16 June 2012

Forgiven by Jana Oliver

For Father's Day I review the latest book in my favorite father-daughter relationship series.

Jana Oliver's third spellbinding Demon Trappers novel - following The Demon Trapper's Daughter and Soul Thief - brings all new thrills, as Riley Blackthorne takes on demons, love... and the future of the human race.

The days are growing darker for 17-year-old demon trapper Riley Blackthorne. With her father’s reanimated body back safely, Beck barely speaking to her because of a certain hunky Fallen angel, and a freshly-made deal with Lucifer, she has enough on her hands to last a normal teenage lifetime. Though she bargained with Heaven to save his life, her ex-boyfriend Simon has told the Vatican’s Demon Hunters that she’s working with Hell. So now she’s in hiding, at the top of everyone’s most-wanted list.

But it’s becoming clear that this is bigger than Riley, and rapidly getting out of control: something sinister is happening in Atlanta… or someone. The demons are working together for the first time ever and refusing to die, putting civilians in harm’s way. Riley thinks she might know who’s behind it all, but who’s going to believe her? Caught between her bargain with Heaven and her promise to Lucifer, Riley fears the final war is coming – and it may be closer than anyone thinks…

Oh, Riley! Break my heart again why don’t you!?! When I said that book 1 was a love story, not of romance but of the love between a father and a daughter, I didn’t know that it would rip my heart out and stomp on it a bit after. This book really had me feeling for Riley and her grief over losing her father. Riley has a great character arc and follows a realistic grieving process while still dealing with other plot points, and her friends are supportive without being crutches or pure plot devices. Riley’s relationship with Beck is nice, solid and grounded in something other than lust, but also realistic and only as perfect as the two people in it (which is to say: not very). Throughout everything Riley and Beck have to deal with a doozy of a plot. Things in this book go at breakneck pace, which makes the character development even more remarkable because it uses so few introspective lulls. I like how the plot ties up things from previous books and yet opens even more questions for the future. It always seemed natural and yet unexpected which is very hard to do. I burned through this book very quickly due to the pace, and now I can’t wait for book 4!

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