I had to read it. In the middle of my reading/writing/living slump came this book which rocked.
I disagree with Carolyn in comparing him with Mal only because his general personality was so much more evil and Mal (Mal and Val... heh) needed some ADD meds to get him on an even keel... howevs, the sudden declarations and bombastic speeches were very Mal like (Val and Mal... heh) so I won't argue too much.
What I loved: Val was bad. Bad, bad, bad. He had reasons (it's always the father in these books, correct Dr Freud?) but his evil was fun. He was a blackmailer, a kidnapper, a killer. Seriously, not a good guy. Yet his reasoning for why he did things was sensible in his world view and as a reader, I disagreed with him but loved his thought processes.
The heroine was fun. She foiled Val which made him want her more because nobody truly challenged him. That was fun. And she didn't try to change him to make him a better man. He wasn't capable of that. What she did was work against him to keep him safe.
And he never considered what she did betrayal. He understood her better than she knew.
This was a seriously wicked read and I can't recommend it enough. And if it was left to the cheesy cover I would never have read it.
Hated the cover. Loved the book.