…So what’s this book about?
This is the second book in Felicity Heaton’s new paranormal romance series – Guardians Of Hades. This new series is about the sons of Hades, the Greek God of the Underworld, and his Goddess wife, Persephone; Ares, Valen, Daimon, Esher, Keras, Calistos and Marek. Each son has been charged with guarding one of the seven gates to the Underworld – which are located here on Earth – from the daemons who want to use them.
As the title suggests, this book features Valen who is the guardian of the Rome gate. It is a full length novel of 119,000 words and is set in our world, at this time. I think that you have to have read the previous book (Ares) to fully enjoy this one, as many of the characters were introduced in the first book and the background story arc is continuing through this book too.
Now as my regular followers will know, I never post any spoilers or reveal plot twists in my reviews, so this is what the official blurb says about the plot:
Prince of the Underworld and Lord of Lightning, Valen was banished from his home by his father, Hades, two centuries ago and given a new duty and purpose—to keep our world and his from colliding in a calamity foreseen by the Moirai. Together with his six brothers, he fights to defend the gates to the Underworld from daemons bent on breaching them and gaining entrance to that forbidden land, striving to protect his home from their dark influence. Cursed by Zeus to never know love again, Valen has brought up barriers around his heart to protect it, but with each new barrier he creates, the dark hold his power has over him grows, becoming all he needs.
Until the night he finally crosses paths with the assassin who has been watching him from the shadows, a bewitching mortal possessing the name of an angel and the skills of a devil — a woman who awakens his passionate heart and stirs dangerous desires.
Eva has built a fearsome reputation for herself in Italy’s underworld, but her latest job in her beloved city of Rome has left her feeling that she has stepped into a dangerous world and this mission might end in her death—either at the hands of her mysteriously seductive client or by the blade of the wickedly alluring warrior who is her target.
As the threat from the daemons escalates and more than just the Rome gate becomes their target, will Valen be strong enough to face the fears in his heart and the ghosts of his past to claim everything he desires or will they lure him deeper under their spell and into the darkness?
As with most of Ms Heaton’s work, this book contains material of a sexual nature and some graphic violence and as such is only suitable for adults.
…So, what did I like about it?
I am already a big fan of Ms Heaton’s other series and love her writing style! Her world building is amazing; it is her mix of fantasy and reality that captures my attention right from the start. Her characters are never black or white, good or evil but a complex mix of positive and negative traits and emotions which they either have to embrace or overcome; Valen and Eva are no exception.
I have already mentioned in previous reviews how I love the way Ms Heaton makes the most explicit sexual scenes very romantic – I think she’s a very talented writer because, for me, a story is only really erotic if I’m emotionally connected to the characters involved, Ms Heaton gives her characters such depth that they do become real, but it’s not just her main characters, I find all of her characters complex, multifaceted and completely believable due to their very real human virtues and foibles even though most of them are mythical, paranormal beings; this includes our main protagonist here, Benares. We were introduced to all the Hades sons in the previous book as well as Hades and Persephone themselves and learned a bit about them all; this book allowed us a closer look at some of the brothers’ characters. I am looking forward to getting to know them all throughout this series.
This story made me giggle, growl in frustration and shed a tear or two. Of course, I got caught up with the passion (who wouldn’t *blush*) but the tender insights into both Valen’s and Eva’s doubts, their feelings of “relationship unworthiness” and the growth of their trust in each other’s love was heart-warming to read.
…So, ummm, was there anything I disliked about it?
Absolutely nothing! (Hence the 5 star review) 😉
This is the second book in a new series, and as such, you must expect a cliffhanger or two in the general story arc that the series will take. However, for those of you like me who HATE huge cliff-hangers, rest assured, Ms Heaton doesn’t leave us hanging. Yes, there are main story arc questions that are left unanswered but the paranormal romance aspect between our two main characters is happily concluded in Ms Heaton’s signature style.
…So, basically what I’m saying is…
I really loved this paranormal romance tale. I read the Greek myths when I was younger and love that the thesis for this series has come from them (with Ms Heaton’s usual twist, of course). VALEN was a great read that engaged me from the start; making me smile, cry and feel all hot and bothered with well written erotic thrills, kick arse fight scenes and tons of romantic gestures.
I would recommend this book to those who enjoy reading stories about the battle between one’s duty and heart, inner strength, the lengths we go for our siblings or those we love, and of course, it’s a must for those of us who adore tales about soul saving love.
So, has my review of VALEN (Guardians of Hades #2) sparked your interest? Just click on any of the links below to check out the book yourself, or to find out more about other books I’ve read, take a look at my profile on Goodreads.
(Of course, Valen is also available to download in e-book format from other online sites including: iBookstore, nook, KOBO, Google Play and All Romance eBooks.)
Don’t forget to visit FELICITY HEATON ‘s own little corner of the web.