Hunt the Darkness (Guardians of Eternity #11)
The vampire, Roke, is raw, sensual, always in control. Yet somehow he's allowed the unthinkable to happen: a nymph-like witch named Sally has used her magic to trick Roke into mating with her. The pair will remain bound for eternity unless Sally breaks the spell. The trouble is, she has no idea how. . .
Mating with Roke was an accident; at least that's what Sally keeps telling herself. She's on the hunt for her demon father, whose identity holds the key to releasing the spell. The search won't be easy with Roke shadowing Sally's every move. As they mate with a ferocity that leaves them both aching for more, Sally isn't sure if her world is more dangerous without Roke—or with him. . .
Themes: vampires, witches, paranormal
Rating: 4.5 stars
Well this series has certainly taken some interesting turns over the years, but if you’ve been a fan from the beginning like I have you will probably have enjoyed the journey as much as I. Picking up right where Darkness Avenged left off, Roke and Sally’s story is full of revelations, emotional vulnerabilities, and the love that can develop between the most unlikely of individuals. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and am looking forward to a lot more in the future, but I gotta say I wish they were released much closer together because the wait in between books about kills me.
Sally has spent all her life trying to find contentment but it has always eluded her. She’s been abused and used by her mother, looked down on by other witches, used and discarded by a seriously bad demon, held captive by vampires, and finally escaped only to find herself pursued by the vampire she accidentally mated. While she is insanely attracted to Roke, she’s not willing to give up her quest to find her long lost father and try to understand her own heritage. She never imagined he would chase her down so quickly and demand that he accompany her. As her powers grow, the world around her begins to make less and less sense, but Roke is an anchor in her ever-changing world and she finds herself clinging to him and becoming more emotionally attached with every minute they are together. When a long forgotten enemy comes after Sally, only by overcoming her insecurities and trusting in her own blossoming powers can she kick his ass and keep her mate, the man she has fallen irrevocably in love with, safe from harm. I loved seeing Sally kick some serious ass and the true nature of her magic and identity was a fun twist I never saw coming, but am looking forward to exploring more in coming books.
I think Roke is one of my favorite vampire characters in a long time. He is definitely an alpha male of the highest order, a clan chief that expects others to fall in line, but when he’s faced with the unexpected he is able to flow with the changes like water over rock. He’s been insanely attracted to Sally from the beginning, but when she accidentally casts a spell that mates them, he is at first reluctant to have her as a mate, but as his instincts flare and force him to chase her down, he begins to suspect that maybe it wasn’t an accident after all. I would have to say I was surprised by Roke’s ability to compromise in this story. I fully expected him to fight Sally every step of the way, and though they certainly had their arguments he was surprisingly flexible and trusted her abilities much more than I thought he would. He takes obvious pleasure in taking care of his mate, but as he gets to know her and understand her more, he sees the woman she truly is and finds himself even more intensely determined that she is really his mate and it wasn’t just a freak magical accident that had them mated. I loved seeing how Roke challenged Sally at every turn to accept her new role as his mate, but never tried to force her into a corner to get his way—or at least almost never. I also have to say that I loved his willingness to give up everything he’s ever fought for, his clan, his friends, and even his world, if that’s what is necessary to keep Sally as his mate. Honestly what girl could turn down that kind of dedicated?
Hunt the Darkness was a great read from start to finish, fast paced, full of action, drama, love and surprises, and written with all the flair I expect from Alexandra Ivy. The story takes you more deeply into another culture, or class, of demon, the Fey, and we get to learn more about them and their powerful hierarchy. Sally is on a quest, determined to find her father so she can learn about the demon portion of her DNA, initially in the hopes of reversing her mistake in mating Roke to her, but soon she finds her quest leading into new and unexpected directions. Roke begins his journey believing he is chasing after Sally just to make sure that she stays safe long enough to remove her spell, but soon he begins to believe that the spell is the least of his reasons for chasing after her. When they both begin to fall, there is no denying the intensity of their emotional connection and the expression of that passion will leave the reader reaching for ice just to cool down. There were even some interesting new creatures introduced that expanded Ivy’s world of Guardians and the demons that share their world. I loved reading Sally and Roke’s story, one that reminds us that even the most unlikely of matches are sometimes made in heaven and the heart wants what the heart wants. There was, as always, a bit of a cliffhanger in this story (something Ivy is famous for) and I am looking forward to finding out what happened in the next book with Cyn and Fallon. Keep the awesomeness coming, Alexandra, but maybe just a little faster would be greatly appreciated so my fixes aren't so far apart.
*eARC provided by publisher (via netgalley) for the purpose of an honest and unbiased review. No compensation was provided.