Firstly, Fantasy Lover is technically the first book of Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series, but for the sake of my sanity – and the fact that when I started reading the series, Night Pleasures was clearly listed as the first book in the series – I’m referring to this as the Pre-Dark-Hunter book.
Fantasy Lover is the story of Julian of Macedon (friend of Kyrian from book 1) and Grace Alexander (friend of Selena Laurens – a Devereaux sister). Julian has been trapped in a book as a sex slave for the last 2,000 years, only ever released by the women who wish to use him for his ‘services’ for 30 days. While in the book Julian can hear what is going on around him, but he is unable to achieve any sort of satiation therefore left in the dark and starving for any amount of time between summons. Grace Alexander is a sex therapist who hasn’t had sex herself in four years, thanks to a loser who left her with a bad taste. Selena, good friend that she is, is certain that all Grace needs is a little time with the man in the book, but what no one expects is that the two would fall for each other.
Fantasy Lover is essentially a tale of a 2,000 year old demigod who is entirely blindsided by the state of things in the present day. Microwaves? Vehicles that don’t require horses to actually get from point A to point B? Who knew? His view of the world has been limited to the closets and bedrooms of rich women who were able to get to his book. At the same time it is the story of a modern woman, an independent woman who certainly does not need this man and absolutely refuses to use him – even if that’s technically what he is there for. From the start Grace is unlike any of her predecessors, she isn’t afraid to take Julian into public or treat him like more than a toy. In fact, when the two are able to contact some of his family and figure out how to break the curse, things look up for Julian for the first time in a while.
Without giving too much away, Fantasy Lover is full of friendship and family – and the difficulties that comes with each, tension, aggravation, stubbornness, a little bit of danger, and ultimately love, love of all types. Basically, I loved it, but then is that really all that surprising when I’ve adored each of the books of the series I’ve read thus far.
In my opinion, Fantasy Lover is a great introduction to the Dark-Hunter series. While it isn’t entirely action packed with Daimon fighting and the like, its the intro to Kenyon’s mythology that makes the book. Fantasy Lover introduces the background to the series, its the ‘Yes, you can expects lots of this,’ or the ‘Mhmm, even Gods have to deal with that!’ of the series. This installment is also our introduction to some of the big characters at the start of the series. Kyrian, the obnoxious-labeled Devereaux clan, and of course the lovely Acheron all get their start here.
Bottom line, Fantasy Lover is a great place to start, and while its not full of fightin’ action on the streets of New Orleans as the other books are, it is a great intro to the backbone of the series.