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Monday, December 9, 2013

The Darkest Night (Lords of the Underworld #1) [Maddox & Ashlyn] by Gena Showalter

This one is going to be a loooong review and also will contain mild spoilers (which I'll "warn" about :))

First - I loved this book! I feel like it's been a while since my last PNR series, but actually it's only been a little more than 2 months from finishing the Midnight Breed series. It seems that no matter how much I enjoy reading "regular" romance books I always find myself missing a dab of supernatural in my reading. I yearn for those manly man creatures with inhuman strength and special abilities (and disabilities ;)) that simply doesn't exist in our world. 
Though I'm a HUGE fan for vampire related PNR this one is different. Vampires are mentioned in about a sentence (meaning they probably exist somewhere) but there is nothing on them and probably wouldn't be in the future. We have a group of 6 warriors, immortal warriors that each one share their existence with a demon inside of them. This demon makes it hard for them to manage a "normal life" so they choose to live together and stay off society. That's in a nutshell.. 

This novel tells the story of Maddox who shares his existence with the demon of Violence. Not a very "happy little demon" as you might imagine.. and also the gods (the Greek ones in case you were wondering) "gifted" him with a curse for killing a woman he shouldn't have. His curse is he must be stabbed at midnight each night 6 times - until his death - and then delivered to hell for the rest of the night to be burned there. Just from those details you can see that Maddox isn't really a relationship material kinda guy.. But nevertheless by the end of this book he and Ashlyn find their happy ending. 

Ashlyn always knew there are other creatures in this world - first because she has the unique ability to hear all conversation that has ever been made in a certain place and also because she works for an institute that research supernatural beings. She hears that on a hill near Budapest there are special beings, maybe even angels that she hopes might help her control her ability. She discovers first hand that the ones living up the hills are far from being angels but though she is being held there captive she learns that they are by no mean monsters. 

Maddox captures and holds Ashlyn against her will because he things she is "Bait". In the past Hunters - people determine to kill the Lords of the Underworld (he and his friends) - used women to lure them and kill them. But right from the start there is something about Ashlyn that makes him re-think the possibility of her being there other than to help herself. Surprisingly from the very second Ashlyn encounters Maddox she stops hearing the voices of the past making her long for his presence (doesn't that remind you of Sookie Stackhouse and Bill Compton in the Southern Vampire Series?).

You can guess what happens with Ashlyn and Maddox. Don't need no guessing here :) But what is interesting is all the changes that happen to Maddox and his relationship with his demon. 

We have the POV of Ashlyn and Maddox throughout the book but also other characters - the other Immortals and also a little bit by Danika - a woman who is captured (with 3 other members of her family) by the Immortals by the request of the Titans that as it seems threw out the Greek Gods. The warriors don't really know what to do with the women so they keep them captive for the meanwhile..

As you can see there is a lot going on in this book. A lot of "world" to be unraveled. But that's not the least of the things that happen. They also have Hunters on their back and also a "surprise from the past" -   SPOILER
Which keeps them "on their toes" since there is no trust with whom they have to work with now.

I loved this book and really looking forward to the next ones!! the only complaint I have for this book is there's just too many damn characters to follow! :D
Mind you, I've read "A song of Ice & Fire" and if you want to blame SOMEONE for creating too many characters - George R. R. Martin WOULD be the guy.. ;)  

Since this is the first book in the series (the novella before gives only a feel of the story - actually this book happens maybe even a thousand years after it..) there are simply a lot of details about this world and the characters with their special characteristics. It took me half the book to really get "who's who" you know? but then there were more to come and I was a little lost there for a while.

Additional Details: Kindle Ebook, 384 pages, 6-9 December 2013 / On GoodReads

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