Friday, February 20, 2015

#Review: Ember by Rachel Van Dyken - 4.5 Wine Glasses

23269850Title: Ember 
Series: Eagle Elite #5
Author: Rachel Van Dyken
Publication: February 19th 2015
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Source: Publicist
Reviewer: Crystal
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Wine Glasses

I am a Killer. A Rapist. A Monster.
I know only pain and survival. 
That is until the Cappo's sister walked into my life. 
And changed everything.

She's a light who makes my darkness darker, her smile makes my heart turn to ice, and I can't escape the fear her seductive looks instill--knowing it's only a matter of time before I fail--again, and take her for myself.
This is the story of my redemption. 
But it's not pretty...I died, and now I'm alive, but not living, breathing but not surviving. I am Phoenix De Lange, son to a murdered mob boss, estranged brother, horrible friend, monster in the making, newest leader to one of the most powerful families in the Cosa Nostra.
And I will have my vengeance.
Or die trying.
I am Phoenix De Lange. 
Death is all I know. 
Until she offers me a piece of life--I can't resist taking.

Crystal's Thoughts:
Rachel Van Dyken captivates and excites with the newest addition in her new adult dark mafia romance series, Ember!

Phoenix De Lange is the epitome of the living dead. After surviving the horrific things not only his father did, but he joined in as well, Phoenix takes no pleasure in life. Going so far as to only eat tasteless items, and just enough to survive on. But that all changes when Bee Campisi walks through the door. Phoenix knows that he should keep his hands off her. Not only because they are tainted with evil, but because she is the Cappo's sister. His memories and guilt might solve that problem for him though, because every-time she rubs her tempting body against him he feels sick from the deluge of faces past that bombard his mind. When he's assigned to protect her though, Bee might just push him to the edge. She doesn't know his past and only see's his present. With her inner light and innocence, Phoenix begins to dream of a different future. Is there any hope of redemption for a beast? 

If you're already a fan of the Eagle Elite series, then you understand my trepidation going into Phoenix's story. Not many people could find redemption for such an apparently evil character, but Rachel Van Dyken masterfully pulls it off. Phoenix lives in darkness and embraces it, accepting it as just punishment for the heinous acts he committed. But Bee is all light, and just what Phoenix needed. Ember was a story of struggle, and if not forgiveness - acceptance. I loved how though Bee didn't overlook Phoenix's past, she focused on the person he is today and forced his friends to as well. They balanced each other out perfectly. 

You can't have a mafia story with out danger, intrigue and betrayal. The plot was fast paced with action seamlessly woven into the romance. The suspense kept me on my toes throughout, never knowing what was going to happen next. Phoenix had more then a few tricks up his sleeve when it came down to it, finally stepping into the shoes of Boss. We also return to the school, which adds a whole new facet to the story and new characters. Are they friend or foe though? You never know at Eagle Elite!

Ember can technically be read as a stand-alone. The author does give an overview of Phoenix's past through some evil baddie's actions and Phoenix himself but if you want the full story of what made Phoenix the man he is in Ember, start at the beginning. He plays a big part in Trace and Nixon's story and the series as a whole is exceptional. Reading order can be found below. If you like your romance a little dark with plenty of action and suspense to keep you glued to the pages then you'll want to pick up Ember today! 

Reading Order:
Enchant (Eagle Elite, #0.5) - Amazon 
Elite (Eagle Elite, #1) - Amazon 
Enforce (Eagle Elite, #1.5) - Amazon 
Evoke (Eagle Elite, #1.6) - Short Story from Author
Elect (Eagle Elite, #2) - Review | Amazon 
Entice (Eagle Elite, #3) - Review | Amazon
Elicit (Eagle Elite, #4) - Review | Amazon 
Enamor (Eagle Elite, #4.5) - Short Story found in the back of Elicit
Ember (Eagle Elite, #5) 

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