Review: Darkness Awakened by Katie Reus

Review: Darkness Awakened by Katie ReusDarkness Awakened by Katie Reus

Series: #1 Darkness
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Published by Indie/Self Published on November 11, 2013
Pages: 201
Format: eBook
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four-stars  

A reunion romance paranormal style seemed all kinds of good so I picked this one up and dove right in. Literally, it turned out because this one was off to the races from the very first moment and didn’t slow down for much. The plot, characters and backdrop were introduced quickly and action and passion were the driving features of this story. It was a nice change-up from all the character driven pieces that I’ve read lately.

I had a good time with the story and definitely want more, but there was a feeling that I got almost from the beginning and I couldn’t quite shake it. I felt that I was jumping into the middle of a series instead of the beginning and not just because this is a reunion romance. I felt like the world building was understood when it came to the way the paranormal races did stuff, mentions of events and people, etc. I actually re-checked to see if this was book one and then checked to see if I could figure out if this was a spin-off because the feeling was so strong that something else came before though I found no evidence of that. Now all that being said, the story didn’t suffer greatly for this and I wasn’t disappointed at all that the pace was swift and things kept moving right along

The story surrounds Finn Stavros, the alpha of a wolf shifter pack of the region, and the vampiress, Lyra Marius, that he once had a relationship with and ended it because their races are hostile and an inter-species relationship is taboo. Finn was heartbroken to make the choice he did, but he feared for Lyra’s safety. Once he became the pack alpha, he tried to find her, but she had completely disappeared. That is, until now. No matter what brought her to him and the secrets she holds close, he plans to help her find her child and then not let her go like he did before.

Lyra was crushed when Finn pushed her away right about the time she was planning to tell him that they were going to have a baby. Then her brother threw her out of their coven when he heard that she was having a wolf shifter’s child. For years, she struggled and finally made a place for herself and Vega in the human world, but now Vega has been kidnapped because of her unique bloodlines that can fulfill a deadly prophecy and she must turn to Vega’s father for help. What he will do when he discovers the secret she kept from all these years, she can only guess, but he is her only hope. If he can forgive her for her secrets, maybe they have a new chance to rekindle what they once lost.

As I said, this one flew right along. It was refreshing in a way that it didn’t pause much for what could have gotten really angsty based on the issues the two main characters had going on. I suppose it could be argued that things resolved rather swiftly and they let go of the past quickly, but I guess I was in the mood for a simple romance and for the priority placed on the action of the story because I really didn’t mind.

The characters weren’t drawn with a great deal of depth, but there was enough to them that I was able to respond with feelings of like or dislike depending on their roles. The suspense side of the story was a nice extra touch. The main plot to take Vega and use her to fulfill a prophecy was known, but who was actually involved in the plot was the mystery that I enjoyed having in place on the flip side of the plot thread that had Finn and Lyra hunting for Vega.

The romance, as I said, was a reunion romance. Yes, the two have matured, strengthened and grown confident in their time apart, but Finn and Lyra still have the old magic together from the moment they share the same space. There is some resistance in the beginning as conflicting emotions are present, but when they chuck the clothes, these two can scorch up the sheets. I loved how their otherness plays a roll in their sexy times too. They work well as a team searching for their daughter though Finn doesn’t realize he has a child, but the time hunting together does the job of bringing them back together and stronger than before.

On an aside, the cover is an odd choice for this type of book. Nobody, let alone Finn, even wears a tie. So ignore the cover and think hot, sexy wolf shifter instead of businessman.

Overall, it was a quick, engaging read that I would recommend to those that enjoy Paranormal Romance on the steamy side more action than character driven.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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  • Great review!! I haven’t read this author before, but I do love sexy shifters, and reunion romances are some of the best ones out there!! I like the idea of this story so I have already added it to my list and hopefully I can read it SOON!! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this one. Happy Reading.

    • I’m glad I could point you toward a new one. I’m a sucker for a reunion romance too.

  • I tried one of her novels, First surrender – a contemporary, but it just fell off my hands. Maybe I should give her a second chance with a paranormal…

    • That happens with me and a couple authors too. One, I tried like three times and just couldn’t get into her books. The other, I get into her books, but only under one of her pseudo-names. Who knows? Maybe this one will work for you if it catches you in the right mood, Iza. 😉

  • Oh my gosh the cover thing would drive me nuts. Why they do that kind of thing is beyond me. I’ve heard a few say that they felt they’d stepped in mid series. Still sounds pretty good to me 🙂 I read one of her contemps recently and enjoyed it. Will have to try this one sometime soon 🙂

    • I liked one of her recent romantic suspenses and that’s what encouraged me to try this one. Glad I did. It didn’t shake my world, but I still had a good time reading it. And gah! Normally, I’m not that critical of covers, but…The cover is a niggle point b/c it literally has nothing to do with this story and doesn’t even hint at the genre.

      • Oh I am so bad about covers. I really wouldn’t have guessed this was para anything from it. Not until I saw your review and I think it was Braine’s the other day. I would have thought ceo/millionaire kinda read. I did just see that tiny little paw print but so missed that on first glance.

        I like those reads actually. I don’t need every book to rock my reader world, ya know? I like those you can just settle in and relax with 🙂

        • Exactly! This was a nice break from the deeper, angsty character plots that I’ve been reading. Sometimes a fast paced action and passion-filled story just hits the spot.

  • I’ve seen good and not so good reviews on this one. I haven’t read K. Reus before, but this sounds like its a pretty solid story.

    • Yes, her work seems to be hit and miss with folks. I’ve only read her romantic suspense, Bound for Danger and loved it so I wanted to try one of her paranormals. This one was a solid story with good passion and action though it didn’t tease out the paranormal world her characters inhabited. I had a good time with it.

  • Haha yes the cover! So doesn’t match the story so I wonder who that guy is supposed to be? I liked this one too, curious what you’ll think of the next one.

    • Oh man! That cover niggled at me once I realized that it had no resemblance to Finn.

      I already read the second one and sent it along to Shari, but in a nutshell, I liked it better than this one- love me the dragons, Braine!