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Review: Azrael’s Light by Amy J. Hawthorn

Azrael's LightPublisher: Siren
Publication date: out now
How I got this book: Ebook from author

Azrael longs for a vacation that’s over two hundred years late. Overworked and heartsick, he’s desperate for peace and solitude.
Diane, a former goddess, wants nothing to do with the immortal world or its inhabitants. She’s living on Earth, posing as a bartender and couldn’t be more content. That is, until a tall, dark, and dangerous Soul Runner storms in and turns her world upside down.
Azrael’s confused by a beautiful little barmaid who appears to be human, but something’s not quite right. He doesn’t know which frustrates him more, the fact that he doesn’t know who or what she is or that she’s pulling at his heartstrings with her stubborn chin and the sexiest set of eyes he’s ever seen.
But it might not matter when they are called on to prevent the collapse of Unearth and find Lucifer’s lost daughter. Coming from opposite realms with opposing needs, will the two immortals find more than they bargained for?

Blurb taken from Author’s Website.

Magic, adventure, and love are the stuff that a good paranormal romance is made of, and Azrael’s Light did not disappoint. The characters were enjoyable and the dialogue quite witty, but I did have some trouble following along which detracted from my overall enjoyment of the book. But onward!

I think that my difficulty with this book were the first few chapters. We were dumped right in to the story, and with many books that are a series first, there was a great deal of explaining that needed to be done. We learn, for example, that Azrael is a Soul Runner, someone who knows exactly when someone is going to die. he is there, ushering their souls to Heaven or Hell, and this work has taken a toll. There is Earth, the planet that we all know and love, and then there is Unearth, which is the world of gods and goddesses. Shout out to Greek mythology–this author draws from that liberally and it is something that I haven’t seen very much of, so I really loved it. I always loved mythology when we got to that part of English class, and I enjoyed how she intricately weaved parts of that and religious references in to her writing and yet made them vibrant and with their own quirks.

The book starts off with Azrael in the middle of a vacation that he has more than earned. he is under a huge emotional toll since he has to usher souls to their final destination. He is also grieving due to an accident that happens with his apprentice and the burden weighs heavily on him. His solitude is interrupted when Lilith, the wife of Lucifer, comes to tell him that their daughter is missing. I love how utterly annoyed he was by having to deal with someone that he loathed so much, yet he knew that he needed to do the right thing.

His search leads him to a bar where he meets Diane. Immediately, he tries to get all Alpha, but when he sees that Diane is not backing down, he is not only perplexed but full of admiration and worry. He takes his job very seriously, and he really just wants to find Lucifer’s daughter and get her home so that he can finish that much-needed vacation.

Azrael is the kind of hero I absolutely adore. He is alpha without being an Alpha-hole, and is very much self-aware. He doesn’t always like the things that he does, but he does his job with integrity. He might try to push, but when someone worthy of him pushes back, he goes all melty inside. It is totally adorable and I love him!

Diane is a former goddess and also Lilith’s twin sister. When she sees her niece, lucifer’s daughter alia, she knows that something is wrong but she doesn’t know exactly what it is. She recognizes Azrael for what he is, and mama-bear instincts activate immediately. She is a spitfire and someone who is unafraid to stand her ground. it doesn’t matter that she has no powers, there’s no way that she’s going to let Azrael know anything about Alia until she gets to the bottom of what’s going on. Unfortunately, such ideas are great in thought but not always in its execution.

Diane was so fun for me to read. She has been living among mortals for a very long time. She owns a business and cares about her employees. She has a huge heart and reaches out to everyone around her in her desire to help. She knows that there are bad things afoot, and even though she does not have the power to stop them, she still cares. While she definitely butts heads with Azrael and isn’t about to let him walk in to danger on his own, she doesn’t take forever to decide that she wants to work with him.

Let’s talk about Diane and Azrael together. Woo boy, did they have some off-the-charts chemistry. It has been a while since I have read an erotic-centric romance. One of the reasons why I have shied away from them of late is because at times, there is way too much sex and only a little bit of substance. The sex scenes in this book were emotionally-charged and desperate. Azrael has that silky purr dominant streak that I love to read about in heroes. he cared for Diane without understanding why, and when he wanted something, he wasn’t above playing a little dirty with his touch. I hate even calling them sex scenes, because even before they realized that they loved each other, it was much more than desire that spurred them on. Their attraction was palpable. Both of these people were lonely, and watching them find each other was a real treat.

While there was mistrust at first, I am so glad that they didn’t take seventy percent of the book to finally start working together. Diane and Azrael made an incredible team. They didn’t back down from anything or hem and haw about their attraction either. They both knew what the other wanted even if they didn’t believe that it was possible.

While I truly enjoyed Diane and Azrael, I wish we would have had more time with them as a center stage couple. There were other characters that we ended up meeting in the course of the story, and while I liked them, the switch between settings and other people felt disjointed and abrupt. While the attraction between main characters was intense, I felt like they didn’t have enough time to really be together. I wanted more Azrael and Diane time and got tired of others stealing the show.

Sometimes the book moved too fast for me. I would read about one thing and then all of a sudden there was something else going on entirely. I could have used a little less frantically trying to figure out what was going on and a lot more continuity with our hero and heroine. But, since I’m talking about other people, could we please, please! have a story about Alice and Brick? Alia and her lost love? Cyril? Lucifer and Lilith, because I know that had to be a hot mess in terms of dating.

I wish that the conflict would have been a little sharper, a little more suspenseful. The resolution felt really rushed to me, but I can’t complain too much. I love it when people get what’s coming to them.

While Azrael’s Light suffers from the information dumping and abrupt changes in the first few chapters, it is well worth the read. It is a fun, sexy romp in two worlds with engaging characters. There are some loose threads toward the end of the novel, but I am hooked. I need to know that people are going to be okay. I need to know what happens to everybody. While we didn’t get the amount of hero and heroine time I would have liked, I still felt as though I got to know them. I hope that we’ll get to see more of Azrael and Diane in future books. I give Azrael’s Light a B and I cannot wait until the next book comes out.

2 replies on “Review: Azrael’s Light by Amy J. Hawthorn”

I tried to read this review, but got hung up on Diane who works at a bar. What, does she sometimes just want to go where everybody knows her name? Also there’s a secondary character named Brick? I know there are real people with that name, but I just can’t take it seriously.

Glad you liked the book, though.

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