Young Delight: The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman

Posted April 7, 2019 by Sophia Rose in Reviews, Young Delight / 28 Comments

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Young Delight: The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman
The Dark Days Club

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Series: Lady Helen #1
Genres: YA Historical Romance, YA Paranormal Romance
Published by Viking Books For Young Readers
Released on January 26, 2016
Pages: 472
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
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The Delight

A Regency period story of an aristocratic woman coming of age and discovery the secret legacy of her family and the insidious darkness moving wearing human faces and working their evil wiles.  Oh yes!  I was captivated by the blend of authentic historical and demon fighting working side by side.


The Dark Days Club introduces the first installment in the Lady Helen series.  It has the job of introducing Lady Helen and her sparkling Regency society world.  Helen is making her debut and has the the added burden of living down her dead mother’s scandalous reputation.  As she prepares to take her curtsy in the Queen’s Drawing Rooms signaling she is now out and ready to participate in the London Season, she feels a mysterious restlessness building inside her and odd things happening around her.  She is also confronted with the duty of discovering what happened to a housemaid who went missing and no one else cares to investigate.  Her search takes her to needing the aid of the most notorious man in England.  Only, Lord Carlston may not be the horrid rake everyone paints him to be and he may be the only person who can help her with the danger she now faces.  Between dancing and meeting suitors and learning the secrets of the Dark Days Club and honing her own hidden powers, Helen is leading a double life that draws her further into the charismatic Lord Carlston’s world as they track a powerful villain with his own agenda.  It would help if the man didn’t annoy her so much.

What a wonderful blend of history and paranormal!  It was drawing room and ball room, but the stakes are much higher than a good marriage match.  I thought the historical backdrop and setting were meticulously researched and presented without being dry, the characters were developed, and the plot built in a slow and steady pace with some blips of excitement.

Helen is an engaging character as is her faithful maid Darby.  I enjoyed seeing Helen come of age and grow through the book.  She has a lot thrown at her and she stumbles now and then, but it fit.  She does pretty well considering she learns the truth about her parents, her hidden abilities and that demons walk about among people all in a short amount of time.  There is a potential love triangle brewing which is pretty much my biggest niggle.  It will depend on how that works out in the books following.  I know which one I’m rooting for and its the one who annoyed her to high heaven most of the time.

The Dark Days Club ends at a good place.  It wraps up the first battle round, so to speak, and leaves the reader eager for what is to come as they track their enemy and try to race him to get all three pieces of the artifact.

All in all, it was a strong first book with excitement and growth in a sparkling historical paranormal world.  It is YA and is appropriate for mid to older teens along with adults alike.  I can definitely add my voice to those who adore it and recommend it.

Challenges Met

Literary Pickers #48 Love Triangle
Mt. TBR #23


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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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2 years ago

Oh yes that’s one I’m curious about and I heard great things about it!!!

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Melliane

How fun! Hope you like it when you get the chance, Melliane.

Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

Ooh this sounds so good! I like the idea of a paranormal historical fiction read, with a lot of mystery. Love triangles are always tricky! I don’t like that someone always ends up hurt! I’m glad the main character made so much growth. Great Review Sophia 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

This was definitely good stuff with the blend of history and fantasy. That’s what I don’t like about love triangles, either. It was neat to see her come into her own after being so at sea first.

Anne - Books of My Heart

Well I love the cover but YA and historical romance are both not my favorites so this is probably not.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

No sweat. It’s not always for me, either. If this love triangle blows up big then I’m checking out, too. 🙂

Mary Kirkland
2 years ago

As soon as you said demons I perked up a bit about this one. lol

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Mary Kirkland

I know, isn’t that a great thing to toss into a historical? And, they look just like everyone else unless you have the special ‘sight’. 😉

2 years ago

I love a good mix of historical and paranormal! This sounds awesome, and just that name- The Dark Days club, Love it haha! Sounds like it will be an outsanding series- and I like both those cover too.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Greg

That combo is like catnip to me, too, Greg. Secret demon-fighting club was really cool. 🙂

Angie Elle
2 years ago

Glad you enjoyed this one, Sophia. It’s been on my TBR for a while.

Great review.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Angie Elle

It was on mine, too. Woohoo! One more off the pile. I’m hesitating about trying to continue, though, because I don’t like love triangles especially the way this one is shaping up.

Melanie Simmons
2 years ago

It does sound really interesting. Great review.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

It was pretty good. I think I would have really loved it as a teen reader.

Carole @ Carole's Random Life in Books

I have had this book sitting on my bookshelf for a couple of years. I went to a book signing and was really impressed by the author and I think that the book sounds great. I am glad to see that you liked it, Sophia Rose. I will have to try to bump this one up a bit on the reading schedule.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

How neat that you met and liked the author!

I’ve had it forever and was glad to finally pick it up and dust it off. Incidentally, the book was just gorgeous.

Rachel @Waves of Fiction

I don’t read YA too much anymore, but this sounds like a fun series. I’m not thrilled about a love triangle, but if there’s a clear winner and little back and forth I can bear it. I’ll have to look this one up. 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

I go in spurts where I’ll read one or two and then none for several weeks. I’m cautious what type I’ll read, though.

And, this one with its love triangle has me hesitating to go on and finish the trilogy b/c it has the feel of those types that I don’t like where the girl hem-haws around.

Di @ Book Reviews by Di

Wow, this has sort of floated around my ‘maybe one day’ list but now your review has me quite keen to read it! Demons? Awesome!

Helen sounds like a great character to follow too.

Lovely review.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

Haha! It was on that list for me, too, Di. I’m trying to work through that older pile.

Oh yeah, we’ve got demons at the ball. 😉

Melissa (Books and Things)

Oh this sounds perfect for me. You had me at history and paranomal! 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

Haha! Some buzzwords are enough to have me grabbing for a book, too, Melissa. 🙂

Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer

The cover screamed click me, but I was hesitant with the YA rating..I am glad to see it works for all ages.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago

It does have a YA feel, but also has an ageless one because girls really were this age when they came out and got married. Plus most other characters are not teenage. I do love the mash up of demon fighting in the Regency period.

2 years ago

Ooh demon fighting, sounds good. I like the mix of historical and paranormal.

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  Nadene

Yes, that is a fun mash up for me, too. 🙂

herding cats
2 years ago

Ooo interesting. I enjoy that fusion of genres but it’s rare for me to stumble on them. I’ll have to add it to the list 🙂

Sophia Rose
2 years ago
Reply to  herding cats

I don’t find the historical paranormals easily either. There are still a couple series that I need to get around to that you and Renee have mentioned in the past.