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Title: Seraphim
Author: Shelby Reed

Genre: Paranormal/Fantasy
Published in June 2005 by Ellora's Cave Publishing
IBSN: 1-4199-0281-4

Born and raised in abject poverty not by her choice, but by her drunken mother who was focused on her next bottle, Gia refused to allow herself to live in that kind of life as an adult. When the grandmother slipped the medallion on her granddaughter, neither one anticipated the outcome, or knew they were being watched by the angels. When she met Vincent Rossi, a wealthy man, she seized the opportunity to escape. She knew that by marrying him, she would have a home, nice clothes and money to spend. Poverty would be far away behind her. In spite of all the things her husband was willing to give, she did not have one thing she wanted the most: her husband’s loving attention.

When Gia was snatched away from her home, she feared that either the abductors were going to kill her or hold her for ransom. She found herself confined in a room but she was not all mistreated. She was told that her husband was possessed by a demon and that they were angels to rescue her. She did not believe them. She wanted to go back home, back to a lifestyle she knew. She did not take anything Joachim or the other angels’ words seriously, but went along, waiting for the right time to escape. When she couldn’t, she tried another tactic. She tried seducing Joachim. It backfired on her. As time progressed Gia started to see how shallow her soul was before she was abducted. By living among the Seraphim, she got in touch with reality not just the things that were happening on earth but also the things above and under the earth, the seen and the unseen. She also learned that she was appointed from above to do one thing, to learn how to use her medallion to retrieve the Sword of Longinus.

Joachim was appointed to lead this rescue mission, to train Gia, to retrieve the medallion that belonged to her. Joachim was a Seraph, divinely created and appointed to guard the Creator. When he was assigned to remove demons that were out to possess human bodies, he was given a human body. For many years, including centuries, he had done numerous missions and rescued men and women. At the end, the women often thanked him and went on their way. No problem. But in the beginning with Gia, he was her teacher, her trainer. He treated her the same way he did with the others. In other words, he kept himself in a distance from her, feeling nothing except that he was doing his job, nothing more. When she tried to seduce him, he naturally put her in her place, but he had a curious sensation in his heart when he saw the hurt in her face. He never experienced this before.

As time progressed, he could not forget her kisses, her touches and his physical reaction to her touches. He knew she really loved him. He was a Seraph and he could not reciprocate her feeling towards him, however, in his human body he could. It was a huge struggle for him, knowing it was not the thing to do. At first, he avoided her, concentrating on his job. In spite of it all, it affected him as much as it did to her. He could not in clear conscience turn his back against his Creator just to have Gia and yet if he forsook her, then would he return to his heavenly realm missing her and wishing for her? Could he allow himself to become intimate with her and if he did, what would the consequence be?

Seraphim, by Shelby Reed, contains at least three different areas of tension that affected me. In the story…each had increased to the point I could not sit still or stop reading, put the book down and go to bed. One, I had to find out once Gia understood her position as the Daughter of Longinus, had she succeeded with the Seraphim’s help in obtaining the much needed ‘tools’ to bring down the demon that possessed her husband? Two, I also had to find out what the outcome was after the battle she and the angels had with the demons and what would happen to Joachim and Gia. Would they ever be a relationship between them? Would Joachim lose his celestial position if he used the human’s emotion called love for this woman who held the key that would save the heaven and earth? Three, I had to know after the fiery battle, when many angels were down including Joachim, was there any hope for him to resurrect in a new body to be with Gia, or would Gia once taste the genuine love for Joachim only to face the rest of her life alone with the Medallion and the Sword of Longinus?

Shelby Reed created a very good allusion using the verse from the Bible.
“For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms.”
(Ephesians 6:12)
She succeeded in creating a story not only about the battle between the heavenly beings and the demons of the underworld, but to have her intertwine it with a bit of romance was truly remarkable. Seraphim was not as erotic as most books from Ellora’s Cave tend to be, but I sincerely believe the sexual tension and the love scenes she has written between Joachim and Gia were tender and sweet. Seraphim is most definitely a keeper in my shelf (or should I say in my Zip?).

Happy reading,

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