Publisher: Pocket Books
Publication Date: January 20, 2009
Series or Standalone: Immortals After Dark #6
Links: Amazon – Barnes & Noble – Goodreads
CW: Edging; sexual torture; incest; violence; dubious consent
You know when you get a snippet of a couple who will be the center of a future book and you think, “that’s a book I will love!” Well, that was me with Sabine and Rydstrom. I think I’ve found my new favorite book in the Immortals After Dark series. After being introduced to them in Dark Desires After Dusk, I could not wait to get their story. And boy, did their story live up to my wildest expectations.
Sabine, Queen of Illusions, captures Rydstrom Woede, the fallen king of the rage demons, to become his queen and beget his heir who is foretold to unlock great power. She keeps him on edge until he gives in to her demands. Meanwhile, Rydstrom is plotting how he’ll get his revenge on her and her half-brother Omort the Deathless while captive. As soon as he gets free, the tables turn on Sabine, and Rydstrom is determined to get his revenge. However, with each day and each sexual encounter that passes, the two cannot seem to deny some burgeoning feelings are developing between them.
Y’all this book was HOT! The power struggle between Sabine and Rydstrom, the edging, the need for revenge. Dear God, I love it. This might be the hottest book thus far in the Immortals After Dark series, and I feel like that’s saying something as Cole excels in the sexy times.
This is a true enemies-to-lovers tale. It is hate turned to love in the best possible way. Sabine and Rydstrom should not work together, but my god, do they, even if they both wished they didn’t have to have feelings for the other. Watching these two go toe-to-toe and push each other to the brink was so thrilling and engaging. I felt like I couldn’t read this story fast enough.
I was hooked on this one from the very first page. Sabine is quite possibly my favorite female character in the Immortals After Dark series. She’s more on the evil side, and honestly, she doesn’t care. She doesn’t mind violence, and I’m here for it. She revels in her power and will do what she needs to get what she wants. She’s a badass bitch, and honestly, I’d love more stories focused on villainess. She’s aligned with her half-brother, Omort the Deathless, but not by choice. He keeps her and her sister Lanthe poisoned, so she’s forced to stick around, but she’s only playing by his rules and his game until she can figure out a way to get free. He also lusts after her, but luckily her plans for Rydstrom keep him at arm’s length. She also truly deserves the title Queen of Illusions as her Sorceri powers are insanely powerful.
I enjoyed Rydstrom. We’ve gotten to know him over a few other books, and it was interesting to get into his head. He’s been trying to find his mate for years, attempting with many females, and yet fate is a cruel mistress as his fated mate is one of his enemies. He’ll do anything to take down Omort the Deathless and reclaim his throne. I feel like Sabine reinvigorates him, even if it drives him to seek out revenge against her. He’s a bit of an alpha male, but Sabine is also an alpha, so they go toe-to-toe constantly.
The journey Rydstrom and Sabine go on in their relationship is incredible. These two genuinely hate each other, and honestly, they’re a bit toxic together. And yet I cannot help but love them. This book really shows how close hate and love can be. They know they bring out the worst in each other but cannot stand to be apart. Their feelings towards each other don’t shift towards love quickly – it’s a bit of a slow build as they get to see beyond their initial feelings. It’s like a slap in the face when they both realize, “Oh hell, I love this person.” Truly such a joy to read.
Outside of everything with Sabine and Rydstrom, I really enjoyed the plot and overarching story. The pacing was spot on and I never got bored while reading this. I couldn’t wait to see how this would end. I’m also genuinely curious as to what Lothaire’s plan is. He aligns himself with Omort but breaks the covenant with him to help Rydstrom escape in exchange for Rydstrom’s promise to give Lothaire anything he wants when Lothaire asks for something in the future. Lothaire, the Enemy of Old, has now popped up in a few books. It definitely seems like he’s up to something, but we don’t know what yet.
On a side note – I also continue to love Nïx. She had me full-on laughing in this one with her obsession with Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs, and I love that she threw a raging Valkyrie and Witches party at Rydstrom’s house. She continues to be one of my favorite characters of the series, and I love her meddling.
This book won’t be for everyone, but it ticked all the right boxes for me. This is one of the best true enemies-to-lovers stories out there. It’s hot, it’s emotional, it’s a wild ride. I loved second reading it and had a massive book hangover afterward. Definitely one of my all-time favorites in the Immortals After Dark series, and I highly recommend everyone check out this series.