I don't think I loved this one quite as much as everyone else did. Don't get me wrong... I liked it, but it didn't reinvent the wheel, at least not for me.
Our heroine is Elena, a vampire hunter. In this world, vampires are made by angels, and are indentured to them for their first 100 years of life. If one decides to break the terms of the deal, the Guild gets a call to track him down and return him to his angel. Elena is one of the best hunters there is; she can track vampires by scent. And as a result, when the archangel Raphael needs a hunter, Elena is the one he wants.
To call Raphael intimidating would be an understatement. He is centuries old and barely relates to humanity. He is alpha to the extreme; he is sexy; he is a warrior. And he can manipulate the minds of humans. Elena is both attracted and repulsed by him at the same time. She fights her attraction tooth and nail, which intrigues him. And once she becomes interesting to him, the chase is on.
As a relationship starts to grow between Elena and Raphael, the two of them must hunt for an angel who is turning into a vampire of sorts. (It's complicated.) The hunt gives the book plenty of action and excitement. There is a strong cast of secondary characters, ranging from Elena's fellow hunters to the angels and vampires in Raphael's entourage. I liked the world building and I loved the ending.
So why am I not writing sonnets to the book? I guess it was hard for me to get on board with the love story. Such a point was made about Raphael's lack of humanity and he was drawn to me as someone incapable of a real romantic love. He inflicts his will on others; he sees Elena as a puzzle --or an interesting thing-- more than a woman. I guess you can say this changes as she "makes him more human," but it was hard for me to see him as a man capable of love. It felt more like an ownership or she was more like a favored pet than a mate. With the way the book ended though, I think maybe that could change. I'll keep reading to find out... 4 stars.