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Expected Release Date: July 26, 2011
Publisher: Harlequin
Imprint: Nocturne
Author’s Website: http://www.michelehauf.com/
My Source for This Book: Netgalley
Part of a Series: Yes, Book 3, Of Angels and Demons
Series Best Read In Order: Yes
Steam Level: Steamy

Official Blurb:

As a muse, Cassandra Stevens had been warned of the Fallen angel who’d one day come to impregnate her
with a nephilim, an evil offspring. But no one could have foreseen that Samandriel—the raven-haired, silver-winged Fallen one—would sweep her off her feet.

Against all good sense, Sam stirred her suppressed desires, yet for her own sake she dared not arouse his carnal ones. For Sam had been summoned to earth by a dark vampire lord. And more Fallen were on their way. Despite the dangers, Cassandra needed Sam by her side, for only together could they prevent the apocalypse that had been unleashed… 

Cassandra is a Muse — the one woman on earth with whom a particular Fallen Angel can sire a nephilim, an abomination that can bring about the world’s destruction.   Having known of her destiny her entire life, she’s extensively trained in self defense, determined to be able to protect herself when the evil Fallen angel comes after her.

However, when the day finally comes, she discovers that Samandriel — the oh-so-sexy Fallen angel whose sigil matches her own — is nothing like the evil rapist she’s been taught to expect, and can’t help but feel an immediate connection and attraction.

However, another muse was not so lucky with her Fallen angel, and soon evil incarnate walks the earth — and it’s up to Sam and Cassandra to stop it.

What Worked For Me:

  • I really enjoyed the mythology as a whole.  Fallen angels have a glass heart which traps the souls of those humans that they first taught their craft to (silversmithing, iron works, etc.). Each Fallen Angel can experience sex with human women, but only one woman (their muse) is destined to be the one they not only receive the greatest pleasure from, but also with whom they can create the Nephilim.  There are demons whose sole purpose is to destroy the Fallen, and these demons were actually Fallen themselves who were taken before their feet hit the earth and sent to the Below (hell).  The Great Flood resulted in all Fallen being swept from the earth and imprisoned. All of these things were very fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable.
  • Sam was delicious. A curious blend of arrogance and innocence, not to mention being incredibly hot and having silver wings, he was absolutely wonderful.

What Didn’t Work For Me:

  •  I can’t help but notice that the connection between Sam and Cassandra feels… forced.  Yes, they’re “destined” for each other, and of course they find each other attractive, but I never felt like there was truly more than that.
  • While this story worked okay as a standalone, it was obvious from the very beginning that I was so missing something.  I hadn’t realized that this was a part of a series when I picked it up, and was left scratching my head at times as to a lot of the nuances and details that I’d obviously missed from previous novels.
  • The pet names that Sam kept coming up with for Cassandra got annoying after a while.  Plus, he was a virgin, and yet was as arrogant as any player could ever hope to be. Something about that simply didn’t sit well with me.
  • Vampires have their hands on a book that could bring about the end of the world.  A Nephilim has been created and is wreaking havoc in Berlin.  More Fallen Angels have been summoned, and there’s a gathering of muses who need your protection. What do you do? Oh yeah, you stop to make out or have sex. Sure. Because that makes sense.
  • Even though it is logical for a book with Fallen Angels to have some discourse on G-d, I admit it made me uncomfortable to have the Creator not be all-powerful in this book.  That’s my own personal quirk, so other readers might not be bothered by this, but I definitely was.
I really wavered hard with this rating. I couldn’t decide if it was 2.5 or 3 stars. Looking strictly at all my negative points, I was definitely leaning towards the 2.5, but when I think about how much I enjoyed the mythology behind the narrative, I think I am going to have to settle with a 3/5.
There was also a Nocturne Bites short story at the end that tells Coco and Zane’s story. That rated a 1.5/5 for me, mainly because of the first-person narrative that kept switching back and forth between Coco and Zane with no warning.  The storyline itself was fine, and the sex was wonderfully hot,  just the shifting POV was flat out awful.