Today’s post is a review of HD Smith’s Dark Awakened. I reviewed the first book in the Devil’s Assistant series, Dark Hope, a few months ago. You can read that review by clicking THIS LINK if you are interested. If Dark Awakened sounds good to you, I’ve included the purchase links for Dark Hope after my review. These links will take you directly to the purchase site.
Be sure to enter the giveaway at the bottom of the post to win your very own copy of The Devil’s Assistant series or an awesome $75 Amazon gift card!
By HD Smith
Genre: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Published: December 1, 2014
Published by: Wild Fey, LLC
Last spring Claire’s seemingly normal—if not totally screwed up—life was tossed on its head. For five years she’d been one of the damned—a human that knows the truth about the otherworldly among us. She’d worked for The Boss—the Demon King himself—as his administrative assistant, handling everything from early retirements, to Maintenance’s incessant requests for dental.
No one gets dental.
Then she walked into Purgatory—totally not her fault—went back in time, and awakened powers she never knew existed. Now Claire has a prophecy hanging over her head, a diamond ring hidden in her sock drawer, and the blood of a long dead royal running through her veins.
And it’s only going to get worse.
Her vow to live free or die takes a serious hit when she’s forced back under The Boss’s protection. Of course, there’s no protection from fate, or the Bounty Hunter sent to deliver her to Purgatory. And as if being “the girl” in the prophecy wasn’t enough, Claire soon discovers there are three other contenders for her role—two of whom want her dead.
Follow more of Claire’s adventures in Dark Awakened, the second installment of the Devil’s Assistant Series, to find out if she’s lucky enough to escape with her life, or if she’s just the first notch on the next contender’s belt.
In Dark Awakened, we continue to follow Claire along in her crazy life where every time she turns around someone is trying to kill her or manipulate her into doing something for them. There are these crazy prophecies and unfortunately for Claire, they center on her and what she is supposed to do. The majority of the book consists of her doing things for other people just so she can live long enough to fulfill the prophecy! It’s a little convoluted, but not confusingly so.
I really enjoy this author’s writing style. I love the creativity in her worlds and how her characters interact with one another. There are plenty of bad guys (and girls), there are surprisingly few good guys other than Claire, which is frustrating, and Claire never knows exactly who she can trust. The bad guys are all so full of their own agendas that they really couldn’t care less if Claire lives or dies, as long as she takes care of the things they can’t or won’t.
For me, the beginning of the book went a little bit slow, but once I got past the first few chapters, it was like the snowball effect. By the end of the book, I was so involved in the story, I didn’t want to stop reading, and I wanted more! I’m definitely looking forward to the next book in the series and I hope HD Smith is quick with it! I want to know what the deal is with Ronin and what will happen with Thanos. He almost broke my heart just reading about him!
Not that this matters, but I met HD Smith at a book event the same weekend my son was born, actually I met her the day before he arrived! At the time, I had not picked a name for him. I actually picked on the way to the hospital. HD and I never discussed names while we were chatting. I was super excited to get part way into Dark Awakened and discover that one of her characters has the same name as my son, Ronin. Especially considering it’s not a name you hear every day.
I would recommend this whole series to anyone who likes an epic adventure type of story with characters in which the reader can really invest. HD Smith gives us characters that we want to see survive, be happy, or just die already. I know I looked forward to seeing Claire kick some serious ass and after everything she has been through, she deserves a happy ever after!
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my thoughts or my review in any way, shape, or form.
… Prologue, which picks up right were book 1 left off:
Death materialized in front of me. I stepped onto the elevator and into his strong embrace. I sunk into him as the warmth of his body enveloped me.
“Can you give me a ride home?” I asked, not sure I knew where that was anymore.
“Shhh,” he soothed, “don’t cry.”
“Jack’s dead,” I choked out. “Quaid, that son of a bitch, he killed him.”
His hand stroked my head as if he were calming a child. The magic of his touch coated me with a sense of contentment, as if it could numb the pain of my heartache. Death’s touch had that effect—a physical force of will to evoke strong feelings and emotions, as if he knew exactly what I needed and could give it to me.
“He had him killed. The Boss had Jack killed.” I was sobbing now, somewhat incoherent. “I won’t go back. I’m done. That bastard can take his protection and shove it.”
I was unsure if Death could actually decipher any of my words, but he held me close, sending a stronger wave of his influence to soothe me. My sobs quieted.
After a long pause he asked, “The Devil just let you go? No fight?”
“I didn’t give him a choice. I won’t go back.”
Death kissed me on the forehead wrapping me in the sensation of his blissful touch, as if I were swaddled in an unseen blanket of peace and love. “You’ll stay with me. I’ll protect you.”
The elevator dinged, and the doors opened on the lobby.
“Ms. Cooper,” one of the guards said to me. “You’re needed back up—” He gasped, cutting off his words as if he’d seen a nightmare—Death’s cursed form does that to a person. I looked up into Death’s golden eyes—thankful I didn’t see him that way.
“Take me away from this place,” I pleaded.
“We’ll go to my villa. The Devil won’t find you there. You’ll be safe—protected.”
I closed my eyes, sinking into him, letting his power envelop me. Hiding from the world, the big three—the Devil, Mab, and Harry—was just what I need. I wouldn’t be their puppet anymore. Damn the prophecy—I didn’t have to be the girl that fixed things. I could disappear, mourn Jack, forget about the pain and the power and the hell that fate had in store for me. Let someone else have that job. I was through.
Purchase Links for Dark Hope
5 eBook copy sets of book 1 and 2
1 prize pack containing $75 Amazon Gift Card and
eBooks of Dark Hope and Dark Awakened