Seven deadly sins. Seven souls that must be saved. One more no-holds battle between a fallen angel with a hardened heart and demon with everything to lose.
Isaac Rothe is a black ops solider with a dark past and a grim future. The target of an assassin, he finds himself behind bars, his fate in the hands of his gorgeous public defender, Grier Childe. His hot attraction to her is a totally wrong place/wrong time kind of thing—and that’s before Jim Heron tells him his soul is in danger. Caught up in a wicked game with the demon who shadows Jim, Isaac must decide whether the solider in him can believe that true love is the ultimate weapon against evil...
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The Desert, Far from Caldwell, N.Y. or Boston, M.A. or... sanity.
Some two years after the fact, when Jim Heron was no longer in special ops, he would reflect that Isaac Rothe, Matthias the Fucker and he, himself, had all changed their lives the night that bomb went off in the sand.
Of course, at the time, none of them knew what it all meant, or where it was all going. But that was life: nobody got a guided tour to their own theme park. You had to get on the rides as they presented themselves, never knowing whether you would like the one you were in line for... or if the bastard was going to make you throw up your corn dog and your cotton candy all over the place.
Maybe that was a good thing, though. Like back then he would have believed he’d end up duking it out with a demon, trying to save the world from damnation?
Come on now.
But that night, in the dry cold that washed in the second the sun went down over the dunes, he and his boss had walked into a minefield... and only one had walked out.
The other? Not so much...
“This is it,” Matthias said as they came up to an abandoned village.
They were fifteen miles northwest from where they were staying in a barracks of Army boys. Being in XOps, they were outside the stream of defined corps which worked to their benefit: soldiers like him carried I.D.s from all branches of the service and used them whenever it suited.
The “village” was more like four crumbling stone structures and bunch of wood and tarp huts. As they approached, his green night vision goggles tracked movement all over the place. He hated those fucking tarps- they flapped in the wind, their shadows darting around like fast-footed people who had guns. And grenades. And other varieties of sharp and shiny.
Or in this case grungy and gritty.
He hated desert assignments; better to kill in civilization. More exposure, true- but at least you had a shot at knowing what was coming at you. Out here, people had resources he was unfamiliar with and that always made him twitchy as fuck.
‘Course, no one wanted to get their balls blown off. So most people felt like he did, including the enemy.
Plus he didn’t trust the man he was with. Yeah, Matthias was his boss. Yeah, he’d trained with the guy way back when. Yeah, he’d been under him for the last decade.
But all of that just made him more certain he didn’t want to be alone with the big man- and yet here they were, at a “village” in the fine township of Nowhere-Anyone-Could Find-A-Body-ville.
A gust of wind went Nike across the flat landscape, sprinting over the sand, picking up those tiny little particles, carrying all of them right smack into the collar of his digi-fatigues. And beneath his black, lace-up boots, the ground was constantly shifting, as if he were an ant walking across the back of a giant and irritating the piss out of the bastard.
You began to feel that at any minute, a great palm could come down of the sky and flatten you.
The meeting had been Matthias’s idea. Something that couldn’t be discussed anywhere else. So naturally, Jim had worn a Kevlar vest and about forty pounds of weapons. Along with water. MRE’s.
He was a pack animal for real.
“Over here,” Matthias said, ducking into the door-less entry of one of the stone structures.
Jim paused and looked around. Nothing but tarps doing the running man as far as he knew.
He got out both his guns before going inside. Bottom-line? This was the perfect locale for a forcible inquisition. He had no idea what he’d done or what he’d learn to warrant it, but one thing he was clear on- there was no reason to run. If that was the reason he’d been brought here, he was going to go in and find another two or three XOps guys in there to work him over while Matthias asked the question. If he bolted? They’d just hunt him down in the desert even if took weeks.
Maybe that was why Isaac Rothe had showed up this afternoon with Matthias’s protégé and second in command, Ezekiel. That pair were straight up killers, a couple of bit bulls ready to go for anyone’s throat.
Yup, this made sense and he should have figured it out sooner. But even if he had, there was no getting anyway from a reckoning. No one got out of XOps alive. Not the operatives, not the fringe-playing Intel guys, not the bosses, either. Die with your boots on was the way you lived- not that you knew that going in.
And the thing was, he had been thinking of ways to get out. Killing people for a living was all he knew how to do, but it was starting to fuck with his head. Maybe Matthias had somehow figured that out.
Time to the face the music, Jim thought as he went through the doorway with both his guns up.
Might as well give ’em a fight-
Just Matthias. No one else.
Jim slowly lowered his guns and looked around the cramp space just to make sure. Turned out, it was true: According to his night goggles, there was just the man and no one else. With a flick of a switch, he went to heat seeking mode. Nothing but Matthias. Still.
“What’s going on?” he demanded.
Matthias was over in the far corner, about ten feet away. When the man’s hands came up from his sides, Jim flipped his weapons back into firing position... but all his boss did was shake his head and loosen up his gun belt. A quick toss and it was in the sand.
And then he opened his mouth and said something softly—
Jim came back to consciousness sometime later. The explosion had thrown him against the stone wall, knocking him cold, and going by how stiff he was, he could have been out for a while.
After a couple minutes of what-the-fuck, he sat up cautiously, wondering if anything was broken-
Across the way, there was a pile of rags where Matthias had once been.
“Jesus Christ...” Jim repositioned his night goggles and retrieved his weapons then crawled through the sand to his boss.
“Matthias... oh, fucking A...”
The man’s lower leg looked like a root that had been torn up out of the ground, the limb nothing but a ragged stump that was shredded at the end. And there were patches of darkness on his fatigues that had to be blood.
Jim checked the pulse at the neck. There was one, but it was faint and uneven.
Unbuckling his belt, he cranked the leather around Matthias upper calf and pulled hard, torniqueing the leg. Then he quickly searched for other inj-
Shit. When Matthias had been tossed back, he’d fallen onto a wooden spike. The damn thing went right through him, the toothpick to his pig-in-a-blanket.
Jim pretzeled up and tried to see whether it could stay in place-
It appeared to be free standing. Good.
“...dan... ny... boy...”
Jim frowned and looked at his boss. “What?”
Matthias’s eyes opened like his lids were steel shutters he could barely raise. “Leave me.”
“You’re blown to shit-”
“Leave me here-”
“Fuck that.” Jim reached for his transistor and prayed that Isaac, not that freak Ezekiel, answered. “Come on... come on...”
“What ya’ll needin’?” The soft Southern drawl that came over his earpiece was the only good news he was going run across until he got them both back to camp.
Thank God for Isaac. “Matthias is down. Bomb. Coming in. Look out for us.”
“Where ya’ll at? I’ll come and get you.”
“We’re forty-six degrees n-”
The gun went off right next to Jim’s ear and at first he assumed he’d been hit in the head and the pain had yet to register. As he braced himself on one palm, Matthias let his gun fall to the side... and what do you know, Jim did not follow suit thanks to some kind of head wound. Warning shot, evidently.
His boss’s eyes shone with unholy light. “Get yourself... out... alive.”
Before Jim could tell Matthias to shut the fuck up, he became aware that something was biting into his palm. Lifting his hand up, he found... part of the bomb’s detonator.
Turning it over and over, at first he didn’t understand what he was looking at.
And then he knew all too well what it was.
Narrowing his eyes, he focused on Matthias. Then he put the fragment in his front pocket, and leaned down to his boss.
“You’re not playing me like this,” Jim said grimly. “No fucking way.”
Matthias started to babble, but Jim didn’t give a shit what the guy went on about.
“I’m okay,” he said to Isaac’s squawking curses. “Misfire. I’m starting for camp. Make sure we’re not shot as we approach.”
The southerner’s voice became instantly strong and steady, just like the guy’s killing hand. “Where you at. I’ll get a truck-”
“No. Stay put. Find a medic on the QT and make sure the doc can keep his mouth shut. And we’re going to need a chopper. We need to airlift him out- discretely. No one can know about this.”
The last thing he needed was Isaac out in the middle of the night looking for them. The guy was the only thing standing between Jim and an accusation that he’d murdered the head of XOps, the deadliest shadow org in the U.S. government.
He’d never live that one down. Literally.
And the hush-hush was not going to be a newsflash to the solider. Keeping quiet about shit was the M.O. in XOps- no one knew exactly how many operatives there were or where they went or what they did or whether they went by their own name or an alias.
“Do you hear me, Isaac,” he demanded. “Get me what I need. Or he’s a dead man.”
“Roger, that,” came the reply over the ear piece. “Over and out.”
After confiscating the gun that had been put to use, Jim picked up his boss, settled the dead, dripping weight on his shoulders and started hoofing it.
Out of the stone shack. Out into the blustering, frigid night. Across the sand dunes.
His compass kept him right, the true north orientating him and leading him on through the darkness. Without it, he would be utterly lost because the desert looked the same.
God damn him.
Then again, assuming the guy lived, he’d just given Jim his ticket out of XOps... so in a way, he owed the guy his life.
Guess Jim wasn’t the only one who wanted to be free.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I am VERY suprised with Crave. Dont get me wrong, i enjoyed the Covet very much, but this book really grabbed me. I am almost finished with the book and i thought i should review it already. The thing that grabbed me most is that there is much more character development than Covet. The first book was more about introducing Jim and his mission. Crave focuses much more on the mission Jim is trying to do. What i also loved most is that Isaac, from the start, reminded me of Zsadist from the BDB series. Anyone having second thoughts about picking this book up, forget the doubts and just start reading. You will come to enjoy this series very much!
I love all of J.R. Ward books. I bought all of her BDB series and now Im reading Angels series. From the three books, crave is the best.
This book was amazing! J.R ward has a way of drawing you in and relating with the characters. I could not put this book down! All her books are a must read for sure.. plus ya get a sneak peak of Paynes book from the BDB!!! Cannot wait!
Ok, I'm a little more than halfway through this and have to say, it's much better than Covet. sort of like suzanne Brockmann's Troubleshooter series meets the BDB. The couple of the story-Isaac and Grier- get more plot and character development than in the last one and there's much less set-up and backstory of the contest and Jim. If you made it through Covet and didn't love it, give the series another try!
I love the Black Dagger Brotherhood - but this series leaves me unimpressed. I read the first one and wasn't crazy about it. Giving it the benefit of the doubt, I bought this one and wish I hadn't wasted the money. I love the concept, but the execution leaves me cold. The books feel disjointed and the "style" annoyed me incredibly. By the end of first book I found myself not giving a darn about anyone in it and I couldn't finish this one. It just doesn't work for me. Apparently it doesn't work for any of my friends either. Out of the five of us that are first in line to buy Ms. Ward's books, none of us can stand this series. And it's simply a matter of writing style and an inability to connect with the "heroes." This is one of the rare times when I would tell you as a buyer to borrow a copy and read several chapters before you spend your money.
I have enjoyed the Black Dagger Broterhood series - fun paranormal romance with lots of edgy sex and a good plotline. Crave, from the Fallen Angels series, pales in comparison to the books in her other series. The novel is not well written and some of the dialog is so cheezy that it made me cringe. The characters were not well developed and the sex scenes were not as detailed as in the Black Dagger series. I would not go out of my way to read this.
The first book in the series was a little hard to get into in the beginning, but well worth finishing. This 2nd book is better than the first. It is an excellent read. Can't wait for the next book!
Heaven works in mysterious ways as affirmed when recently deceased, acrimonious construction worker and retired assassin Jim Heron became a chosen one responsible to save seven assigned souls that Devina the demon craves. If he wins all seven the evil Devina dies; if he loses just one all hell breaks lose. His first battle with Devina was over Vin diPietro (see Covet). Soul number two is former black ops agent and brother in arms Isaac Rothe who did the unthinkable when he left Matthias and the XOps; as no one leaves except in a body bag. His arrest in South Boston for participating in an illegal underground fight leaves him behind bars and vulnerable to a XOps assassin. Even scarier is his attraction to his public defender Grier Childe who reciprocates his desire. However, neither Matthias nor the Massachusetts legal system is the major stalker. Devina craves his soul and Jim must find a way to help his former brother in arms triumph over evil of a human and demonic kind. With a loose connection to the Black Dagger Brotherhood, Crave is a terrific second Fallen Angels romantic urban fantasy. The ultra dark story line is action-packed with South Boston looking extremely grim yet the flicker of hope resides inside the hearts of Isaac and Grier. Fans of J.R. Ward will enjoy this super paranormal thriller. Harriet Klausner
Please have this available in eBook on the release date. J.R. Ward is the only one I give five stars to. Her books are awesome. Black Dagger Brotherhood series is simply the best.
Crave is the second book in the Fallen Angels series by American author, J.R.Ward. The events in this book take place two days after Covet, and much of the action is in Boston. It is certainly advisable to have read Covet, as much essential knowledge pertaining to this book is covered in that book. Chosen to influence seven souls in the fight of good against evil, former X-Ops soldier, Jim Heron decides his next assignment is to save X-Ops buddy, Isaac Rothe from certain death at the hands of their boss, Matthias. Arrested for cage-fighting, Rothe is assigned public defender, the breathtakingly beautiful Grier Childe. The attraction is immediate, but Rothe knows he is way out of her league, and Grier has her own baggage, some of which even she is unaware. Ward slowly and carefully feeds the reader information about the world she has created for this series. She further develops the main characters and gives the reader an original plot with a great twist at the end. As with the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, the banter between the angels and the archangels is fun. One surprise is that Jim has more weapons than just crystal guns and knives at his disposal. This is another excellent read and fans will look forward to the third book in the series, Envy.
I have slugged through the first two Fallen Angels Series books often bored and wondering what. has happened to my favorite author. Truely, had I not been a big fan, I wouldn't have read the second book Crave. I probably won't read any other books from this series.
I really enjoyed the Black Dagger Brotherhood series and the Fallen Angels are just as interesting! This book has a great deal of twist and turns along with a great surprise ending! An all around enjoyable read!
To win the last battle between good and evil against Devina, Jim Heron had to make a few sacrifices. Now he felt responsible to protect and save Isaac Rothe from their old XOps boss Matthias. Getting arrested for cage fighting, Isaac knew that whoever Matthias sent would find him. All he needed his lawyer Grier Childe to do was get his money and post his bail and he would be gone. Deciding that the money her client sent her for was probably illegally gained, Grier posted his bail herself. While she could afford to lose it, she really wanted to get him to stay and face the charges against him. Not realizing that Matthias is not the only one after him, Isaac lets Jim, Adrian and Eddie (fallen Angel friends) help. To protect Grier he would lay down his own life even if she didn¿t want him to. Book 2 ¿.. Yeah, the return of Jim, Adrian, Eddie and Dog was well worth the wait. The game is in full swing now with Devina and Nigel both taking the rules in their own way. I don¿t understand the rules, and it doesn¿t appear that Jim does entirely either, but that makes his mistakes and bumbling around more suspenseful. The second of the seven souls that Jim encountered happened to be someone that he used to know in his former life, their interaction was tainted by that history and those preconceived ideas may have had to do with the outcome of the encounter. Really enjoyed the romance between Isaac and Grier, even if it was predictable. Looks like Envy is the next installment of the Fallen Angels series, due out in October 2011.
In the novel Crave, angle Jim Herron and sidekicks Eddie and Adrian go a second round with the devilish Devina. This time the struggle is over ex-XOps soldier Isaac Rothe. Ground down by the pointless killing Rothe has gone AWOL from XOps in an attempt to free himself from the ruthless leader Matthias. Along the way Rothe meets and falls hard for the classy defense attorney Grear Childe. Little is as it seems in this second installment though, which features some nice plot twists at the end.JR Ward is back in form for this second entry in the Fallen Angels series. Isaac and Grear have good chemistry and the plot is paced nicely. Fans of Ms. Ward¿s Black Dagger Brotherhood series will be happy to know that the author has picked up her game with Crave.
Typical Ward, I liked this one better than the 1st, Covet. Based on fallen angel Jim Heron battling for lost souls. Issac Rothe was a decent character as was Greir Childes, the two love interests, you got to know Matthias and what a cold s.o.b he is. What I would've liked was for her to expound the detailing of protagonist Jim Heron's torment by the demon Devina. While you know what happened, I think she went easy on it. Of course you have the Wardens own special way of speaking, her slang makes me smile.
I enjoyed the first book of this series, Covet, but felt there was too much of a disconnect because the main character, Jim, was not the romanic hero in the story and I didn't really care for Vin as the romantic lead. I wasn't really looking forward to Crave but thought I would give it a shot. I'm very glad I did. I liked the story of Isaac and Grier. I'm starting to see Jim more like Acheron in Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark Hunter series, and hope ward gives Jim his own story at some point in the series. I'll definitely read the next book in the series.
While I still feel that J.R. Ward's books are immensely readable, Crave proved to be the first time I've contemplated seriously giving her up. The plot of this book made absolutely no sense whatsoever, characters made choices that defied logic and seemed designed simply as a means to provide gratuitous scenes of torture. The central conflict of the story is convoluted and unclear - I have no idea what these people are fighting against and the rules of the game are ever changing. And I've finally reached the point where Ward's bending of the English language into her own unique form of slang is so ubiquitous and obvious that I can't ignore it and am constantly pulled out of the story to roll my eyes. I think I may have finally broken my Ward book-crack habit.
First let me say that I love the Black Dagger Brotherhood series overall. However, this new series is just not grabbing me like BDB. The first one - Covet - was ok, but this one was almost painful to finish.I found myself really not liking the main relationship characters much. If I don't care about them, how am I supposed to care about the whole thing? I really do like Jim and the battles he seems to struggle with. But seeing as how he isn't the entire story, that's certainly not going to work for me, huh?However, in an odd way, I do look forward to future ones. I want to know how the whole Jim/Devina thing continues, and I know Ms. Ward is capable of some pretty awesome intricate story work. So, here's hopin' for better in the future.
A little bit more like work than most other Ward books. Somewhat enjoyable, but by and large I just wasn't that invested in the characters.
The mission: Newly fallen angel Jim Heron knows he has to locate the second of the threatened souls he's charged with saving - but when saving an ex-comrade-in-arms takes precedence, his 1-0 record may take a beating.The soul? : For Isaac Rothe's, some botched PR may mean a death sentence when the advertising hits the fan and he gets arrested. The powers-that-be that he used to work for want Rothe still, cold, and silent as the grave. They have the means and opportunity, and they aren't worried about the collateral damage. The collateral damage: When attorney Grier Childe catches an pro-bono case involving a cage-fighter, little does she know that she's letting herself in for more intrigue and bloodshed than any nice girl should have to deal with. Lots of fun little details to create confusion and mislead the characters, but on the whole it's fairly predictable. I did find myself the teensiest bit confused as to exactly which sin was being featured this time round, as there seem to be plenty to go round. Great title, though.
This is the second book in the fallen angel series. I really love the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, and I am frustrated to find this series just mediocre. It is a lot better than a lot of other series that I have read, so I will keep at it. Isaac was a member of the XOp, but he wanted out. So he went AWOL. Only thing is, the only way out is death.I really looking forward to the next BDB book that comes out in March. I thought the series was over with, so it was a welcome surprise.
Crave: A Novel of the Fallen Angels by J. R. Ward¿Crave: is the second novel in the Fallen Angels series. The first book is ¿Covet¿. There are many excellent reviews that have explained what the premise is behind these books so I will simply say that this is a book based on Good vs. Evil, played like an American football team with a quarterback for the good guys (Jim Heron a new Angel) and a quarterback for the bad guys (Devina - a really, really bad guy!) The good guys must save seven souls or at least four out of seven, which gives Ms Ward some leeway as to one or more books not ending in the good guys favor.In this book Jim feels that he must save the soul of Isaac Rothe, a fellow special ops soldier that Jim used to work with. In the beginning of the book Isaac meets Grier Childe a public defender while being brought up on charges. Attraction naturally flares and things quickly get very messy what with Issac being AWOL and demon Devina being in play, as it were. If you have read Ms Ward¿s ¿Black Dagger ¿series, you will find yourself right at home with this new one. Unfortunately you will find this very familiar since it seems that it is simply a regurgitation of the Black Dagger books. Both books have this in common:Good vs. EvilGodlike creature vs. Devil like creatureAngst filled, dark, brooding, damaged men -and sexy, mostly understanding and accepting womenHot sexGang speak - I have no other idea of what it should be called but it`s cute beyond all measure (to the point that I want to have a translation in the back of the book)Weapons not found in the here and now.Unimaginable powers on both sides of the coin.Beings that poof when killed and emit a noxious blood like substance.I can lengthen the list but I think you get the picture.While this is not a horrible book or even a horrible new series, you just may find it a wee bit tiresome to read something as similar as the other series. Although on that note it sure does fill in the time quite adequately while we wait the next Black Dagger book.
I adore JR Ward's books! The Black Dagger Brotherhood books are probably in my top three favorite series of all time. I read a ton so that is saying A LOT. I was eager to start Ward's newest series, Fallen Angels and was pleased very much with the first book "Covet". Unfortunately "Crave" just was so-so for me. Honestly by any other author I would have been more wow'd but truth is that I have come to expect over and beyond with Ward's stories. The basic idea of the series is that there is a battle between Heaven and Hell. Each 'team' has agreed on one man, Jim, to be the middle man in a battle for 7 souls. If the soul in question goes dark, its a point for Hell. If the soul ends up on the side of good, Heaven gets the point. The plot of "Crave" features the soul of Isaac Rothe up for grabs. Isaac was a comrade of Jim's years ago on the XOps. Jim feels a strong personal pull to save Isaac's soul (for good, natch!). Issac has tried to disappear from the radar of the XOps. Unfortunately that doesn't usually happen. You have to usually be dead to get away from that group, no retiring here. He is living by fighting in underground matches. He gets picked up by police and meets a beautiful lawyer named Grier Childe, the daughter of a very prominent and wealthy man.I really like the idea of this series but for some reason the story just fell flat for me. Issac and Grier have a solid romance build into the story but I wanted so much more. This series is similar to BDB in that it features big, larger than life men and heroines who tame them. They also feature plenty of action and always have an enemy to overcome. The difference is that the Black Dagger men pull at my heart strings. I care about each and every one of them like I know them. And it was like that from the first book. Here I just don't feel invested in the characters. I don't dislike them but I don't feel that connection to them either. I didn't like the plot as much as I liked the plot in "Covet". Lots of readers suggest that this book surpasses the first in quality, but I disagree. I thought this volume was a step back. This is not a bad book. Its just not fabulous either. I do plan to read the next book in the series and I hope that I can connect to it more.
full review on talksupe.blogspot.comthese men are D.A.M.A.G.E.D. Adrian and Eddie, aside from their traumatic past with Devina, have a disturbing relationship reminiscent of the BDB's Butch and Vishous but while the Brothers' relationship is chaste, Adrian and Eddie is hardly platonic. It's implied that Ad and Eddie's M.O. is always a threesome, Adrian picks up the girl and brings her to Eddie and they partay. And though graphic, Ward has a fascination about men and masturbation and sexual abuse. Jim traded Matthias' temporary safety for a night with Devina and it's a far cry from their little tryst in his pick-up. It reminded me of Zsadist the Bloodslave but with hellhounds instead of human playthings.