Falling Angel, by Rose Burnhouse
Series: Hellhound, Book #2
Published By: Less Than Three Press
Release Date: November 2, 2016
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Sylvester has long grappled with paranormal crimes as a federal agent, gaining a reputation that brings a strange case to his door: an artificial angel has tumbled through reality after escaping imprisonment, but the process has torn his unnatural form apart and he is desperately in need of rescue.
Meanwhile, his partner Tristan soon finds that his case of human trafficking is anything but ordinary, dragging him further into Sylvester’s supernatural world…
Mentions of human trafficking/child prostitution
I have a confession to make.
This review of Falling Angel never should have happened. It’s no fault of the book, of course. It’s just that when I received this book to review, I immediately noticed something that I didn’t initially see when I requested it; somehow I was going to be reading & reviewing the second book in a series…and I had never read the first one. Didn’t even know it existed!
Normally, of course, this might not be a huge deal but when you’re dealing with a story that contains paranormal elements, the world building of the first book is kind of essential for introducing place and characters. It lays the groundwork for understanding everything that comes after. Here’s the thing though – despite feeling discombobulated at times as I tried to piece together previous events, I couldn’t stop reading. I just kept plugging away through the first few chapters and suddenly, this quiet but really interesting story captured my attention.
In order to review this book properly, I did have to go back and read the first book (Hellhound, for those that are interested) and even then, I seemed to be missing pieces of the story. There are references to past cases the men have worked on, but those events do not take place in either of the books I read. This did makes this a little confusing, because the backstory on how our two MCs, Sylvester and Tristan, first met and hooked up seems super interesting. Maybe the story exists somewhere other than in the author’s imagination, but I was unable to locate it.
There are three intersecting storylines in this book, all of them connected to one another. Sylvester and Tristan are continuing their search for missing children, taken by child traffickers. The traffickers were responsible for the enslavement of a shifter named Hound, who was rescued by Sly and Tristan in Book One, and who is now helping the men recover the lost children. Also assisting, is another shifter named Roshanak, whom Hound and his pack rescued from the two beings that originally kidnapped and sold Hound to the traffickers. In addition to this, a young angel is in danger and Sly feels compelled to help him. For that, he requires the kind of magical assistance that only Roshanak can provide.
Are you confused yet? Yeah, I was too.
But I kept reading and found myself immersed in this story. The relationship between Sly and Tristan (they generally refer to each other by their last names in the book but I’m not a Federal Agent, so I’m not doing that :p) is very tender and sweet. There’s a lovely power dynamic forming, with the older Sly slowing showing his openness to be dominated in the bedroom. Tristan is initially reluctant to pursue this dynamic, possibly due to the effects of his job and his reluctance to fully let his feelings for Sly show.
Hound is adorable, in both his human and animal form. To fully appreciate him, I think you need to read the first book because his story is a little heartbreaking. Still, he manages to retain both his puppy-like innocence and his cold-blooded need for revenge on the child traffickers he despises.
I hope as the series progresses, all the loose ends will be tied up because there are plenty. Also, it would be nice to fill in the backstories that are talked about between the characters, but never fully explained. I highly recommend reading Hellhound first, but if you don’t mind reading out of order like I did, then go for it. Either way, both books are definitely worth reading.
Rose Burnhouse is a reclusive Alaskan writer with an insidious agenda to warp the world around her with her fiction. She has a college degree that has nothing to do with anything, and sincerely hopes that you enjoy being part of her nefarious plot to engage in premeditated beauty and wanton strangeness. She likes dogs and cats equally well, fears death more than public speaking, has a very strange horoscope due to the latitude of her birth, loves the tendency of the Marvel movies to court the female gaze, and believes that the war between literary and genre fiction is counterproductive and just the product of a sexist academic hegemony, anyway.
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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.