Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Book review: Darkness Unbound, by Keri Arthur

Not really a mini review, but still shorter than normal today. I read this back in November, so it's hard to think of lots to write without talking about the sequel!

Title: Darkness Rising
Author: Keri Arthur
Publisher: Piatcus (UK)/Bantam (USA)
Publication date: October 2011
Notes: Book 1 in the Dark Angel series. Contains spoilers for the Riley Jensen series.

Description: Born from a lab-enhanced clone mother and an Aedh father, Risa Jones can not only talk to the souls of the dying and the dead but she can see reapers and walk the grey fields that divide this world from the next. They are skills she rarely uses, however. But when her mother asks her to help the parents of a little girl locked in a coma, she reluctantly agrees. What she discovers terrifies her: someone has ripped the girl's soul from her flesh.

As it turns out, a creature consuming the souls of the innocent - and not so innocent - is the least of her problems. Because someone wants to rip open the gates that divide hell from earth, and Risa is a key component in their plans. And the only person standing between her and disaster is a reaper who isn't exactly on her side.

My thoughts: I'm a big fan of the author, Keri Arthur, and particularly her Riley Jensen series, which I was sad to see end. So when I heard she was writing a new series set in the same world, you know I was interested! 'Darkness Unbound' is the first book in the Dark Angel series, and focuses on Risa, someone we started to see at a very young age, now all grown up. Along with her best friends Iliana and Tao, she owns & runs a very successful restaurant, but with her ability to see reapers, the creatures that usher souls along to the next life, her mother (a Seer) sometimes points clients to Risa too.

Risa quickly gets pulled in to a conspiracy that seems to involve her father, and looks like it could leave her dead, possibly getting her friends first. And of course Risa won't let that happen. I really liked the dynamics between the three friends - it's clear they all get on very well, but there are also slight tensions sometimes over things that happened before the book starts. I hope we'll get to explore those things in the rest of the series.

This being a Keri Arthur story, it wouldn't be complete without some sexy complicated men, and taking up the post here we have Lucian, who seems interested in becoming something serious for Risa, but has a lot of secrets. Then there's the reaper who's staying by her side pretty much 24/7 while he tries to stop Risa's dad.

I loved this book, and can't wait to see where the Dark Angel series goes. Book 2 is also out already (hopefully I'll review it soon) and book 3 comes out in July. I'll give Darkness Unbound 8 stars.



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