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Friday, October 29, 2010

Tarnished Knight by Shiloh Walker

Tarnished Knight (Grimm’s Circle Book 4) by Shiloh Walker
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (124 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 5 Books
Reviewed by Holly

The mind forgets, but the body remembers. Everything.

Grimm’s Circle, Book 4

One look at Jack Wallace and Perci knows he’s going to be trouble. Even surrounded by soul stealers, he’s a one-man wrecking crew. What does he need Grimm training for? He’s already hell on earth, a warrior bent on destruction. And something…more.

He’s too strong and fast to be a mere mortal. Even covered in blood, he makes her forget she’s only here to do a job and get out. It’s twisted. Sick. She hasn’t felt this alive in three centuries.

Born with a natural talent for killing unnatural things, Jack has always known things he shouldn’t. The fact that Perci is one of them glows all over her. Giving him an unholy urge to see just how far he can push her before don’t touch me melts into touch me there.

When they come together, it isn’t careful or cautious. It’s heaven and hell, exposing all their raw and wounded places to healing heat, resurrecting memories of a destined love from the distant past. But the evil that destroyed them once before has tracked them here, threatening their second and last chance at forever. Demanding a sacrifice no one—Grimm or human—should ever be asked to make…

Luc and Perci were married…once upon a time, three hundred years ago. Until Luc’s mother went insane and tortured and killed them both, along with their unborn twins. Three hundred years later, Perci and Luc are Grimm: guardians of mortals, protecting them from the demons that would possess them. But it is time for both to move on, and not together; after all they have been divorced for three centuries.

It is time for Perci to begin to live again, and she can’t do that with Luc, because a part of her still blames him for everything, and although she loves him, it is not the kind of love he needs. When Perci meets her new assignment, sparks fly, in more ways than one. Jack Wallace knows things he shouldn’t know as a mortal. He can recognize demons, he can destroy them faster than a mortal should, and he knows about the Grimm. Most important, he makes Perci feel alive for the first time in three hundred years. Can Perci train Jack to be what she is? Now that Perci is feeling again, can she face the past and move on? Will Jack discover who, and what, he was?

Shiloh Walker has created a world where fairy tale characters are real people, just not as sweet. These folks are demon hunters, guardians of humans in this modern world. I love how Shiloh Walker finds a way to turn something so familiar into a new and different story. This one is based on a tale of a woman named Persinette, who served as the basis for the Rapunzel fairy tale. It is an intriguing story of love, betrayal, and renewal, with a hidden history between the main characters. I loved the “flashbacks”, small glimpses into the past shared by Perci and Jack so long ago.

Perci is Grimm, and she has stayed with Luc, her ex husband for over three centuries, for all the wrong reasons. She is strong, courageous and one of the best of the Grimm in a fight. But until the powers that be separate her and Luc, she is filled with pain and regret and blame for her past experiences. I loved watching her find her inner strength, and learn to live and love again.

Jack is human, but more. Tall, strong and sexy, he sets off alarms in Perci’s mind, while igniting a flame inside her, in places she thought long dead. Jack doesn’t understand why he knows things, he just does. His mother was a Grimm, until she gave up her wings, so he has always known about them, as well. I loved that his past didn’t just come rushing back all at once, but came in small peeks here and there.

The secondary characters are all here. Will, the leader they all answer to, is here, but this time there is a vulnerability not seen in him before. I like the small things that make him a more sympathetic character, especially when it concerns Mandy, from a prior book. I look forward to her story in some future book, and I hope to revisit the others from the series as they drop in to help kick demon butt. This is a great reading experience for those who still believe, in their hearts, that fairy tales can come true.