Review originally posted on Musing of a Bookworm Can Gabriel ever be redeemed for the sins of his past? Or is he doomed to forever walk the circles of his own personal hell?Sylvain Reynard has skillfully used the inspiration of Inferno, the first chapter of the 14th century epic poem La Divina Commedia by Dante Alighieri, as a starting point for both characterisation and storyline in this beautifully crafted story of love lost, found and fought for.Gabriel takes the role of Dante. Gabriel has created his own personal hell, constructed from his past failings and errors. He must traverse his seven circles of Inferno without Virgil as a guide. He punishes himself by keeping himself apart from his adopted family and has few friends. Gabriel has perfected the art of objectifying himself and others, unable to give or take love from anyone. It’s not until he meets his own personal Beatrice, Julianne.Julianne has loved Gabriel since she was a teenage girl, best friends with his adopted baby sister. Their one meeting changed her life forever, becoming the very example of her idea of perfect love. Gabriel inspired her choice of career and he can’t remember her at all. Julianne has been through her own hell, and now she must go through the heart break of watching her first and only love not remember her, and actively dislike her.Reynard prose is elegant and emotive, bringing to mind the writing of Anne Rice and Colleen McCullough in its style. The characters have intricate backstories which allows the reader to become truly immersed in the romantic tale.I loved the character development in this tale. Honestly, I found Julianne’s character insipid and weak at first. I truly disliked her until she become more confident in herself storms out of his apartment, then argues with him in class. That’s when I found something to identify with the characters.Sylvain Reynard has crafted a story of love, hardship, personal growth and overcoming obstacles which draws a reader in with the intelligent prose and artfully constructed characters.Go out and buy this book now! You won’t regret it. I couldn’t put it down. And its the first in a series. YAY!