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Butcher's absorbing series opener successfully fuses an urban fantasy premise with characters designed to appeal to romance readers. Helen Day encounters a man in a diner and is dismayed to realize she recognizes him from nightmares where he watches her burn to death. Drake, an ancient member of a dying race devoted to protecting humanity, feels a powerful attraction to Helen, which she returns despite her fear that the nightmare will come true. After demons attack them, Drake's determination to keep Helen safe is at odds with her haunting vision, leaving her wondering which to believe. Butcher skillfully balances erotic, tender interactions with Helen's worries, and intriguing secondary characters further enhance the unusual premise. Fans of Butcher's romantic suspense novels (No Control, etc.) will enjoy her turn toward the paranormal. (May)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.