Sunday, January 1, 2012

Book Review: The Darkest Secret

The Darkest Secret
Book 7 of The Lords of The Underworld series
Published By: Harlequin
Release Date: March 29, 2011
Buy it at Amazon
Source: Owned by Reviewer
Audience: Adult - Mature

My Thoughts:
I really enjoy this entire series, so that bumped up this particular book from a solid three birdies to four. Amun’s book is the 7th and latest book in a world that is ever changing, and always interesting. (Random aside: there is also a tie-in/crossover/whateveryoumacallit with Kresley Cole’s Immortals After Dark series – The two authors are close friends. Can you spot Nix? I want to see it in the comments!) I like that the characters, the setting and the premise is something different and new. I keep using this word, but it’s a refreshing change from the run-of-the-mill paranormal romance. They’re also really hot and sexy without being super graphic. The dialogue between most of the characters, particularly the Lords and William or Anya the (minor) Goddess of Anarchy, is absolutely hilarious.

 Let me introduce you to the Lords of The Underworld, a group of immortal warriors created to guard Pandora’s Box. The fact that Pandora was chosen over them (including Cameo, who is female, so no misogyny here) ruffled their feathers, so they stole the box and opened it. (They’re awfully pretty, but that wasn’t bright.) All sorts of chaos and pain rained down upon the earth until Zeus decided each of the 12 warriors would house within themselves one of the demons the box had contained: Violence, Pain, Death, Disease, Disaster, Misery, Doubt, Promiscuity, Defeat, Lies, Secrets, and Wrath. Cheerful bunch, no? I digress. 
This general rundown brings us to Amun, the Keeper of Secrets. I was really intrigued to see how the author was going to play this one out, since Amun doesn’t speak. When he does, his demon, Secrets, starts spilling out every single thing you don’t want anyone to know. It also means Amun can read your mind and hello awkward! I wouldn’t enjoy that, and to be honest, if he read mine, he’d run screaming, no matter how many demons he’s seen. But anywho.... Who doesn’t like a strong, silent type?

Enter our not very likable heroine. Her name is Haidee, and she is a Hunter, one of a zealous group who is dedicated to wiping out the Lords. Now this where it gets good – I did not want to like her. I thought she was a self-righteous psycho & didn’t want her anywhere near poor, overburdened Amun. When I realized the author was pairing them up, I had one of those “book in freezer" moments. But Showalter carefully crafts quite the backstory for her and by the end of the book, I was cheering for her. And you will have to work at it – the first half-ish of the book was slow and kind of “where is this going?” for me. There was also a side bit about Strider being attracted to her, and I found that distracting and unnecessary.

So overall, a surprisingly good read. Grab your beach towels and get to know the Lords. You won’t be sorry, and you can blame your perma-blush on the sun. *wink wink*

Keeper of the demon of Secrets, Amun can manipulate the darkest thoughts of anyone nearby. But when new demons possess him, the immortal warrior must be chained and isolated to protect those he loves. Death is his only hope of release—until he meets Haidee, a fellow prisoner whose beauty and hidden vulnerability draw him into a reckless test of his loyalty…

Haidee is an infamous demon assassin, raised to despise Amun’s kind. Yet how can she hate the man whose touch sets her aflame? But to save him, she must give herself body and soul…and face the wrath of a powerful adversary sworn to destroy her.

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