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Friday, January 9, 2009

Seventh Circle by F.E. Heaton

Seventh Circle by F.E. Heaton
Publisher: Alinar Publishing
Genre: Contemporary; Paranormal
Length: Full
Heat: Sensual
Rating: 4.5 books
Reviewed by Eglantine

Dark, sensual and fast-paced, Seventh Circle is a story of forbidden love so strong that it will save the world.

Born with strange powers similar to a vampire’s, Lilith has spent her life hunting demons for Section Seven. Now, on the very same night that she watches a vampire kill her best friend, she’s faced with her worse nightmare.

A client who is not only attractive, but a vampire.

Lincoln, a powerful pure blood vampire, has a problem. The prophecy he’s caught up in is coming to pass and his only chance of survival is relying on those he hates most—vampire hunters. It has been foretold that one will save him, a female hunter, and when he meets her, the attraction he feels is both instantaneous and forbidden.

Their mutual attraction becomes difficult to deny as they work to unravel the mystery of a contract between Lincoln’s lord and the Devil. The barriers around their hearts fall, but is there only pain ahead of them? With Lincoln’s life on the line, can Lilith find the strength to protect him and embrace a side of herself that she wished didn’t exist? Can Lincoln overcome his fear in order to save Lilith even if it means parting from her forever? What price will they pay to be together?

I promised myself when I signed up as reviewer for LASR that I would never, never award ratings for books that I didn’t truly feel deserved the accolades. I’ll rather err on the side of caution and give a book a slightly lower rating than take even the slightest chance of rating a book more highly than it deserved to be. That conviction alone kept Seventh Circle away from earning a full five books.

Lilith has been trained from birth to be a vampire hunter. She knows the right thing to do is to hate them, to despise them, to kill them whenever you get a chance. But then a vampire is thrust on her as charge, it’s her job now to keep him safe. He’s aggressive, bloodthirsty; he kills people for his dinner. He’s everything she thought vampires were. And he’s nothing she expected.

It’s often bothered me that, though it’s a bit of a turn-on to imagine, if you really thought about the mechanics of vampirism, it’s quite disgusting. Having all your blood sucked from your body is bloody sore, not erotic. The author doesn’t shy away from the cruel reality of the undeads' appetites. Lincoln kills people; it’s not pretty. But somehow, he seems more real, more truly sympathetic than any protagonist in any other vampire novel I’ve read. I’d gladly bare my neck for him. This story sweeps to higher heights and deeper lows than you could possibly imagine when you commit to the initial reading. Characters are as three-dimensional as you could hope for fictional creations to be. It kept me riveted to the page until the last word ran out, way beyond my bedtime.

I hovered my finger over the number 5 on the keyboard when I had to fill in my rating. But no, though this is truly good, really worth reading, I think I’ll yet keep that one for a book that has me gaping like a fish on dry ground. This one came close, though.

Really close. You will not waste a cent if you were to buy this excellent book.