Infamous, by Sherrilyn Kenyon pretty much says it all.. who needs to actually write a review? But I will try. When JK Rohling wrote Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, I hated it. It wasn't because it was dark, I got that, it wasn't poorly written, it wasn't about the fact that the world was out to get Harry, No. It was about the fact that 15 year old Harry had a huge attitude. It took me forever to realize that it was the only realistic thing in the book. I had a 15 year old male child at the time and it was like reading a mirror description of what I had at home. Why speak of Harry Potter in a review about Nick Gautier? Well because he too is 15 and Sherry got it oh so right. Yes, his trademark, Nick Gautier attitude is there but so is this dark, seething, brooding male of the human species.
Infamous is much darker than the previous two books and we see Nick's battle really gearing up. His relationship with Ambrose starts to make sense and we begin to get a peak at how Sherry is going to combine this Nick with the Nicky we have already met and fell in love with the early days of the Dark Hunter Series. We get a lot of information in this book and it leaves the rollicking good time concept of the first two books. But that makes sense, Nick is growing both as an adolescent human and as the Malachai.. The good news, even though it is most indeed darker than the previous books it in no way compares to Sherrie's offering to suffering and despair, Archeron, although it has it's moments. I suppose to really understand a character of such depth that Nick is turning out to be we must first understand how they came to where they are. Fortunately for us, we get Nick in pieces instead of all rolled up in one book. This way we still get to see the charming, snarky, pain in the derriere that we call Nick.
Infamous in many ways is about relationships.. Nick's relationship with Kody, Caleb and most importantly his mother. We also find out about Bubba and his family and get to meet his mother, the dynamics of this relationship come as quite the surprise. It also embraces the concept of creating a family, knowing who your friends are and in learning to trust them. We also learn that sometimes those that you think are on your side, aren't.
This story begins, the real story not the prologue, as Nick, Kody and Caleb walk into home room and discover that something nasty is happening at the school. First off there are horrid pictures of Brynna Adams (yes one of those Adams) manufactured and posted on computer.. then students are posting rumors and innuendo on another person's locker.. Then all heck breaks loose as Nick and crew try to get to the bottom of things. Nick has to battle Demons both inner and outer, in this realm and other ones.. He has to fight his mother to be heard, truly heard and worst of all, he is in constant battle with true evil, humans.
Along the way he is beaten, betrayed and not believed. Every time he does what is right, what we know is right someone takes him down for it. He has to battle his way through demons, makes his first sneak appearance into Azmodea and enjoys a rather strange first meeting between Nick and Asmodeus. Ok, could a meeting between those two be anything but strange? But I giggled my way through it, I couldn't help myself. Adarian Malachai makes his presence felt and in doing so we learn a few interesting facts about why Nick can be saved.. Nicky also makes a deal with someone that infuriates an unbelieving Ambrose.
As I previously stated Infamous is a dark, brooding, cacophony of the demons that control us but it has it's fun moments and it is endearing in the way Nick continues to really want to be normal, human and good. Yes, Nick has way more battles ahead but he shows such promise. Maybe Ambrose will finally be happy. Do I recommend this book, heck yeah.. it is a must read for those who are following Nick's chronicles but more than that it stands as a wonderful example as why Sherrilyn Kenyon is one of the leading PNR writers today.