story.

Adrian and Lindsey’s romance is very hot and steamy though heartbreaking as you watch Adrian grasp and cling to Lindsey-knowing that he will yet again have to destroy her to save her.

“…I’m going to send your soul from this Earth once and for all. My love will destroy you, me, and everything we care about. Who am I, if not the man who loves you beyond all self-preservation?”

Ms. Day does a fabulous job imparting his emotional turmoil and and angst to us. I like that Lindsey doesn’t play games in here with Adrian. She too senses their limited time frame though she isn’t sure why and chooses to act upon her attraction.

Our secondary characters carry as much weight as our protagonists in here. We are gifted with each groups (vampires, lycans, angels) POV at times and this allows for a deeper understanding of the overall arc. No one is really what they seem and each group carries misconceptions about the other. I loved Elijah, alpha of the lycans. His controversial decisions guarantee that his story will be a phenomenal one.

A few problems I had with the storyline is Adrian’s ability to justify what he does. He effectively breaks the rules for himself (falling in love with a mortal, waiting over and over for her reincarnation) but shows no mercy for those who may do the same. Ands while Lindsey may feel attraction to Adrian, I was confused about how easily she succumbed to him with hardly any explanations needed. I would have liked more conflict between Lindsey and him. I felt the romance lessened the impact of the main plot and would have rather seen more of Lindsey and Adrian in the second book.

The ending stays true to the dark and suspenseful nature of this story. We are left with some interesting revelations and outcomes that assure us this trilogy will only continue to get better.

Ms. Day’s A Touch Of Crimson is the start to an action packed, emotionally dark series that promises more to come. I look forward to the next in the series-A Hunger So Wild (Elijah’s story)- which releases July 3, 2012.

Overall Rating: C
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