Merrimon Book Reviews

From Merrimon Book Reviews
The Redeeming

by Jennifer Ashley
Publisher: Love Spell (2008)

After 700 years of torture and captivity, the Immortal Tain is back. Born from a goddess and a human, Tain had protected the earth from the Old Ones, powerful vampires and demons. With the help of Samantha, Tain escaped the Old One Kekhsut, after endless torture, a torture that inspired him to try to end the world to relieve the pain. Within him lives a memory of darkness, so deep within himself, that Tain is not the man he once was. Samantha may have helped restore his freedom back then, but can she help him discover love, a love that heals rather than destroys? On assignment with the paranormal division of the LAPD, Samantha sits in Merrick's, a demon bar, trying to bait the owner into offering her Mindglow, a drug used by lesser demons to render their victims helpless to resist the taking of their life essence. Into the bar walks Tain with plans of his own, not only interrupting her undercover operation but setting off a powerful attraction in Samantha. Tain seeks her help. Four demon prostitutes have gone missing. The nature of the disappearances makes Tain suspect some kind of anomaly in the system, a threat more serious than isolated crimes or the girls disappearing of their own free will. Together Tain and Samantha must work together on a mission to discover whether these disappearances are crimes, and if so, the culprit. Together, they must face warring demon clans, anti-demon hater groups, an encounter with a clan matriarch and dangerous adventures at ever corner.

Jennifer Ashley's fifth book in the series, IMMORTALS: THE REDEEMING is packed full of passion, dynamic action, and suspenseful clues as Tain and Samantha uncover more and more layers of connections beneath the initial mystery. Samantha is the perfect romance heroine for Tain. Intelligent, yet patient and accustomed to working within the law rather than acting on impulse to achieve justice, she alone has the inner strength to bring Tain back, to heal the healer himself deep from within. Tain, an Immortal, is none too fond of demons after being captive to one, but something about Samantha, half demon and half human, is different. As they work together, Samantha's life opens up in ways she never expected. Jennifer Ashley writes an emotional moving romance that brings two opposing forces, a half-demon and an Immortal together, so that each comes into the richness of their being. Tain and Samantha's love transforms them on the deepest level and puts choices before them that call them from within to be what they are meant to be. Jennifer Ashley presents a detailed emotional vision as fate and free will play out in her characters' lives.

IMMORTALS: THE REDEEMING is my kind of book! With its intricate world building, rich characters, universal moral codes set within a new unfamiliar environment, and an opposites-attract romance that enlarges the characters as individuals through love, IMMORTALS: THE REDEEMING has all the fine ingredients that make me love the paranormal genre itself. The background history of the demon world and the look at the changes in the demon world as modernity challenges traditional, conservative demon beliefs add a richness and depth to this romance that creates a legendary history. The world building is intricate and beautifully constructed --- and revealed in just the right measure throughout the story. Jennifer Ashley creates a beautiful balance in her portrayal of life and death magic in an intricate network of beings and their connections to one another. IMMORTALS: THE REDEEMING with its fine portraits of fanatical villains upped the level of suspense with each page. The careful plotting of clues kept me guessing (and glued to the pages!) until the very end with a trail of exciting twists. I never suspected who was behind everything, and yet, the trail made perfect sense. THE IMMORTALS are back, and does this one ever captivate!

Personal Notes
Jennifer Ashley's world builds on a notion of death and life magic, darkness and light. She paints a beautiful and intricate framework to explore the notion of balance, an idea that is picked up in the next book. The strains of fanaticism that motivate some of her characters chill as the reader sees extremism in a fantasy world. Jennifer Ashley explores universal moral codes in an unfamiliar world, one that has meaning but is not narrowly confined to our reality. I love this kind of framework in a paranormal romance and Jennifer Ashley's presentation is so rich that I have put this book not only on my keeper shelf, but on the shelf of books I know I will want to reread.

Reviewed by Merrimon, Merrimon Book Reviews

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Copyright Merrimon Crawford  2008  All Rights Reserved