Sherrilyn Kenyon's most highly-anticipated novel in the New York Times bestselling Dark-Hunter series since Acheron is here—the unforgettable story of Styxx, Acheron's twin brother and one of the most powerful beings on earth
Just when you thought doomsday was over . . .
Centuries ago Acheron saved the human race by imprisoning an ancient evil bent on absolute destruction. Now that evil has been unleashed and it is out for revenge.
As the twin to Acheron, Styxx hasn't always been on his brother's side. They've spent more centuries going at each other's throats than protecting their backs. Now Styxx has a chance to prove his loyalty to his brother, but only if he's willing to trade his life and future for Acheron's.
The Atlantean goddess of Wrath and Misery, Bethany was born to right wrongs. But it was never a task she relished. Until now.
She owes Acheron a debt that she vows to repay, no matter what it takes. He will join their fellow gods in hell and nothing is going to stop her. But things are never what they seem, and Acheron is no longer the last of his line. Styxx and Acheron must put aside their past and learn to trust each other or more will suffer.
Yet it's hard to risk your own life for someone who once tried to take yours, even when it's your own twin, and when loyalties are skewed and no one can be trusted, not even yourself, how do you find a way back from the darkness that wants to consume the entire world? One that wants to start by devouring your very soul?
About the Author
New York Times bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon is a regular in the #1 spot. This extraordinary bestseller continues to top every genre in which she writes, including manga and graphic novels. More than 70 million copies of her books are in print in more than one hundred countries. Her current series include The Dark-Hunters, The League, Deadman's Cross, Chronicles of Nick, Hellchasers, Mikrochasers, and The Lords of Avalon. Her Chronicles of Nick and Dark-Hunter series are soon to be major motion pictures.
Read an Excerpt
By Sherrilyn Kenyon
St. Martin's PressCopyright © 2013 Sherrilyn Kenyon
All rights reserved.
June 19, 9548 BC
"You missed, moron. My son still lives, and one day, we are going to bathe in your blood."
Dressed in Greek cavalry armor to hide his identity, Archon, the king of the Atlantean gods, froze in the middle of the dark hallway as he heard the taunting voice of his angry wife in his head. A sick feeling of dread clenched his stomach tight. "What say you?"
"Well," Apollymi projected mentally to him, drawing the word out. "Lord High King God Intelligent, ye who knows all, I am still imprisoned in Kalosis and that baby you hold in your arms is quite dead. What does that tell you?"
That he'd slaughtered the wrong infant.
Damn it! He'd been certain this was the right child....
Wincing in utter agony over what he'd done, Archon heard the screams of the Atlantean queen from where he'd left her in her bedroom as she cursed them all for the death of her newborn son. It was an unforgivable act, but Apollymi had given him no choice. She had refused to hand over her son and had hidden the infant here in the mortal world so that Apostolos would live in spite of Archon's order that the boy be killed.
If her infant son grew to manhood, all of them would die. The Atlantean pantheon and their people. But Apollymi didn't care. So long as Apostolos lived, the rest of them could burn.
Heartbroken over the innocent life he'd mistakenly taken, Archon handed the baby's body to a guard on his right so that it could be returned to its grieving mother.
"Where is your son, Apollymi?" he demanded in his head.
She laughed at his anger. "Where you will never find him. Go on, slaughter every pregnant queen and her brat in the mortal realm. I dare you!"
Archon glanced at the three gods with him, who were also disguised as he was—in cavalry armor. The Atlantean queen believed them to be vengeful Greeks sent to assassinate her child. Since they were the gods she and her people worshiped, they couldn't afford for her to hate them. Not when the worship of the Atlantean people fed their powers.
And if they searched through the mortal realm where other gods ruled to find Apollymi's son, they would have to do so very carefully. Especially if the mission was to slaughter princes. The humans would call out their own gods, who would then demand retribution for their followers, and it would be a divine bloodbath between feuding pantheons.
Been there. Done that.
And it hadn't been the least bit enjoyable.
No doubt that was what Apollymi craved as much, if not more, than the return of her child. Born of the darkest powers in the universe, the first goddess of destruction lived only for such warfare. It was the very air she breathed.
Disgusted and furious over his mistake, Archon flashed himself from the human world to the main temple hall on Katateros, where the Atlantean gods ruled their people. The three gods who'd gone with him to Atlantis followed.
The moment the four of them were corporeal in their ornate temple, the other Atlantean gods stared at them expectantly.
"Well?" Misos, their god of war, asked. "Did you get him?"
Archon shook his golden head and narrowed his gaze on Basi. Beautiful and seductive, the drunken goddess of excess was the one who had taken Apollymi's son and hidden him out of their reach. Unfortunately, the sot had no recollection of where she'd put the baby, other than in the stomach of an already pregnant human.... maybe. Maybe not.
Big help that, bitch. Thank you.
That was why Apollymi had chosen the drunkard and forced her to do this deplorable deed. When it came to giving up any kind of useful information, Basi was worthless.
Archon shed the hated Greek armor and skin in favor of his true form—that of a perfect blond male in his mid-twenties—and donned his dark blue Atlantean formesta robes. "Can you remember anything else?"
Fear darkened Basi's beautiful brow. "No, Archon. I just remember Polly telling me to hide it in a queen.... Yes. It was a queen. I think I was in Greece, but I can't remember. Maybe Sumer ... Akkadia or Egypt? I think the queen had dark hair ... but it might have been blond or red.... Maybe."
It took everything he had not to kill her for her stupidity.
His brother, Misos, sighed heavily. With black hair and a full beard, Misos was as different in appearance from Archon as he was in his divine warring powers. "So what do we do now?"
Archon growled at the only option they had. "We go out and we hunt that bastard down. Whatever it takes."
Chara, the plump redheaded goddess of joy and happiness, scowled at him. "If we venture into the domains of other pantheons to search, we'll have to hide our powers from their gods. How are we to find Apostolos without them?"
It wouldn't be as easy, but ... "I know my wife. There will be something about him different from other mortals. You won't mistake Apostolos when you see him, and I doubt our powers will help anyway since she has him shielded so carefully. In the meantime, those of us who remain in Katateros while the others search can call out to him and drive him insane. That, too, should help us find him. He'll be the mortal prince who hears the voices of the Atlantean gods even when he doesn't worship us."
Bet'anya Agriosa stood up from where she'd been sitting next to her mother, Symfora. With flowing black hair and perfect caramel skin, she stood out from the other Atlantean gods. "For the record, I want to state my displeasure over all this. I may be the goddess of wrath and misery, but I find it distasteful and wrong to hunt down an innocent child and kill him because of the accidental prophecy of three little girls."
Archon glared at her. "My daughters may be young, but they hold the power of two pantheons in them. You better than anyone know how powerful that makes them." While his daughters were born of him and the Greek goddess Themis, Bet'anya was Atlantean and her father the Egyptian god, Set—one of the most powerful beings in existence.
Some even claimed Set held more power than Apollymi, and that was something Archon never wanted to test.
Bet'anya arched a brow. "So? You don't fear me."
That wasn't true, but Archon wasn't dumb enough to let her know that. Bet'anya held a lot of dark power herself and he wasn't about to cross her. No one with a brain would. The last time a god had taken her on, the world had almost ended over it. "You don't draw the same powers Apollymi does. And we don't know what powers her son holds."
Misos nodded in agreement. "As the son of Apollymi and Archon, he could easily be the mightiest of any pantheon."
Archon inclined his head to his brother. "We have twenty-one years to find this boy and kill him. We cannot fail. The sooner he's destroyed, the better for us all."
Bet'anya clenched her teeth as they began to divide the world between them. Apollymi had always been one of her allies. And Bet hadn't been here when the other Atlantean gods had united their powers to trap her in Misos's hell realm, Kalosis. Personally, she couldn't blame Apollymi for her anger. Had they ganged up on her and locked her away while calling for the life of her child ...
She, too, would show them exactly how dark her powers ran.
But like it or not, Bet'anya was part of this pantheon and would be honor bound to hunt for the child.
She'd just do so leisurely.
Her great-grandfather, Misos, approached her. "What are you thinking, child?"
"That it's a sad day when a mere baby can threaten a pantheon so powerful."
"While I concur, I would remind you that pantheons have fallen for a lot less." He kissed her brow.
"Fine, Tattas." She used the Atlantean term for grandfather. "I'll take southern Greece and Egypt where I can use my powers to find him ... if he's there."
She looked back at the leader of this cursed quest and spoke to him. "I have one question, Archon ... you slaughtered an Atlantean citizen and prince by mistake. How is it that here at home, where you have full power, you couldn't tell the baby was mortal?"
"The queen's son stank of a god's powers. Not to mention, her husband died well before its conception and to our knowledge, she's had no other lovers. That smacked of Basi's interference." He growled low in his throat. "Obviously, I was wrong. I should have known Apollymi wouldn't make it that easy on us."
Bet'anya arched a brow at that. There was only one god from outside their pantheon it could possibly be. "It was Apollo's son?"
She cringed inwardly. While she wasn't afraid of the Greek gods, she didn't want to be in another bloody war with them. Every time she went up against their rampant stupidity, she felt like it sucked a portion of her own intelligence out of her. "And you think the Greek god will be all right with your actions?"
Archon wasn't concerned in the least. "Why would he care? He has bastards aplenty he ignores. Besides, he doesn't dare rattle our cage since Atlantis is the only place his Apollites can live and thrive. No other pantheon will tolerate them among their people."
And the warring Apollites had been a constant source of grief in Atlantis, but Archon didn't see it that way. To him, they were another set of beings to honor the Atlantean gods and feed their powers.
To her, they were creatures who were as likely to turn on them as they were to continue to worship them. Anything Greek made her skin crawl. She hated them above all races.
Out of the corner of her eye, Bet'anya saw Epithymia slinking out a side door. Tall, beautiful and golden, she was the goddess of all desires.
Curious about what had her so skittish, Bet'anya followed after her. "Epi?"
Outside the hall, she froze instantly. "Yes, Bet? What I can do for you?"
"What have you not confessed?"
Epithymia stiffened. "That which I will not confess."
Unwilling to play this game, Bet'anya gestured toward the hall they'd just left. "Then perhaps I should tell Archon about this?"
"Don't you dare!" Epithymia grabbed her arm and hauled her to a corner so that they couldn't be overheard by anyone. "I have to do something I don't want to do."
"Kill a baby?"
Epithymia scoffed. "I wish. That would be easy." This from a goddess of light powers? If Epithymia was so quick to kill, it explained so much about Bet'anya's proclivity for violence.
"Apollymi has enlisted me in her scheme and I have to do it. If I don't ... I can't even tell you what she holds over me because I can't afford for anyone to learn it. That bitch!"
Bet'anya frowned. "What has she asked you to do?"
"Birth her child."
Bet'anya sucked her breath in sharply at that implication. "He's not born yet?"
She shook her head. "And if you tell a soul, I swear I'll join Apollymi against you."
Rage clouded her vision as Bet'anya glared at her. "Do not threaten me. God or not, I will feed on your entrails. But in this, you don't have to fear. I have no desire to kill a defenseless baby."
Epithymia released her. "Good. Because I have a plan. Apollymi wants me to oversee his birth to make sure nothing goes wrong with it, and I intend to deliver him myself."
Bet'anya's stomach clenched at what the goddess was telling her. "You intend to touch a babe who will be born without god powers?"
That was so cold....
"The humans will tear him apart in their desire to possess him. And they will hate him for it."
Epithymia winked at her. "I'm just following my orders from Apollymi. To the letter."
"Why not tell Archon—"
"She'll rip out my heart and devour it if I do. I wouldn't cross that bitch for anything. I cannot even hint at where that child is or anything else about his birth. She wrung an oath from me."
And Atlantean gods could never breach their oaths. As such, they tried their best to never make any.
"It would be kinder to kill him on delivery than to leave him with your touch and no protection."
Epithymia held up her hands. "Apollymi won't let me. So I'm doing this her way. And if you breathe a word ..."
"My oath, I will never tell the ones hunting him where he is or what it is you do." No sooner had those words left her lips than she realized what she'd said. It was just such a slip that had cursed poor Apostolos.
Epithymia glared at her.
"I didn't mean ..." There was no need in explaining. "Fine. I can still kill him if I find him."
Epithymia relaxed. "Good luck, Agriosa." She left to go to her own temple down the hill.
Bet'anya sighed at Epi's parting shot that referred to the fact that she was also a goddess of the hunt. She absolutely hated the thought of harming a child.
And yet ...
What she'd said was true. Death would be the kindest act. Otherwise, that child would live a life of absolute agony. No one should be condemned to such a horrific fate.
"I'm sorry, Apostolos."
As in all battles, when a soldier's wound was mortal, no matter his age, and there was no doubt he would die from it, the kindest thing was to end his suffering with a single fatal blow.
She would commit this mercy killing and pray that one day Apollymi could understand and forgive her. It was for the good of all.
Especially the boy.
Her only hope was that she found the child first. The other gods would not be so merciful to him.
June 23, 9548 BC
King Xerxes stared down at the infant boy who peacefully slept in his arms. How could his joy have turned so bitter so fast? For a moment, he'd believed himself to be the most blessed of all kings. That the gods had granted him two sons to rule his vast empire.
Did he even have one?
There was no doubt that the firstborn, Acheron, was born of the gods. That his wife-queen had whored herself to them and birthed it.
But Styxx ...
The king studied every inch of the perfect, sleeping child nestled against his body. "Are you mine?" He was desperate to know the truth.
The infant appeared to be a mere human babe. Unlike Acheron, whose eyes swirled a living silver color, Styxx's were vivid blue and perfect. But then the gods were ever treacherous.
Could it be that Acheron was his son and this one was not? Or that neither child belonged to him?
He looked to the elder wise woman who'd proclaimed Acheron a god's son just after his birth. Decrepit and wizened, she wore heavy white robes that were richly embroidered in gold. Her gray hair was wrapped around an ornate gold crown. "Who is the father of this child?"
The woman paused in her cleaning. "Majesty, why do you ask me something you already know?"
Because he didn't know. Not for certain. And he hated the taste of fear that scalded his throat and left it bitter. Fear that made his heart pound in trepidation. "Answer me, woman!"
"Truth or lie, will you believe whatever answer I give?"
Damn her for her sagacity. How could the gods have done this to him? He'd sacrificed and prayed to them his whole life. Devoutly and without blasphemy. Why would they taint his heir in this manner?
Or worse, take his heir from him?
He tightened his grip, which caused the baby to wake and cry out. A part of him wanted to slam the child into the ground and watch it die. To stomp it into oblivion.
But what if this one was his son? His own flesh and blood ...
The wise woman had said it was.
However, she merely relayed what the gods told her, and what if they lied?
Angry and betrayed, he went to the woman and shoved the infant into her arms. Let someone else solace it for now. He couldn't bear the sight of either child.
Without another word, he stormed from the room.
The moment she was alone with the babe, the old crone transformed into a beautiful young woman with long black hair. Dressed in bloodred, she placed a kiss to the boy's head and he instantly calmed down.
"Poor, poor Styxx," the goddess Athena whispered as she rocked him in her arms to soothe him. "Like your brother's, yours will be an unpleasant future. I'm sorry I couldn't do more for either of you. But the human world needs its heroes. And one day, they will all need you."
March 10, 9543 BC
Five years later
"You wretched little thief!"
Styxx looked up at the shrill cry of his older sister. Ryssa towered above him and his twin brother Acheron as they played with their wooden horses and soldiers on the floor.
Why was she always so cross at him? No matter what he did to try and please her, it was never enough.
Ryssa hated him. She always had.
"I took nothing."
Curling her lip, she closed the distance between them and yanked him up from the floor by his arm. "Where did you put it, you worthless little worm?" she demanded, shaking him so hard it felt as if she'd rip his arm off.
Styxx tried to break free, but she was too strong for him. "Put what?"
"The toy horse Father gave me for my birthday. I know you collect them and I know you stole mine. Where is it?"
"I haven't touched it."
"You're such a liar!" She threw him toward the ground then went to search his things again. "Where have you hidden it?"
Styxx met Acheron's gaze. "Did you take it?" he whispered to his brother.
Acheron shook his head.
"What are you doing in here?"
All of them froze at the sound of fury in their nurse's voice. Before Styxx could explain that he'd invited Acheron in to play with him, the nurse snatched his brother away.
Acheron cried out as the nurse's grip bit into his small arm. "How many times have you been told to stay in your own room?"
Styxx panicked as he realized Acheron still held one of the soldiers in his hand. Even though he'd given them to his brother, he knew what would happen if anyone saw it in Acheron's possession.
Excerpted from Styxx by Sherrilyn Kenyon. Copyright © 2013 Sherrilyn Kenyon. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Utterly Brilliant. I waited eagerly for this book to show up on my kindle at midnight and started reading it immediately. Given that it is eight-hundred and forty-eight pages long and completely engrossing from page one, I did not get any sleep. I wondered how in the world Ms. Kenyon could possibly turn Styxx into a hero, given all the awful things he did in previous novels, but I knew from experience that with her fantastic imagination it would certainly be something to see. Complete. Understatement. I started to love Styxx as the protagonist immediately; that sad little boy who was neglected and abused just as badly as Acheron, maybe even worse, because he didn't have Ryssa and his father continuously vacillated between hating and loving him. It was easy to pity him at first, then admire and cheer him on. The majority of Styxx takes place during the same time as the first half of Acheron; every moment, every conversation takes on new meaning from Styxx's point of view. It was utterly fascinating and oh-so very painful. There were times I wanted to kill Acheron and I didn't think anything could do that. The worst of Styxx's torment may have started when he was a older than his twin, but it was just as bad. Sherrilyn Kenyon sure likes her tortured heroes. Emphasis on the tortured. The romance surprised me in that it started so early. Styxx was such a sweet, innocent young lover. His ever-enduring faithfulness was one of my favorite parts of the whole novel. Beth, however, I wanted to smack upside the head. How could she...do something I can't say because of spoilers? She's a goddess and she was with him for years and yet all the while...grr. Not saying anything more. Despite how much she annoyed me at times, I did like her for the most part, except...I find I really can't say much about her without spoilers. Suffice it to say she is not my favorite of Ms. Kenyon's heroines. She seemed a little lacking in the 'heroics' department. However, she did have a good sense of humor and once she...bother. I liked her more in the second half of the book. The relationship between Ash and Styxx was brilliantly handled. Their interactions were limited, but when they met...oh, boy. Sparks flew in all directions, sometimes literally. It was so easy to see how alike they are, no matter how much they would like to deny it. I loved, loved, loved how hints and foreshadowing and characters from the previous novels were worked into this book. I won't say what they were, but I am very interested in what will happen next in the series. I have new questions by the bucket load, especially those stemming from a delightfully shocking little revelation. It's going to drive me mad waiting for answers. Overall, I loved this book. The fact that I got annoyed with characters just made me enjoy it all the more; that made them more human (figuratively speaking). Plus, who doesn't love to yell at fictional characters? I highly recommend Styxx to anyone who likes the rest of the Dark-Hunter series. I would not recommend reading it out of order. It gives away the ending to Acheron, Night Embrace and Devil May Cry as well as other things. Make sure you have a few to several hours (depending on your reading speed) before opening this book. You won't want to stop.
Honestly I don't know how to react to this book. I was excited about Styxx. And I must say this book made me love the character. There are people who say they had pitty for Styxx. I didn't. The hell he went through he still remained loving. This book made me also dislike the sister, dislike Ash, hate Este and his Father and so on. What deeply disturbed me was the brutality of the first 600 pages of this 895 page book. Between the Emotional abuse, the physical abuse, sexual abuse, the incest, the pedophilia an the down right meanness and bulling my stomach stayed in a knot and I had nightmares (sounds like an exaggeration). People have nightmares over horror stories but to me this was a horror story. So yeah I had them. I think I will be taking a break from this author and others that write like her because there is already to much ugly in the world. I like to feel good at after reading a book and although there is an HEA I cannot seem to enjoy it because I cannot seem to get the images out of my head.
I really hoped we'd get out of the slump, I really did. I just can't stomach that much torture, rape, and sadism. I liked the first few books, felt a bit invested in the characters and wanted to find out what happened. However, much like Christine Feehan's Carpathian novels, there seems to be a need to "up the ante" for each tortured hero. At this point, the books are less about romance and more about a voyeuristic thrill from a characters pain. I know this isn't real. It's fiction. However, I suspect that indulging in this is probably not beneficial, and I'm going to have to stop reading this series. Which bums me out. I know there are other true fans, or people for whom the first half (hundreds of pages) of horror, will have a different message. Perhaps it will bring the character's motivations more to life, or make their foibles more understandable, the character more sympathetic. I wanted to add this, however, as the other folks who put in a low review didn't bother to include a reason. I'm not done with the book, I think I'll skim to the end, which I believe I did with one other recent novel in the series. Sorry now I didn't wait and check this out from the library.
Too much abuse! I found this book exhausting to read. As with several of Ms. Kenyon's other books, this does contain abuse (physical, emotional, sexual) -- approximately 650 pages out of 896. I knew the story was going to be somewhat depressing, because of Ash's back story. However, I didn't realize his emotional misery was going to continue another 150 pages. In my opinion, it barely included a love story. Oh yes, it did have one, but it wasn’t fulfilling. Abused teenager meets girl, and since she’s the only person nice to him they fall instantly in love. So it was like “wham!” they were in love and being sickly sweet with the two cooing at each other. Don't get me wrong, I really wanted to like this book, but I just couldn't. I have noticed a trend with the last few books she’s written have had heavy amount of abuse. And, I have to say, I can read about it, but it doesn’t need to go on and on and on, etc. We get it! The character was abused, now move on. I think I heard somewhere that the author is a survivor of some type of abuse, and I really think she should see a therapist and stop inflicting this on her readers or write a self-help book before she alienates all her readers. Unfortunately, I have to say I think this is the last book I will purchase from this author. I really wish her the best, but she’s appears to continually be taking a path with her writing that I’m not interested in reading.
I love Sherrilyn Kenyon, but was so bogged down in the most depressing, sadomasochistic, abuse relationships I just couldn't get past. What a disappointment. I don't understand how this happened. The book fell completely flat for me. I understand that there is a back story for every DH, but this was just too much. 3/4 of the book was based in ancient Greece. Sometimes it felt more like a history lesson than a romance. Sad to say, sorely disappointed.
Best Dark Hunter book since Acheron!! They say there are at least two sides to every story. Ms. Kenyon has done a wonderful job of showing us just that. When I pre-ordered this book, I went back to Acheron to remind myself of all I knew about Styxx. I came away, as most all have after reading Acheron, with a complete and utter disgust for Styxx. Then, I read Styxx. I didn't think it was possible to cry that much from just reading a story, or for any book to make me cry harder then I did while reading Acheron. Boy was I mistaken. If you cannot take stories of abuse, this story is ABSOLUTELY not for you. What was done to these brothers while they were such young boys was atrocious and the wost of horrors, and Ms. Kenyon pulls no punches in her descriptions. I found myself with a mountain of used tissues next to me every I sat down to read some more; however, as no other author can do quite like Kenyon, in the middle of all the horrors, a true love story emerges with all the mushy-gushy hotness that Kenyon also does sooooooooo well. Loved this one, and cannot wait for the next! Thank you Ms Kenyon for another great book! -- SPeeD
I had to do most of my reading alone because Styxx's story kept bringing me to tears. I think we all hated him after reading "Acheron". Ash hated him because he had it so bad but that didn't mean Styxx had it good. I loved the way she made me love this man who none of us really knew before. It just goes to show you may have it bad but there is always someone who has it worse. I loved this book, my favorite Dark Hunter book so far!
After reading this book i was more than a little annoyed at Ash and struck by the man Styxx is. Deep, rich, characters and engaging plot
I would have given 3-4 stars for 2nd half of book, but first half was too torturous for words! I don't mind a sad & painful background to give explanation for a character's current status (eg DWTD), but this was just way too much. Enough already with the painful narrative that only a sadist could love. Oh, and the heroine needed a good boot up her a$$,
I wouldn't read a book with this much violence towards a woman. I just don't know if I can stomach reading the rest. The graphic deatils of the rape and abuse of Styxx in this book seems to do nothing but make me sick and it doesn't even really move the story along. This may be the last book I read by Ms Kenyon.
I really was hoping to love this book, but sadly it was a difficult read. This is obviously just my opinion, but I felt like the really disturbing graphic darkness that sadly seemed to last two thirds of it, was just a little much. I have loved the majority of the dark hunter novels...and this one was a lot better the last third or so....but I just found the constant theme throughout, while I understand that she wanted to describe the horrors Styxx suffered in great detail, it just seemed so constant and repetitive that it really just was hard to read. Again, I feel it was much improved closer to the end, and I did care about the characters, but personally do not know if will revisit this book as I have so many of the others over and over.
THIS BOOK SHOULD COME WITH A WARNING LABEL Warning 1: If you haven't read the series, don't start here! Warning 2: If you have read the series, remember the uncomfortable, awful first half of Acheron; multiply it times ten; read about it for the first THREE-FOURTHS of the book. There is so much suffering, abuse, rape and neglect, it made me physically sick to my stomach. There is simply too much bad and not enough good. I suggest checking it out from the library, skimming the first 600 pages, and then reading the action/romance part at the end. Here's hoping the next book has a LOT more humor, romance, action, intrigue and adventure. And a lot less rape. Please, no more rapes.
I have read every single book in this series and have loved them all, but Styxx is by far my absolute favorite. You will cry, get angry, laugh, and cry tears of joy. Styxx makes you fall in love with him and I saw a totally different side of Ash that I was surprised to see, but in the end, Ash is awesome still. Urian, you rock! And Simi is still a joy. Thanks for creating a world that is fun and exciting. This book and all the others will suck you in and not let go.
I can't believe this was actually published. It's disturbing and shouldn't be masquerading as main stream media. The constant abuse that permeates the book was just unnecessary and made it unreadable. Unless you are interested in a boy being constantly abused and raped stay away from this. If I could I would have given zero stars
I agree with others regarding the amount of abuse in this book. It was too much for me to even enjoy the story. Writing is quality but I read these kinds of books for enjoyment and I found it difficult to enjoy this book. Which was frustrating since I love this author. Hopefully the next one lightens up a bit!
I, for one, absolutely LOVED this book one of my favorites along with Acheron. However, I'm highly disappointed by the readers giving it a rating of anything below the value it truly deserves. Anyone who read Acheron had to expect this. It's his twin! But we will ignore the cognitive abilities of some people, and go with the book is well written, and while graphic in its portrayal of Styxx's suffering, did anyone really expect her to phone it in?! Especially after reading the Acheron. Honestly... if anyone has read the dark-hunter books (any of them) and could look past the gooey love and sex they would realize that !!ALL OF THEM!!, had they gone back to the beginning of the character they would have had horrible amounts of suffering as well. *talking to a kindergartener tone* "That's kinda one of the reasons they are chosen as dark hunters..." As an after note though... People that are of a weak constitution or they just can't handle violence and abuse (you name it... it has it in there.) Shouldn't read Acheron or Styxx. Any of the others... yeah... mostly because while there is violence there is more than enough fluff in there to make them forget ALL about their stomachs turning at people being turned to dust, and OTHER OTHER Side note.... If you can get past the abuse it also give a health incite to what was happening on the other side of the spectrum in Talon and Acheron's books.
its really sad that most ppl that are giving this book 1 or 2 stars can't see past the abuse mentioned and see the story for what it really it is. So instead of bashing this author and saying the nastiest things you can think of, you need to take a look at yourselves and wonder why YOU can't get past the abuse mentioned in the book. And besides, its not like the author or the publisher did not mention this before YOU brought it. I mean seriously did you buy just so you can say mean things about the book & its author? because if you did...then you are truly the pathetic ones. And I finish by saying that this was an amazing book written by an amazing author.
This book could have been much more, so much more. For over 600 pages the authir goes and on with an extreme and graphic account of abuse that disturbed me to the very core and was, for the most part, unnecessary. She wanted us, tge readers, to get Styxx's side of the story, I get it. But it was simply excessive. She tried too hard to victimize the villain while villifying the victims from previous boojs, mostly Acheron and his sister Ryssa. I thought after reading Acheron, I was prepared for the tortorous reading. I wasn't; thus one was even worse. To make it worse, the rest of the book is quite flat and it felt as if the author lacked the inspiration to redeem the novel and craft a nice story to bring a final resolution. It was disappointing, especially because I loved all the previous books and preordered thus one a long time ago and in great anticipation.
this book sounded good so i went ahead and purchased it, BAD IDEA! this is a terrible book i didnt even finish the whole thing because the book mostly consisted of styxx getting gang raped every other page, i guess if your into reading about children/teens getting gang raped by their uncle and his friends then this book would be for you...SO DISGUSTED WITH THIS BOOK!! i will never read another one of sherrilyn kenyons books! PATHETIC!
Before i bought this book i read the reviews. That being said it made me angry seeing all the one star reviews. If you were moved by this story you should appreciate how much passion the author puts into her writing. Great read that made me cry and laugh. Thank you for writing this book about Styxx!
If you read her book Acheron, like I did, forget it. Did you like it? So did I. This book renders Acheron pointless and impotent. It's as if the author was trying to outdo herself in terms of extreme plot development at the expense of her previous novels. Her scene pass up intense and chilling and instead catapult into disgusting and uncomfortable. My advice? Skip to, say, the last fifth of the book. The end is thrilling and the climax well done. Otherwise? My least liked of any of her works.
I liked this book right up till they got to mondern day. I hated Styxx after I read Acheron but once I started Styxx I started to feel bad for the both of them. Then they get to moder day and it's like the first 2/3 rds of the book was some twisted delusion. All of the begining Styxx talk about how much he loved his brother then over the course of three pages he decides he actually hated him and stole his birth right. I felt like she wrote the first part, went on extended vacation then picked up where she left off without giving the first part a re-read . I was really disappointed. This book only succeeded in making me dislike characters I had fallen in love with.
I've read several of the books in the Dark Hunter Series. I liked Acheron, but the first 2/3 of this book was just overkill on the rape and degradation of the twins. It was like "enough already, I get it their lives sucked". I wanted to throw this away several times, but my rule is to finish books I start. There was some redemption in the latter 1/3 of the book. I just didn't enjoy this book.
Oh my goodness! I did not expect Styxx's story to be such a tear jerker but the saying is true, "there are three sides to a story: yours, mine and the truth". Now I'm going to say that this book turned me against Acheron because they both have been through so much in their 11,000+ years of life but I am so glad for the ending of this book. I can't wait to see how this will change things in the Dark Hunter books to come because this was an epic shift in their world and in their personal lives. From a prince (not pampered though) to thousands of years of solitude for something he could not control, Styxx definitely lived a life of suffering that he did not ask for. I'm sure that Acheron could say the same. Even though I was intimidated by the thickness of the book (just as thick or bigger than Acheron was) I dove in and had some emotional moments indeed. Love the characters in this series even more now!
Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Pack Alpha - Chelle: *Audible Audio book I just finished listening and am in utter and complete awe. Fred's narration was impeccable, but the story that Sherrilyn Kenyon laid out with this novel is truly one for the ages. Stellar, epic, and mind blowing are just a few of my first impressions. I went into this book incredibly hesitant. I love Acheron, and therefore had a deep seated hatred for Styxx, even though his appearances in past installments was very limited and splotchy at best. Now we know why... Though instead of magically transforming a villain into a lovable hero, Sherrilyn told a well known tale from another perspective and proved how perception and degrees of separation can seriously twist the truth. In the telling of this tale, Sherrilyn made me feel things I didn't think a book could make me feel - stomach turning revulsion (this book is VERY dark and incredibly violent in many parts!), seething hatred, breath catching anticipation, gut clenching agony from sorrow, loss, & loneliness, the weight lifting rush of relief, the heart clenching press of love, and over and over, the rush of anxiety, drama, anticipation, and surprise. It was almost exhausting, but utterly wonderful. She turned what I THOUGHT I knew about Acheron, Styxx and several others on its ear, and made me rebuild my perception of almost the entire primary cast and crew of the DH world. I can only shake my head at the wonder of it all, and feel giddy for what's to come now that the record's been set straight. A lot of fans were upset that Styxx's book was slotted here before others', but after having enjoyed it, I can't imagine anybody else's being here, and the heightened anticipation for future novels of the DH universe is greater than ever (and that is saying a lot), and I hadn't thought it possible - no, I would have said that it was utterly IMpossible for me to love a character more than I love Ash - but I stand corrected, as Styxx has claimed my heart like no other character has before; in any series. Every single DH fan must read or listen to this book. It's a catalyst, and I'm assuming only just the beginning of SO much more as Sherrilyn merges the Chronicles of Nick with the Dark-Hunter/Were-Hunter/Dream-Hunter timelines. Highly recommended!