Archangel’s Viper by Nalini Singh – Dual Review & Giveaway
Guild Hunter series – Book #10
by Nalini Singh
Release Date: September 26, 2017
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Once a broken girl known as Sorrow, Holly Chang now prowls the shadowy gray underground of the city for the angels. But it’s not her winged allies who make her a wanted woman—it’s the unknown power coursing through her veins. Brutalized by an insane archangel, she was left with the bloodlust of a vampire, the ability to mesmerize her prey, and a poisonous bite.
Now, someone has put a bounty on her head…
Venom is one of the Seven, Archangel Raphael’s private guard, and he’s as infuriating as he is seductive. A centuries-old vampire, his fangs dispense a poison deadlier than Holly’s. But even if Venom can protect Holly from those hunting her, he might not be able to save himself—because the strange, violent power inside Holly is awakening…
ARCHANGEL’S VIPER is the tenth full-length installment in Nalini Singh’s adult GUILD HUNTER dystopian/UF/paranormal series focusing on Archangel’s, angels, vampires, shifters and hunters. This is vampire Venom, one of the Seven, Raphael’s private guard, and newly Made ‘vampire’ Holly Chang. ARCHANGEL’S VIPER can be read as a stand alone but I recommend reading the series in order for background and cohesion as many events in the current time line are as of a direct result of previous happenings and premises.
Told from dual third person perspectives (Venom and Holly) ARCHANGEL’S VIPER focuses on the search for the person(s) responsible for placing a five million dollar bounty on our heroine’s head. With the Cascade-an event that causes massive power fluctuations and other changes among the members of the Cadre- in motion, the Archangel Uram’s bloodlust was out of control, and Holly Chang became one of his victims to survive. Although destroyed by the Archangel Raphael, the fallout of Uram’s mindless brutality has left our heroine lost; without direction; not knowing the who or what of her newly ‘made’ body, Enter Venom, one of Raphael’s private guards known as the Seven, and the man with whom Holly will fall in love. As Holly and Venom struggle to uncover the truth behind the five million dollar bounty, Holly is pulled in another direction-a pull she is unable to ignore.
The relationship between Venom and Holly is acrimonious; a love-hate relationship that pushes the boundaries of mentor and friend. Their back and forth snarky banter is sexually charged but Venom doesn’t do relationships believing himself too damaged to fall in love towards a happily ever after. Venom’s Maker gifted our hero with a lethal poison that few can survive and finding a kindred spirit in newly made Holly Chang gives our hero a potential prospect for the future-a future with an unknown expiry date due to inexplicable talents and powers of our story line heroine. Holly Chang’s Maker was killed by the Archangel Raphael but what remains behind has taken control of its’ victim, leading her on a journey to the other side of the world. With Raphael sequestered with the meeting of the Cadre of Archangels, Holly and Venom follow the pull of the darkness within.
Unlike many of the other story lines in the series ARCHANGEL’S VIPER is limited in the amount of action; there are no battles or fight scenes except the internal battle Holly wages with herself and the ‘other’.
There is a large ensemble cast of secondary and supporting characters including the leader of the group of Seven Dimitri, Jason, Janvier, Ashwini, Illium, Guild Hunter Vivek Kapur, Angel Kanasha, Archangel Michaela, several members of The Legion, and a number of lesser known vampires including Daisy, Holly’s acquaintances Magnus, Zeph and Arabella as well as Holly’s human sister Mia, and their parents Allan and Daphne Chang. Raphael makes a cameo appearance as Holly battles the other for control.
ARCHANGEL’S VIPER is a fantastic story of friendship, family, power and control. Holly Chang is a woman desperate to understand the who and what of her growing power-every day her abilities begin to mimic Archangelic abilities and the only explanation is no longer alive. The premise is spirited and energetic; the characters are passionate and inspiring; the romance is passionate but slow to build-the $ex scenes are limited and mostly implied. ARCHANGEL’S VIPER is a compelling and enticing story line where one of Raphael’s Seven finds his heart and his happily ever after.
Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley
Archangel’s Viper by Nalini Singh is the 10th book in her wonderful Guild Hunter series. I say this quite often; Nalini Singh is one of the best authors around, and the fact I love both her Psy/Changeling and Guild Hunter series proves how good she is. Nalini writes fantastic stories in different worlds that flow so seamlessly, and each book just grabs hold of you at the start and never lets go till the very end. I do feel bad for those of you who do not read Nalini Singh, as you are missing an amazing author. On to my review.
We met both Venom and Holly, our heroes in this book, early in this series when he saved her from sure death. Holly had been tortured by an insane Archangel, Uram; and she had witness the horrifying deaths of her friends. Though she is considered human, Holly was left with abilities she gained from Uram’s vampire blood coursing in her body. Her acid green eyes; ability to mesmerize others; has a poisonous bite (which Venom also has, but he is immune to Holly’s bite); and does require blood, which she minimizes as much as she can.
Venom, is one of Rapheal’s Seven, and very dangerous, but loyal to the Seven, as well as being different from the others. After being away for two years, he returns and Holly was sent to pick him up. Venom not only was the one who saved Holly, but he also is the one who tries to teach her to control the violent impulses she has. However, they have never gotten along, both always antagonizing each other. Venom enjoys pushing Holly’s buttons, and she just hates him. Holly has changed since she was first rescued, and Honor (Dimitri’s mate), has worked with her on her emotional stability, as well as Janvier and Ash training her how to fight as a warrior. She is tough, smart, and fights off an inner voice that wants to control her. When Venom and Holly drive to the tower, someone attacks them trying to kidnap Holly. It seems that someone has a bounty on her head. Dimitri and Venom begin to worry what is it about Holly’s blood that warrants a 5 million dollar bounty?
When Venom and Holly start working closely together to find out who is trying to kidnap her, they begin to see each other in a different light. They were the same in many ways, allowing them to be their normal self in front of each other, and in a short time their relationship will escalate in an unexpected romance. Venom sees that Holly is fighting something deep inside her, and she will tell him the truth about an otherness she feels. Besides the mystery of who is trying to kidnap her, the main focus of this story is finding out what/who is trying to control Holly.
What follows is an addictive and captivating story with Venom and Holly following the trail that is pulling her into the lands of another Archangel. Venom and Holly surprised me how much I fell in love with this fantastic couple, and they sizzled together. The last half of the book was such a thriller, with many twists and turns right to the very end. I can’t tell too much more, as I do not want to ruin this for you, but I loved Archangel’s Viper, as well as a couple that totally won me over.
Nalini Singh once again gives us a wonderful addition to this fantastic series. She is an author whose flawless skilled writing simply has me in awe. I have never failed to love every single one of her books in both series. If you have not read the Guild Hunter series, what are you waiting for?
Copies provided by Publisher
I was born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand. I spent three years living and working in Japan, where I took the chance to travel around Asia. I’m back in New Zealand now, but I’m always plotting new trips. If you’d like to see some of my travel snapshots, have a look at the Travel Diary page.
I’ve worked as a lawyer, a librarian, a candy factory general hand, a bank temp and an English teacher, but not necessarily in that order. Some might call that inconsistency, but I call it grist for the writer’s mill.
I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. All of my stories held a thread of romance, even when I was writing about a prince who could shoot lasers out of his eyes. Creating unique characters and giving them happy endings is my favorite thing. I even love the voices in my head, so there’s no other job I’d rather be doing. When I got the call in September 2002 that Silhouette Desire wanted to buy my first book, Desert Warrior, it was a dream come true. I hope to continue living the dream until I keel over of old age on my keyboard.
To learn more about Nalini Singh, you can follow her on the following links:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Nalini’s publisher, Berkley, is offering a paper copy of ARCHANGEL’S VIPER to ONE (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe
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