Whom Gods Have Favored by Denyse Bridger

Whom Gods Have Favored by Denyse Bridger
Publisher: Absolute X-Press
Genre: Paranormal, Historical
Length: Short (60 pages)
Other: M/F
Book/Cherry Rating: 3.5
Review by Wild Plum

Pompeii lies complacent and decadent in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius, the populace thriving on their depravity and their hunger for blood and Games. Within the elite aristocracy, games of another type are being played, deadly secrets are a threat to more than status, and conspiracy is a way of life for those who are unhappy.

Lucius has long been exalted as a warrior without peer. Adored and covetted by men and women alike, he is blind to the plots that are thickening around him. While total control is his on the bloody fields of war, on the battlefield of the heart, as he is about to discover, even the strongest man can be deceived by his ignorance.

Watching over it all is the majesty of Vesuvius, sputtering smoke, promising retribution. In the midst of the looming destruction, an ancient evil emerges, and will claim not only a celebrated general of Rome, but the slave girl he has slowly grown to love and cherish. A girl who will follow him into hell itself?

I love Denyse Bridger’s style of writing: she has a unique voice. I have to say that this book is a different read for me to begin with, so I wasn’t sure how well I would like it. But I quickly lost myself in the pages of her story.

My fondest wish for this story was that it had been somewhat longer and had had more to do about vampires. I didn’t really realize it was even about vampires until halfway through the book. I’m not sure if Lucius is a vampire or not, since there is no scene of him biting Xina, or anyone for that matter. But Lucius’s son is a vampire, but this really wasn’t thoroughly addressed, and there is very little going on with that aspect of the story.

If you’re looking for heat, however, you’ll find it in this story. The love scenes between Lucius and Xina are explicit. There were a few scenes that made me a bit uncomfortable, such as one of the first scenes between Lucius and Xina: they are engaging in something rather intimate, but Lucius’ son walks in and they have a casual conversation as if nothing is going on. Another disturbing scene for me was when, again, Lucius and Xina are engaged in sex, and Lucius’ son walks in with his current fling and they all four have sex in front of one another. These two scenes just didn’t seem normal to me, not with it involving a father and son. I think, for me, if it had been two men who weren’t so closely related, it wouldn’t have been as uncomfortable.

I have to point out the amazing cover of this book. I really loved it — so stunning. Despite my discomfort with some aspects of this story, I must say that Denyse Bridger is one of the authors I have on my must-buy list, because of her style and the strength she gives her characters.

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