Title: Shaedes of Gray
Author: Amanda Bonilla
Genre: Urban Fantasy Romance
Series: Shaede Assassin (Book1)
Publication Date: December 6, 2011
Format: Paperback, 336 Pages
ISBN-10: 0451235290 (Penguin/Signet)
ISBN-13: 978-0451235299 (Penguin/Signet)
Reviewed by: Kiwi
In the shadows of the night, Darian has lived alone for almost a century. Made and abandoned by her former love, Darian is the last of her kind-an immortal Shaede who can slip into darkness as easily as breathing. With no one else to rely on, she has taught herself how to survive, using her unique skills to become a deadly assassin.
When Darian’s next mark turns out to be Xander Peck, King of the Shaede Nation, her whole worldview is thrown into question. Darian begins to wonder if she’s taken on more than her conscience will allow. But a good assassin never leaves a job unfinished…
Quick & Dirty: An original and complex urban fantasy romance.
Opening Sentence: I live in the gray.
When the story begins, we meet Darian, a shaede, and as she believes, the last of her kind. A shaede, in this series, is an immortal (well, immortal as any other almost human is) who can physically blend her body in with the darkness. Her gift also comes with some heightened senses, other superhuman abilities and a nose for sniffing out other immortals. Darian has been trained by her maker, and once beloved Azriel, to act as an assassin, taking on contracts from the hot, and also immortal, Tyler. Tyler, my ladies, is of the Jinn species, or loosely translated, he’s a genie. A genie, ladies! One whom has bonded himself to Darian and will grant her every (well almost every) wish. Phew, is it hot in here J
When Tyler takes on another contract and hires out Darian; neither one of them realize their lives are about to change dramatically. You see, the contract is to kill none other than the King of the Shaede Nation. Imagine her surprise when she discovers not only is she not alone, but there are a slew of other immortal races just hanging out there among the rest of us. Alas, this hit is just a sham, a way to bring Darian so she can serve her king’s actual needs to kill his most powerful rival, who also happens to be his son, none other than…wait for it….why, it’s Azriel of course. Apparently, in order to die, a shaede must be taken out by either a natural enemy, or someone from his own family tree. Harsh!
So, now we find Darian being trained to fight immortals, in love with a genie, and being sought after by her king, who in a strange way is kind of like her grandfather. But what she doesn’t know, and some others definitely do, is that there is something special about our Darian, something not even they have ever seen. But, as with most paranormal type things, with great power comes great danger and she must fight for her life, again and again, and in the end it is the fate of an entire species she carries on her shoulders.
This book was thrilling, like an amusement park ride I didn’t want to get off of. Seriously, it was after one in the morning. I was tired. My oldest bratlet’s alarm goes off at 6:30. Did I mention I was tired? Not many books grab a reader from the very beginning, and keep them like this all the way through. I can’t wait to read the next installment, Blood Before Sunrise.
“You’re a pretty Shaede,” she said before twirling in a circle. “Wanna dance?”
I wondered if I camr across as the kind of girl who let loose on the dance floor. She looked me up and down and gave a small shrug of her tiny shoulders. “No, but I thought I’d ask anyway.”
Whoa. That’s new. “I guess people have to be pretty careful around you, don’t they?”
“What do you mean?” Blondie replied, her eyes drifting shut again. “Because I can hear your thoughts?”
“Uh, yeah.” I watched her sway and twirl, and the strange flow of air that came off her sort of lulled me, momentarily confusing my purpose in being there. I blinked back a sudden wave of lethargy and tapped her shoulder again.
“I know you’re, um, busy dancing and all, but someone said you might have some information on where I can find the Enphigmalé.”
She twirled again before peeking out at me through one eye. “When night becomes day and day becomes night, the nine will come to claim their right. When darkest soul meets lightest love, her blood will play creator’s role, and from stone release their souls.”
I didn’t expect her to go all rhyming and poetic on me. Not to mention that none of what she said made an ounce of sense. She spun again and ignored me completely while the music absorbed her attention. “You want to elaborate on that?” I asked, grabbing her by her arms to stop her. I was getting seasick from all the rocking.
“Marked as creator, but no one’s maker. No mother, no father, they surely will take her,” Sylph Girl said.
“What are you talking about? The Enphigmalé? Whose souls?” I gave her a little shake. “Hey snap out of it! What the hell are you talking about?”
Her head lolled back and a deep, throaty laugh bubbled up through her mouth. It drew the attention of a small group, and one of the guys came to see what was so funny.
“You girls want to go to a party?” he asked.
The Sylph smiled and broke free from my grasp, turning to the guy, who would’ve been better off minding his own business. She pulled him down for a kiss, which didn’t get weird until he started thrashing and fighting to get free. You wouldn’t think something that little would be so strong. But all ninety-eight-or-so pounds of her held on to that big guy, and she kept a lip-lock on him like a sailor home o n leave. His efforts became weak, and then she just let him go. He fell to the floor, dead.
“That was fun,” she said with a giggle…
The Shaede Assassin Series:
FTC Advisory: Penguin/Signet provided me with a copy of Shaedes of Gray. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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