The Darkest Night
The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Have you ever been in the position of being somewhere and you’re being forced to listen to a conversation that you really don’t want to? Most have and most can either cover their ears or just plug in a pair of earphones and drown the sound out. But what if you couldn’t? And what if the conversation had already taken place and the people having that conversation were no longer in the room but you could still hear what was said in that room? In your head. Regardless of how long ago that conversation might have taken place.

This is Ashlyn. She has is forced to listen to conversations no matter when they happened in her immediate vicinity. I can’t even begin to imagine how torturous being in a city would be for her. Which is why she is in Budapest searching for angels or demons who may be able to help her either silence the voices or give her the ability to control them.

One of these is Maddox, an immortal man created by the Greek gods to guard a very special box. However, the responsibility was given to Pandora and he and his fellow guards weren’t too happy about that. Yes, that Pandora and that box. The rest, as they say, is the stuff of legend. And so Maddox was cursed by his gods to hold the spirit of one of the demons that escaped the box; specifically violence. Because of what happened to Pandora at Maddox’s hands, he is also condemned to hell every night, returning to Earth at dawn of the next day.

Fast forward to the present day, you can probably now imagine that Maddox and his fellow immortals don’t consider dating or searching for mates anywhere in their immediate future. But this changes when Ashlyn and Maddox meet each other and she finds the silence that she desires so much when around Maddox.

And that’s largely it for a lot of the book. Ashlyn trying to stay close to Maddox and Maddox not having any of it because the spirit of Violence sometimes gets control and things tend to get destroyed when that happens. And there is the whole journey to hell every single night. However, he does come to learn that Ashlyn is a calming influence on the spirit and it’s not long before both Maddox and Violence are in agreement about Ashlyn. This is a wonderful love story and whilst Maddox mostly acts like a neanderthal a lot of the time, he does treat Ashlyn appropriately but aside from the love story nothing really happens.

It’s not until the last 15% or so that the story really starts to ramp up with mortal Hunters out for the blood of Maddox and his cohorts making an appearance, Ashlyn’s employer turning out to be someone other than what she thought he was and Anya; a mysterious invisible entity who may have the answer to Ashlyn’s and Maddox’s obstacles.

I did enjoy the book as a whole but I think it would have been better had less time been spent on Maddox losing it to Violence and beating up everything in sight and more time spent on the events in the later part of the book. I certainly want to hear more from Danika and Anya so I shall definitely be continuing with the next in the Lords of the Underworld series.

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