I’m going to come across as a complete ass with this review, and I apologize.
I’ve been hearing so much about Kenyon for years, from men and women, but I kept putting it off because it was technically a romance. And as we know, I don’t like romance, at all. I bought the book about a year ago, finally, from a used book store, just in case I got worn down enough and decided to read it. Well, that day came. Curiosity overcame better judgement and I opened the well worn and yellowed pages.
I will say the book isn’t badly written. But it just wasn’t my thing. I have nothing against sex in books (hello, look at some of my past books), but I prefer sex scenes with a point. If the book has a good plot, sex scenes further the story and show more about the characters. This leads to my first issues with romance …and this book. The book is focused mainly on the sex and the plot is just that pesky thing that gets in the way of the sexual tension.
This book starts with our main character, Amanda, getting mistaken for her twin sister and kidnapped, only to wake up handcuffed to some strange man in a dungeon jail cell. Great start! How are they going to get out of this and how will this reveal each character? We don’t know much about Amanda, which is a given since it’s the beginning of the book (it says online that it’s the second in the series, but reads like a first, so I have no idea), but situations like this usually reveal how a character reacts to panic and tension, and shows who they TRULY are, not the mask they show the world.
They monologue about how sexually attracted they are to one another until the big bad shows up and lets them go.
So it had a shaky start, with how much people rave about her stuff, it has to get better? Right?
Her main male is an immortal vampire hunter; your standard tall-dark-and-handsome walking phallus. Amanda is your standard romantic heroine, with little to no personality who makes “nerdy” references and sarcastic comments to seem “different” and “cool”. Within a few pages I already did not care about either character. Amanda is written like many YA female heroines, with no personality so the reader can place themselves in the shoes of the protagonist.
I think because I grew up reading books stereotypically aimed at boys, I don’t understand the need to place myself in the protagonists shoes. Instead of trying to see myself reflected in the character, I saw a role model, something to improve myself and aim for. If I read a boy going on a great adventure, or a girl ending up on a ship and deciding to work alongside the men to gain their acceptance, I decided that I could be adventurous, that I could work hard and be strong. Maybe that’s the same idea as a bland character being a place marker for a persons imagination, but those characters don’t seem to strive for greater. They’re just there for the male to fawn over.
The story was a great idea! With vampires and creatures trying to kill and maim. It has so much potential, but instead of fleshing out a good idea, it’s written in between the sexual tension.
I think the biggest irk I have about the characters is Kyrian and Amanda are both written very inconsistently. One moment Kyrian is strong and commanding, the next he’s blushing and buying baby toys. Instead of giving Amanda traits, the other characters just talk about how ‘strong’ and ‘intelligent’ she is …yet she never shows it. Or when she proudly announced “black belt in aikido”, yet her black belt never came up in any other situation, and she used her black belt to simply kick a guy in the balls. It seemed so out of place. This made me care even less about the characters because they were all over the place with their personalities (or lack there of).
And it seemed that every time the plot was getting interesting, the Daimons would go into a thing called a “bolt-hole” which was an astral projection between dimensions that only they could get into. It hid them away for several days, until it opened again and they had to leave. I was so frustrated with the book at this point that I started referring to the bolt-holes as “plot-holes” …a place where the plot goes to hide. When the interesting parts of the story went into the bolt-holes, it was chapters and chapters of sexual tension.
This series is raved about, and I see lots of people with the Dark Hunter tattoo. It’s just not for me. The plot isn’t interesting enough for me to look past the characters and just enjoy the story like I can with some books. I will not be going back for the rest of the series.
If you like romance, and vampires and the like, then this series is probably for you! I have heard glowing reviews on it from many people. So proceed with caution, but still check it out.