Isaac Rothe is a black ops soldier with a dark past and a grim future. The target of an assassin, he finds himself behind bars, his fate in the hands of his gorgeous public defender Grier Childe. His hot attraction to her can only lead to trouble-and that’s before Jim Heron tells him his soul is in danger. Caught up in a wicked game with the demon who shadows Jim, Isaac must decide whether the soldier in him can believe that true love is the ultimate weapon against evil.
So we’re back with another installment of Ward’s Fallen Angel series. Jim Herron is back, this time however, he has shuffled off this mortal coil and is now an angel. Accompanied by his sidekicks, Eddie and Adrian, and with the help of Archangels Nigel and Colin they are gearing up for round two to save another soul for their team and once again thwart the lovely, OCD demon, Devina.
Our human soul for this round is one Isaac Rothe. Issac is no stranger to Jim, he is an XOps member who has gone AWOL. Of course, there is no quitting the XOps…unless it’s in a body bag. His boss Mathias is gunning for Isaac’s head as a result. Isaac is hiding out in Boston, engaging in illegal cage fights to earn some quick and dirty cash. Unfortunately, due to a dumbass promoter who thought flyers to an illegal fight was a good idea, Isaac ends up getting busted and ends up in jail. The flyer itself is a beacon for Mathias, but on top of that he’s now immobilized and ripe for assassination.
Which brings about the introduction of Isaac’s love interest, Boston attorney Grier Childe. Grier is privileged, beautiful and is in the business of saving soul’s as well…especially since her brother died of a drug overdose. Though she works for a posh firm, she takes rotations of service as a public defender. She meets Isaac when she is assigned his case. She is immediately drawn to this quiet, polite man who’s demeanor is completely contradictory with his larger-than-life physical appearance. She senses that Isaac wants nothing more than to disappear, but when he becomes indebted to her he feels honour-bound to repay it…but having Grier in the picture is also putting a target on her back. Mathias will stop at nothing to get to Isaac, and with the appearance of Jim on the scene…he hopes that it will be enough to keep Grier safe.
The first half of this book was a little plodding for me. The building story between Isaac and Grier didn’t grab my interest as much as I would have liked. However, as is usual with Ward, there is so much more going on by the second half of the book, that you can almost forgive that bit of dryness. The intricate relationships add richness to the plot that saves it from being your run-of-the-mill romance. Eddie and Adrian are quite interesting angels…not quite what you would expect…and their bantering always makes for some amusing dialogue. We get more back history regarding Jim, Isaac and Mathias and their time together in XOps, before Mathias became a total dick of a boss. Also, there are the heart-wrenching relationships between Grier and her brother (who’s ghost appears to her quite often, it’s a quirky yet understated plot device) and also with her father. Finding out about Grier’s father also explains much about her connection with Isaac. And of course…there’s Jim acclimating with his new afterlife…and his emotional struggles over a loss sustained to Devina in Covet.
One of the most enjoyable characters in this story for me, is Devina. Yes, she’s the demon…but such an engaging character, you can’t help but be intrigued and repulsed at the same time. Her first scene in the book is a visit with her therapist. Yep, you heard me correctly. Seems our Devina has a bit of an OCD thing going on. Before her souls go to her own little corner of hell to exist in torment for her amusement…she takes a metal item from them, precious metal preferably, and hoards them. She exhibits anxiety about losing her possessions, as well as being away from her souls. Of course, Devina is in the guise of a human female, so she has put a human spin on her woes for the benefit of the therapist. It’s quite amusing. However, don’t let that fool you into thinking that she’s not the demon she is. She is quite evil, and her propensity for torture in all forms, including sexual depravity is graphic and unsettling.
All in all, another good read from Ward. I don’t find her characters to be as well written or engaging as BDB, but damn…she is good at building the world we are visiting. I’m always along for the ride, seeing, hearing and feeling everything the characters do. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series, Envy.