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Death Angel

Review

Death Angel

“Never piss off a smart woman.” Especially after
she’s had sex with an assassin with the approval of her
mobster boyfriend. Major drug trafficker Rafael Salinas makes the
ultimate mistake when he grants his hired assassin Simon an unusual
request. Instead of money for his latest hit, he wants five hours
alone with Rafael’s mistress, Drea Rousseau.

Bracing herself for a brutal experience at the hands of the
assassin, Drea is taken by surprise and succumbs to the tenderness,
skill and emotion he ignites in her. New York Times
bestselling author Linda Howard entices the reader seductively with
an unlikely liaison between a stone-cold killer, “his eyes
glittered with an intent so hot her skin should have scorched as he
looked at her,” and a woman who “worked hard to make
people see her as ornamental, self-absorbed, and more than a little
dumb; in short, nonthreatening.”

“Once was enough” boasts the lethally dangerous
assassin before he calmly leaves a still breathless Drea alone in
her bed. What he doesn’t count on is temptation. Just as Eve
succumbs to temptation in the Garden of Eden, Simon gives in to
temptation in this modern tale of two societal castaways.
“Simon had made a lifelong habit of resisting
temptation…” Once is definitely not enough for
the solitary assassin who is cold enough to make his living as he
does, but weak enough to be enticed by “his own heightened
awareness” of a big-haired bimbo who adorned the arm of the
repulsive criminal Rafael. The ruthless assassin couldn’t
forget Drea.

Drea is a woman who “felt that potent chemistry as
strongly as he had.” She “used sex to control men, to
get what she wanted from them.” DEATH ANGEL has the elements
of a “Sopranos” segment --- sex, lies, criminal intent,
fear, murder, falling in love with a hit man. I liked the way the
reader is enticed and tempted by the bad boy assassin, ignoring our
consciences and giving in to the illicit pull of excitement.

As a scorned woman seeking the ultimate revenge for the
humiliation and pain Rafael caused her, Drea uses her dumb blonde
routine to gain access to information that helps her steal Rafael
blind ($2,188,433 to be exact), change her identity and make a
daring escape across the country. In Rafael’s world, there is
only one way to handle the betrayal: send the assassin after
her.

“Sex and guile were her weapons, along with makeup and
perfume…” Drea runs scared from the assassin,
constantly looking over her shoulder, using her
“weapons” until the day Simon catches up with her and
the chase changes everything. The plot takes a bizarre, far-fetched
turn when Drea has a death experience in which she encounters
angels who tell her to return to earth and earn a second chance.
Simultaneously, Simon watches Drea die, which changes his outlook
on life and death.

Romance is the unseen but never forgotten character in DEATH
ANGEL --- a man and a woman who can’t forget their memories
of a few stolen hours, souls seared together despite the bizarre
circumstances that bring them to each other and the dangers that
lurk ahead. Romance brings us back to the core of the book.
“What was between them was real --- unexplored, undeveloped,
but real.” Simon barters for sex, but he has no experience
when it comes to bartering for love. He is a realist, his secrets
dark, and when he admittedly finds love, he pursues it as if it
were his next target.

An unexpected tryst in the afternoon turns out to be a magical
moment for Drea and Simon. Despite the odds, the past and the
dangers, they find the beginnings of a love that won’t die.
Simon’s predatory instincts and his blatant request lead him
to feelings he had buried long ago. Bad boy heroes are
thankfully notorious for appealing to readers with a
thirst for romance and a little danger.

Reviewed by Hillary Wagy on December 29, 2010

Death Angel
by Linda Howard

  • Publication Date: April 28, 2009
  • Genres: Fiction, Romantic Suspense
  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • ISBN-10: 0345486552
  • ISBN-13: 9780345486554