by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Mass Market Paperback, 362 pages
Published December 1st 2003 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
Zarek's Point of View:Goodreads
Dark-Hunter: 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.
Truth: 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 to gain.
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 heart shatters.
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?
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Emotional and heart-rending do not begin to describe Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dance with the Devil.
We were first introduced to the dark and tortured character of Zarek in the last DH installment, Night Embrace where he didn't make too many friends but Acheron still held hope for him. In Dance with the Devil, Zarek is leaving New Orleans and returning home to Alaska when Artemis sends out a Justice Nymph to judge him, and ultimately decide his fate. Astride, baby sister of the Fates, must judge Zarek to be redeemable or not, to live or die. But while judging, Astrid is blind, so that she can judge a person on their actions alone. At first Astrid perceives what everyone else does in Zarek, a cold and seemingly emotionless man without compassion, only out for himself and possibly insane. But the more time Astrid spends with Zarek the more she comes to realize that though he may longer bare scars on the outside they are still deeply imbedded within. Zarek has a heart-breaking past of a slave used and abused by those that should have protected and cherished him the most. But can he move past that and be saved? Zarek and Astrid’s relationship progress at a natural pace that fit each character well. They both are reluctant to trust another; Zarek because of his past as a human and Astrid because of her time as a Justice Nymph. She has yet to find a person judged that is truly innocent. Will Zarek be the first?
I absolutely adored all of the Little Prince references in Dance with the Devil; it took me back to my childhood and was a nice touch that cemented these characters in my heart even more. There wasn’t anything that I didn’t like about Zarek and Astrid, the whole cast of characters in Dance with the Devil captivate. Sasha, Astrid’s wolfish best friend added fun, dry humor to the storyline that made me giggle and Zarek touched my heart. If you’re prone to crying during tormented stories like these then have you tissues ready! Readers also get a glimpse into Acheron and Artemis’ relationship and it ain’t pretty my friends; I’m with Simi on this one. Can someone please kill the heifer goddess? The ending was wonderfully weaved together and Zarek realizes that he was never truly alone, there were always people out there that cared about his fate.
Acheron, oh Acherone…how can you not love the Dark Hunter, God, all powerful male? He is up there with Vishous and Bones in my book and is currently lounging in my harem of book boyfriend with them. ;)
If you fell in love with Zsadist from J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood then you will no doubt fall in love with Zarek just as easily! Sherrilyn Kenyon weaves a world that will stick with you well after finishing any of her Dark Hunter books, there is a reason this series has such a huge fan base!
Rating: 5 Wine Glasses - A toast to absolute perfection!