Thursday, November 14, 2013

*REVIEW* "Gabriel's Inferno" by Sylvain Reynard

Enigmatic and sexy, Professor Gabriel Emerson is a well respected Dante specialist by day, but by night he devotes himself to an uninhibited life of pleasure. He uses his notorious good looks and sophisticated charm to gratify his every whim, but is secretly tortured by his dark past and consumed by the profound belief that he is beyond all hope of redemption. When the sweet and innocent Julia Mitchell enrolls as his graduate student, his attraction and mysterious connection to her not only jeopardizes his career, but sends him on a journey in which his past and his present collide. An intriguing and sinful exploration of seduction, forbidden love and redemption, "Gabriel's Inferno" is a captivating and wildly passionate tale of one man's escape from his own personal hell as he tries to earn the impossible...forgiveness and love.



My Thoughts

"Gabriels Inferno" was a pre-blog read for me. I actually read it well over a year ago. But when the opportunity came up to be on the blog tour for Book #3, "Gabriel's Redemption", I jumped on the chance to re-read the first two in the series. These have been, hands down, one of my top 5 series reads since I read them, and definitely one of my go-to books to recommend anyone asking!

This isn't your typical teacher-student book, so get that out of your head right now. There is much more to this story than that. Gabriel, a Dante specialist Professor, is tortured by demons of his past, and Julia, a grad student with a Dante focus, is used to her life of "just so", and not exactly looking for much otherwise, except one thing. She is school-focused, and (somewhat) content as to where her life is currently. But there is once huge secret that she has held on to...

When Gabriel and Julia first lay eyes on each other, sparks fly. But for Gabriel, not used to any sort of feeling, he immediately goes up into defensive mode, and lives up to his "obnoxious professor" status he has earned over the years. But Julia has ways of breaking through, and eventually these two try to fall into whatever type of "friendship" a student and a teacher can have. However, once Gabriel sees the innocence of Julia, he starts erecting his walls right back up. He does not feel worthy of such innocence, when he feels as though he has lived his entire life in sin.

" 'We exist under the red flag of professionalism. Professors can't be friends with their students. And even if we were just Julianne and Gabriel sharing a pizza, you shouldn't want to be friends with me. I am a magnet for sin, and you are not.' He smiled sadly. 'So you see, it's hopeless. Abandon hope all ye who enter.' "

Lines are crossed, secrets come to light, pasts are revealed, and careers could possibly be in the balance. But the pull between Gabriel and Julia might just be too hard to break apart. Now it's a matter of how to handle it, and how far to really let this go. 

" 'Feel my heartbeat.'
He frowned. 'Too fast. Like a hummingbird's wings.'
'This is what happens every time I'm near you. When you touch me. I'm the one who's overcome by you, Gabriel. Don't you know that?' "

This book sucked me in and turned me upside-down after the first chapter, and it had the same effect on me the second time around. Not only is the story intriguing, but the writing is fantastic. Sylvain Reynard has a way with words that just grabs at you. You feel like you are living the story. You hurt for the characters, you laugh with the characters, you feel like you could be one of the characters. And there are always lines in Sylvain's writing that are just beautiful, that stick with you, that makes your heart beat a little bit quicker..

"Two almost-lovers entwined beneath a dark November sky, the stars and moonlight their only illumination."

I'll be back with my review of Book 2, "Gabriel's Rapture", asap. 
Be sure to check back on the blog the first week of December for my tour stop of "Gabriel's Redemption", Book 3.

Quote that gives me chills:
" 'Beatrice?' he whispered. "



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