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Saturday, August 1, 2009

Shayla Black - Tempt Me With Darkness

Shayla Black – Tempt Me With Darkness
Genre: Paranormal
Book 1 in the Doomsday Brethren
ISBN: 1-4165-5858-6
Releasedate: August 6, 2008
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Format owned: MPB
For sale at: The Book Depository Store

He’s an immortal knight hungering for satisfaction. . . .
As soon as Marrok sees Olivia Gray, he’s sure they met in eons past. He’s felt her soft, gentle curves writhing in pleasure beneath his own powerful body. . . Morganna! For centuries, towering Marrok, once the mightiest of King Arthur’s warriors, has endured a terrible curse the witch cast upon him when he spurned the witch.

She’s a modern woman about to discover ancient magic. . . .
Olivia shares a mystical—and irresistible—connection with brooding Marrok. Soon after the sexy warrior appears in her erotic dreams, he abducts her, demanding she uncurse him. Their intense passion is more powerful—and intimate—than either of them has ever known. Olivia may be the key to unlocking the diary that will break Morganna’s hold on his life. But in the wrong hands, the book also holds the power to destroy magickind. As they search for answers, a ruthless wizard returned from exile is building an army of evil. When he discovers Marrok and Olivia have the diary, only their love—with the help of a powerful group of magical Brethren—can save them.
Marrok, an ancient warrior from the reign of King Arthur, trapped by a spell cast upon him by the witch Morganna La Fey to immortal life, has been around for a very long time. Once he had the dream that he would have a way out of this immortal life he quickly finds himself in a situation not foreseen taken care of a girl he claims is Morganna herself.

Unbeknownst to Olivia, Marrok thinks she is the key to unlock a book known to be able to uncurse him. However there is also the catch that this book is powerful enough to destroy mankind in the wrong hands. To make matters worse a dark and rogue wizard returns from exile and is making a steadfast group of followers to help him get what he wants.

An century-old pact of hatred between wizards and witches has to be laid to rest, to help safe the world, henseforth the Doomsday Brethren are introduced!

It starts up with a very demanding and erotic dream that introduces Marrok and connects the dots to why he, as an ancient warrior, is still allive in the 21st century, why he so much seeks revenge on Morganna and why he wants to undo the curse she bestowed upon him. As expected from Shayla Black this first book in the Doomsday Brethren has it’s scorching hot scenes, starting with this one!

Tempt me with Darkness, is a classic and solid introduction to a new series by this author. It holds a thorough basic explanation on worldbuilding and characters. It shows very much the potential that this series can be brought to further heights with the follow-up books. Though the theme of a brotherhood (Brethren) protecting the world from evil is one that we come across a lot in books as of late, Shayla Black is able to give it a different surrounding environment, using old legends in new settings, where good stands against evil once more. Ofcourse with the incredibly hot scenes between the hero and heroine!

Marrok is the warrior type loved amongst many. Alpha Male, demanding, seeking revenge, creative (who doesn’t love a man who can create with his hands!), brooding, reluctant to follow rules, but sensitive and tender once you found a way to his heart.

Olivia however, is a woman on the brink of finding the magic she unbeknownst to herself holds within. A girl who is trustworthy, follows feeling over rational interpretation, passionate but very sweet and strongminded as well.

Their interaction is strong and sharp, verbally, and has to overcome issues as trust and betrayal. What really got me connected to them as a couple was the fact that the everyday emotions of doubt and trust (being able to lay your heart in another’s hands), were difficult for them to surpass. Especially as the world around them, gives them obstacles to solve whilst working out their feelings for eachother. It took this romance from the fairy-tale like of it all and threw it back into reality. Some ‘Romance’ readers might not perceive it well but it does fit within this world an the way Shayla Black set this world up so for me it fits right in.

The story unfolding in Tempt me with Darkness grabbed me from page one. I was intrigued immediately by the fascination of the erotic-tinted dream Marrok had and made me want to read on to find out how it would unfold and which part Bram was playing in it all. What did he know and would his premonition come to be! I was completely surprised with the mate-bonding ritual. It wasn’t strong and urged but it came natural and unexpected to both Marrok & Olivia. It holds a nice little quirk that will leave the expectations of Shayla Black’s readers of other books satisfied.

The secondary characters are as fascinating as the hero & heroine and gives you a certain longing to keep reading on in this series. Ofcourse there is one character within this build up of series that is like an encyclopedia into this world and in this series Bram is that person. Mysterious and with that appealing to me! But these are the good guys. Amongst all this, a brooding chilling evil is raising and it’s one of the few evils that I can say leave my heart cold and frosty and instantly disliking him to every fiber of my heart. I loved it. It’s great to see that contrast and I have to say that every storyline in this book was well balanced and creates a great thrill for the fan of erotic paranormal romance!

Certain plotlines however might come across as a bit of shocking and it made me raise an eyebrow for a bit as well but strangely enough it fitted the picture of good vs the evil portrayed in this book and shows that this author is not afraid to use it to balance it out.

All in all Shayla Black was able to grab hold of me with this sereis and made me a fan of her writing-style even more. I’m so glad I’m able to dive straight into the next installment Seduce me in Shadow to see what will happen next!

4 Stars

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With everything new, I ofcourse, had to get used to the idea of making, owning and maintaining a blog but I have to say, now that I’ve got the hang of it, it’s quite fun to do. Let me introduce myself, I’m Natascha, in my early 30’s and from a little place called Winschoten in the Netherlands, I’ll be your host on this blog.

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