My favorite one so far! I love me a damaged hottie who just needs someone to love him in order to fix him.
So, this is Zarek's story. He had one messedup lifebut I guess they all did in order to become Dark Hunters. Zarek was a whipping boy and then a slave during his mortal life. He was beaten daily, to the point of being disfigured when he met Ash. Luckily, Ash was able to restore his body before becoming a Dark Hunter. Of course, no one could restore his soul. Dun dun dun!!! So, he turned into a hardened psycho who lashed out at everyone and everything so that nobody would have the ability to ever hurt him again.
Poor poor Zarek! sniff sniff.
Yeah, I'm going with this cute animal theme. I know it's disgusting, but I stand by my decision.
Astrid is a justice nymph who is sent in to judge immortals when the gods are thinking of killing them. It is her job to find out if they have any redeeming quality that should allow them to live. So far, she has never judged anyone innocent. She is sent in to judge Zarek since he is so feral. He has no idea, but his life is in her hands. Since justice is blind, she has to go in there blind with only her wolfman guidedog, Sasha as her eyes.
I absolutely loved Sasha! He totally wanted to bite Zarek the whole time. I love when dogs can talk in books! I wish I could have a talking dog...
Although, my dogs would just nag me for treats all day. Never mind. Mute dogs are fine.
if just one talked...
So, Astrid finds Zarek injured and brings him into her cabin to help him heal and to find out whether he gets to walk the green mile. Zarek, of course, is rude and prickly as ever, but he also finds her attractive and does nice things for her behind her back. Since she is blind, he feels free to be a little more of himself. He has no idea that Sasha is telling Astrid what he's doing, or that Astrid can look through Sasha's eyes to see him occasionally. Of course, Sasha hates him, so...
Sasha: "I swear he shoved one entire pancake in his mouth at once."
Astrid would have been disgusted had she not been in his dreams. No one had ever taught him even the most basic form of manners.
Okay, that made me laugh. She would have been disgusted seeing him stuff a pancake in his mouth? I'm guessing she's never been around young boys, or teenaged boys, or young men... I have two young men who bring over loads of friends all of the time and shoving a whole pancake into their mouths would be a good day. You don't know the word disgusting until you've had a slumber party with 10 teenage boys at your house. It's scary stuff. And, the next day, with the bodies all around... it smells like a petting zoo.
yeah, that looks about right...
But, of course they fall in lurrv. It is cute and sweet.
We also learn more about Ash, and meet his "child", Simi, who is some weird Greek demon thing. She is also kind of funny. But, poor Ash! His mortal life apparently sucked, and his immortal life doesn't look like it's much better. Still in the "sucks" category. I'm looking forward to his happy ending, but I don't think it comes along for a while. Suffer a bit longer, Ash! We'll get to you eventually. Zarek of Moesia (Hunter) & Astrid (Nymph of Justice/ Dream warrior)
Why Zarek become a dark hunter: For many awful reasons. His mother was a whore who wanted him dead since the day he was born. His father was rich and from a noble family but also the cruelest man alive. His father hated Zarek, his half brothers hated Zarek, the servants hated Zarek. Before he realised what life is, he became the family whipping boy. He was starving his whole life, he became crippled and half blind from the beating. After a lot of continuous suffering, he died stoned to death, accused of being a rapist although he was a virgin. Obviously, he needed to have his revenge.
Astrid: She was sent to judge Zarek, but she could not resist his dark charm. She slowly breaks through Zarek, she makes him feel loved, she gives him cotton candy to taste, she follows him in his nightmares, she teaches him how to make love, she falls desperately in love with him.
One thing I loved: Both Zarek and Astrid love the book "the Little Prince" and they say passages and recite favourite quotes to each other while they are falling in love.
I greatly enjoyed the story. The book is about the healing powers of love. A dark tortured hero is usually a favourite story of mine. I felt sorry for Zarek, I was angry on his behalf, I was happy that he found Astrid. The book made me feel really strong emotions.
Favourite quote:"Come away with me, Astrid"
"Why should I?"
His gaze burned into hers. "Because I love you, and even if I'm lying on the sun itself I'll be freezing there without you. I need my star so that I can hear laughter." #Free Epub â Dance with the Devil ã Zarek’s Point Of View:
DarkHunter: A Soulless Guardian Who Stands Between Mankind And Those Who Would See Mankind Destroyed Yeah, Right The Only Part Of That Code Of Honor I Got Was Eternity And Solitude
Insanity: A Condition Many Say I Suffer From After Being Alone For So Long But I Don’t Suffer From My InsanityI Enjoy Every Minute Of It
Trust: I Can’t Trust Anyone…not Even Myself The Only Thing I Trust In Is My Ability To Do The Wrong Thing In Any Situation And To Put A Hurt On Anyone Who Gets In My Way
Truth: I Endured A Lifetime As A Roman Slave, AndYears As An Exiled DarkHunter Now I’m Tired Of Enduring I Want The Truth About What Happened The Night I Was ExiledI Have Nothing To Lose And Everything To Gain
Astrid Greek, Meaning Star: An Exceptional Woman Who Can See Straight To The Truth Brave And Strong, She Is A Point Of Light In The Darkness She Touches Me And I Tremble She Smiles And My Cold Heart Shatters
Zarek: They Say Even The Most Damned Man Can Be Forgiven I Never Believed That Until The Night Astrid Opened Her Door To Me And Made This Feral Beast Want To Be Human Again Made Me Want To Love And Be Loved But How Can An Exslave Whose Soul Is Owned By A Greek Goddess Ever Dream Of Touching, Let Alone Holding, A Fiery Star? I felt quite sorry for Zarek in this one, he’d had a terrible life and hadn’t even been shown love by his own father. He and Astrid made a good couple though.
6.5 out of 10 This is the story I was most excited about and I'm so glad it didn't let me down. I loved it. I loved Zarek, loved Astrid and above all I loved their journey to each other. Zarek's past is so sad and I'm amazed how strong he turned out to be despite all the pain and loneliness. He's one of my favourite characters and I'm really glad I got to read his story. I adored Astrid and her undiing strenght to not let go of Zarek and to show him the beauty of kindness and love. they really are perfect for each other. The other character that I liked was Sasha. He's just adorable and I would enjoy reading about this story. All in all, the action, romance and angst was really nicely placed and I couldn't have hoped for more.
OK, so let's get to the grand plot, shall we? Yes, we shall. So...the big problem seems to be the Gods and their immaturity, that on such a high level, not even Mount Everest can reach it. And then we have Acheron, the supposedly God killer.
He was the very thing she feared most in the universe. In this state, he could kill her with nothing more than a passing thought. She panicked. If she didn’t get him calmed down the other gods would feel his presence and there would be hell to pay for everyone.
And honestly that's where my mind stops and says 'so, you have a god problem and someone who can easily solve it, but can't because... Why exactly can't he!?' Seriously, I liked Acheron in the previous books but now I just want to kill him. He's so weak, it's unbeliavable. I get that the author want's to make him as such an important character and a wise, strong leader but come on. Then why does she write such a weak plot, where he's nothing but a bitch for the bratty, slutty Artemis. Oh, and let's not forget the reason poor Zarek has to spent nine hundred years in Alaska. Fuck them!
I cannot believe what I'm about to write but Artemis said it as it is “I’m a goddess, not a servant. I fetch for no one.” “Just because you sold yourself so cheaply, Acheron, it doesn’t mean I have to.” To be honest, I don't know how I could read about his book, since he fucked that bitch a lot. Yeah...pass. And what's even more, is that out of all the characters I like the demon Simi the most, now ain't that a funny thing.
Sorry guys for my rantig but I just had to get that off my chest. What matters is that Zarek's story is amazing and you definitely should give it a try. 3 REAL STARS, 5 ROMANCE STARSYes, this an elusive "5starromance' that I rarely stumble upon.
DISCLAIMER: This review has some discussions about the correct use of the word "fuck." If the word "fuck" bothers you, please skip this review. Some sex will also be discussed, although not graphically.
Zarek has had a rough life. Born with his father a nobleman and his mother a whore, his mother paid some servants to kill him by leaving him in the snow to die. But a servant took pity on him, and gave him to his father. His father hated Zarek for existing, and turned him into the family whipping boy. Due to these beatings, Zarek is blind in one eye, partially blind in the other, has had his legs broken so many times that he limps and is almost crippled, and doesn't have full use of his right arm for the same reason. Not only is he regularly beaten and mocked by everyone, but he is also forced to eat rotten food, and sometimes shit.
His father finally pays a slaver to take Zarek off his hands, and Zarek spends a few years cleaning out slave cesspools. Eventually he is bought by a Roman noblewoman who uses him to keep watch for her husband when she is with her lover. After 5 years of this, he hears one night his mistress being beaten. He rushes in to save her from her lover, who has turned violent. The lover runs off when he hears Zarek coming, and the noblewoman tells her husband that Zarek was responsible for the beating/rape. So Zarek dies being spat on and stoned to death for being a rapist, when in reality he is a virgin.
Of course, this is when the goddess Artemis comes along and gives Zarek the powers to be an immortal DarkHunter and save humanity from the demons. But even though he is now physically healed and whole, his life never becomes any better. Hated and feared by the other DarkHunters, banished to isolation in Alaska, left to suffer and live completely alone, Zarek is a snarly, prickly mess. Everyone thinks he is a murderous, dangerous, asshole. (This infodump I've just given you is slowly and carefully revealed through the book, just in case you think Kenyon is a bad writershe's not. There's also a lot more to his story, this is just the bare bones.)
But we, the readers, know this isn't true, Zarek's not a monster. How? Because in the previous novel, Night Embrace, we see him do things like help a child who is lost find his mother, and also save Talon's woman: Sunshine Runningwolf. So even if no one else can see it, we know that he's really a good man deep inside.
Unfortunately, Artemis has him slated for execution. Zarek is a hard man to kill (understatement of the millennium) and he drags his bulletriddled body through the blizzard to a cabin and promptly passes out outside the door.
Imagine his surprise when he wakes up warm and dry in a woman's bed. And not just any womanthe beautiful Astrid, who is blind and lives by herself. He's been unconscious for 4 days and cannot go back outside because there's a terrible blizzard.
This being a romance novel, you should know what's coming. LOVE! Love! Kissing! Yay!
Some important notes.
1.) This NOT erotica. It's not a book that is just like, "Here's some sex." I don't like those books, they are boring. This is a romance, and that means a really long story that focuses on love, acceptance, and redemptionwith a generous side dish of sex. Big difference, huge. I enjoy reading about people having sex, but only if they are characters that were developed, and characters who started to fall in love slowly and sweetly, and I understand how much they care for each other and why they are choosing to have sex. Not like erotica, which is like porn in book form. Erotica just shoves me into a room with two people (or more) having vigorous sex. And I'm like, "I don't care about these people, can I please leave?" Whereas in romance I am like, "Oh, this couple is so cute! Remember how he took care of her dog when she was sick?!!?!? Remember when she taught him how to make sugar cookies!?! Oh, they're finally kissing! Yay!" Also, most times erotica skips over kissing. Who wants to read a book with sex but no kissing?!?!!? Blergh! I must have tons of kissing in my romance novels.
I'm including this explanation for anyone who sneers at romance novels and says, "Why is Carmen reading this shit?" Because it's sweet and cute and I like to read about kissing. That's why.
2.) This book works for me only because it keeps up the pretense that Astrid is a human, normal woman. I can't get as involved in paranormal romance as regular, human romance because oftentimes two powerful, magical beings are falling in love and I don't care. I need at least one of them to be human so that I can relate to the story. So, even though Zarek is a DarkHunter and therefore very powerful, we've got the vulnerable Astrid to balance it out.
3.) This book employs one of my alltime favorite tropes: bringthedangerouswoundedmanhomeandhealhimwhilefallinginlove tropes. However, this trope is not a guarantee of a book's successjust look at how Joyce Maynard screwed up Labor Day.
4.) Zarek is one of the only DarkHunters in this (very long) series that is allowed to say 'fuck.' I believe it is used about 4 times in the novel. However, Kenyon mostly makes him say 'screw' when he means 'fuck.' I can understand why she's doing this: she is being considerate of her readers and doesn't want to offend thembut if anyone would be fine with saying 'fuck' it's Zarek. o.O I mean, I just can't see him pulling his punches and toning his language down no matter what the reason. So when Kenyon did this, it just completely took me out of this (very excellent) story. I didn't like that.
Fortunately, I remedied the problem by taking a pen and scratching out every single time Zarek says a form of 'screw' and replacing it with the proper tense of the word 'fuck.' Very fun, very satisfying, and will save me a lot of annoyance when I reread this. And I will reread it.
Yes, I am one of those terrible people who has no problem writing in books (don't worry, it's a cheap paperback). Bad habit I picked up at University.
5.) I love stories of grumpy men learning to be happy and enjoy life. It is one of the reasons I reread A Christmas Carol every single year. I had so much fun watching Astrid slowly, slowly break through Zarek's belligerence and sharp words. So cute. She does things like forces him to eat cotton candy! LOL It's just so cute and sweet and makes my heart melt. :)
6.) Zarek and Astrid have funny conversations sometimes.
"Are you up?" the unknown woman asked, her voice surprised. "Dressing?"
"No," he said irritably. "I'm pissing on your rug. What do you think I'm doing?"
"I'm blind. For all I know you really are peeing on my rug, which is a very nice rug incidentally, so I hope you're kidding."
He felt a strange twinge of amusement at her comeback. She was fast and smart.
He liked that.
Or the amazingly cute scene where Zarek makes Astrid hot chocolate.
"Here," he said, his voice ringing with its usual rude, hostile note. He took her hand and led it to the cup.
"What is it?" she asked.
"Arsenic and vomit."
She screwed up her face in disgust at the thought. "Really? And yet you managed to hack that up so quietly. Who knew? Thanks. I've never had vomit before. I'm sure it's extra special."
"I think I might be grateful for my blindness, after all," she said. "Something tells me that if I could see the reckless speed you're driving at, I would probably have a stroke."
She rolled her eyes at his ready agreement. "You have no idea how to comfort anyone, do you?"
"In case you haven't noticed, princess, social skills aren't my forte. Hell, you're lucky I'm housebroke."
LOL This book was frequently making me laugh with Zarek's snarling sarcasm and Astrid's dry wit responses to his barbs. :)
7.) The Little Prince by Antoine de SaintExupéry plays a big role in this novel, as it turns out to be a favorite book of both Zarek and Astrid. If you are familiar with this amazing book, then your enjoyment of this novel will be that much sweeter. :)
8.) Kenyon's ideas of "letting a man 'handle' you" how 'disrespectful?' or 'badgirl' some innocuous behavior is continues to baffle me. I mean, I can think of a thousand things a man can do to disrespect a woman sexually, but it's definitely not anything Kenyon writes about. In this book, it's:
He slid a cool hand under her shirt until he could cup her breast. She shivered as his fingers pushed the lace of her bra aside so that he could run his palm against her swollen nipple.
She'd never allowed anyone to handle her like this.
This whole thing is just confusing. What he's doing is a safe, loving, respectful (for a boyfriend) activity and not even in the least bit dirty, shameful, or letting a man 'handle' you, which to me makes it sound like he's doing something disrespectful, violent, or unwantedwhich he isn't.
This isn't the first time Kenyon's pulled this crapshe did it in Night Pleasures when the hero grabs the heroine's ass while they are kissing. Again, not something I consider even the least bit shameful or scandalous or 'letting a man do something dirty with you.' I mean, both of these instances are just very basic, normal sexual behavior and I am unsure as to why she thinks they are shocking.
9.) I've noticed that the way Zarek makes love to Astrid in this book is eerily similar to how Robert Kincaid makes love to Francesca Johnson in the book The Bridges of Madison County by Robert James Waller. Just something to think about.
10.) The differences between 'making love' and 'fucking.' Important differences. Astrid has to have quite a few educational conversations with Zarek to stop him from referring as what they do together as 'fucking.' She has a problem with him describing their lovemaking as 'fucking' because
a.) She's in love with him and is hopeful that he is in love with her, too.
b.) She sees calling what they do together 'fucking' as disrespectful to her.
c.) She's trying to educate him on the fact that all sex is not 'fucking.'
Now, I don't exactly share all her beliefs on the word 'fucking' and it's appropriateness and usefulness when describing sex, but I could definitely see where she was coming from and why she was doing what she was doing. I am fascinated by semantics and how couples choose to describe what they do together sexually, so this was very interesting to me.
11.) Kenyon writes great sex. It's so difficult to find an author who is able to write good sex. Kenyon is amazing at this. :) Some romance authors are just cringeinducing.
That's about all I can think about now, but I might have more points later.
Overall, a sweet, tender book about the healing powers of love! Sounds so sappy and silly, but I really need books like this sometimes.
For every 50 romance novels I read, I only find 1 that I really enjoy. So it's a slog. I have a short list (very short) of actual romance novels that are good, and this is definitely going on it. :)
I cannot give any romance book more than 3 real stars in good conscience, because they are predictable, silly, and just basically a daydream written down on paper. So, don't expect any prizewinning plot or superb writing from any romance novel, but just read them for fun and love them for what they are.
P.S. Kenyon gives Zarek "kiss virginity" in this novel. Yes, he is a Roman from ancient times who has been alive for thousands of years. But with no kissing. Kenyon frequently invents new forms of 'virginity' for a man to have so that the heroine can be his 'first' in some way.
3 REAL STARS, 5 ROMANCE STARS Oh Zarek. I still love you. I wish he was real because I just want to give him a great big hug.
Upon revisiting this (long time) favorite of mine, I decided that Zarek deserved a review.
This was my first Sherrilyn Kenyon book (once upon a time) and it was the book that started my love of the DarkHunters. Zarek has remained my favorite hero all this time, and while there are others that I love, none match Zarek for me. Every glimpse of him throughout the series is a treasured moment.
Reading Zarek's story breaks my heart. He was a truly tortured hero who deserves all the good things in life, just to make up for his really horrible beginning. The only other hero that comes close to Zarek’s torment (and actually surpassing it) is Acheron, who is one of my other DarkHunter loves.
There are a few books that I love having multiple copies of. I have the wellloved paperback (signed by the author herself!) and a brand new copy for my Kindle. I normally have a hard time buying Kindle books for the same price as a paperback, but I had no problems doing that with this book. I know Zarek is a character I’ll revisit often, and actually being able to read the book at any moment, no matter where I am made the decision to purchase the Kindle version easy for me.
Every time I read this book, my heart breaks all over again as I read Zarek’s memories. Astrid is the perfect heroine for him. She sees through his attitude to the guy he really is, and is able to love him in a way that shows she accepts him…surly attitude and all.
(view spoiler)[And straight from Sherrilyn Kenyon’s website…here’s Zarek:
"4.5 stars" At last.....another DarkHunter book that I could really sink my teeth into (pun intended;)). I had greatly enjoyed the first book of the series, Fantasy Lover, but the stories in between that book and Dance with the Devil had left me feeling underwhelmed and less than satisfied. As I suspected it might, Dance with the Devil gave me a meatier tale with two welldeveloped characters that I could totally root for and who were very relatable, as well as getting back to some stronger relationship building. Even though the story took place within a matter of days, much like the previous books, the connection between Zarek and Astrid was more palpable and consequently more believable to me, because they actually spent large swaths of time virtually alone together, during which they were able to communicate on a fairly deep level. Their communication wasn't always of a direct nature, since Zarek was bound by the DarkHunter code which forbade him from telling anyone about who or what he was. Still, I thought that the author used a very creative solution for getting around that by having Astrid join Zarek in his dreams, where she was able to see the things he dreamed about (nightmares really), and they could talk about some things that he wouldn't be able to discuss when he was awake. It also provided the opportunity for Astrid to give Zarek some muchneeded love and kindness in a “safe” environment, as well as a couple more steamy love scenes than would have been possible otherwise. I also liked how, in the dreams, Astrid gifted Zarek with a few small childhood pleasures that he had been harshly denied in his human life. I just think that the hero and heroine being together and interacting in more than just a sexual way for a large part of the book really helped to solidify their burgeoning love for one another.
Zarek definitely earned a place at the top of my most tortured heroes list. I've seen other readers liken him to Zsadist from J. R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series, and after reading this book, I would have to agree that it is an apt comparison. Zarek's torment was somewhat different from Zsadist's, but no less inhumane and cruel. What was truly heartbreaking to me about it was when I discovered through a bit of research that some Roman slaves really were treated that badly. Sherrilyn Kenyon certainly did her homework on that one. Even in the last book, Night Embrace, I could tell that there was a lot of depth lurking beneath the surface of Zarek's gruff exterior and harsh words, and he certainly didn't disappoint me in this story. Inside, he has a sensitive, compassionate heart and especially around Astrid, he is extremely tender and gentle. He was strong enough to live through 2000 years of loneliness, torture and betrayal, but no matter how brutally he was treated, his tormentors were never quite able to kill that part of him that longed to love and be loved. He just buried it very deeply inside, where I'm not sure even he realized it still existed, making it a challenge for Astrid to find and unlock it. The only thing about Zarek which I would have liked to know that wasn't told, is exactly how he became a DarkHunter and what his act of vengeance was. Typically, it seems that the DarkHunters were warriors in their human life, but Zarek was a lowly slave. This left me wondering why Artemis decided to grant him immortality, but this part of his backstory was never explored. Otherwise, Zarek was a wonderful character who has become one of my favorite heroes.
I knew after reading about Zarek in Night Embrace that he would need a strong, patient heroine to help him overcome his past, and in my opinion, Ms. Kenyon wrote the perfect mate for him. Astrid is very intuitive and understanding of Zarek, instinctively knowing that he isn't the bad person everyone thinks him to be. I loved that she never took his barbs and sarcasm personally, but realized it was just part of the armor he used to protect that most fragile piece of himself, his heart. This was wonderful, because it meant that there were no silly misunderstandings between them. She also exhibited some bravery in staying by Zarek's side to keep him from being killed by the gods, even though by doing so, she was endangering her own life. Additionally, she showed determination by not giving up on finding out the truth about what happened to Zarek's village, which nearly everyone thought he was responsible for decimating 900 years ago. Overall, she was just a warm, kind, gentle and loving heroine who was exactly the kind of woman Zarek needed in his life.
Dance with the Devil had a fairly broad secondary character palette. Acheron and Artemis returned from previous books, and readers get to know Ash even better. Ash played a strong role in this book, and the depth that was added to his character made him all the more lovable, but still an enigma that leaves me wondering exactly who and what he is. Acheron's little demon companion, Simi, is introduced in this book, and she is mostly cute and endearing, although I will admit that she talks a little too much for my taste. She is a childlike creature who has stream of consciousness dialog, basically no filter between her brain and her mouth, but her heart is definitely in the right place. There are a number of other new characters who were introduced in Dance with the Devil as well including Jess aka Sundown who is Zarek's friend and the first cowboy DarkHunter (his book Redemption is forthcoming); Sasha, Astrid's Katagari (WereHunter) wolf companion; Syra, the first female DarkHunter to grace the series; Spawn, the first Apollite DarkHunter, and M'Adoc, a DreamHunter. There was also a brief mention of D'Alerian, another DreamHunter who appeared in Night Pleasures, and several assorted squires. Some of these characters were quite intriguing, but unfortunately, I'm not aware of any of them appearing in their own books as of yet.
While I did enjoy Dance with the Devil a lot, especially when compared with some of the previous books in the series, it wasn't absolutely perfect for me. The author seems to have a habit of throwing supernatural powers into the story for the sake of convenience, and Dance with the Devil unfortunately was no exception. It just wasn't as pronounced in this book as in past ones which made it more palatable. I was also able to take it a little bit better because there were no human characters who were being afforded these powers either. Ms. Kenyon also seems to enjoy creating lots of new characters, as is evidenced above, which usually means new mythology as well, but again unlike previous books, she managed to weave most of these elements in without bringing the story to a screeching halt to do it, which I greatly appreciated. The last thing that was a little bothersome to me was the ending. There was certainly some excitement in the climax, but things just seemed to peter out a little too quickly. Maybe it was because the bad guy wasn't quite as bad as he seemed, so I didn't get the satisfaction of his comeuppance. Also, the final romantic scenes between Zarek and Astrid, while quite happy, seemed to be a little lacking and I felt they needed a bit more zing to them. Overall though, my complaints are pretty minor and didn't detract much from my overall enjoyment of the novel. Dance with the Devil still managed to earn a place on my keeper shelf and has definitely reinvigorated my interest in the DarkHunter series which I now look forward to continuing in the future. There are currently a total of 19 fulllength novels in the DarkHunter series and quite a number of related novellas and graphic novels as well, with more still to come. A complete list of all the books and their recommended reading order can be found on Sherrilyn Kenyon's website.
A DarkHunter Christmas – A DarkHunter Christmas is the story of Gallagher, a relatively young DarkHunter (only about 100 years), who was newly introduced for this tale. Readers will get to see yet another side of Acheron and Simi that adds a bit more depth to their characters, and also get a brief visit with a bunch of the WereHunters from Sanctuary as well as Tabitha (Seize the Night). I don't know if Gallagher will play a part in any future DarkHunter stories or if he might someday get his own, but I felt like I got to know him well enough to think that he would make a good hero.
Overall, this was just a quick, heartwarming holidaythemed read that emphasizes the importance of family and how people don't necessarily have to be related by blood to consider themselves family. A DarkHunter Christmas is a short 16page bonus novella that falls between Dance with the Devil and Kiss of the Night in the DarkHunter chronology. It can be found in the back of first editions of Dance with the Devil, and was later republished in The DarkHunter Companion. The novella can now be read in its entirety for free on Sherrilyn Kenyon's website. Rating: ****1/2
*Review updated 9/21/10 Dance with the Devil
Phury()Zadist = Zarek.
Zarek was very much like Zadist from Black Dagger Brotherhood, and I LOVE ZADIST!! If you take Phury away from Zadist you'll be left with Zarek. This probably makes no sense at all but that's all i could think throughout the whole book. Maybe it was a mistake to start this series with this book because now i hate all other hunters! Except Ash.
Full review to come...
“Dying’s easy. It’s living that’s hard.”
Dance with the Devil is a perfect romance, the beautiful love story of Zarek and Astrid.
Certainly, it's not simply a romance: there is an incredible plot and fastpaced action, suffering and dread, twists and turns, revealed secrets, humor, one of the most heartbreaking background story ever, and fascinating secondary characters.
But the main attraction of the novel is the story of the two of them, the development of the love and relationship of Astrid and Zarek. Their every thought and emotions are meticulously captured and conveyed.
Zarek is tired of pain; he is unimaginably lonely, mad and angry at everyone, especially himself. He is full of hatred and rage, has lost faith in goodness, and is incapable of trust. He is totally broken, but at the same time, unexpectedly vulnerable, kind and gentle, with poetic and artistic skills. He is generous, merciful, and tender.
She held her hand out to him. “You have to learn to trust someone, Zarek. You’ve been brave your whole life. Now show me that courage. Take my hand. Trust me and I swear I won’t betray you.”
He stood there indecisively, his heart pounding. He’d never been more terrified.
Not even the day they’d killed him.
His personality is complex, and brilliantly layered. While there are many attributes to describe his character, there are no words for the cruelty of his past.
Astrid is a perfect mate for him. She is strong, sensible, caring, and loving. I admire her perceptiveness, as she is able to see through Zarek's façade.
It was not my first read of the novel, and not the last either. Dance with the Devil will always remain one of my alltime favorites.
My favorite quotes.
My favorite one so far! I love me a damaged hottie who just needs someone to love him in order to fix him.