Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Review: Edge of Darkness (Night Prowler 4) by J. T. Geissinger

Edge of Darkness
Author:  J.T. Geissinger
Series:  Night Prowler 4
Publisher:  Montlake Romance, December 10, 2013
Format:  Paperback and eBook, 444 pages
List Price:  $12.95 (print)
ISBN:  9781477848944 (print)
Review copy:  Provided by the Publisher via NetGalley

Six years after a shocking tragedy left her emotionally and physically scarred, Ember Jones lives a life of quiet isolation in Barcelona. Determined to keep her troubled past a secret, she keeps her head down and her heart locked up tight. Until the day a beautiful, mysterious stranger walks into her life, and her carefully controlled world is shattered forever.

Christian McLoughlin is unlike anyone Ember has ever met. Wealthy, cultured, and utterly charismatic, he also has dark secrets of his own. They succumb to the undeniable pull between them and embark on a passionate affair, but things turn explosive when the truth about Christian and the reason he came to Barcelona is exposed. As their dark pasts collide, the two unlikely lovers find themselves caught in a web of danger and deceit that neither of them might survive.

The Edge of Darkness, where hunter becomes hunted, no one can be trusted, and love is the most dangerous game of them all.

Melanie's Thoughts:

If I could get away with a one word review then my review for Edge of Darkness would be simply 'wow'. But no, I need to say more about this fantastic instalment of the Night Prowler series. Geissinger, pulls out all the stops in the story of Christian, who we first meet in book 1, Shadow's Edge. Edge of Darkness has something for everyone and then some. Its has tension, suspense, great new characters, a sassy heroine with a deep, dark secret and development of not 1 but 2 plot arcs. It stays true to its PNR roots but not to the detriment of the plot.

The first book of this series starts with a love letter and this fourth installment starts with a letter as well but of a different kind. This time it's a note from the super, evil baddy Caesar whose true character was revealed in book 3. Caesar's letter is addressed to all of  humanity informing them of his supremacy, the power of the Ikati and their imminent demise. This sets the tone for the whole novel with the heartless cruelty of this antagonist at the forefront of the plot yet again.

The story takes place in Barcelona and Geissinger has selected another beautiful, historic city for the setting of her love story. Our heroine, Ember moved to the city with her father after her mother and brother died in a tragic car accident. This is where Ember's deep dark secret comes in and Geissinger teases the reader throughout the plot as to what it could be and leaves us hanging until the final chapters to reveal it all. Ember is one of my favourite types of heroine. She is strong, flawed and best of all plain! Nothing is better in PNR, in my view, then when one of the love interests is amazingly gorgeous and the other is described as plain. It's very Pride and Prejudice, with Eliza Bennett's not living up to the beauty of her sister Jane but for her 'fine eyes'. Ember reminded me of a modern day Eliza Bennett. She was smart, sticks up for herself and of course, had rather than 'fine' eyes had piercingly intelligent ones.

Fulfilling the role of the gorgeous hero is Christian who readers will remember from Shadow's Edge. Christian has been sent to Barcelona to track down the evil Caesar and encounters Ember at the bookshop that she owns with her evil stepmother. Qwill asked me about my use of the word 'evil' to describe Ember's stepmother as it sounded a bit 'Cinderella-esque'. She wasn't evil in the traditional meaning of the word but was very unpleasant to Ember and had two equally unpleasant daughters making Ember seem quite a bit like Cinderella. Christian slowly starts to woo the reluctant Ember knowing the dangers of courting a human. Christian has his own secrets to keep and runs the risk of them being exposed if he gets any closer to her. Opposites attract is the theme of this story with the gorgeous, wealthy and shapeshifting Christian falling in love with the plain, poor and very, very human Ember. This is a relationship that's hard not to like.

Caesar isn't the only antagonist we are encounter in Edge of Darkness. Geissinger brings back a baddy we met in one of the earlier books in the series. I'm not going to say who is back to cause mischief and mayhem so you will have to read the book to find out. Multiple antagonists with their own motivations can make a plot confusing but in this case Geissinger cleverly ties these threads together and we are left again wondering how and when the plot arc will be resolved. There is another big cliff hanger in store for the reader so prepare yourself.

Well what can I say? This is a great book. Hats off to Geissinger as she managed take me from 'I like this series' to 'I love this series'. I have already started to bite my nails in anticipation for what may be in store in final few books of the Night Prowler series.

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