Ajax Petrakos died at the Battle of Thermopylae with his Spartan brethren. Ares, the god of war, offered immortality to seven of the fallen soldiers in exchange for their service. It seemed like a good idea at the time, but over two thousand years later, Ajax doubts his decision. The only thing that keeps him going is the promise of Shay Angel, his destined mate.
Shay Angel is your normal, wholesome, southern girl. She has a steady job, a strong family, and the ability to see demons. It’s an ability that is normally passed down to the men in her family – men who have hunted demons for generations, men who refuse to tell her what her purpose is in this whole crazy demonic business. Even after she’s attacked by an ancient evil in the cemetery and saved by a beautiful winged being, her brothers refuse to tell her what part she has to play. Soon the choice will no longer be theirs to make. The demons know who she is and they won’t stop until they have her.
If the Dark Hunter series by Sherrilyn Kenyon and the movie 300 were combined in a scientific experiement, it would be Red Fire by Deidre Knight. It was a nice mixture of devastating violence, eternal love, and ancient lore, earning 3.5 tombstones.
The beginning was a little rocky, both in plot and characterization. Ajax went from a bad-slang swinging playboy to a loving immortal in just a few pages, and the fact that his being a Spartan was his big, horrifying secret didn’t ring as genuine. The pinnacle, though, was when he proclaimed, “I, Ajax Petrakos, am a Spartan!” in a fashion befitting Gerard Butler himself. I fully expected someone to get kicked into a giant hole while he roared in victory.
Rocky beginning aside, I enjoyed Jax and Shay’s journey to find love and battle demons. The inclusion of Jax’s servant, River, was a stroke of genius, as was the role of the Oracle. That blue-haired, giddy daughter of Delphi acted as the perfect comic relief while upping the stakes in the battle of good versus evil.
- Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
- Publisher: Signet (October 7, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0451225384
- ISBN-13: 978-0451225382