March 4, 2012

Review: The Darkest Seduction by Gena Showalter

March 3, 2012
The Darkest Seduction
Lords of the Underworld #9
by Gena Showalter
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: HQN Books
Release Date: February 28th 2012

Author Summary

Possessed by the demon of Promiscuity, immortal warrior Paris is irresistibly seductive-but his potent allure comes at a terrible price. Every night he must bed someone new, or weaken and die. And the woman he craves above all others is the one woman he'd thought was forever beyond his reach…until now.

Newly possessed by the demon of Wrath, Sienna Blackstone is racked by a ruthless need to punish those around her. Yet in Paris's arms, the vulnerable beauty finds soul-searing passion and incredible peace. Until a blood feud between ancient enemies heats up.

Will the battle against gods, angels and creatures of the night bind them eternally-or tear them apart?

My Thoughts
I really wanted to love this latest novel in the Lords of the Underworld series like I do all the others.  LOTU is one of my all-time favorite series and will continue to be, however, this chapter in the series just didn’t do it for me.  At times, I found Paris & Sienna’s relationship was forced to the point that it wasn’t believable.  I wasn’t feeling the emotion I was hoping for and just wasn’t compelled by them as a couple.   

However saying that, there was still much in the novel to enjoy and a lot going on.  I found the side stories fabulous and the lead-in to storylines to come exciting and will absolutely leave you wanting more. 

Will this ruin the series for me?  Absolutely not!  I am a fan and will continue to be.  I’ll be the first in line to pick up the next one when it comes out.  Could you skip this one and pick up with the next?  I wouldn’t.  There’s too much going on in the side stories that impact the direction of the series that you shouldn’t miss.

So here’s what I thought…

Anyone who is familiar with this series knows Paris and how he has been a very troubled soul as of late.  Even though the Lord of Sex and Keeper of Promiscuity gets to have lots and lots and lots of action, it’s not fulfilling for him.  He wants what all his brothers have – a loving life-long relationship with someone he adores.  Unfortunately his demon will not allow him to have sex with the same woman twice and can’t go without because he’d die, so the possibility of a relationship like theirs is far out of his grasp.

Then Sienna came along - a Hunter and enemy of the Lords.  She drugged and trapped him in a weakened state, then had sex with him to revive him when he was dying, all so the Hunters could torture him some more.  Paris should hate her.  However, when she aroused him again after they sex, the possibility of a real relationship drove him to do whatever he could to find her.

Paris is a nice guy.  We all want him to have his HEA.  We didn’t get to know much about Sienna before and she turns out to be pretty cool and I like her.  Unfortunately, I found their relationship to be kind of boring and unconvincing.  I would have expected their sexual exploits to be mind-blowing given his… experience.  It was hot don’t get me wrong but no more so than the other novels in the series.  It bothered me that the first time Paris and Sienna kissed he was awful at it.  She told him he was worse than the boy Carl Knickerbocker that kissed her in the 3rd grade. A sex Lord who’s been around for thousands of years having sex every day can’t kiss well?  Come on.  Really? 

Moving on…the side stories were great and integral to the future of the series. 

So, you all remember Galen, the Keeper of Hope & Jealousy, leader of the Hunters, Gwen’s father, all around bad-ass, well turns out he has been obsessively chasing Legion since she had sex with him and tried to kill him a few novels ago.  He figures out a way to get to her and he’s different from what we thought.  We see a tiny spark of compassion in him.  An itty-bitty one but one all the same.  And that’s all I can say about that.  Only I’m pretty excited to see where Gena is going to take the storyline.

Yay!  Ashlyn finally had her babes! The naming of the little tykes was pretty funny…Some of William’s ideas…Smith & Wesson, Pistol and Shank, Blood and Gore, Shits & Giggles, Fists & Kneecaps, Hammer & Nails…didn’t really work for the proud parents. So they settled on Urban and Ever.  All rightly then! 

Kane is stuck in Hell from when he and William were sent there in the last book.  We did get a bit of a lead in on him and the horsewoman of the Apocalypse.  Should be interesting.

We get a little more about William but that man is still an enigma.  We need his book soon Gena!! 

And Striker?  What’s up with that?  May not be a big deal but wow!    

We got to meet a few new/newish characters:
~ Viola – Minor goddess of the Afterlife, Keeper of Narcissism kept me amused throughout the entire book.  Full of love for herself and vanity, she was a mix between Anya and a female version of William.  I’m curious to see who Gena will pair her up with.  I pity the poor thing already!
~ Zacharel - a warrior angel tasked with getting Sienna away from Paris, as she is the key to ending a war.  We’ve seen Zacharel before but not like in this novel.  He is an interesting character and enough was given to intrigue us to read about him in Showalter’s new spinoff series Angels of the Dark coming out June 26th
~ Three new Lords were briefly introduced: Cameron – Keeper of Obsession, Pukinn - Keeper of Indifference and Winter - Keeper of Selfishness.  

So you can see, there was A LOT going on in this novel.  Some things were resolved and there are great lead-ins to new stories and new threats. 

Bottom Line
Despite the fact that this wasn’t my favorite novel, Lords of the Underworld is still one of my favorite PNR series and Gena Showalter one of my favorite authors.  Always will be.  It felt like it was a struggle for her to write Paris’ story and that manifested itself in the writing.  I’ll still be excited when the next one comes out and will be the first in line to read it.  I’m also looking forward to this spinoff series with Zacharel in June. 

Happy Reading!!

3 Bad Boys – Good!!!


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