January 6, 2023

REVIEW Eternal Rider (Four Horseman #1) by Larissa Ione

Eternal Rider (Four Horseman #1) by Larissa Ione
Rating: 3 Stars
Release Date: April 1, 2011
Format: Audiobook (Borrowed from Library)
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing 

Larissa Ione’s Eternal Rider is the first book in the Four Horseman series, set in the world of her previous Demonica books. The world has been ravaged by the breaking of the seal binding the first horseman of the apocalypse, Pestilence (formerly known as Reseph). Even though he’s the only Horseman on the loose, it's complete chaos. Plagues, death, and wars have been unleashed upon humans, and Pestilence is trying hard to trigger a break in one of his siblings’ seals. The remaining horsemen of the apocalypse (otherwise known as Pestilence’s brothers and sister), Ares, Limos, and Thanatos have their hands full trying to prevent the apocalypse and save the day (and poor Cara Thornhart gets caught in the middle of their fight). 

As the figure who inspired the legend of the God of War in Greece, Ares is a warrior in every sense of the word. Compared to other iterations of his character, I appreciated how balanced Ares is in this book. As one might expect, he’s very tough and imposing on the outside. However, the more time he spends with Cara, the more he opens up to her, and readers see a softer side of him. Their relationship is definitely one of the opposites attracting, and I was amused seeing the big strong warrior melt in her presence. 

Immortal families are eternally messy, and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are no exception to that rule. Larissa Ione made a unique choice emphasizing their family dynamic, and did an excellent job weaving their sibling relationships into the story.  For example, Pestilence seemed almost jealous of the attention that Ares has received over the centuries. Ares and Thanatos are jerks, but their care for their sister Limos is evident. 

As a side note, given that this is set in the Demonica universe, it does feature some crossover of storylines and characters. I have not read those books, but with the help of the handy glossary at the beginning of the book, I was able to keep track of everything and not miss too much context. 

Overall, this was an enjoyable book and a great take on the story of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Hilary Huber delivered a solid performance with her work in the audiobook. Readers who enjoy adult romances with some scenes featuring explicit sex and a paranormal fantasy element should check out this novel and the subsequent books in the series. 

CONTENT WARNINGS: Plagues, Death, Torture, Violence, PTSD, Explicit Sex

About the Book
A dark, sexy romance from New York Times bestselling author Larissa Ione for readers of Katee Robert, Laura Thalassa, and Scarlett St. Claire: she's his only hope to stop the Apocalypse—but is he willing to pay the price?

His name is Ares, and the fate of mankind rests on his powerful shoulders. If he falls to the forces of evil, the world falls, too. As one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, he is far stronger than any mortal, but even he cannot fight his destiny forever. Not when his own brother plots against him.

Yet there is one last hope. Gifted in a way other humans can’t—or won’t—understand, Cara Thornhart is the key to both his safety and his doom. But involving Cara will prove treacherous, even beyond the maddening, dangerous desire that seizes them the moment they meet.

For staving off eternal darkness requires a staggering cost: Cara’s life.

About the Author

Air Force veteran Larissa Ione traded in a career in meteorology to pursue her passion of writing. She has since published dozens of books, hit several bestseller lists, including the New York Times and USA Today, and has been nominated for a RITA award. She now spends her days in pajamas with her computer, strong coffee, and supernatural worlds. She believes in celebrating everything, and would never be caught without a bottle of Champagne chilling in the fridge…just in case. She currently lives in Wisconsin with her retired U.S. Coast Guard husband, her son, a rescue cat named Vegas, and her very own hellhounds, a King Shepherd named Hexe and a Belgian Malinois named Duvel.

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