Review: The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter

The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter

Published by: Harlequin

Publication Date: May 3, 2008

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Fantasy

Page Count: 379

Rating: 4/5

Source: Gift from Friend

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All her life, Ashlyn Darrow has been tormented by voices from the past. To end the nightmare, she has come to Budapest seeking help from men rumored to have supernatural abilities, not knowing she’ll be swept into the arms of Maddox, their most dangerous member — a man trapped in a hell of his own.

Neither can resist the instant hunger than calms their torments… and ignites an irresistible passion. But every heated touch and burning kiss will edge them closer to destruction — and a soul-shattering test of love…
Though they carry an eternal curse, the Lords of the Underworld are irresistibly seductive — and unimaginably powerful.


“I’ve traveled all over the world for the Institute, but I never dreamed I’d meet someone like you.”

Like my bestie always says, “Sweet Jesus!” If you’re a fan of paranormal romance, Greek mythology, and steamy male characters, this book—hell, this series—is a treat for you.

Ashlyn Darrow struggles with her ability that allows her to hear people’s thoughts, past conversations, and the like. While working for a parapsychology institution that studies supernatural beings, she decides to travel to Budapest so she can seek help from men who not only possess powers of their own but also can help her with hers. They are more than just supernaturals though. These immortal warriors are cursed for their actions they committed long ago. But now someone has decided to take over the gods who damned them.

I haven’t read many Harlequin books. I prefer fantasy over romance. Sure, I’m a fan of fantasy books with some romance elements. So while walking into this series with no great understanding of the romance genre, I wasn’t expecting I’d like it this much. Yes, I admit I like romance. Well, paranormal romance, but you get the gist. My friend Beth recommended the series and bought me the first book of the Lords of the Underworld. She hadn’t known I love Greek mythology. Give me Hades, battles of gods and goddesses, and prophecies any day. And now I’m tempted to just spend all my money to buy the entire series. Thank you Beth and Gena for this addiction, like I haven’t needed another one to add to the ever-growing list.

Yes, this series is almost hitting its tenth anniversary, but I can’t miss up a chance to start reviewing it. Hands down to Gena and her talent to spin a sensual story that hooks you from the beginning. Some writing and repetition could have been tightened up or taken out. But overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the read. The characters have strong voices, and the storyline is compelling and intriguing. And their backstory will entice any mythology fanatic. These Lords received a curse since they defied orders by opening Pandora’s box. Each warrior possesses a different demon: Maddox is bonded with Violence, Reyes with Pain, Lucien with Death, Torin with Disease, Paris with Promiscuity, and Aeron with Wrath. Gena weaves together Greek lore and her own story to create a seamless, imaginative, and character-driven plot.

 

“You are mine, woman, and I am yours. Until you, my life was desolate. I existed, but I didn’t truly live. Now I live, even in my death.”

The MC, Ashlyn, instantly connects with Maddox. And clearly you understand why. They act as if they’re mated. Their relationship is steamy and keeps you turning pages. Gena puts in strong character development throughout the story, and I enjoyed this progression. Readers can say their relationship is too exaggerated, but what do you expect from a romance novel? Perhaps it is, but it works because Gena makes it real.

 

“Pin his fucking legs.”
“Can’t. Got his arms.”
“Knock him out, Paris.”
“Sure. Want me to spew diamonds from my ass while I’m at it?”

Besides Maddox, four other characters who stick out are Paris, Reyes, Torin, and Lucien. The banter among the warriors captures my attention, and many times during the night I held back laughs so I wouldn’t wake anyone up. Gena writes their bond and brotherhood so fluidly that I can’t tell The Darkest Night is the first book.

Sometimes a genre you’ve never thought would interest just sneaks up and surprises you. I can’t wait for the next story.

What do you think of paranormal romances? Do they interest you? Let me know in the comments!

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