Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Book Review: Styxx by Sherrilyn Kenyon

by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Genre: Urban Fantasy / Romance / Mythology / Paranormal

Ages: Adult. Very adult.

22nd book in the Dark-Hunter series, you can read my review of Acheron here, though I really should re-review it now that I'm a little older and can do it justice.


Sherrilyn Kenyon's most highly-anticipated novel in the Dark-Hunter series since Acheron is here—the unforgettable story of Styxx, Acheron's twin brother and one of the most powerful beings on earth
Just when you thought doomsday was over . . .

Centuries ago Acheron saved the human race by imprisoning an ancient evil bent on absolute destruction. Now that evil has been unleashed and it is out for revenge.

As the twin to Acheron, Styxx hasn’t always been on his brother’s side. They’ve spent more centuries going at each other’s throats than protecting their backs. Now Styxx has a chance to prove his loyalty to his brother, but only if he’s willing to trade his life and future for Acheron’s.

The Atlantean goddess of Wrath and Misery, Bethany was born to right wrongs. But it was never a task she relished. Until now.

She owes Acheron a debt that she vows to repay, no matter what it takes. He will join their fellow gods in hell and nothing is going to stop her. But things are never what they seem, and Acheron is no longer the last of his line. Styxx and Acheron must put aside their past and learn to trust each other or more will suffer.

Yet it’s hard to risk your own life for someone who once tried to take yours, even when it's your own twin, and when loyalties are skewed and no one can be trusted, not even yourself, how do you find a way back from the darkness that wants to consume the entire world? One that wants to start by devouring your very soul? 

My Thoughts:
I waited eagerly for this book to show up on my kindle at midnight and started reading it immediately. Given that it is eight-hundred and forty-eight pages long and completely engrossing from page one, I did not get any sleep. I wondered how in the world Ms. Kenyon could possibly turn Styxx into a hero, given all the awful things he did in previous novels, but I knew from experience that with her fantastic imagination it would certainly be something to see. Complete. Understatement.

I started to love Styxx as the protagonist immediately; that sad little boy who was neglected and abused just as badly as Acheron, maybe even worse, because he didn't have Ryssa and his father continuously vacillated between hating and loving him. It was easy to pity him at first, then admire and cheer him on.

The majority of Styxx takes place during the same time as the first half of Acheron; every moment, every conversation takes on new meaning from Styxx's point of view. It was utterly fascinating and oh-so very painful. There were times I wanted to kill Acheron and I didn't think anything could do that. The worst of Styxx's torment may have started when he was a older than his twin, but it was just as bad. Sherrilyn Kenyon sure likes her tortured heroes. Emphasis on the tortured.

The romance surprised me in that it started so early. Styxx was such a sweet, innocent young lover. His ever-enduring faithfulness was one of my favorite parts of the whole novel. Beth, however, I wanted to smack upside the head. How could she...do something I can't say because of spoilers? She's a goddess and she was with him for years and yet all the while...grr. Not saying anything more. Despite how much she annoyed me at times, I did like her for the most part, except...I find I really can't say much about her without spoilers. Suffice it to say she is not my favorite of Ms. Kenyon's heroines. She seemed a little lacking in the 'heroics' department. However, she did have a good sense of humor and once she...bother. I liked her more in the second half of the book.

The relationship between Ash and Styxx was brilliantly handled. Their interactions were limited, but when they met...oh, boy. Sparks flew in all directions, sometimes literally. It was so easy to see how alike they are, no matter how much they would like to deny it.

I loved, loved, loved how hints and foreshadowing and characters from the previous novels were worked into this book. I won't say what they were, but I am very interested in what will happen next in the series. I have new questions by the bucket load, especially those stemming from a delightfully shocking little revelation. It's going to drive me mad waiting for answers.

Overall, I loved this book. The fact that I got annoyed with characters just made me enjoy it all the more; that made them more human (figuratively speaking). Plus, who doesn't love to yell at fictional characters? I highly recommend Styxx to anyone who likes the rest of the Dark-Hunter series. I would not recommend reading it out of order. It gives away the ending to Acheron, Night Embrace and Devil May Cry as well as other things. Make sure you have a few to several hours (depending on your reading speed) before opening this book. You won't want to stop.

1 (mild) through 10 (extreme).

I rate it a 10.10 for strong, frequent language including 108 uses of the f-word (no, I didn't count them all; my kindle did).

I give it a 10.10 in sexuality for multiple scenes of sexuality and rape, as well as multiple references, innuendos and fade-aways. Most were not graphically described.

I rate it a  9.10 for extreme violence including torture and ghastly wounds of all varieties.

                                Lieder Madchen

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