Upon the capture of his brother, Gryphon’s, soul, the demon hybrid Orpheus is tapped by the gods to take Gryphon’s place in the ranks of the Eternal Guardians. Although Orpheus has proven in the past to be more than the care-for-nobody that he seems, he Does Not want to be a Guardian (and he harbors secret regard for his brother), so he goes in search of the Orb of Kronos which he will use to free Gryphon’s soul from the evil goddess Atalanta. This will entail a trip to the underworld where Gryphon’s soul is bound and subjected to daily torture.
Orpheus is stalking a daughter of Zeus, whose aid he needs to fulfill his quest, when he is stymied by Skyla, a Siren that has been ordered to kill Orpheus and retrieve the orb herself. But Skyla quickly realizes that Orpheus is the reincarnation of her long-dead beloved, whom Skyla betrayed, which caused his death. She has mourned ever since. Watching Orpheus in action rocks the foundation of Skyla’s belief system, and his honorable intentions challenge her intel that he wants the orb for himself. If the gods lied about that, what else have they lied to her about? Orpheus is at once chagrined by Skyla’s interference, and grateful for her presence when they are repeatedly attacked. He also finds Skyla completely irresistible and strangely familiar. When Skyla joins in his quest, old events and new secrets threaten their growing romance.
I liked this book a lot for several reasons. Orpheus and Skyla have sex early and often, with delicious love scenes. At first raunchy, the love scenes become more tender as the characters get to know one another better and develop loving feelings. Very nice. The reader is provided with more information about the internal maneuverings of the gods, which I found edifying. While present in the earlier books in the series, the pantheon here includes the underworld as well as the gods of Olympus, with even the best of them revealing a dismaying tendency toward self-interest at all cost. Orpheus experiences a vast amount of personal growth, especially in the latter stages of the book, which has the reader rooting for him. There is a lot of struggle, Orpheus against Skyla, Orpheus and Skyla against treachery and the gods themselves, and Orpheus, Skyla and the other Eternal Guardians against Hades and his minions. This couple really deserves their HEA.
I have to thank Ms. Naughton for the vaseline on the lens during the scenes of Gryphon’s torture and humiliation at the hands of Atalanta and other denizens of the underworld. It seems to be my month for violent books, and if Gryphon’s later state is anything to go by, what happened to him must have been horrible. I suppose we’ll find out more when Gryphon receives his own story. I’m just grateful not to have read about it while it was occurring.
True to form, the writing here is impeccable. My one small complaint is how often the words “deja vu” were used. I don’t know how else the author could have described Orpheus’ feelings, his being a reincarnate, but sometimes the phrase appeared several times on a small number of pages and in one instance three times on just two. It was somewhat distracting.
With apologies to the author, I have to say that I found this book very difficult to review. I received it early, read it and set it aside for reviewing later. And even though I enjoyed it very much every time I read it, the truth is that I had to read it twice and skim it later just to get the review completed. For some reason the details of the story didn’t stick with me at all, even down to the participant’s names. The fact that it was so forgettable is what kept Enraptured from receiving a B+ or even better grade.