Series: Dark-Hunters #18
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Published by St. Martin's Press
Released on November 2, 2008
Seeing Stryker’s former wife kick his ass. Yep, that was the highlight of the story for me.
Stryker has been the proverbial pain in the ass to everyone in this series. Seriously! I know he had daddy issues (son of the God Apollo) and he is cursed to steal souls to continue to live. Watching his children and grandchildren die by either violence or getting to their 27th birthday. It’s a crappy deal he was given in life, but really he wants vengeance on three people. One his father, Apollo. Two Acheron, who leads the Dark-Hunters and thwarts Stryker’s every plan. Three, Nick because Nick killed his Stryker’s evil half-sister and betrayed Stryker by helping the Dark-Hunters.
But this delve back a little into Stryker’s history to see how he got this way. At the young age of 14 or 15, he met a lovely maiden Zephyra. She is the only one who brought him peace and love and he adored her with everything in him. His father, Apollo, is a big pain in the ass and threatens to have Zephyra beaten and raped if Stryker didn’t end his marriage to her. Zephyra tells him she is pregnant before all of this throws down, but when Stryker ends it all, she tells him she lost the baby. Leaving her money, he hurts her emotionally, but she also hurts back. While she is a gentle loving soul, this does her in by leaps and bounds. Apollo remarries and has many children, but when Apollo curses the Apollites, him as well as his offspring are cursed to die a painful death on their 27th birthday.
Well, Stryker doesn’t go down without a fight. Apollymi has a female boner for killing Apollo after what he did to her son, Acheron. She emotionally adopts Stryker in a way and teaches him how to steal souls to live past his 27th birthday. Some of his children choose not to become Daimons and die. Some become Daimons and live for a while, but Urian is the last child left to Stryker and even Stryker attempts to kill him.
Back to present day….
With nothing much left to live for he unleashes a warrior of old to kill Acheron and Nick while still hoping to find a way to kill Apollo. Apollymi and Stryker aren’t on very good terms any more since Stryker keeps attempting to kill her son. But when Stryker unleashes the power, he sets up his own demise, which really he doesn’t care about if he can also take down his enemies with him.
Artemis (good ole bitchy Arty), sends an assassin to kill Stryker and who should it be? Zephyra, his long lost wife he ditched on his father’s orders. Stryker’s blood boils with fiery passion as he sees the one woman he loved above all trying to kill him. She’s not the sweet young maiden he married, but a vengeful warrior out to kill the one man who broke her heart.
You see a good side of Stryker. Really in some ways he is honorable in that he doesn’t believe in torture. If he wants to kill you, he does. He loves his children he lost and keeps memories of them in his nightstand along with mementos of his first wife. He feels conflicted on attempting to kill Urian. One as a father his killed is last living child, but also as a betrayed leader on what he felt Urain did behind his back.
Faced with the power he unleashed, Stryker has unleashed something that may take the one woman he loves away from him.
Zephyra on the other hand has had eleven thousand years to stew over being dumped by the one man who she loved more than life. Life isn’t so nice to her after Stryker leaves and she kept a vital secret from him. After all that time, she isn’t really into getting back together and she isn’t the nice little lady he left behind any more. Time has toughened her with tragedies and she has made deals to save herself. So good boy Stryker can jus screw himself.
This was a morbid meeting of two lovers gone wrong. They aren’t the same people by any stretch any more and now they have done things they can’t take back. Hardened, wronged and not forgiving, these two battle to the end of the story. Do I like them any more after their story? Not really. They deserve whatever Hell Kenyon decides to give them. They are pretty selfish thinking of only their own race. I don’t think I can ever forgive a man who would kill his own living son.
But what makes this story so much better is Stryker has to trust Acheron and Nick to get through the big bad in the end. That doesn’t mean they won’t go at it again, just they have to face a temporary truce for the bigger picture. Something is also revealed to the Daimons, that will change fights in the future. Oh, boy there was a loop hole in this one.
So while it was an addition to the Dark-Hunter series, I could have done without Stryker finding love while still raining down terror on humans. Asshole.
Books ‘N Tunes
I kind of picked a song about not being satisfied…here’s Aranda with the song Satisfied.
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