Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Book Review: Cipher by Larissa Ione


In the war between good and evil, sometimes the biggest battles take place inside the soul…and the heart.

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Larissa Ione, comes CIPHER, a passionate and spellbinding novella from the Demonica Underworld Series, brought to you by 1,001 Dark Nights! Be sure you grab your copy today!

Author: Larissa Ione
Series: Demonica Underworld #8, Demonica #19
Audience: +18
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts, Incorporated
Release Date: April 9th 2019
My Rating: 5 Cups
Source: InkSlinger PR
Blurb (from Goodreads):
From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Larissa Ione comes a new story in her Demonica Underworld series…

It’s been seven months since Cipher, an Unfallen angel who straddled a razor thin line between good and evil, woke up in hell with a new set of wings, a wicked pair of fangs, and a handler who’s as beautiful as she is dangerous. As a laid-back cyber-specialist who once assisted guardian angels, he’d been in a prime position to earn back his halo. But now, as a True Fallen forced to use his talents for malevolence, he must fight not only his captors and his sexy handler, but the growing corruption inside him…before the friends searching for him become his enemies and he becomes his own worst nightmare.

Lyre is a fallen angel with a heart full of hate. When she’s assigned to ensure that Cipher carries out their boss’s orders, she sees an opportunity to take revenge on those who wronged her. All she has to do is appeal to Cipher’s burgeoning dark side. But the devastatingly handsome fellow True Fallen has other ideas — sexy ideas that threaten to derail all Lyre’s plans and put them in the path of an approaching hell storm.

Danger and desire explode, even as Cipher and Lyre unravel a sinister plot that will fracture the underworld and send shockwaves into Heaven itself…

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you'll enjoy each one as much as we do. **
*Disclaimer: I received an eARC from InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.

**Disclaimer: This book contains mature content. As a result, my review may contain references to content intended for mature audiences only.

Finally we get to learn what happened to Cipher after being dragged in Sheoul, and guys... GUYS. It is a glorious story.

Here's the truth: I struggled writing this review because this story broke me in so many little pieces. It's not a secret that I absolutely love Larissa Ione and her Demonica series, and honestly each and every new story is amazing and I loved it. But for the first time in years, finally, I got some of my prayers answered in regards to this series. I'm getting ahead of myself though.

So the story is about Cipher, who kidnapped him, why they kidnapped him, what to they want with him, and who saves him. I absolutely loved the twist of this story, in that Cipher isn't your normal Fallen Angel. There's something going on that not even his handler, Lyre knows at first, and it's something incredibly curious. Cipher is also not the air-headed creature I believed he was in the previous stories. I wasn't a huge fan of him in the beginning, but I was still excited to know more about him. I love the way Cipher dealt with his imprisonment, his capture, and how he fought to do the right thing. I also loved seeing how he managed to outsmart his opponent. His story about how he fell and how he became friends with Hawkyn was very sweet and I really liked it.

Lyre was the perfect heroine for Cipher. I loved seeing this seemingly evil Fallen Angel have small moments of goodness, how her rage and her need for revenge consumed her but not enough that she'd become corrupted as Flail was. I thought it was interesting that her power was that of transforming into mist, and I loved seeing her discover what she could do with this power she and everyone around her believed to be inferior and useless.

There's a new foe in town and boy, oh boy, is he evil. This new enemy is not so much evil as he is deranged and psychotic, which makes him very scary. I want to know more about this person, just because I feel that while we got a part of the story in this novella, we don't have the entire picture, which makes me wonder exactly what have the high powers in Heaven hidden from everyone, including Reaver and Revenant.

As with most of the stories in the Underworld spin-off, we get to see Azagoth and Lilliana. I won't say much, because of major spoilers, but it is just what I had hoped for and more. Azagoth shows how cunning and devious he can be, but also how much he's willing to do to protect the one he loves most.

Now for the reason that this book is just what I had hoped for. So you know that I recently finished my 3rd reread of the full series and if you've followed Larissa Ione, you know that she's been teasing about the spin-off series with the original cast's children. Well, we are getting close to that. While I loved these short stories and I hope they never end and that she'll write more and more and more (I have my eye on a certain angel at the moment) we're finally getting a new full-length novel this year. It's titled Reaper and from what I understood from the blurb on Goodreads, it's Azagoth and Lilliana's full story. This probably will tie in with this new foe, and I have a feeling it will pave the way for the Next Generation series. My excitement level is way, way over 100 at this point, and I cannot wait. I want to skip ahead to October right now, if possible.

Cipher is not only a great story, but an amazing way to end one chapter and open another. I adored this story, as always, and I am very excited to see what the future holds. Until then, I think I'm going to do another reread, you know, to prepare myself.

Amazon | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU


“Ione has made a major name for herself with her amazing Demonica series.” ~ Romantic Times Book Reviews

      EXCERPT :
Cipher threw out a hand to warn Lyre off. His control sucked, which he proved as a fireball shot at her from the palm of his hand.
Fire engulfed her, demon-faced flames that laughed and bit at her. No! Oh, shit. He felt her screams all the way to his gut as she fell to the ground and writhed in violent agony,
Soretay! Stop!” He yelled commands in Sheoulic as he rushed toward her, but his words were useless.
He dove on top of her, covering her with his body. He tried to wrap his ugly-ass wings around her, but the fuckers didn’t behave, instead fanning the flames, beating the both of them as they flapped uselessly.
Then, for no reason he could figure out, the shrieking apparitions flickered out. Lyre went limp beneath him, her exhausted, panting breaths puffing hot air against his neck.
“Wow,” she rasped. “That was unexpected.”
He pushed himself up on one arm and looked down at her. Scorch marks streaked her face and her clothes were singed. The hemline of her shirt was completely gone, leaving her flat belly exposed, a smudge of soot forming a crescent under her navel.
He wanted to clean it off with his tongue. Too bad she was playing for the wrong team.
You’re playing for the same team now.
No he wasn’t. He might be a fallen angel, but not by choice. And, until evil took him over completely, he wasn’t in league with them yet. And he’d never play for Bael the Seriously Unstable. Right now he had no choice, but once he figured out these new powers, he was going to get the fuck out of here.
“You can let me up anytime now,” Lyre said softly. “Preferably before one of your new powers incinerates or melts me.”
“Right.” He jumped up and offered her a hand.
“Thanks, but no.” Eyeing his hand like it was a viper, she pushed to her feet and backed away from him.. “I’m just going to watch from…over there.” She pointed to a bluff in the distance. The far distance.
It was probably for the best. With little to lose, he was going to test his limits and push his boundaries.
And boundaries? Well, those were something he’d never believed in, and for once, that little personality flaw was going to work for him instead of against him.
    About Larissa Ione: Larissa Ione is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. An Air Force veteran, she traded in a career as a meteorologist to pursue her passion of writing. She now spends her days in pajamas with her computer, strong coffee, and supernatural worlds. She believes in celebrating everything, and would never be caught without a bottle of Champagne chilling in the fridge…just in case. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her U.S. Coast Guard husband, her teenage son, a rescue cat named Vegas, and her very own hellhound, a King Shepherd named Hexe.  

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