February 2, 2012
Sacrifice (Mortal Path #2)
by Dakota Banks
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Harper Collins
Release Date: August 31st, 2010
A demon's enslaved executioner--a ravager of lives and souls--Maliha Crayne has been reborn, willing to sacrifice her immortality for a chance at freedom ... and salvation. Now she has an opportunity to prevent the death of thousands to help balance the countless lives she has obliterated over the centuries. To do so, she must locate and destroy an evil cabal of madmen in possession of a weapon of unspeakable power--and survive the immortal assassins who are now after her blood. But it means reverting to the old ways and surrendering once more to the darkness.
If you haven’t read my review on Book #1 (Dark Time), click HERE. I included some backstory info that you might like to read.
The mortal path isn’t so smooth for Maliha. Since giving up her immortality and the life of an assassin, she is free to have friendships and people in her life; however, that also means having much more to lose. Since her quest is dangerous, she struggles with the decision to involve those she loves or to keep them at a distance to protect them. She is happy with her decision to become mortal but at the same time misses the power that comes with being Ageless.
In this installment, Hound’s girlfriend Glass, is kidnapped by a band of Janjaweed in Sudan when delivering supplies for the World Health Organization. While there Glass sees inhumane experiments are taking place and manages to take a sample with her when they escape. Turns out the sample show the existence of a newly created nanite device that when ingested can destroy entire populations. Maliha knows this is her next quest.
Trying to find answers about these deadly nanites, death comes to everyone Maliha talks to including two friends. Worried for their safety, she pushes her friends into a safe house and away from the action. Then, a little too easily, she reverts back to the old Maliha - the Ageless Black Ghost. The lone assassin. The bad thing is…she finds herself enjoying the feeling of working on her own again and the power of being an assassin. Enough so, that she’s tempted to become Ageless again when approached by Rabishu.
There’s still her quest to find the missing diamond shards of the lens that will allow her to read the Tablet of the Overlord. If she can find all seven shards, she can destroy the demons and save countless lives. So along with locating the evil nanite makers, she spends time looking for these as well.
Dealing with death, lies and betrayal, she slips back into who she was before - unemotional, detached and distant. This is an understandable and realistic reaction to her situation and would explain some of the bad decisions she made while on the mission.
Maliha isn’t a perfect heroine. Nowhere close. That’s why I like her. She makes mistakes but isn’t afraid to own up to them. Some of her actions may be atypical but that’s ok. It’s her imperfection that makes her such a great character and the reason why I enjoy this series so much.
We had a couple new characters introduced to us. Glass (Hound’s girlfriend) is quite spirited and endearing. I hope we get to hear more about her. Lucius is another very yummy Ageless one. After 1,000 years being an assassin, he pursues Maliha to find out how she got out of her contract with her demon. Their relationship was intense and I had high hopes for them. Abiyram is a contact from her past and he helps her find one of the men behind the nanite plot.
I enjoyed Sacrifice so much that I was ready to give it 5 bad boys but then the last chapter threw me. When Maliha was in the clinic, she seemed to realize her mistakes and what she needed to do. Her head was on straight and she made up with her friends. All was good. But then she started an internal dialogue about what choices she needed to make - giving it all up to stay on the island, rescuing Lucius, living with Jake, living with Abiyram in Jerusalem, living with Dac in Australia. It was a bit confusing for me. I wonder if this was a way to let us know that everything is not as settled as we thought and that the series can go just about anywhere?
Banks delivers another great chapter in Maliha’s struggle to redeem herself since choosing to give up immortality and live on the mortal path. Like the previous in the series (Dark Time), this novel has everything that makes a great Urban Fantasy novel - conflict, suspense, major obstacles and compelling characters. I really enjoyed reading it and despite the ending, I’m anxiously waiting for the next in the series – Deliverance on March 27th, 2012.
4 Bad Boys – Really Enjoyed It!!!!