Book Reviews

Review: Darlings of Darkness (A Vampire Anthology)

Featured Image - Darlings of Darkness - Vampire Anthology

Hello fantasy lovers. Today, I’m sharing my thoughts about Darlings Of Darkness. A box-set of ten stories all about those creatures of the night, vampires!

I actually read this vampire anthology way back in 2015. However, as it doesn’t appear to be in my review archives, I thought I’d better post it again. 😉

What’s Darlings of Darkness about?

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Review: Darlings of Darkness (A Vampire Anthology)My Rating:
Title: Darlings of Darkness by Trina M. Lee, Chrissy Peebles, Kristen Middleton, Claire Farrell, Suzy Turner, Ally Thomas, W.J. May, Kasi Blake, Dale Mayer, S.J. Wright, K.C. Blake
Published by Dark Shadows Publishing on 21 September, 2013
Genres: Adult Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy, Young Adult (YA), New Adult (NA)
Formats Available: eBook
No. of Pages: 2711

10 thrilling full-length vampire novels in one volume. 10 sexy heroes.10 strong heroines. All for FREE! 10 bestselling novels by 10 bestselling authors.
This is ten complete novels from some of today's most exciting authors.A star-studded anthology of thrilling, action-packed and totally swoon-worthy first books from ten different vampire series by your favorite women authors.
Book 1 – Blurb: A werewolf with an unusual power is forced to face the monsters of her past and the uncertainty of the future after a dangerous vampire awakens the darkness within her. ONCE BITTEN by bestselling author Trina M. Lee of the bestselling Alexa O'Brien Huntress series.
Book 2 – Blurb: His precious touch could prove deadly… CRUSH by bestselling author Chrissy Peebles of more than ten novels including the popular series The Apocalypse Infection Unleashed Series and The Ruby Ring Saga.
Book 3 – Blurb: After the inexplicable disappearance of Lilly Taylor's parents, she has no choice but to move to Canada where she unravels some frightening yet intriguing family secrets... RAVEN by bestselling author Suzy Turner. Suzy Turner of The Raven Saga trilogy and The Morgan Sisters series as well as a chick lit novel entitled Forever Fredless.
Book 4 – Blurb: An unhappy vampire gets a second chance to be mortal in this dark, yet often humorous tale of creatures at war. VAMPIRES RULE by bestselling author K. C. Blake. She’s the author of two other exciting series which include Bait, Crushed, and Witch Hunt.
Book 5 – Blurb: It lurks in the dead of night… BLUR by bestselling author Kristen Middleton
Book 6 – Blurb: Rayea is a daughter of Satan, and a vampire. But the good thing is…she’s on our side. THE VAMPIRE FROM HELL by bestselling author Ally Thomas. Her books have been on the Top 100 bestsellers list in Fantasy at Amazon since 2011.
Book 7 – Blurb: Sixteen-year-old vampire Tessa's throwback human genes make her an outcast in her world, but fate and near death teaches her that who you are on the inside is more important that what you on the outside. VAMPIRE IN DENIAL by bestselling author Dale Mayer
Book 8 – Blurb: A reclusive hybrid vampire is forced to reacquaint herself with the human world in order to rid herself of an accidental slave problem. THIRST by bestselling author Claire Farrell, author of over a dozen speculative fiction novels.
Book 9 – Blurb: Sarah reads her grandfather's journal in stunned disbelief. What was once her grandfather's responsibility has passed to her father and now to her. She has become the Warden. Her life will never be the same. THE VAMPIRE’S WARDEN by S.J. Wright
Book 10 – Blurb: What if courage was your only option? COURAGE RUNS RED by bestselling author W.J. May


Source: Bought
Purchase Links: Books2Read Universal Link ¦ Amazon*

What did I think about Darlings of Darkness?

This book is a collection of ten “bestselling” full-length urban fantasy and paranormal romance stories with the common theme of all the tales being about vampires. My favourite mythical beasts. I love paranormal romance, especially those with vampires, so I downloaded this Kindle version for free from Amazon UK in the hope of finding some “new to me” authors. I’ve written mini-reviews for each story as well as my overall thoughts at the end.


Book 1- “Once Bitten” by Trina M Lee

I’ve already read this book and really enjoyed this story. It is well written, has an intelligent, strong and funny lead female character, fast-paced story, bit of mystery, hot lust/romance scenes and left me wanting to read the rest of the Alexa O’Brien Huntress series.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Book 2 – “Crush” by Chrissy Peebles

This is the first book of a Young Adult series called “The Crush Saga”. Teen/YA books are not my choice of reading material. I found both the plot development and character development and the writing style juvenile in its execution. It read as though a teenager had written it. I suppose sometimes as a reader you click with a story and sometimes you don’t, it didn’t click for me with this one.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Book 3 – “Raven” by Suzy Turner.

This is the first book of a Teen/Young Adult series called “The Raven Saga”. Boy, was I pleasantly surprised by this book! I loved it; very easy to read and beautifully written from the viewpoint of our thirteen-year-old main character, Lilly, but without being juvenile in the plot. This story is about family relationships, dealing with tragedy, experiencing first love and heartache, with a paranormal twist that includes werewolves, shifters, witches, vampires and, of course, magic. This book made me laugh as well as shed a few tears and I liked that some of the story’s mysteries were solved by the end while letting others remain elusive. I am duly impressed and will put book 2 “December Moon” and Book 3 “The Lost Soul” on my Goodreads “want to read” list.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Book 4 – “Vampires Rule” by K.C. Blake.

I found this a bit of a struggle. The writing style isn’t as smooth as the other stories so far. Although I know new authors often have to find their feet as their experience grows. However, I felt lost with the story too. I’m assuming that the time frame of this novella is well into an established series that has seen major storylines.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Book 5 – “Blur” by Kristen Middleton

This is a very short ghost story that plunges you right in the middle of the action. A team of U.S. Federal “Retrieval” Agents undercover in a house to remove the rebel ghosts. I found it easy to read and understand the concept behind the plot. Great story with an unexpected twist. I found myself thinking and coming up with my own “what happened next” scenarios.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Book 6 – “The Vampire From Hell” by Ally Thomas

This short ghost story is set at a séance in an old haunted house. The writing style was easy to read and I enjoyed the building tension of waiting for the ghost to appear. However, I didn’t feel engaged with the characters enough to want to find out what happens in their lives next after this story. I am happy & satisfied leaving this as a quick standalone ghost story.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Book 7 – “Vampire in Denial” by Dale Mayer

Not what I was expecting, in a good way! I completely fell in love with Conner Francis and think Shane Taylor is a great supporting character. I loved the story and would definitely buy a paranormal series if they were the main characters! It made me laugh and I actually shed a tear at the end which I think is impressive for a short story!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Book 8 – “Thirst” by Claire Farrell

This is a Teen/YA short story. Plots revolving around those early relationships and life angst is not my choice of reading even in a paranormal setting. However, the writing style is good and it was a nice change to read this very short story about magical adolescents.

Rating: 2 out of 5.

Book 9 – “The Vampire’s Warden” by S.J. Wright

I really loved this story. The writing style was easy to read and the world-building was believable. I felt a connection to the main character, Kyle Smith and enjoyed being plunged feet first into his life. Although this story is in the paranormal genre, the dynamics and complexities of living as part of a huge family are brilliantly captured and will resonate with many readers and could have easily taken place in many a family home at Christmas (or Thanksgiving). Lol! I loved the ending, it left me wanting to find other stories about Kyle Smith and his usually talented family 😉

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Book 10 – “Courage Runs Through It” by W.J. May

I didn’t get involved in this story. It left me feeling “meh”. The writing style didn’t flow for me, the build-up felt complicated & I couldn’t connect to the characters. It’s a shame really because the concept was good. I suppose sometimes as a reader you click with a story and sometimes you don’t.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Basically, what I’m saying about Darlings of Darkness is…

I’ve enjoyed having Darlings of Darkness as an ongoing back-up. To be able to pick up and read when I’ve had a bit of free time. I’ve enjoyed reading 2 out of the 10 tales. I think it’s got a nice collection of different settings and sub-genres under the vampire-themed umbrella to suit most tastes.

About Suzy Turner

Author - Suzy Turner

Although Suzy is a Yorkshire lass at heart, she left her home town of Rotherham, UK, to move to Portugal with her family when she was ten.
The Algarve continues to be her home, where she lives with her childhood sweetheart husband Michael and their menagerie of cats and dogs.

Suzy's career began soon after completing her A levels when she was offered the position of trainee journalist for a local English newspaper. Her love of writing developed and a few years later she moved on to become assistant editor for the region's largest English language publisher. Since then she has also worked as the editor of one of the Algarve's most loved monthly lifestyle magazines. Early in 2010 however, Suzy began working as a freelance writer and author.

She has since completed seven novels and one novella for teens, The Raven Saga and The Morgan Sisters series. She has also published four chick-lit novels, Forever Fredless, And Then There Was You, Stormy Summer and Aphrodite's Closet.

Suzy Turner also writes under her pen name, SG Turner.

 

Thank you for visiting and taking the time to read my thoughts. Have you read Darlings of Darkness? Sadly, none of the authors made it onto my favourite authors’ page. Are any of them on your auto-buy list? Drop me a comment below.

signature graphic. Happy reading from flora image sitting on books

Stay safe : get lost in a book!

Flora x

About Author

I'm in my late forties, my interests are varied but since menopause hit a few years ago, I find myself becoming a "grumpy old woman" all too frequently - where has my infinite patience gone!?! Lol!
I bought a Kindle in the summer of 2013 and haven't stopped reading since. If you want to know more about me, check out my blog - www.florasmusings.com

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