Pages: 384 pages
Publisher: HQN (Harlequin)
Published: May, 2008
Form: Mass Market Paperback
Series: Lords of the Underworld #1
Maddox is a warrior, created at the dawn of men by the Greek gods, he and his warrior brothers become angry when Pandora was given the guardianship of The Box which held all the demons of mankind - they opened the box releasing the demons. For their insolence the Greek gods cursed one demon to one warrior’s body and Maddox... was fused with Demon of Violence.
Having to try and control the demon living inside him is hard but not as hard as his curse for taking Pandora's life, for that he has to die every night like Pandora did and spend the night in Hell. This doesn't make for one fun and easy going guy, so when he meets Ashlyn he doesn't know what to make of the mysterious woman who is hiding something from him.
Ashlyn has come to Budapest to listen on what the people of the town know of the inhabitants of the castle, the stories wary from demons to angels, but most of all they are said to help and help is what Ashlyn needs. Her clairaudient powers have bothered her since childhood, she can hear everything ever said in a building, and the voices are a constant companion she is desperate to silence - and she hopes the demons or angels in the castle can help her.
Maddox stops her approach of the castle and Ashlyn experiences what she has always wanted - silence. The man's presence supresses all the voices and she is hooked. He tries to get her to leave but she insists staying following him, because she can't imagine voices after the silence she gets to experience with him.
Maddox doesn't know what to make of her is she a bait send by the Hunters who are bent on killing all of them or is she innocent - it doesn't really matter as the biggest battle is wither to touch her or not, bed her or not, and midnight and his death is fast approaching. He eventually gives in and grabs her and imprisons her in the castle.
She ran her tongue over her lips. His gaze followed the movement and his nostrils flared.
She didn't mean to, but she started babbling. "Look, there are all kinds of unusual creatures in the world. No one knows that better than me. Did I mention I know firsthand that demons exist? I just want to know what I'm dealing with here." Shut up. Stop talking. If only he would respond. She'd never had to fill a silence before. Never thought silence could be uncomfortable.
He eased down a step, the action measured and precise as it closed the small distance between them; she eased down a step in response, widening it again.
"No more questions. I want you bathed, fed and resting within the hour. You're covered in dirt, wavering on your feet because of hunger and there are dark circles under your eyes. Afterward, we can… talk."
Again that hesitation. It disconcerted her, and she gulped. "If I asked you to take me back to the city, what would you say?"
I thought so.
So starts Book 1 of The Lords of the Underworld Series "The Darkest Night". The relationship with Maddox and Ashlyn is front and center, but the relationship with the old gods and the new gods affect the whole castle full of demon filled warriors. Where Maddox is torn to understand who Ashlyn is and wither he can have her as his own, he also has his demon to wrangler and his curse to fulfill each midnight.
I very much enjoyed the concept of Pandora's Box releasing demons into the men as punishment, and all they have to handle while trying to control the demons.
I'm looking forward to reading the stories of Reyes/Pain (2008) and Paris/Promiscuity (2012)!
I like the idea of the Hunters but they didn't make too big of an appearance in the book to be considered a real threat to the warriors. The shift in the power of the Gods was very interesting but that also was sort of on the back burner - if these two had been stronger in the book it would have been more interesting to read.
Very good book nonetheless and worth a read for the sexy warriors, interesting new world created and a nice break from the vampire populated Paranormal Romance genre. (don't get me wrong I still wholly love Vampire PNR books!)
Started Reading : 19th of Aug. 2011
Finished Reading : 20th of Aug. 2011