GABRIEL’S INFERNO by Sylvain Reynard
Gabriel’s Inferno by Sylvain Reynard
Reviewed by Jo
Julia Mitchell is a graduate student specializing in Dante and has just transferred to theUniversityofToronto. That wasn’t her first choice however circumstances have brought her there. It wasn’t that Julia was worried about not having a great instructor to help her with her thesis, but rather she knew just how good the professor who specialized in Dante really was. As a matter of fact, Julia almost knows a bit too much about him. After all, he is her best friend’s brother.
Professor Gabriel Emerson knows that many of the students who enroll in his class do it for many more reasons than to learn about Dante and his writing and other Italian writers during that time. He knows that being a younger professor with good looks leads some of the girls to hope for things that will never be. It’s not like Gabriel does anything to encourage it – he runs a tight ship with his students. So when a new transfer student catches his attentions by not being ready and then being a mishap magnet, Gabriel believes the best thing to do is to turn her down as being her thesis professor.
Julia believes that her dreams, both professional and personal, are about to go up in flames when several mishaps puts her at odds with Gabriel. Gabriel believes that Julia put herself in his family business only to learn that he jumped to the wrong conclusions. That awkward and hurtful meeting was just the first of many tense meetings between Julia and Gabriel. And through them all was the undercurrent of lust and passion that should never be allowed to bloom. Julia and Gabriel go from misunderstandings to longing to passion all while fighting for their right to explore the feelings that have pushed them together time and again. The fight that Julia and Gabriel face isn’t just from outside forces but also the dark places they each have in themselves that seem to be trying to tear them apart before they experience that passion.
Two hurt souls with dark places find a way to be each other’s light and explore their feelings in Gabriel’s Inferno. Talk about crossed stars, it seemed that Julia and Gabriel had everything against them from the very beginning. I will say that there were times when I found Julia weak and even spineless, just letting life happen to her instead of sticking up for what she wanted. I also wondered if Gabriel would be able to allow love to enter, even when he discovered that Julia was the person who could do that. The saga of how Julia and Gabriel found each other and then fought for their love was well written, but I am not kidding about the saga part. This is one long story with the same intensity as is found in Dante’s writing. There were times when I was intrigued by what Gabriel and Julia were facing and other times when I thought it was too sticky sweet. When it ended Julia and Gabriel had finally come together but I have a feeling they have a long way to go before they will find the happiness that love should bring. Gabriel’s Inferno is not an easy read but for those who aren’t easily distracted, they will find a well written tale of passion and love found against the many odds that face a professor and student who have dark places inside themselves and rules that are made to tear them apart.