From the Ashes by Adrien-Luc Sanders

Publication Date: September 7th, 2012
Entangled Publishing
Format: E-copy, provided by Entangled
RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars
Sociopath. Killer. Deviant. Monster, devoid of morals, incapable of human emotion. The villain known as Spark has been called that and more, and as a super-powered aberrant has masterminded countless crimes to build his father’s inhuman empire.
Yet to professor Sean Archer, this fearsome creature is only Tobias Rutherford–antisocial graduate researcher, quiet underachiever, and a fascinating puzzle Sean is determined to solve.
One kiss leads to an entanglement that challenges everything Tobias knows about himself, aberrants, and his own capacity to love. But when his father orders him to assassinate a senator, one misstep unravels a knot of political intrigue that places the fate of humans and aberrants alike in Tobias’s hands. As danger mounts and bodies pile deeper, will Tobias succumb to his dark nature and sacrifice Sean–or will he defy his father and rise from the ashes to become a hero in a world of villains?

This was amazing. How the author managed to cram so much in such a slight novel and not leave any stone unturned is truly a feat not a lot of writers can achieve. The author endeavoured (and was successful) to write a full story in a novella that did not leave his readers feeling gypped. Oh and it had a nice twist in the end to boot!

From the Ashes tells a story of Tobias Rutherford, the son of a ruthless aberrant whose primary goal was to rule the world. At first glance, his father was every bit as manipulative as, oh I guess any other villain in a comic book. He’s certainly not winning any father of the year awards with what he’s turned his son into. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that perhaps he’s just like Magneto; he only wanted his ward of mutants to have a place in the world. And he’s just as evil; but the jury is still out on him because this is just the first book.

Tobias is pretty much a loner, not so much of a recluse but close. He tends to stay away from any human relationships because they never end well…actually, they usually end up in deaths. So when he developed that kind of connection with his professor, he was intimidated, scared, curious, and pretty much powerless. He couldn’t have stopped it if he tried. Amidst the excitement of a budding, albeit forbidden relationship with his prof, Tobias’ role as his father’s executioner was never far from his mind. So when an order to assassinate a Congressman came through, he had to choose between pursuing the relationship and doing what he’s ordered to do.

Verdict: This book is close to being flawless by my standards. The writing is so natural, the characters well fleshed-out and a plot that will have you entranced from beginning to end. I hardly blinked from the time I started it till the end. The romance is intense; sometimes sweet, quite often difficult but we’ve barely scratched the surface of their relationship. If you like heroes with superpowers the like of the X-Men mutants and m/m romance, then this would definitely make for a nice addition to your shelves.