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Friday, August 22, 2008

Eternal Pleasure

Eternal Pleasures by Nina Bangs
Publisher: Dorchester
Genre: Contemporary; Paranormal
Length: Full
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 5 books
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

THE ELEVEN—an alliance of ultimate predators. Primal, lethal, irresistible.

THE PROPHECY—an ancient Mayan prediction that the world will end on 12-21-12.

THE PREY—where can you hide from pure evil?

Kelly Maloy opens her car door to much more than a great looking stranger at the Houston airport. Terror, desire, and a horrible truth climb in with him. She’s only supposed to drive Ty Endeka around the city for a few weeks. Too bad no one tells her that once day fades she’ll become part of a battle fought in the darkened streets with an enemy that isn’t human. And the sensual man who feeds her fantasies hides a soul that gives new meaning to animal magnetism.

Eleven Gods of the Night…

The only creatures more deadly are the ones they’ve been summoned to destroy.

Nina Bangs is getting serious. Her past series have been sexy and humorous but this new series, of which Eternal Pleasures is the first, is intense, unique, exciting and full of growly alpha males whose stories are just begging to be told.

Eternal Pleasures introduced me to a panorama of men who aren’t men. At one point I felt this story is what could happen if Sherrilyn Kenyon’s alpha Dark Hunters merged with Jurassic Park. I got to meet Fin and he has that same mystique as Acheron but ends up being much more -- scary and intimidating. He’s other and unknown. In fact they all are other and it’s that which hooked me.

There are hints of Ms. Bangs’ distinctive writing style in how she presents the internal dialogue for the heroine, Kelly Maloy. She’s feisty, courageous and inquisitive, and I enjoyed her personality. When Kelly is first made aware that something wasn’t quite right with Ty, the process of disbelief to belief made for good reading. I never thought her TSTL (too stupid to live) and in fact she does a better job of facing her fear than Indiana Jones. I have no idea if that was a background inspiration for Ms. Bangs but that thought popped into my brain at one point. I thought it was pretty cool.

Ty is about as unique a character and hero as you’ll find anywhere in paranormal romance stories. He is the ultimate dominate personality. Well, one of them anyway; there are a few other guys who vie for that position and they’re so serious about it, I found them endearing. Ty’s journey from totally clueless about women and emotions to realizing that what he’s feeling is more than lust is quite romantic. His inner turmoil, struggles and balance of nature are what make him a good counterpoint to Kelly.

Ms. Bangs’ world building in Eternal Pleasures did not leave me wanting. I met some of the Eleven and some of the allies. In fact, how the allies came to be allies was another level that added to the story without diluting the focus. This book is about Ty and Kelly, of that there is never any doubt. But when I got to meet Neva and Macario, it added another interesting element. Jude was fascinating and Seir pole axed me. Sounds like a lot, doesn’t it? And yet, all the rules, the goals, the characters and world within they all live were presented in a concise and entertaining way making this a book easy to read in one sitting.

The villain is only one of many and the final confrontation does not end as you would expect with men and beings as strong and willing to throw themselves into the fray as these guys are. It was that unexpected and unlikely weapon which had me admiring the creative process of Ms. Bangs. Guns and shedding blood isn’t always the answer. Well, maybe a little blood.

If you are looking for a different kind of hero, a love that transcends age differences and a conflict which demands the best from its characters, then Eternal Pleasures is your first step on what promises to be a series bound for your keeper shelves.