Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard

Redonk Nutshell: A play on Dante’s Inferno featuring two starcrossed lovers with hellish emotional baggage

Ugh.  This book. I swear to god I have a bald spot because of it.  I wanted to pull  my hair out.  Why, you ask?  Because I vacillated back and forth between hating it and being completely absorbed by it.  I suppose this was like a car wreck for me.  I couldn’t. Look. Away.

Julia Mitchell is an aspiring grad with aspirations in becoming a Dante expert.  She’s a shy, annoyingly naive woman with a shattered past that tends to attract…parasitic men.  Gabriel Emerson is a renowned Dante expert and Julia’s newest professor – and just so happens to also be a figment of Julia’s past, though he only recalls her in fits of delusion.  Julia has been head-over-heels obsessed  in love with Gabriel since she met him when she was a teenager.  When she arrives at grad school she has no intentions of resurrecting her feelings for him, nor does she want to draw attention to herself.

Too bad she does.

What we’re treated to is a back-and-forth tournament of I-want-you-but-I’m-not-worthy-of-you mixed with I-have-horrible-secrets-in-my-past.  Which could work, but in this case it drags incessantly.  I swear to god there came a point when things FINALLY actually started happening and I looked down and realized I was barely halfway through the book.  The pacing was way off for me.  It was a constant stop-start-stop-start of “let’s have an action, then we’ll stop to dissect it, and see how we can relate it to Italian art or literature.”

Le sigh.

Yet, I was intrigued enough to stick it out so I could find out what happened between these two.  And yes, that is partly code for PLEASE GOD CAN WE FINALLY GET DOWN TO SOME SEXY TIME THAT’S MORE THAN SENSUAL CARESSES OVER LIPS AND HIPS.  Imagine my surprise when I finish and see a note taunting teasing me with an upcoming sequel!  Find out what happens between Gabriel and Julia next!

Oh god help me!  I have to know what happens but I don’t think I can bare to drudge through it!

And that, my fellow raunchers, is the dilemma that is Gabriel’s Inferno.

Rating: C-

Romance: 2.5/5          Raunch: 2/5

 

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2 comments

  1. I attempted to read it (just downloaded the ‘Sample’) but was disgusted by the Hero crying in the first couple of chapters. I’m all for a strong man crying, but I want yo get to know him first, otherwise he’s just a puss. I’m assuming it gets slightly better later on by your review, I’m just not sure I can get over the early waterworks.

    1. Ha. There’s so much back and forth…and then back and forth some more…and when something substantial actually happens it just doesn’t follow through. I cared just enough to want to know what happened between these two, but by the time I made it to the end I was really wishing it’d be over already.

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