Type: Contemporary Romance
My Copy: NetGalley
Professor Gabriel Emerson has embarked on a passionate, yet clandestine affair with his former student, Julia Mitchell.
Sequestered on a romantic holiday in Italy, he tutors her in the sensual delights of the body and the raptures of sex. But when they return, their happiness is threatened by conspiring students, academic politics, and a jealous ex-lover.
When Gabriel is confronted by the university administration, will he succumb to Dante’s fate? Or will he fight to keep Julia, his Beatrice, forever?
In Gabriel’s Rapture, the brilliant sequel to the wildly successful debut novel, Gabriel’s Inferno, Sylvain Reynard weaves an exquisite love story that will touch the reader’s mind, body, and soul, forever.
First off, you have to read the first book, Gabriel’s Inferno, to really understand what’s going on in this one. Second you have to understand what your reading. Book one was so sensual, so all consuming, it left me floundering for days. I loved Gabriel and his autocratic and somewhat off putting personality. I enjoyed him swooping in and taking Julia like he had every right to do so. Coupled with the beautiful Dante references it was simply a great book.
I went into Gabriel’s Rapture desperately wanting to re-create that wonderful feeling I had upon finishing book one. I started to…and then things fell apart. The beginning is great because Julia and Gabriel are off together in Italy and we get them together a lot. Gabriel can barely keep his hands off Julia and together they scorch many many sheets. When they come home from their holiday though I found myself completely bored with the meandering story line and the repercussions at their school. I thought Gabriel spent a lot of the book acting pretentious and self righteous. He felt like he was better and above everyone else and that grated on my nerves often. It took forever to get anywhere and the bloated word count was most likely to blame. Nothing happened for chapters at a time. The plot seemed to stand still and I thought about giving up a few times.
I did enjoy Julia because she seemed way more “normal” than Gabriel and her reactions were pretty in line with how I would think someone should react in these situations. When Gabriel disappears for a length of time toward the end of the book his explanations were HORRENDOUS and I kept thinking…girl, give him a piece of your mind….tell him you deserve better! He acts like Julia is a mind reader. She does, kinda but in the end she lets him basically walk all over her again. It’s a vicious cycle for Julia.
While I didn’t find Gabriel’s Rapture to be nearly as good as book one, I recommend reading it if you plan to continue the series. I do think I will read book three simply because I’m curious to see what else can possibly happen. Especially since by the end of this one things have changed, but then again not changed at all. Vague right? Heh. Short review because really, I can’t say anymore. It was okay but left me without the need to shout about it from the rooftops.
I give Gabriel’s Rapture by Sylvain Reynard 3 stars!