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The Darkest Warrior (Lords of the Underworld) Hardcover – June 26, 2018
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"Gena Showalter never fails to dazzle."-Jeaniene Frost, New York Times bestselling author
"Showalter...rocks me every time!"-Sylvia Day, #1 New York Times bestselling author
"Showalter writes fun, sexy characters you fall in love with!"-Lori Foster, New York Times bestselling author
"Showalter makes romance sizzle on every page!"-Jill Shalvis, New York Times bestselling author
"A fascinating premise, a sexy hero and nonstop action, The Darkest Night is Showalter at her finest."-Karen Marie Moning, #1 New York Times bestselling author
"Gena Showalter is a romantic genius."-San Francisco Book Review
"[A] spellbinding love story that will stop the heart of every reader...an addictive paranormal romance that will leave you stuck at the beach until you finish it (so make sure you have your sunscreen)."-Redbook on The Darkest Promise
About the Author
- Item Weight : 1.36 pounds
- Hardcover : 480 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1335498303
- ISBN-13 : 978-1335498304
- Product Dimensions : 6.32 x 1.5 x 9.23 inches
- Publisher : HQN; Original Edition (June 26, 2018)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #868,532 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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This book was very well written – one of her best offerings in fact. I was sucked in from the first page and had a hard time putting down the book. At the same time, it took me a few days to finish because there was a part of me that didn’t want to read it. I did manage to finish it and I am glad I did. I was very frustrated by the direction Showalter had indicated that she was going in and while I didn’t publicly berate her decision or vow to never buy from her again, I was really not here for Gillian and Puck. In my mind, you cannot build up a relationship through several books then abandon the story at the last minute. And it was last minute. The pairing came out of nowhere for me and there was no easing into a more platonic relationship between Gillian and William to get me used to the idea. It seemed like a spur of the moment idea and it showed in the book. On the other hand the story itself is engrossing. The supporting cast are a treat. The chemistry between the H and h crackles off the pages and the conclusion was satisfactory.
Showalter’s decision to use the first chapters of the book to give us Puck’s back story and version of events was a wise one and made him seem more likeable rather than the interloper who caused the end of Willian. I understood his motives and came to enjoy him. But the fact is I would have enjoyed him more if we hadn’t had years of Willian build up. Also, I couldn’t really get into the furry goat feet thing - Gillian is weird.
Initially I thought I might begin to dislike William during this book, but Showalter brought out a maturity in him I hadn’t seen before. New facets of his personality were revealed and even though at first he came on as his usual arrogant self, by the end he had grown up. My issue with William and by extension Hades in this book has nothing to do with the character himself, but the way writers are able to manipulate their creations as they see fit. I could be totally wrong, but when I read the part where Hades says he is certain that Gillian is not fated for William and he would kill her if necessary to get her out of the way - He helped Puck so that Gillian would be apart from William - I had this moment where I came out of the written world and wondered if Hades was just voicing Showalter’s own feelings on the matter. What I am trying to say is we all know William is the most popular and intriguing male character to come out of this series, does Showalter think - like Hades -that William deserves better so in a last ditch move wrote this book to justify the separation? At the end of the day, no matter how great Puck is, he is no William. William is THE prize male all the readers want to read about and Gillian didn’t end up with William.
I wished we had more than a few letters to Puck to really show how Gillian became a warrior. I felt like the use of different timelines and swift passage of time was a cop out and it was even worse that we didn’t actually see enough of Gillian overcoming her trauma. It was more Showalter telling me, hey, Gillian is a bad ass now rather than letting me witness it myself. I also didn’t buy the instant lust between Gillian and Puck no matter how well the attraction was written. She had barely known Puck and he left her alone for hundreds of years but as soon as she sees him again it’s on? Nothing for William who she had known and trusted for much longer?
Showalter does a pretty good job of presenting Gillian and Puck as a great couple and at the end she had done what she set out to and I was invested in our H and h’s happy ending. I would have given this book 5 stars if not for the underlying “wrongness” I constantly felt throughout. I wish that Gillian and William had realized that they were meant to be just friends a few books ago rather than discovering it here, thus taking away from what could have been my favourite book in this series. Puck deserved better.
I will not abandon this series. Showalter is a favourite of mine and I cannot wait for Galen and Legion’s book. I feel like Showalter has written here the best book she could have under the circumstances. My critiques have very little to do with Puck and Gillian as written and more about me not being fully able to immerse myself in the idea of a broken Willian. She almost sold me, but not quite. I really hope that by the time William’s book comes around I will be fully converted. I cannot wait to see who Showalter thinks is worthy enough of him.
Although the actual writing was good, as always, I just couldn't see the story. It didn't seem as realistic to me as her others have. (Yeah as real as paranormal romances can be right?)
Maybe my beef was with the fact that the Liam/Gilly seeds had BEEN planted for several books now and nothing else seemed plausible?
Oh well, I wish I could give this book more stars, but if I hadn't felt Gilly and Liam had been shoved into someone else's story I definitely would have:(
1. Of course, my first complaint is that Gilly and William do not end up together. Thanks for wasting years of my life hoping for their HEA and then ripping the rug out from under my feet! I appreciate that! Really.
2. Gillian went from being madly in love with William straight to being in love with Puck. No. That isn't how works.
3. She never actually deals with her fears of sex. At the start of the book, she is absolutely sure that sex is never gonna happen for her. Then suddenly a few hundred years have passed and she is suddenly cured.
4. I think I know who William is gonna end up with and if I am right it is completely unacceptable!!!
5. Everything in this book felt rushed. It didn't flow as well as the previous books did. The whole story felt like filler. It didn't progress the main story for the Lords at all.
.....there are so many other things that I could complain about but I won't. I am so disappointed by this book. I have waited so freaking long for Gillian and William to get their book and instead we got this. What's gonna happen next? Is she gonna ruin the Galen and Legion pairing too?
As for Williams upcoming book, I'm not even excited about it. That makes me sad cause I adore this series.
A couple of things I did enjoy...
1. Peanut! I love him! Lol
2. Galen! He is one of my favorite characters in the series! Don't ask me why. I hated him at first!
3. Winter. I hate to love her. I have my reasons as to why I don't like her but I won't get into those. I also have reasons why I love her character. I was surprised by her.
I really hope that I am wrong about whom I suspect William is gonna end up with. If I'm not I will end up being just as disappointed with his book as I was Gilly’s. If I am then I hope he ends up with someone amazing. He deserves it. We deserve it.
Top reviews from other countries
I myself was initially shocked and upset by the revelation, it's difficult to let go of a hope/belief. But never for one moment did it put me off reading this book, quite the opposite in fact.
With this new realisation, predictability was removed and replaced by mystery and intrigue once more. This for me is the role of an author, especially in a long-running series.
Now after finishing the story, I have to say I'm very impressed. It couldn't have been easy to lead us readers away from a dream and into a new direction. To make us believe in this newest relationship & accept it as truth. To see that this is the way it was always meant to be. But Gena manages to do that and so much more. Very cleverly written.
We see Gilly grow up, become Gillian the warrior woman. Shaking off her lost little abused girl persona, in a way I wasn't sure of at first. Now I know it could only have worked this way.
Locked away in Amaranthia for 501 years, separated from all she knows (including her husband Puck) Gillian has the opportunity, space, time and freedom to become all she could be instead of remaining who she was.
Her friends would never have allowed her to do all she does, would only have held her back believing they were helping rather than pushing her brutally at times to become all she could be. This definitely includes William.
I like the new, improved Gillian
I was intrigued by Puck in earlier books and was looking forward to getting to know him properly. I'd never for one moment imagined he'd be the one for Gillian. How could the keeper of indifference become her perfect match? How could he possibly give her what she'd need emotionally when his own emotions had to be locked down and hidden to prevent his own suffering? Turns out his demon and behaviours due to said demon were exactly what was needed, perfect in this situation. He's able to push Gillian more than anyone else would ever do, to leave her in a strange, dangerous new place with people she doesn't know, who could & would hurt her. To not treat her like a lost, broken little girl. Brutal, yes, but exactly what was needed (for both of them.) Enabling Gillian to establish herself, to learn to fight back and reclaim that which others had taken from her and become his equal, his desired mate, his wife and his queen. Self belief, self confidence and freedom of choice can truly save a person & that's Pucks gift to Gillian.
In turn, the new & improved Gillian is able to reach Puck as no other has. To shatter the ice he's hiding behind. To fight for what he wants. To finally realise & accept that he is loved as he is. That he is Gillian's true & only love.
William, what can we say about William. It was clear quite quickly to me that there had never really been a chance for William & Gilly. The way he continued to view & treat her was extremely irritating. He saw but refused to really see, he wouldn't listen to, believe or accept, still insisted on treating her the same way he'd always done. It was crystal clear that William hadn't ever viewed Gilly in a romantic light. She was always his friend and like a stubborn young child, he didn't want anyone else to play with his friend. He wanted Gilly, yes, but he'd never have seen her or accepted her as his partner, his equal. He'd have kept her exactly as she was, completely dependant on him & that would have been unfair to Gillian. I think that would have eventually ruined their relationship completely,which would have been more upsetting for us readers. I'd rather they remained friends than have that happen.
I'm glad William came to the point where he finally accepted & admitted the truth he'd always known but refused to face. I love his character (he's my favourite) and seeing him upset is too difficult to take.
So we've entered the new direction and I for one am very happy with how it all played out. As I said earlier, very clever and well written.
An excellent addition to this series and I can't wait to find out what lies ahead (for William especially) :)
The Black Dagger Brotherhood has gone the same way bringing in new characters just for a book when you fell in love with the original tight knit group.
When Gena introduced Puck a couple of books ago, I knew he was going to be an interesting one... and boy, I wasn't disappointed. He doesn't quite knock Lazarus off my No.1 spot for the guys in this series, but he came damn close.
This book is soooo good. I'm not going to post any spoilers. All I'll say is that if you're in the camp of Gillian/William, you need to read this book. You will understand everything. Trust Gena.
Also... I NEED more Hades. This book just makes me want him more.
Puck has been betrayed, and in order to achieve his goals he resorts to manipulation and betrayal himself. Being possessed by the demon of indifference, he doesn't feel any emotions, until he meets Gillian.
Gillian has had a tough life until William rescues her. Of course she thinks that they are fated mates, but William is cursed. Falling in love can lead to a his demise. When Puck makes a bargain with Gillian, he only has revenge in mind. Gillian manages to break through his "Ice Man" countenance and they soon find that feelings are getting involved. Of course William is none too happy about the situation. He acts like a child whose favourite plaything has been taken from him. His behaviour is hilarious and frustrating at the same time. Thank goodness he comes to his senses, and sees things for what they really are.
I love Puck's and Gillian's interactions as madenning as they are at times. The realisation of what they really feel for each other is quite enlightening. She sees past his exterior and chips away at his defenses until he comes to his senses. They have to take into account the prediction of the Oracles, but together, they can achieve anything.
The conclusion of this story is more than rewarding, and it will be interesting to see how the next story develops. This one is very entertaining.