REVIEW: Heartless by Nathalie Gray
Dear Ms. Gray,
Now normally I don’t read paranormals, erotic romance or novellas as I’ve found they usually don’t work for me in any combination or alone. So imagine my surprise when this one does. Work, I mean. I just goes to show what luring me in with a story about ancient Egypt and Rome can do.
Only, it’s not really about ancient Egypt or Rome. Well, not that much since the bulk of the story actually takes place in modern Montreal. Gaius was a shit back when he was alive. Years of soft living and boredom broke down his integrity and drew him into orgies, mistresses and assorted whatnot. He coldly ignored the pain he caused his Egyptian priestess wife until she took matters into her own hands and devised a punishment that’s kept on giving…and giving…and giving for over 2000 years.
Now his life – such as it is – and any possible chance at redemption are tied to a canopic jar which has changed hands over the millennia until now when it’s located in a private gallery in Montreal. Which is where antiquities liberator, so to speak, Anne-Marie Valois gets her hands on it. And discovers a horror such as she’s never known. And a man for whom she’s willing to risk everything. But can they beat this thing or will the curse continue to destroy Gaius and kill Anne-Marie in the bargain?
I just happened to read this after watching “The Mummy” which gave me some great visuals to go along with your chilling descriptions of the curse. And let me say how much I admire the way you portrayed it. It truly gives it a visceral punch beyond the usual curse. Here’s one that not only ruins your life but laughs at the pain it causes while it does so.
Gaius is a world weary hero who’s seen almost everything the world can throw at him and who almost dreads the next day just because he knows the struggle he’ll endure to survive it. He’s a bit like Sisyphus and Tantalus mixed together. Plus he’s dead and not a vampire! Be still my beating heart – kind of like his is, now that I think of it. He’s had enough time to think on what he did and repent at leisure so satisfy me of his worthiness of a HEA after what he acknowledges he did to his wife.
Anne-Marie is a strong heroine who’s never actually kicked ass before though she does catch on quickly to the necessity and handles herself quite well. Thank you for having her fight her innate attraction to this strange man she’s never met and wonder at her sanity – even if she does end up gleefully hurling herself into the hot smexing a short time later. I am curious about her future job plans though I guess fighting off a curse like this would entitle one to having a few past illegal activities wiped off the slate, karma wise.
The way the curse is broken is fairly standard with twue love conquering all. I also noticed that Anne-Marie’s unique sensory skills towards the curse are never fully explained – but it is a novella and there’s only so much room. But I’m willing to just go along with this since I’m enjoying the ride in most other respects. This story leaves me fairly satisfied in and of itself and interested in what else you’ve got to offer. B
This novella can be purchased at Red Sage in DRM FREE ebook format.
This book was provided to the reviewer by either the author or publisher. The reviewer did not pay for this book but received it free. We do not earn an affiliate fee from Red Sage through the book link.