If you've followed me for any length of time on social media, you already know that Sylvain Reynard is one of my favorite authors. I've been a devoted reader of SR's since 2010 and my love for Prof. Gabriel O. Emerson knows no bounds. When it comes to book boyfriends, no one comes close to The Professor. So when it was announced that "Gabriel's Promise" would be published, my excitement went into overdrive.
The fourth book in this series picks up right where "Gabriel's Redemption" left off. As a reminder, "Redemption" is a story in which The Professor seemingly has it all. But even as Gabriel and Julia navigate through their newlywed bliss, Gabriel remains convinced that his happiness is destined to be short-lived, that it could be ripped away at any moment. When his infant daughter, Clare, is born and placed in his arms for the first time at the conclusion of book three, we get a glimpse of how blessed Gabriel's life will become by fatherhood.
"Gabriel's Promise" takes this glimpse and fully immerses us in those first precious days and weeks of new parenthood. Gabriel's love for Clare is limitless and it's a joy to read. The Professor dotes on his Principessa as only he can, and I took it all in with a big smile. Seeing Gabriel achieve true happiness has been a long time in the making. He is an amazing dad. Naturally, there are some complications that arise for the Emersons during this time. What's interesting to read is how Gabriel chooses to deal with his obstacles in "Promise" compared to the earlier books.
My only word of caution would be for those who haven't yet read "The Florentine Series" or "The Man In The Black Suit." There are elements from those books that have found their way into "Gabriel's Promise" and might cause some mild confusion. That's not to say that you need to read those books before diving into this one. Just be aware that some dots won't be fully connected with this novel, and that you may want to move on to those other stories afterward.
"Gabriel's Promise" is my first read of 2020, and as usual, SR sets the storytelling bar high for my subsequent reads this year. I'm giving this novel five stars for it's heart, humor, sexiness, and the mere existence of the dazzling Prof. Gabriel O. Emerson.
(If you thought Gabriel was hot before, just wait until you spot him strolling through the Harvard campus with Clare in a fancy Swedish baby carrier.)