Author: Tara Fuller
Series: Kissed by Death #3
Genres: Young Adult, Paranormal
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Pages: 320, Kindle Edition
Publication Date: June 2nd 2015
My Rating: ★★★★½
Easton doesn’t believe in love. He believes in Death. Darkness. Sin. As a reaper for Hell, it’s all he’s known for over four hundred years. When he gets slapped with the job of training the boss’s daughter, an angel who knows nothing but joy, he knows he’s in for a world of trouble
Though he’s made it clear he wants nothing to do with her outside of work, Gwen would do anything to get closer to the dark and wounded reaper—even taint her angelic image and join the ranks of her father’s team of reapers. But in all her planning, she forgot to factor in one thing—how far the demons Easton doomed to hell would go to get revenge.
When the dangers of the Hell threaten Gwen, Easton will do whatever it takes to save her. But as the darkness closes in on them both, will he be able to save himself?
Descent is the third book in the Kissed by Death series but can be read as a standalone. I’ve had the first (Inbetween) and second (Blurred) books in this series ever since Blurred was released two years ago and I am ashamed to say that I haven’t read them yet. I feel like such an idiot for not reading them before reading Descent. Seriously, two years of having the ebooks and not reading them?!
Descent takes us on Gwendolyn and Easton’s journey through hell to rescue an innocent Heaven-bound soul from spending an eternity of suffering in hell. While fighting they’re way to victory they find that they’re feelings for each other may be less platonic than they’d thought. Together they fight their inner demons, face the wrath of hell and its inhabitants, find hope and a little something more. An angel and a reaper, how much are they willing to sacrifice to be together?
This book alternates between the points of view of Gwen and Easton. Mainly set in hell, as expected things got a little hellish. What I did not expect, though, was how horrific some parts got. While it wasn’t too graphic, it was descriptive enough that readers get a clear visual of exactly how gruesome the hell Fuller portrays really is. It was enough to give me goosebumps and make my skin crawl.
Now for the characters. Easton caught my attention from the beginning and he held it till the end. As the reaper for Hell for almost five centuries, the idea of love and happiness was lost on him. There’s no darker job than dealing with souls bound for hell, especially when it constantly reminded him of his very own unfortunate, short life and his afterlife that couldn’t seem longer. Having been through hell, literally and figuratively, he was convinced that being numb and feeling nothing was the best way to live the rest of his very long afterlife.
That is until a certain angel arrives and crawls her way into his life, bringing out the best in him. Easton was this intriguing character that made it hard to resist falling for him. He was just so broken and damaged; if he were a song, it would be one of those that make you weep because of the tragedy and beauty of it. Throughout the book you can see him determined to put up walls and push everyone away. I felt like screaming “Let someone in for God’s sake! Let Gwen help you!”. Much to my relief as they spent time together in Hell (ahh.. how romantic) he actually let her in little by little. Not sure if it was my internal screaming that convinced him or something else…
She was so good, so kind and pure, and beautiful. And she loved me. In what kind of world did someone like her love someone like me?
Gwen on the other hand is the exact opposite of Easton. As an angel of joy she always saw the good in everyone and felt this need to spread joy everywhere she went. Her seventeen years of existence had been a sheltered one; her father only let her see the good things and kept her as far from the bad ones as possible. After witnessing a soul being reaped she became curious about the other side of life. Not just the good side of it but the bad one too. Some arguing and convincing later her father agreed to assign a reaper to show her around Hell. Her father’s motive being that she will freak out in no time and return home having put the matter aside and go on with her angelic existence. What he didn’t know was that Gwen had an ulterior motive and had no intention of going home with the job incomplete. She had just the right reaper to help execute her plan. With her kindness she got Easton to open up to her and let her in. But I have to give it to her, boy was she determined to save him from his self inflicted doom.
It was refreshing to get a character like her and I believe the main reason the author managed to pull off such an innocent and at times naive, character like Gwen was because of her being an angel of joy. If not for that I’m sure that her decisions and way of seeing things would have gotten on my nerves on several occasions.
The relationship Easton and Gwen had wasn’t a hundred percent insta-love, but it wasn’t a hundred percent not, either. It was more like when he first laid eyes on her he was awestruck by her purity because being Hell’s reaper he didn’t really get a lot of it. For her it was something along the lines of being taken aback by the sadness that he had in him. So, as everyone can guess, they were intrigued by each other. No surprise there, opposites attract and all. What I loved most about they’re relationship was how they built each other up and were always equals. In my opinion, they changed each other in a way no one else could have. Easton’s sudden sweetness was a total bonus too.They also understood that there were some things that had to be done and didn’t stand in each other’s way.
Her body began to quake with the pain she was pulling out of him. I stepped back and shoved my fingers into my hair, forcing myself not to interrupt. I hated this. Hated seeing her hurt. But this was who she was. Her father tried at every turn to keep her from being free, and she resented him for it. But how the hell was I supposed to stand by and watch her do this to herself.
As difficult as it was for him to watch her suffer he stood back and let her do her job.
I hated seeing her touch someone else. I decided to get the hell over it. She may be touching him, but she didn’t look at him the way she looked at me. She looked at him the way my mother used to look at me when I was a boy. With unconditional, self-sacrificing love.
I think it’s cool how he didn’t get all jealous and actually thought things through before opening his mouth. We’re clearly suffering from a lack of guys like Easton on this planet/dimension/realm/world/whatever you want to call this place when in comparison with a fictional world.
Fuller’s writing is simple and phrased in such a way that makes it easier for readers to get the meaning without having to think about it more than once.
Overall, Descent was a fast paced love story with unique elements such as reapers that I thoroughly enjoyed and multidimensional characters that got more interesting as I read. The little I got of the characters from the previous books have got me excited to finally read Inbetween and Blurred. I cannot wait to read about the other two couples!
Fans of Rachel Vincent’s Soul Screamers series and readers who are looking for a love story that has been to hell and back, Descent is right up your alley. Of course, those of you who’ve read the previous books you do not want to miss Easton’s book!
It’s a wrap, people! If you’ve read it, did you enjoy Descent as much as the first two books? To those who haven’t read this book/series, have I done a good job convincing you to get off your butts and get reading? 😉 Chat with me about the book/series in the comments! Hugs! ❤