by Caroline Hanson
amazon - kindle £0.72
Book Description (taken from goodreads)
Valerie Dearborn wants a cotton candy life, but it’s more like a puffer fish: pointy, unusual, and—if not prepared exactly right—deadly.
In London for graduate school, Val knows she's finally free. Her father and ex-almost-boyfriend are back in California and she's out of the Vampire hunting biz for good. Or is she?
She draws the attention of Lucas, a 1600 year old Vampire, and King to his kind. He’s also wicked hot. As golden as Lucifer, and just as tempting, he makes Valerie an offer she can't refuse— help him find out if the Others (Empaths, Fey and Werewolves) still exist or he'll stop protecting those she loves.
Lucas tells her that Empaths were a Vampire’s biggest weakness before going extinct hundreds of years ago. While the Fey or a Werewolf might kill a Vampire, an Empath could enslave them, seducing or harming with emotions at will. The one detail he leaves out? Valerie is an Empath.
And after 1600 years of an emotionless existence, Lucas wants Valerie like a recovering alcoholic wants a wine cooler.
Can she keep those she loves alive, stop Lucas from munching on her, survive a fanged revolution and still find a way to have that boring, normal life she’s always wanted? Probably not, but boy is she gonna try!
I’m on an adult urban fantasy kick at the moment and Caroline Hanson’s Love is Darkness was a delicious meal in my feeding frenzy. Hanson’s modern, smooth and polished prose drew me in from the first page. I was immediately engaged by Val and Jack, the tension and chemistry between them was absolutely electric! Val is an incredibly likeable heroine. There’s a lot about her that’s relatable - certain insecurities, loneliness, a drive for something ‘more’. She just wants an ordinary life away from paranormal danger (I loved how her reactions to the paranormal were so authentic) and the conflicted pull she has between wanting this and a certain hot hunter was expressed extremely well. I have to love Val for her backbone and resolve.
With a great sense of humour and an intense loyalty towards the people in her life (a loyalty that is used against her), Val is a great character. She plays off of Lucas just as well as she does Jack which was frustratingly brilliant I must say. Lucas was just as compelling as Jack. Sometimes I find one male hero shines less than the other but I’m on the fence with this one. OK, maybe I’m leaning more towards Jack but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy every second Lucas was on the page. The ending was like ahhhh no ‘I need more!’ I’m so glad book 2 is out in ten days. Seriously, seriously impressed with this book, not just as an indie (an amazingly professional, polished and well-structured indie), but as an adult pnr book in general. It holds its own among some of my favourite writers such as Charlaine Harris, Chloe Neill and Keri Arthur. It’s full of humour, action and sizzling chemistry. Fans of adult urban fantasy will love it!
Five Massive Massive Stars!