Raven Wood spends her days at Florence’s Uffizi Gallery restoring fine works of Renaissance art. But an innocent walk home after an evening with friends changes her life forever. When she intervenes in the senseless beating of a homeless man, his attackers turn on her, dragging her into an alley. Raven is only semi-conscious when their assault is interrupted by a cacophony of growls followed by her attacker’s screams. Mercifully, she blacks out, but not before catching a glimpse of a shadowy figure who whispers to her…
When Raven awakes, she is inexplicably changed. She returns to the Uffizi, but no one recognizes her and more disturbingly, she discovers that she’s been absent an entire week. With no recollection of the events leading up to her disappearance, Raven also learns that her absence coincides with one of the largest robberies in Uffizi history – the theft of a set of priceless Botticelli illustrations. When the baffled police force identifies her as its prime suspect, Raven is desperate to clear her name. She seeks out one of Florence’s wealthiest and elusive men in an attempt to uncover the truth about her disappearance. Their encounter leads Raven to a dark underworld whose inhabitants kill to keep their secrets…
Sylvain Reynnard does it again! Her Gabriel’s Inferno series is an amazing mix of fine literature, well written romance, history, art and culture in one book. I seriously learned so much from that series I wasn’t quite sure she could, yet again, reach that level with her new novel but OMG am I glad this has been the last book I read in 2015.
With the Raven Sylvain Reynard takes a turn into the paranormal world to tell us a story we may have read a hundred times already: a human and a vampire falling in love. However, this book’s romance and characters differ in a big way from the typical characters in vampire/human love stories. Raven is a strong and independent character that although sometimes a bit unbelievable is very relatable. Furthermore, she challenges the classical beauty of women in romance novels by being described as overweight and having to use a cane. YAY for that! P.s.: I’m honestly so jealous of her work.
On the other side our mysterious PNR creature (whose name I will not disclose so you enjoy the whole experience) is the epitome of beauty according to social standards, he’s also very poetic and deeply flawed because lets be honest, he’s been years without really having to engage in proper social interaction, but underneath he has a kind heart. Both characters conform an unlikely love story made even better by the underlying plot. Because the book, is not only a romance but a mystery thriller that mixes the PNR fights and world with a crime committed in the “human world”. There is pain, betrayal and many persecutions through the streets of Florence.
It is a must that I point out the cameos of Julia and Gabriel for fans of the GI series that might read this book. They aren’t on much but their scenes are heart-warming. Also, as a personal thing, I have to give a shout out to my homie Ibarra of the Euskaldunak, first representation of my region that I’ve ever read on a book and the words are actually well written. Thank you.
Stars: 4.5 stars