08 September 2008

Review: Kresley Cole - Dark Desires After Dusk

Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Pocket; 1st Pocket Books Pbk. Ed edition (May 20, 2008)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1416576754
ISBN-13: 978-1416576754


A seductive beauty he cannever have, yet can't resist...
Cadeon Woede will stop at nothing to atone for the one wrong that will haunt him forever. But once he secures the key to his redemption, the halfling Holly Ashwin, Cade finds that the woman he thought he could use for his own ends and then forget haunts him as much as his past.

A tormented warrior sheshould fear, but can't deny...
Raised as a human, Holly never knew that some frightening legends are real until she encounters a brutal demon who inexplicably guards her like a treasure. Thrust into a sensual new world of myth and power, with him as her protector, she begins to crave the demon's wicked touch.

Surrender to dark desires...
Yet just when he earns Holly's trust, will Cade be forced to betray the only woman who can sate his wildest needs -- and claim his heart?

The one and only goal Cade and his brother have is to get Rydstrom back on his thrown and now a simmer of hope is offered. Omort The Deathless is between Rydstrom and his thrown and as his name proclaims, he cannot be killed…until now. As a sword is forged especially for the Woede’s to wield that can kill Omort The Deathless, they in return have to find and deliver The Vessel. With every Accession there is a female from The Lore that would come into sexual maturity. Her child would be a warrior of ultimate good or ultimate evil, depending on the side of the father.

Cade is indebted to his brother to get him back on his thrown and when he finds The Vessel, he looks into silvery eyes. The eyes with the color of a Valkyrie awoken. Holly felt the rage flow away as the threat subsided and looked in the eyes of another demon. Cade couldn’t believe it, this female…his female… against all odds was one of The Lore! Yet apparently she was also The Vessel and his heart struggled with his honor, how could he give up that which he searched for nine hundred years but nor forgo on his vow to his brother?

Cade has until next full moon to deliver Holly to Groot The Metallurgist and in return get the sword that will kill Omort The Deathless. But can a demon let go of something as precious as his female?

As Kresley Cole let us taste a bit of the Demon world in the previous novels, in DARK DESIRES AFTER DUSK she gives it to us all with one of the Woede brothers, Cadeon “The Kingmaker”. I was plunged into a fast paces tale almost from page one without the author losing eye for details and background. Though Cade and Holly are hunted by various Factions this story feels very character driven as much revolves around the couple and their problems.

Holly with her OCD problems turns her into such a heroine that you can’t help but like and her quirks are just another thing that makes her stand out. She has a whole new side to discover and in combination with Cade she triggers the humorous side in me. If there was one thing that had me stuck to the pages was the formidable verbal sparring between those two, and both give as good as they get! Cade is just a rude, overbearing, chauvinistic demon but has his endearing moments and in the end always tries to do the right thing. The vow to his brother weighs heavily upon him and the fact he has his female in reach makes him torn in two.

If there are two minor flaws in this novel, which is colored by preference, it is Rydstrom. I just didn’t know what to do with him as he remains a bit of an enigma and in the end he even gets darker which left me a bit ambivalent towards him. Also the ending of the story itself was a bit underdeveloped as to what I’m used to from Kresley Cole. Still, despite this, the romance was beautifully captured again with the road trip Holly and Cade had to take. The sensuous blossoming of Holly was believably integrated within the love story and at times steaming hot and at other times…no, it remains steaming hot!

Though Cade is rude and chauvinistic it is his need for Holly that is so evident through all his actions, the torment between his vow and the need for his female is what makes him do all he can to keep both. In doing this he threads dangerous waters that does not always end well and might even cost him that which he wants to protect. This is something that kept me on edge because for quite a while it kept me guessing as how it all would progress and play out in the end. Kresley Cole held me riveted to my seat almost until the ending and surprised me along the way with certain turnabouts that I did not see coming.

Of course Nïx also appears in this novel and I have such a fondness for her. The power combined with a bit of arrogance and intertwined with true Nïx humour makes her a formidable secondary character that becomes treasured throughout the series and makes you eager to meet again in future novels. She has such a personality that upon reading an Immortal After Dark without Nïx is like apple-pie without whipped cream.

DARK DESIRES AFTER DUSK with Cadeon and Holly add another well entertaining story to this outstanding series!

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