Book: Personal Demons
Author: Lisa Desrochers
Release Date: September 14, 2010
Rating: 4 of 5
Frannie Cavanaugh is a good Catholic girl with a bit of a wicked streak. She's spent years keeping everyone at a distance—even her closest friends—and it seems her senior year will be more of the same...until Luc Cain enrolls in her class. No one knows where he came from, but Frannie can't seem to stay away from him. What she doesn't know is that Luc works in Acquisitions—for Hell—and she possesses a unique skill set that has the King of Hell tingling with anticipation. All Luc has to do is get her to sin, and he’s as tempting as they come. Frannie doesn’t stand a chance.
Unfortunately for Luc, Heaven has other plans, and the angel, Gabe, is going to do whatever it takes to make sure that Luc doesn’t get what he came for. And it isn't long before they find themselves fighting for more than just her soul.
But if Luc fails, there will be Hell to pay…for all of them.
Ashley and I rarely read the same books because we do not want to double review, but once in a blue moon it happens. We both chose to read Lisa Desrochers' Personal Demons so that we could argue over which fictional fella we adore. If you want to know how that went down then you can check out the post here. Anyways, we both enjoyed this book, and here's why...
Frannie Cavenaugh is the luckiest girl in the fictional world.
No really. She has at least four guys throughout this book who are interested in her. She seems to have this magnetisim about her that is irresitible to the opposite sex and it will no doubt make you green with envy. Of all the guys that are interested in her though there are only two that are really important for this discussion: Luc and Gabe. One from hell, the other from heaven, but both viable options for Frannie. They are both sent to tag her soul because she is gifted, but this competition extends beyond their bosses' orders and becomes a tug-of-war for her heart. There is something incredibly fascinating about two guys fighting over one girl's love. It is one of those things that will continually appeal to readers; possibly because as humans we just love to have options. For Frannie though, there is really only one option: Luc.
What is interesting about this book is that it attempts to distinguish what is heaven and what is hell; it does this mainly through the characterization of Luc and Gabe. Frannie's presence in their lives though changes them, and thus makes you question what defines heaven and hell. For Luc, this change is much more evident than it is for Gabe. This could be due to Gabe's lack of a narrative voice in the book. With Luc's narration though it is easy to see exactly how he is changing. Luc, the bad boy of all bad boys, has never felt real emotion for anyone or anything - until Frannie. The impact that she has on him has a transforming effect and it forces him to re-evaluate who he really wants to be. Gabe is impacted by Frannie as well, but she seems to have the opposite effect on him. When Gabe is with Frannie he gives in to his desires and in turn jeopardizes his angelic persona. The influence that Frannie has on both of them may in turn allude to changes in heaven and hell if her gifts are exploited. The power that she has over Luc and Gabe might just be a taste of what she is capable of.
As a main character, Frannie is more than a little complicated. Ashley and I tended to agree that we were infuriated by her actions from time to time. On occasion Frannie seems to get caught up with Gabe even though her feelings for Luc are clear. While Frannie's inability to make a concrete decision can be frustrating, it is also an interesting dilemma. As Frannie struggles between choosing Gabe or Luc she is in turn choosing between heaven and hell. Her conflicition between the two highlights the internal struggle she has because of the death of her brother. The guilt she feels about his death may be the reason she was so drawn to Luc in the first place. Where Luc represents punishment, Gabe represents forgiveness. Frannie is unable to forgive herself throughout the book and this does have an impact on her decisions.
While this book is for teens, Luc and Frannie's relationship is fairly racy. With that said, the reading level still manages to stay within the Young Adult genre. I say this because the langauge in the book sometimes contradicts the mature nature of Frannie and Luc's relationship. Sometimes the dialogue between the characters can be a little immature. This might be Desrochers' way of placing the book into a high school perspective, especially at times when the storyline gets a little heated. This book will therefore appeal to both older and younger audiences which is interesting to note.
The idea of soul tagging is a unique concept and one that is bettered by two handsome heroes and their love for a gifted girl. Desrochers not only created an incredible bad boy, but she also have him a voice in the story. It will be interesting to see how Desrochers` follow-up Original Sin is written. Maybe Gabe will have get a chance to narrate? We sure would love to know how his feverish kisses with Frannie complicate his moral code. ;)