#12 Upon the Midnight Clear – Sherrilyn Kenyon

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Hi All, welcome back to another week with another review of the Dark Hunter world. As we get further and further into this world I realise how complex it is. Just like moving out of home for the first time you realise how freeing it it, and then you start to learn about one thing after another that you have to pay for now that you're living on your own.

I feel like that's how this series works. As soon as I feel like I can really understand, comprehend and add value (in the form of my own thoughts, feels and assumptions) the story we need to add another layer that takes time for me to comprehend. Given that I first read this series when I was like 20 I felt like it took a few reads to really get the full meaning out of a lot of these stories.

In a lot of ways I feel like this one was a filler book. Just a book Sherrilyn needed to finish to full-fill a contract, I can see looking back at the series as a whole how this added value. Just like with Game Of Thrones when you have an episode totally about the politics how that's needed to make the massive battle coming in future episodes make sense. You need this book to really grasp the importance of coming books.

So, if you're a fan of reading books in their intended reading order. No matter how boring a book may seem. Or how unlike the rest of the series they may seem. Make sure you read this one.

I felt like when I got to a later book (I will reveal which one in it's review) I really understood where it was coming from and how it interacted with the story and the characters as a whole. Not just the ones mentioned in this book.

By pure chance this book is set in Christmas time and I read it during my first Christmas away from my family. So although I felt really sad about this book while reading it, I also really felt for them. And I instantly fell in love with the main guy's friends when they made an effort to ensure he enjoyed Christmas. Even locked up on his mountain cabin fighting demons.

I left this book with a much more profound impact on my personality than I did on the story itself. I left this really appreciating the time I have to spend with my family. So I make it a habit of calling my dad/ sister to speak to me nieces on their birthday, I try my best to go to all family outings (although I gota admit, with working being as hard as it is and my family constantly doing stuff on laundry day this is really hard sometimes!) to make sure I make the most of my family. Because who knows when that will end.

I don't know if it's because of when I first read this book or because of the family feel Sherrilyn gives this book. But I always walk away from this book missing my family. As crazy and annoying as they can be. They are family and I'd like them around me for important occasions.

Even starting this blog, I thought I'd do this just for fun and for me. But thanks to all the support I've gotten from family and friends. And of course the authors! I feel like I've reached a much wider audience and I appreciate this every day.

Going from the kid who spent my 2 most important summers in full length leg casts and then working full time the next 2 summers. Family and friends support mean A LOT to me. So knowing I have found a new family in a winder community means heaps to me.

So  a special thankyou to you, my readers. I really appreciate you. And I wouldn't be as excited to bring you new reviews each week if it wasn't for your enthusiasm that I see through your likes, comments and shares. So please keep this up!

For those of you reading this in your email, I hope you'll take the time to visit the page so I can see that you've read it as I'm always interested to see how far my blog has travelled. Trust me, my partner wishes I'd shut up about the reach of the internet!

Until next time! I hope you enjoyed this review and I'll see you next week.

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#11 Devil May Cry – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Welcome back everyone, I'm writing this post a little last minute as I've been a bit distracted by work which then makes me want to just come home and kill stuff on a computer game to de-stress. Normally I'd pick a book for that but I've been so tired I needed something my partner could kick me off of when it was time for bed!

Anyway, this one is one of my favourites. I just LOVE the drama in this one! Normally I hate drama, but the way Sherrilyn has written this one has me laughing quite a bit. So we start this one off with Artemis having a bit of a tantrum to Acheron (what's new with that scene?) trying to get him to kill Sin. Only problem is, Acheron is siding with Sin which is pissing Artemis off even more.

Cue Artemis acting like the spoiled brat that she is, she goes to her daughter, spreads some lies and sends her after Sin to kill him. Only problem is Katra (I'll call her Kat from now on) isn't 100% sold on killing Sin since she's not 100% sure she can trust her mum, so she tries to do some recon. "Try" being the operative word there since he knocked her out and abducted her back to his apartment and wrapped her in one of her mother's nets.

Needless to say Kat wasn't happy and they had a bit of a fight when she came to. Luckily she managed to talk some sense into him before he killed her thinking she was Artemis. During their fight they shared a bit of sarcastic banter and that kind of banter continues throughout the book. Being a bit of a fan of this kind of banter I really enjoyed reading this in use.

The best parts of this book for me though are where Sin and Artemis come face to face, when Acheron finds out he has a daughter (this isn't funny but it's really sweet), pretty much every line Kish has and finally the Charonte's! Specially Sin's fear of them. They are classic. Whenever the Charonte's come out it's hilarious.

And of course having Sin save Kat's life, banding together to save the world and then having a kid are pretty good too. But the way Sherrilyn writes this one manages to get me suckered in as if something is going to change since the last time I read it. I like knowing I'm not the only one with a dysfunctional family. I love the adrenaline rush I get every time I read this one. And I love how lighthearted the humour is while bringing in a whole new pantheon of gods, myths, legends and history.

Before reading this book I never really considered Sin's pantheon as one to research about. Like I'm pretty sure we all know about the Greek, Egyptian, Norse and the current day gods. But to then also consider the Sumerian gods, and to learn about the disagreements and inter-pantheon politics that went on way back in ancient times. After reading this book it spurred me on to learn more about his pantheon which I really liked. I love learning new things and being challenged and this book really did it for me. Plus history is something I've always been interested in so reading a different take on ancient events always peaks my interest.

Anyway, I apologise if this one sounds a bit rushed because it kinda is. I'm hoping while I'm on holiday's I can take my time writing these like I normally can. So I hope you enjoyed this one and I will see you again next week!

#10 The Dream-Hunter – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Welcome back everyone, this week I am reviewing the first book to really talk about Dream Hunter's. The third and final type of "Hunter" in this world. These guys are a bit different from the other type of hunter's and have very little to do with the human world anymore.

The most memorable thing for me about how this book opens is that Dr Megeara Kafieri is standing on a cliff mourning the loss of her last family immediate member. Her dad. He was ridiculed by many in the historical world for being "crazy" and for chasing down something that everyone believed to be a fairy tale.

And then she was given a pouch containing the reason for her fathers continued belief, even after the death of so many family members. And this is the moment Megeara feels awful for insulting her father for his blind faith. She realises in that moment that he was right. Atlantis does exist. And she is now holding the proof she needed to continue his quest and really believe in it. If only she could get a good nights sleep so she could concentrate and pull this off in the name of her father.

And along comes Arikos who is impossibly Greek, apparently can't swim until AFTER he's rescued by Megeara from almost drowning and seems to have connections that get Megeara all she wants from life. Knowing why Arikos has tracked Megeara down really didn't endear him to me. He has done it for selfish reasons without considering the consequences. And those consequences are Megeara's life. Literally her life.

What kind of person would willingly trade the life of another just so they can enjoy emotions they haven't experienced before? O that's right. Arikos doesn't have any emotions! We are reminded again of how horrible the Greek gods can be. Just because of some profocy they didn't like and therefore the actions of one person they destroyed any half-Dream-Hunter-half-human children and to then torture and strip the Dream Hunters of any and all emotions they then had.

As is expected, Arikos learns a little bit about what it's like to be human and starts to learn about consequences. Because of this he starts to regret his choices and starts to plan out what he can do make it up to Megeara. Which is especially hard to do since she has no idea what he's done and still doesn't really trust him. Especially since he keeps trying to get her naked and have sex with him. And this is where the emotional intelligence comes into play. Reading how Arikos develops his emotional intelligence really gave me hope for myself.

I hear from people that I don't really have any EQ, so reading about how Arikos is able to develop his EQ gave me hope for myself. But I can also see that he has the support system needed to go about developing this. With all of these people understanding that he needs to develop his EQ, I feel like he has an easier time building up his EQ than I do. And that makes me envious of him.

In the end he manages to come through with the goods. But not without a lot of help, effort and potential loss of lives. But Arikos isn't the only one to learn some valuable lessons during this book. And it's not limited to just Megeara either. Although some of these we don't learn about until future books. So just keep those thoughts in line for when you read the rest of the series!

I hope you enjoyed this weeks review and look forward to next weeks. Thankyou for your likes and please continue to like and comment on these reviews if you're enjoying my thoughts on these books.

#9 Dark Side of the Night – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Welcome back everyone, I hope you've enjoyed reading my thoughts on this series so far. We're not yet halfway through the series so there is plenty more to come! This weeks book has moved to a new location and for good reason. This book is set not long after Katrina hit New Orleans, effectively making the city a ghost town. For me, I read these novels in 2009/2010 for the first time so I was a bit confused about the change of location initially until I was reminded that Katrina had occurred just before this book was set.

Anyway, onto the story! We're located in Seattle for this story and we're following Susan and Ravyn. Susan is a disgraced reporter who hates her deadbeat job and is desperate to get back into the REAL world of journalism again and will do just about anything to get back into that world that she loves. Ravyn on the other hand is an outcast in the Dark Hunter world kinda like Zarek was but not quite AS bad as Zarek.

In this story Susan is unexpectedly forced into taking Ravyn home by a friend even though she's allergic to him. Ravyn on the other hand was pretty damned happy to get out of the pound that he's stuck in. That's right, you read that correctly. Ravyn is stuck in a pound when Susan takes him home. Ravyn being a typical male get caught in cat form (did I mention he's a Were Hunter turned Dark Hunter who's kept his shape-shifting ability? And alternate form is a cat?) after being caught in daylight because he was perving up some girls skirt. Whenever I read this I wonder how oblivious to his surroundings he must be to be caught in such a silly way. I mean, he's meant to be some kind of super warrior trained since birth to fight. So how could he let his guard down enough to get caught KNOWING that he's a high risk target?

Anyway, poor Susan is allergic to cats and as such can't be near Ravyn's hair without her nose getting all clogged up, sneezing etc. When Ravyn makes it safely back to Susan's house he mistakenly gets the impression that Susan is a Squire (human servants paid handsomely to work for the Dark Hunters) because she says she works for Leo Kirby. Who coincidentally also runs the entire Squire network in Seattle. So Ravyn starts talking to her as if she knows everything about his world and then thinks she's new since she has no idea what he's talking about. Only to get into trouble when they get back to Leo and finds out she isn't a Squire.

Leo however sees the use of having someone like Susan involved in the Squire's world and takes her under his wing and approves her becoming a Squire. Anyway, shit hit's the fan. Lots of supernatural people are after Susan and Ravyn (and others) to the point where Savitar (big scary dick head on a GOOD day) comes in and puts things kinda back into rights. The Daimons are still free to hunt whoever they want however they are not allowed to break Savitar's sanctuary laws unless they want to die a painful death.

Out of all the books I really didn't feel the romance side of this book and can't say I read this particular book for the romance. But I definitely love the action in this one. You have people coming back from the dead, you have technology being messed with, you have your sacred places being illegally infiltrated, you have family drama spiking out of control between supernatural beings only to have a human show up the "big smart know it all" Were Hunter leader. Among plenty of fighting scenes. I feel like the action in this book took what has happened in previous books, doped it up with steroids and then pumped it full of performance enhancing drugs.

And I loved every minute of the action! I can't say I'm normally a fan of a lot of action in books. But there's something about the way that Sherrilyn writes that really allows me to picture the scene playing out in my mind as if it was a TV show or a movie. Normally when I read books with action scenes I feel like I'm watching a really badly choreographed fight scene in a C grade movie filmed through a potato. However Sherrilyn's writing feels like I'm watching it in 3D HD 4K whatever quality where I can really feel like totally immersed in it. My breathing stops. I can feel the adrenaline pumping through my body. I shift to subconsciously match what's happening in the book. And I breathe a sigh of relief when they make it out alive.

So even though the normal balance between romance and action makes it exciting, this is on a whole new level. And I think if it was any other writer I wouldn't enjoy it as much. But Sherrilyn draws you into her world in such a way that I love it. And there's just enough sappy romance stuff to still keep it listed as a romance.

Since the action is the main part of this novel and I'm not very good at describing how that affects me since it's more a physical reaction rather than an emotional one I will end this review there. If you like action then you will really enjoy this one. But even if you're not a huge fan, there's still enough sappy romance stuff happening that you will be satisfied.

Thankyou for all your likes and I look forward to bringing you another review next week!

Dangerous Waters – Anne Allen

Welcome back to another Guernsey Book novel by Anne Allen. I read this one accidentally when I was meant to read A Family Divided. And I'm glad I did. I really enjoyed this book right from the get go and was really intrigued by the combination of historically accurate information that was woven into the story in way that made it feel seamless.

We start off with our main character Jeanne returning to Guernsey for the first time in 15 years and she's experiencing a panic attack due to the reminder of the death of her parents, which she witnessed. I can't say I've experienced this myself but I can empathise with her because it can be quite difficult to return to somewhere that was tarnished with difficult memories. Unfortunately some guy decides to be a bit of a dick and accuses her of being drunk when she stumbles due to her panic attack. Luckily, she has some family friends on the island that she is staying with who support her upon her return. Even though she doesn't seem to want to lean on them too much it's good that she's got them there for her when she needs them. Some people have a support system and choose not to use them, while others desperately need them but don't have them. Out of both of these options, I'd definitely rather have the system and not need it so that when I need it I know it's there for me.

She manages to get herself settled in her grandmothers cottage (she passed on and that's why she's returned) while she prepares the place to sell, since she has no intention of staying in a place with so many bad memories. While staying here she discovers a number of recipes going back to her French restaurateur ancestors which inspires her to write a cooking/ romance novel based on her families history on Guernsey Island during the war.

While researching for her novel and managing the renovation of the cottage she learns some dark secrets about her families past, including a love affair with a German soldier, while also working on hypnosis to regain memories of the night she witnessed her parents murder. I personally found this fascinating to read about because I have a little bit of a love affair with history and love learning about something I didn't know about previously. During this time she dates her crush from high school until she starts to feel a little uncomfortable and stalked. At which point she ends things and accidentally ends up dating the guy who accused her of being drunk when she first arrived. And I can't blame her for this given the relationship she got out of not long before coming back to Guernsey. Given that experience I'm all for date around casually, and when you feel ready commit. Don't commit just because for once a guy is ready to commit! What if he's crazy and you end up in an even worse position than you were in before? So it made me happy when she recognised what SHE wanted and followed her gut feeling, her head and her heart. Which luckily all agreed on the one thing, to dump the high school crush and move on to the nice guy you've been having lunch with.

One thing leads to another, and he ends up looking after her and protecting her from the people who killed her parents. The people who killed her parents even tried to kill her but luckily her love interest saves her and brings her to safety. I really feel for her when this happens, because not only is she terrified of being in a boat after her parents death. But the same people who killed her parents also try to kill her on a boat. And by a stroke of luck she's able to call her new boyfriend to come and save her. After he saves her it doesn't take much to sort out the mystery of her parents killers and bring them to justice.

And then as with any romance novel she wins the guy, her career kicks off and her family life takes a massive turn for the better. Although the following books don't follow the same character's; some of the characters we met in this book will also feature in the rest of the series. I've mentioned this in the "Family Divided" book, but I really enjoyed reading both these books and definitely plan to come back to this series to finish reading it. If you enjoy romance novels with a bit of history woven in you will probably like it one.

Thankyou for reading this weeks post, and I will see you next with for "The Wedding Season" by Samantha Chase. As always, please visit the actual post (I'd love to know how many people are reading these posts!), like, comment and share 🙂

#8 Unleash the Night – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Welcome back to another week of our Dark Hunter series! This week we are exploring the story of another Were-Hunter.

This particular book is following Wren, who up until now has only been seen as a quiet, anti-social tiger-were, who no one seems to know anything about other than he turned up some time ago with a monkey in tow. Our other main character is Maggie, the daughter of a prominent US. Senator and is completely human.

When Maggie goes to Sanctuary to celebrate Nick's life with her other uni friends Wren happens to see her and is instantly drawn to her. Since he never talks to anyone, let alone a human, it's amazing that he says anything to Maggie at all. She leaves her purse behind accidentally after her friends pick a fight with Wren which triggers him to find her the following day to return her purse. At this stage I was wondering why he was interested in Maggie since according to what I knew already about Were-Hunters he could never be able to have kids with Maggie. And more importantly, a Senators daughter is not someone that should be introduced to the Were-Hunter world.

After a few more altercations and a hunt being called on fro Wren's life Maggie and Wren run to the past. Specifically to days before Wren is orphaned. While there Maggie learns that Wren is half white tiger and half snow leopard therefore allowing him to have 4 forms rather than the typical 2 forms a Were-Hunter has. At this stage I couldn't believe Maggie was still around. Not only had she discovered this in the worst way possible when he passed out and turned into a giant half white tiger and half snow leopard on her living room floor. Only to then get dragged into his man hunt.

Because of this he is a half breed he is much more powerful than most Were-Hunters, and something his dad had realised. Unfortunately he realised it too late to communicate this to Wren before he died. Good thing is he was working to try and fix this at the time of his death, and although he wasn't able to fix this at the time. He certainly made up for it when Wren came back.

Good news is, thanks to some timely reminiscing Wren's dad realises what happened the night Wren was orphaned and orchestrated the continuity of his family. Even though he mistakenly kinda ruined Maggie's life (in some people's opinion) he was able to save both their lives and make sure Wren was voted a free man once he returned to his own time.

Savitar, the omniscient being who overseas the Were-Hunters, gifts Maggie and Wren with the ability to mate and have children if they so chose. Which we find out is courtesy of Nick who was one of Wren's few friends, and one of Maggie's few TRUE friends.

The things that I really love about this book is how Wren really comes out of his shell and allows himself to be himself despite what everyone thinks about him. How he doesn't let their opinions get him down or get in his way to become the man he wants to be. I also love the fact that even with Wren pushing everyone away in his time in need they refuse to listen to him and keep on helping despite his best efforts. One such thing was when Vane sent him back in time where his attackers couldn't follow until the full moon (something that is explained in Vane's book) to ensure they could get some time to try and figure out how to prove Wren's innocence.

Even Maggie, who barely knows Wren sticks by him and refuses to be shoved out just because of who her father is. I love the fact that this book is all about feeling comfortable in your own skin, sticking by those people who are important to you and really pushing yourself to accept others for who they are. And not for who you want them to be. This is something that a lot of people don't really do, and it's something that I personally have really struggled to feel. And that is accepted by those around for me who I am not who they think I should be. It's definitely gotten better with age, but I think that's also from being exposed to more people and opening up to them a bit more about myself which I never used to do.

Anyway. Enough about me!

I hope you've enjoyed this review and I will be back next week to explore a brand new style of Dark Hunter books.

#7 Sins of the Night – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Welcome back to our Dark Hunter series. This book is the first one that really challenges the history that we know and our perceptions of the characters we have already formed. Yes, the previous book Seize the Night reminded us that not everything is as it seems when you only have a part of the story. However we start this one off with a mutiny against Acheron, the Dark Hunter leader. According to this book this happens every few hundred years when the Dark Hunters get bored.

However the main difference between this one and previous ones is who is leading the mutiny. This difference is that Marco is one of the oldest Dark Hunters. Literally Acheron found out about the Dark Hunters after one had already died, however Marco was there when Acheron went to them and firs met what we now know of as Dark Hunters. So to have him rebel against Acheron and the Dark Hunter organisation really puts Acheron in a bad position.

Alexion is then to Earth during these uprisings to determine the level of mutiny and to kill all those that don't accept Acheron's rule. Since the survivors memories are wiped at the end of the interaction there is no fear of any of them remembering Alexion and passing on knowledge of him to any other Dark Hunters. So when Marco is able to describe Alexion pretty much to a tee to Danger, she freaks out understandably and tries to get her Squire out of her house and to safety.

Danger and Alexion have a bit of a clash of the wills, especially when Danger tries to kill Alexion by stabbing him in the chest and he dissapears. Only to reappear seconds later. Which obviously scares Danger even more since she can't get rid of him or kill him and yet from what Marco said he was there to kill her.

Luckily cooler heads prevail and after a lot of Daimon killing, sex and demon taming (trust me you'll find that part funny) Danger and Alexion are a veritable couple. Until the night to confront Marco dawns (or sun sets?) at which point Alexion is able to truly confront the face of the current rebellion. And Marco soon backs down when he hears Alexion's tale of what REALLY happened to him the night Acheron arrived and a little bit about his life since.

Bloody Stryker (you will remember him from previous books) turns up and starts killing them all making it a bloodbath of dead Dark Hunters. Including Danger.

At this point in time I was really worried. How could this book end without a happy ending?! Let's just say I COULD NOT put this book down until I figured out how it ended happily! And I was not let dissapointed either.

It definitely wasn't the typical ending that I'd come to expect, but neither was it a sad ending. Simi found she had a sister she didn't know even existed (and the sister was way happier about this than Simi), Danger and Alexion ended up "together" as much as 2 dead people can be. And Acheron's identity is kept safe and secret for another day.

I can't say that this is a book I look forward to reading. However it does make a few pieces fall together that I didn't really understand previously. Personally I feel that this book is more of a wider character development book than a great stand alone book like many of the others. And I feel that this is true more so because it wasn't until Danger died that I really felt myself getting involved, which is right near the end of the book. If I was going to get involved and really love the book it needed to happen earlier than the end.

Yes, there are some great comical moments which I loved. But overall it felt more like a filler book compared to some of the others in the series.

Next week's book is one of my favourites so I'm really looking forward to writing that one for you!

As always, please comment, like and share!

Behind the Door – A. Gavazzoni

A Gavazzoni contacted me to read this book and I'm really glad she did. I'm not sure if she's read my blog, but if she has I can see why she thought I'd enjoy it. Yes it had some graphic sex scenes in it (be prepared for way more than Fifty Shades of Grey). However the focus of this book was the psychology behind the characters which is something I really enjoy. Even in my job I love to be challenged. I even commented that I was getting bored at work recently because it was all making sense and I had to quickly get some easy stuff done due to a really tough deadline.

With the boring work having to be done I found myself constantly thinking about what could possibly be driving these characters, why were they reacting in certain ways? How were they all linked? Why did my gut tell me that such and such a character had more to them than it sounded like? So this definitely kept my mind active when I really needed it.

We start off this book with Simone who is a psychiatrist lecturing in New York and was interrupted by a lawyer; Carl; which I thought was odd. Lawyers don't tend to hang around those types of conferences, and if they do want to speak to a psychiatrist then they'd make an appointment or call them to their office. Then when he didn't pressure her to drop everything and focus on what he needed to meet his court deadline, it made me wonder what was going on. Not that you'll find out until right near the very end!

Due to Carl approaching Simone to help him with his court case the book takes two different approaches. One is Mark's story about Lara which he has written as a manuscript while the other is the murders happening in Simone's home town that start to impact her in her day to day life and her psychiatry practice. At this point I started to wonder if the two stories were intertwined or if this was just the beginning of a series to really explore both avenues.

I won't go into what happens in this story too much because I think it'd ruin the intensity for you. But basically someone starts murdering women in Simone's home town while she's working on the manuscript Carl gave her. The murderer even leaves a dead body on Simone's doorstep which freaks everyone out. And eventually Simone is kidnapped and tortured by the murderer. While held by them she figures out who they are and is able to report them to the police when she is rescued days after her kidnapping took place.

Meanwhile we get to read Mark's manuscript alongside Simone (this is where all the graphic details are) to find out what actually happened between Mark and Lara. Mark sounds like a decidedly normal and kinda boring guy, while Lara sounds like she has a LOT of mental issues that have been left unresolved that she doesn't seem to want to work on. Simone diagnoses her as sadomasochistic with ADHD tendencies that resulted in an addiction to adrenaline. That addiction is what seems to control her life as we know it and ends up being what killed her.

The thing that I really liked about this book that a few other books I've read recently hasn't really done when talking about these kinds of topics is that it showed the bad as well as how to combat it. Yes, Lara's mum was awful and sold her off and didn't act like a mother should. However her friends and the rest of her family supported her in any way that they could, including supporting her to leave those situations. Unfortunately for her it seems it was all too late to "fix" what happened, but it was good to hear about others that are willing to do the right thing. Including getting restraining orders, which I feel many people in those situations are too scared to do. I also liked the fact A. Gavazzoni explored how these events impacted those around Lara which is something most people tend to shy away from.

So although the sex scenes were a bit too graphic for my liking, I really liked the fact that Simone then explored the psychology behind these behaviours. In these situations it's the psychology, the thought process and the analysis that really gets me involved and hooked. And A. Gavazzoni nails this aspect of her writing and I love it. I got so hooked on the what and why the events occurred that I almost ditched my boyfriend on a Friday night to finish the book! Which is unheard of for me, especially since it was game night for my footy team which I always watch.

If you like brain teasers and can get through the sex scenes I think you'd really enjoy this book just like I did.

Thank you for reading, next week I will be participating in another Book Tour, this time with a brand new release called "One Summer Weekend" by Juliet Archer. I look forward to seeing you then.

#6 Seize the Night – Sherrilyn Kenyon

As soon as I realised who this book would be following I was really confused. Why should I care about the love life of someone we hate? But of course I by the time I was reading this book I had started to get the feeling that Sherrilyn like's to challenge our pre-conceived ideas and really push us not to "judge a book by it's cover". And going into this book I was definitely judging!

So if you've read the earlier books you will understand where I'm coming from. This book is following Tabitha, who other than being really quirky and a very dominate personality is fine, and Valerius Magnus. And there's a reason that for once I included a last name. So in earlier books we find out that Valerius is a right pompus ass hole. Not only is his family directly responsible for many other Dark Hunter's deaths. He himself is responsible for a few deaths including that of thousands of Greeks. And since most of the Dark Hunters are Greek they don't like him, and he does nothing to try and make friends with them. Likewise, he requires a Squire (a servant) that speaks English, Italian AND Latin!

And that's all before we find out anything personal about like, like the fact that he hates his Squire to be dressed in anything other than a suit, none of his Squires last too long (and all because the Squires council won't grant Valerius the one request he has) and he expects dinner to be served at 7pm sharp (I might have the exact time a little off but you get the meaning) in the formal dining room. When he is around other Dark Hunters or Squires he seems to make it a point to rub them up the wrong way and reinforce the image of the big bad pompus Roman General.

However all these reasons to hate Valerius are the exact reasons why Tabitha is so good for him. She ignores his protests and forces her way into his life. Granted his protests aren't actually that bad and when we switch to reading from his point of view it's more out of fear for her safety than anything else. While with Tabitha he tries oysters (which Tabitha practically lives off of), tries beer, tries penis mac n cheese (did I mention Tabitha runs a sex shop? Like sexy lingerie, sex toys etc sex shop) and escorts a trans-gender (I believe they are pre-op) woman to a Drag event so that she has a chance of winning. None of these things suggest that Valerius is self absorbed, vain, mean or anything negative at all!

Like with all Dark Hunters we learn that Valerius's past isn't as easy as everyone thinks it was and that the betrayal he suffered wasn't his slave not shinning his shoes appropriately. I don't remember exactly what it was that caused his death but I do remember that he witnessed Kyrian coming back from the dead to kill his Grandfather. So unlike many Dark Hunters he witnessed the tragedy of their revenge at an early age and had a limited understanding of what he was getting into when he did decide to take Artemis's bargain.

I felt that by the end of this book when Valerius did everything he could to protect Tabitha while respecting who she is as a person I had learned to respect him more than many other characters in the series. He never changed who he was as a person in terms of his values, ethics and morals even though others would have thought he'd need to just to keep Tabitha. What liked but at the same time had reservations about was Tabitha being willing to shut out her family for Valerius. Tabitha being Amanda's twin is really close to her and was willing to give up that relationship for Valerius since Kyrian was already a part of her wider family.

Cool thing was (and I wish my sister bothered to care enough about me to do anything remotely like this) Amanda took the time to visit Tabitha in Valerius's home to find out why Tabitha loved him. Based on that interaction Amanda decided to lay it out with Kyrian that he had to accept Valerius even though he didn't like him just for Tabitha's sake.

Whenever I want a feel good story about acceptance, individuality, opposites attract etc I love to read this one. I'm sure we all have those time's where you wonder who could possibly love you and want to be with you for the rest of your lives. Reading this always reminds me that there's someone for everyone. It may not always be a nice easy relationship. It might be full of arguments, spice and then making up. But I think so long as you both understand each others limits, how and why you react the ways you do you can get through anything together. Granted it's not always a perfect science, but I believe so long as you can have a conversation around these differences then you can move forward and it will then work itself out.

I'm not sure my boyfriend would agree with me on that one but I can try!

Anyway, that's a wrap for another Sherrilyn Kenyon book so I will see you next week for another Sherrilyn Kenyon book review!