Genre: urban fantasy
Cover: good, a scene from the book itself.
For Evangeline Hollis, a long-ago fling with a bad boy from the wrong side of the tracks just became a disaster of biblical proportions. One night with a leather-clad man of mystery has just led to a divine punishment: the mark of Cain.
Thrust into a world where sinners are drafted to kill demons, Eve knows her learning curve must be short. A longtime agnostic, she begrudgingly manoeuvres through a celestial bureaucracy where she is a valuable but ill-treated pawn. She’s also become the latest point of contentment in the oldest case of sibling rivalry in history …
But she’ll worry about all that later. Right now she’s more concerned with learning to kill while staying alive. And saving the soul she’d never quite believed she had.
I was raised Christian, and attended “schools with the Bible”, but I am not really a believer any more. As such, I don’t really like religion in my books nowadays. Still, all the religious stuff that I was thought so very long time ago did came in handy while reading this book. S.J. Day certainly put her own spin on the Old Testament though, and she uses bible text to get her point through. And I liked this book a lot more than I anticipated; which is a good thing, as I now want to read the rest of the series.
Evangeline Hollis thinks she has an important meeting with a possible new client who wants to hire her for her interior decorating skills. Unfortunately, it is all a setup for her to be assaulted by Reed Abel, who rapes her and brands her with the Mark of Cain. Now Eve is marked as a sinner, and she will have to do God’s bidding and hunt down demons who have crossed the line. Alec Cain suddenly turns up again in her life after ten years, and he is the reason of all of this. He will be her mentor, and teach her what she needs to know to survive, and how to handle her new skill set and of course her new enormous sex drive. His brother, Reed Abel, will be her handler however, and so she will be a pawn between the two brothers.
Before Eve knows what has happened to her, she is almost killed by a Nix, some kind of water demon, and pissed on by a Gargoyle. Alec is only just in time to save her from the Nix. She really needs to be trained fast and good, as she is in danger already and she is not supposed to be.
Their boss the Archangel Raguel is also planning things to get into Gods good graces above the other archangels, and it is surely not to their benefit at all. He almost doesn’t want them to investigate Gehenna Masonry and the strange stanchless demons they encounter. What is he hiding?
As I said, I really liked this book, especially because of Eve. She is not religious at all, not thanks to her Asian parents though. But now she has to mind her tongue, as cursing will get her punished immediately through her Mark of Cain. She wants to believe she can get out of it, that she did nothing to deserve this faith, but both Cain and Abel know that is not so easy, or ever done before.
I liked how she did not jump into bed with Cain as soon as he wanted her again, no matter how he pressures her, and how much her body needs it after the change.
I loved her sweet old and caring neighbour and was sorry for what happened to her.
Lots of action, and lots of learning for Eve, but she is a great heroine, she does not fall apart, she keeps it together and she certainly does not give in easily or believe everything she is told at face value. I like that. There is a mystery and a plot and I do wonder where it will go.
The old story between Abel and Cain in the bible has hidden backgrounds and so far, Cain has refused to tell Eve what really happened to make him kill his brother. And I want to know!
But the book starts out very confusing, making me check two times if it is really the first book in the series. And the first chapter is actually the last chapter in the book, as the whole rest is told like some kind of flashback. I did not really appreciate that, as I did not get into the story at once.
I will read the rest of the series, as I want to know what happens next. I am sorry to report that the books are very expensive, I will have to find a secondhand book or ebook somewhere …
© 2014 Reviews by Aurian