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Sacrificed in Shadow by SM Reine
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Sacrificed in Shadow

by SM Reine

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A lot has changed in Elise’s life and she still has a lot to learn about exactly what she is – but one thing there’s no doubt about id how powerful and dangerous she has become. Certainly she’s more than a match for a rogue werewolf which small-town deputy Lincoln Marshall believes is plaguing his home

But when she hears the list of victims she’s intrigued – because one is a girl from several years ago she failed to save. Someone is trying to lure her to this town and she means to find out who and why. And why they’re trying to frame the country’s last werewolf pack for murder.

This book had an impossible task. This is a brand new series but is taking the existing vast and rich world that all of S.M. Reine’s books take place in and it’s taking Elise as the protagonist – a character who has already been the centre of the Descent Series. Over the course of that series, a lot has happened to Elise – and that’s a massive understatement. Her experiences with angels, demons, in Hell and Heaven, with Adam and Eve and God and her best friend/ally/lover/guardian James and so much else are deep, complicated and incredibly involved. Elise has been through a lot that has created an extremely full and complicated character – especially in terms of her magic and just what she is; there’s such a lot there. On top of that there’s her complicated history with the multiple people in her life she has a lot of history with – and all that history is shown in their interactions.

So this highly developed character with this incredibly epic history had to be introduced/recapped along with a rich and huge world that had already been explored by multiple series all had to be fit into this one book along with a story… it was such a tall order that I put off reading this book, thinking I couldn’t tackle it until I’d finished the Descent Series and maybe some of the other series set in the same world. Yet it worked. This book is genuinely stand alone. I’m sure the other series will add to Elise’s backstory – but I haven’t finished the Descent Series and could still follow her rich backstory and understand all the complexities that go into making her her.

All of this world building and character development was fit into the book in a very natural and flowing fashion. I never felt there was a lot of convoluted infodumping, nor a lot of clumsy exposition, the pacing wasn’t bogged down by conveying all of this vast information but nor where there any holes that made it impossible to follow the story or Elise’s nature or the huge world we have here. And considering how much there is to squeeze in there, that is really really impressive; I’ve seen authors badly fail having to convey a tenth of the information.

On top of that the story is surprisingly involved. Again, it wouldn’t surprise me if the first book in a series was relatively simple in terms of plot in order to introduce the world and characters, but this plot was wonderfully twisty. We had a lot of action, a number of suspects a nice number of red herrings without getting convoluted and a completely surprise ending I didn’t see coming even though, as Elise pointed out, there are definitely more than enough clues there to follow it. All of this is told with pretty excellent pacing (perhaps the number of side plots at times makes me feel like Elise has somehow wandered off from what she’s actually supposed to be doing, but the side plots are still relevant, useful and interesting).

Needless to say after my lead in, the world building is excellent. There are a number of elements from the other series as well as the whole recent revelation of the supernatural (and the organisations designed to police it) being well built into the series. There are some comparisons with marginalised oppression, but it’s not depicted as marginalisation per se, so much as basic injustice and paranoid fear. It promises to be a rich and interesting element of the story especially when read with the other series told from the point of view of characters from those organisations.

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  FangsfortheFantasy | Jan 1, 2015 |
Deputy Lincoln Marshall is a God-fearing man who wants to save his small town from a series of horrific murders. Given the apparent supernatural origin of these crimes, he needs some special help, so he turns to Elise Kavanagh, who is uniquely qualified for this assignment. Investigator of supernatural crimes, former exorcist and demon hunter, and gun for hire, Elise also happens to be a powerful demon. When it appears that the murders may have been committed by werewolves, Elise goes on the hunt, but what she finds isn’t quite what she bargained for. Old wounds from her past are re-opened as Elise has to decide whose side she is on and who she can trust.

This is the first in a series. The basic story line was promising, but I think the author tried to jam pack too much into this one book, and even too much into just one character. While it’s clear that Elise was once human and is now a demon, there’s a lot of other stuff going on with her character. Apparently she’s also Eve (as in Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden), and, oh, yeah, she killed God. After a certain point I just stopped trying to figure it all out. There are witches, demons, werewolves, angels, etc., which is great because I understand that an author has to build an entire world to populate the novels, but it was a little forced, almost as if the author was trying to capitalize on every aspect of urban fantasy that’s popular right now. There are even zombies in this world. I could see definite influences from Kim Harrison, for example, and her Hollows series, as well as book like Angelology. And did anyone else laugh at the priest’s name—Mikhail Night? (You have to be a child of the 80s and love Knight Rider to get it.) ( )
  arbjames | Dec 8, 2013 |
Loved this off shoot of the "Seasons of the Moon" series. As always S.M. Reine delivers a great story line with plenty of action. I think this is another series I will be following. ( )
  bella55075 | Oct 24, 2013 |
When Deputy Lincoln Marshall met with and hired Elise Kavanagh demon hunter, turned demon to investigate some murders in his town/county, he thought that it was the work of werewolves that could be handled easily. While Elise is investigating she meets with Rylie Gresham, the alpha of the last werewolf pack and finds out that they are not the ones doing it, she must now find out what is happening which leads to areas she was not expecting.
This is a well written book that is listed as stand-alone but I have to say that if you have not read at least one or two of the series featuring Rylie and Elise, this book could be very confusing. Also if it is suppose to be a book featuring the two characters I wish Rylie could have been in it more. Other than that as I said it was very interesting and well written. ( )
  Richhayes | Aug 6, 2013 |
Great supernatural novel. The female MCs are powerful! I love the interweaving of different storylines. Werewolves, demons, angels, witches, this book has it all. You can read this work as a stand-alone, but I suggest reading all the related novels and novellas. The werewolves are still my favorite, but all the characters are written well. Can't wait to read the next one! ( )
  LibStaff2 | Jul 29, 2013 |
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**Due to violence, language, and sexual content, this book is recommended for mature readers.**

Lincoln Marshall is a small-town deputy with a very big problem. Six members of his church have been found dead, killed by a rogue werewolf. He’ll have to make a deal with the Devil to save victims that have gone missing — maybe literally.

Elise Kavanagh, preternatural investigator and exorcist, is the expert when it comes to violent deaths at the jaws of evil. She’s also the demon known as the Godslayer. Elise jumps at Lincoln's case, and it’s not just because of his down-home charm. Someone’s laid a trap for her in Northgate, and she wants to find out who.

She’ll have to team up with Rylie Gresham, Alpha of the last surviving werewolf pack, to figure out who’s trying to blame the murders on werewolves. Only together can they stop the killings — and uncover the secrets buried in Northgate.

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