|The Liberator by Victoria Scott|
(Dante Walker #2)
August 27, 2013
Genre: Mature Young Adult
(Contains: sexual references & implication, crude humor)
Source: Personal purchase
Bad boy, meet bad girl.
Dante has a shiny new cuff wrapped around his ankle, and he doesn't like that mess one bit. His new accessory comes straight from Big Guy himself and marks the former demon as a liberator. Despite his gritty past and bad boy ways, Dante Walker has been granted a second chance.
When Dante is given his first mission as a liberator to save the soul of seventeen-year-old Aspen, he knows he’s got this. But Aspen reminds him of the rebellious life he used to live and is making it difficult to resist sinful temptations. Though Dante is committed to living clean for his girlfriend Charlie, this dude’s been a playboy for far too long…and old demons die hard.
With Charlie becoming the girl she was never able to be pre-makeover and Aspen showing him how delicious it feels to embrace his inner beast, Dante will have to go somewhere he never thought he’d return to in order to accomplish the impossible: save the girl he’s been assigned to, and keep the girl he loves.
It's been a while since I read The Collector, but getting back into Dante's mind in The Liberator was like coming home (if my home were the insides of a teenaged boy who thinks quite highly of himself). Though Dante is no longer a Collector and is madly in love, this does not make him some pansy pushover (and if it did, he would vehemently deny it anyway). He's still full of swagger, snark, and all the off-the-wall humor that made me like him the first time around. He's also crude, arrogant, and uncomfortable at times. Dante may not be for everyone, but I get such a kick out of reading his thoughts. But he's also got the girl he loves, and a new assignment, and oh so many thoughts and feelings that are pulling him in such confusing directions with the turn of events his life has taken on. Dante's struggles are very well-written. I could feel the questions and conflict floating around in his mind. And I loved the direction the author took us in, and all the ways we get to know Dante and see him in action.
In addition to Dante, we get to see more of Charlie, who is dealing with her own changes in herself and life in general. New characters are introduced, like Aspen, as well as oldies but goodies. I was impressed by all these character interactions, all the changes in situation and circumstance, the plot twists and turns, and how the author ties together not only the plot, but the depths of the character development especially. Now, the story isn't over, and we have one more book to go with The Warrior, but I truly enjoyed the pace, plot, action, and people of this story. This is such a unique, creative, and entertaining series, and I will be immediately diving into The Warrior!
Though this book never claims to be religious, and seems more of a good versus evil versus something in the middle thing, I couldn't help but feel conflicted about some of the decisions the characters make, and how they didn't quite match my perceptions. I know this seems vague because I hate spoilers, so I don't want to drop any. But I just found a few instances to be contradictory to how I think angelic "liberators" should act. This is just my personal issue. But it is a reminder to the reader that this is not a Bible-based book or Christian fiction.