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Publishers Weekly, 2012-07-16 Virtue does not prevent suffering, as Hayes (The Bad Seed) demonstrates in this fast-moving, if thematically stereotyped, struggle between good and evil. Simon Cassel, a short-order cook in a greasy diner, discovers, to his dismay, that he has the power to destroy humanity. In an "ageless battle between the light and the shadows," Simon's fate has been steered from his birth by Priestess Supreme Adelaide Thibodeaux, who conceals him from the lures of the Shadowman and allied sinister forces. However, her spell of protection will lapse when Simon turns 21 and his powers mature. Hayes injects further complications with the entrance of Simon's evil younger brother and aggrieved mother. As Simon's birthday nears, his by-the-numbers relationship with his aristocratic girlfriend, with whom he has shared horrific experiences, grows to include real emotional intimacy. This newfound vulnerability is used effectively as a contrast with his darker impulses, providing a conflict that leads to a surprising and eventful conclusion. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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