by Cyndi Friberg

July 2004
ISBN: 1-59632-010-9
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Gabriel is angry. After Luciferís fall from Heaven and descent into darkness, he didnít know what to do. He was angry with God and he was angry with humankind for what he perceived as their usurping of Godís favor. Humans were allowed freedom of thought, movement, love and hate. Angels were suddenly slaves or so he seemed to believe. No longer allowed to love, marry and have children, he decided that he didnít want to live that way for eternity. Because his brother knew that he had not wholly descended into the darkness, Gabriel bargained with Archangel Michael to allow Gideon to work his way back into the Light. What Michael did was to allow Gideonís bloodlust to become real. Now as a creature of the night, Gideon must let go of his anger and learn how to love. But his anger keeps him trapped in the dark until he finds what he thinks is the perfect tool for revenge against his brother, he plans to seduce the orphan, Naomi that Gabriel had raised from a baby. As they say, the best laid plans of mice and men.

Naomi is quite content with her life as the illuminator for the keep, Kras de Chevaliers with her mentor and surrogate father, Gabriel. When a mysteriously compelling man appears and claims to be his brother, she wonders what other secrets Gabriel has kept from her. Falling in love with Gideon was not what she had planned. She knew he had secrets but the only way to find them out was to ask, and she wasnít always happy with the answers she got. But Naomi saw something good in Gideon, but she was cautious and did her best to fight their attraction. When she discovers that she has family, she is both elated and scared, for change was coming and the challenges she must face are about to multiply. For Naomi and Gideon must enter into a fight to save Gideonís immortal soul.

Rebel Angels 1: Born of Shadows is a tale of good vs. evil, love vs. hate and redemption vs. damnation. Gideonís struggle with his dark side is compelling and torturous, but at the same time, he isnít totally evil. You can see his goodness and honor shine through in his dealings with Naomi. Naomi is smart, compassionate and ambivalent about her feelings for Gideon. She has a lot to deal with; finding out she has a family and the fact that her lover is a fallen angel. She handles it with maturity and level-headedness that is wonderful to see (no TSTL heroine here!)

I really enjoyed this story; it definitely made me look at bible stories and those beautiful angels in a different light. The great thing about this story is while the hero and supporting characters are angels, demons and clergy, itís not preachy or religious in tone. I am definitely looking forward to book 2.

Reviewed in September 2004 by Carolyn.

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