To sum it up:
(Zarek's Point of View)
A soulless guardian who stands between mankind and those who would see
mankind destroyed. Yeah, right. The only part of that Code of Honor I
got was eternity and solitude.
Insanity: A condition many say I
suffer from after being alone for so long. But I don't suffer from my
insanity- I enjoy every minute of it.
Trust: I can't trust
anyone... not even myself. The only thing I trust in is my ability to do
the wrong thing in any situation and to hurt anyone who gets in my way.
I endured a lifetime as a Roman slave, and 900 years as an exiled
Dark-Hunter. Now I'm tired of enduring. I want the truth about what
happened the night I was exiled- I have nothing to lose and everything
Astrid (Greek, meaning star): An exceptional woman who
can see straight to the truth. Brave and strong, she is a point of light
in the darkness. She touches me and I tremble. She smiles and my cold
Zarek: They say even the most damned man can be
forgiven. I never believed that until the night Astrid opened her door
to me and made this feral beast want to be human again. Made me want to
love and be loved. But how can an ex-slave whose soul is owned by a
Greek goddess ever dream of touching, let alone holding, a fiery star?
(Emilia Clarke really came to mind when I thought of Astrid's
character. This picture my be a little cartoon-ish, but you get the
(Matthias Streitwieser works for me when it comes to Zarek's character-
of course I picture Zarek with longer hair... but who can beat a face
I have to be honest- the only reason I even started reading this book was for three reasons:
My friend Lindsay and I had a deal that if she’s going to read a book
of my choice all the way through until the end, that I was too. (And
this was the book she picked.)
2. Lindsay said the hero, Zarek was a complete and total jerk.
Lindsay also told me that the heroine wasn’t an annoying smart-mouth
that had a “don’t-mess-with-me-because-I-don’t-need-anyone” attitude… I
just hate that.
Since this isn’t the first book in the
series, it took me a good fifty pages or so to really get into it. All
of the characters that were introduced had me feeling a little lost,
since I had no background knowledge on this series- but eventually, the
story took off!
Zarek on the other hand was a jerk with a capital “J!” *sigh*
...for the first time in his life, someone tempted him more than any
other person in the world ever has. Astrid had a vulnerability about her
that brought out all of Zarek’s protective instincts... it was her, who
had him questioning something as simple as what it would feel like to
just be held. My heart broke for the tortured hero- truly, it did. He
was alone in the world, and the idea of someone caring about him and
whether he lived or died was a very foreign thing for him. He always
tried to belong, but it never worked for him; he was an outsider and
that was all he knew in the world. He lived in constant pain and
loneliness, letting hatred guide everything he said or did. My heart
ached for the boy he once was... the boy who should have always been
loved- instead, he had grown into a bitter and angry man. But who could
have blamed him, when all he’d ever been shown was contempt? I just
wanted to hug the man! When I say my heart literally broke for Zarek, I
mean that I literally cried while reading every page that was filled
with his mistreatment. He might have had a frightening presence, but he
did kind things that were at odds with his surliness- and those were the
times that had me falling more and more in love with him.
is definitely a favorite heroine of mine. She saw what was inside
Zarek… the vulnerability. She seemed to be the only one who truly
understood the man that he didn’t dare show anyone else. It was she, who
wanted to ease his suffering. I sympathized with her so much, for just
wanting to take Zarek’s pain away. Anyone in her shoes and who had a
heart, would have wanted to do the very same thing.
there were a lot of secondary characters, so many times I felt it hard
to keep up- of course, that’s through no fault but my own, since I
started the series with this book. However, for anyone planning to read
this book out of order, I would definitely make sure you have someone
you can talk with if you have any questions- I would have been
completely lost during certain part of the story without Lindsay’s help!
(Thank goodness for awesome friends and buddy reads!) One thing that I
absolutely loved was the interactions between Sasha and Zarek, as well
as the brief glimpses we got of Ash and Simi- It definitely added a
lighter touch to the novel, but didn’t take away from the emotional
intensity of the book.
This is definitely a story of emotion,
change and forgiveness. Zarek’s story touched me like no other book has…
my heart physically hurt for him and the pain he went through during
his life. Sherrilyn Kenyon seriously did a fantastic job with this book,
and I’m happy to say that it won’t be my last! I may receive some
negative feed-back once you read but I’m fixing to say… but dare I say
bragging about my love for another hero in Zarek’s review may not be the
best and smartest idea, but the brief glimpses I got of Ash in this
story, definitely makes me want to go out and buy his book! *sigh*