Friday, July 6, 2018

# 4.5 cups # ARC # blog tour # Book Review # Gena Showalter # InkSlinger PR # over 18 # paranormal romance # urban fantasy

Blog Tour Book Review: The Darkest Warrior by Gena Showalter

   

The Queen of Paranormal Romance, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Gena Showalter, returns with THE DARKEST WARRIOR, a searing Lords of the Underworld tale featuring a beastly prince and the wife he will wage war to keep. THE DARKEST WARRIOR is now available where all fine books are sold. Grab your copy today!

Author: Gena Showalter
Series: Lords of the Underworld #14
Audience: +18
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Harlequin HQN
Release Date: June 26th 2018
My Rating:4.5 Cups
Source:InkSlinger PR
Blurb (from Goodreads):
He is ice…

Puck the Undefeated, host of the demon of Indifference, cannot experience emotion without punishment, so he allows himself to feel nothing. Until her. According to ancient prophecy, she is the key to avenging his past, saving his realm and ruling as king. All he must do? Steal her from the man she loves—and marry her.

She is fire…

Gillian Shaw has suffered many tragedies in her too-short life, but nothing could have prepared the fragile human for her transition into immortality. To survive, she must wed a horned monster who both intrigues and frightens her…and become the warrior queen she was born to be.

Together they burn.

As a rising sense of possession and obsession overtake Puck, so does insatiable lust. The more he learns about his clever, resourceful wife, the more he craves her. And the more time Gillian spends with her protective husband, the more she aches for him. But the prophecy also predicts an unhappily-ever-after. Can Puck defeat fate itself to keep the woman who brought his deadened heart back to life? Or will they succumb to destiny, losing each other…and everything they’ve been fighting for?
*Disclaimer: I received an eARC from InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.

**Disclaimer: This book contains mature content. As a result, my review may contain references to content intended for mature audiences only.

Gena Showalter has done it again, writing a story that is fantastic and that made me want for it to never end.

The Darkest Warrior is the story of Puck and Gillian, a story that spans many centuries and many realms. And what a story it is! Puck is a very interesting choice for a hero. The host of Indifference, it was hard at first for me to see Puck as the perfect guy for Gillian. But the more I read the more I realized he wasn't unfeeling, he was feeling too much. Betrayed by his best friend, the brother who should have had his back no matter what, Puck is left alone in the world, at the mercy of the whims of his inner demon. And while at first it seems impossible for this immortal to finally find a happy ending, I realized early on in his scenes with Gillian that being possessed by this brutal demon was actually a blessing in disguise. Because it didn't just make him last centuries before meeting Gillian, it also made him the only guy who would set her on the path to become the warrior she later on became. I realize Puck had a really hard time during all those centuries, especially when his demon decided to punish him for feeling too much and he was left unable to protect himself, but it's the only way he truly managed to fulfill the prophecy intended for him, while ensuring his mate would grow to become the woman she needed to be for herself.

Gillian is a woman who went through a lot. Betrayed by the people who should have loved her and protected her, she was scared of her own shadow. Which was entirely understandable, given her story. Somewhere along the way she is forced to stop being a victim and become a survivor, one willing to help others avoid the horrors that she went through or to escape from them. Every immortal she knew before she met Puck, including the man she had a crush on, William, was determined to let her be the sheltered, hurt little girl who was scared of living. I loved seeing her fight for herself, at times going against everyone, including herself. She chose not just to survive, but to truly live, and I respected her for that.

The plot is really fast paced and full of drama, hot sexy times and intense moments. It's interesting how Showalter manages to inject insane amounts of hilarious bits into the most dramatic scenes. I caught myself chuckling more than a few times while reading this book. I really enjoyed the element of danger that came with having some of the most badass immortals all in one tiny space, all trying to help out Puck and Gillian on their quest, all trying to survive. 

I also enjoyed the little scenes we got from Sin's point of view. Not only did we get a glimpse behind the curtain and I got to understand how far gone he was and why he was so far gone, but I also got to understand what drove him. And I found it really interesting when I realized exactly why he did what he did. I'm curious to see how his story will turn out, and how he will face everything that he has done.

The ending of The Darkest Warrior teased at some things that will come in the future book and I hope we get to see William get if not his happy ending, at least the promise of one in the near future. 

I really enjoyed reading this book and I am definitely going to read the next one once it comes out. Before that happens though, I am going to binge-read this series from the beginning.  


Grab your copy of THE DARKEST WARRIOR here!

Amazon | Kindle | Nook | B-A-M | Kobo | Book Depository | Audio

   

EXCERPT

  Pain seared Puck, shoving a roar past his lips. A demon had entered his body, and now tore into his organs. It bit and clawed, too, and yet he experienced no outward signs of injury. 
Frantic, he dropped his sword to rake his nails over his chest, slicing skin and muscle—to no avail. The creature remained inside him, a dark presence, howling with a toxic mix of hate and pleasure.
The blood in Puck’s veins might as well have been fuel; every cell in his body seemed to catch fire, melting him from the inside out as he...changed? Two rings of fire erupted on the crown of his skull, as if circles had been burned into the bone. He reached up and felt...horns?
Breath wheezed through clenched teeth as he yanked at hanks of brown fur sprouting on his legs. Next, a hard shell grew over his feet—hooves?—as his leather boots ripped apart at the seams.
Changing shapes wasn’t new to him, but this transformation had control of him, not the other way around. He couldn’t stop it.
Jagged black lines appeared on his chest, small rivers of lava burning as they spread. An image formed. A butterfly with wings as sharp as shattered glass. Different colors shimmered in the firelight, one after the other, altering as various emotions flooded him.
Mostly, panic grabbed Puck by the neck and held firm, choking him. Was this a hallucination, caused by smoke?
Or was he becoming a monster for good?
His knees gave out, unable to support his weight. As he lay on the ground, panting, the panic died. His gaze landed on the sword, and the pride he’d experienced only moments before faded before disappearing altogether. The devotion he bore for his realm and people...gone. He felt nothing. The sword was a scrap of finely honed metal, the realm a meaningless lo- cation, its citizens a nonentity.
Puck searched for emotion, any emotion, hidden anywhere. There! Love for Sin, a shining beacon.
He would protect the younger male from this...whatever this was. But, as he attempted to reach for his brother, muscle locked on bone, holding him immobile, and panic returned.
“Sin!”

Sin wouldn’t meet his gaze.

Something’s wrong...

A terrible nothingness began to creep through Puck a second time—this one directed at his brother. Precious Sin. Treasured Sin. Puck’s reason for...everything. But an invisible dagger cut into his heart, affection draining out...draining...
Still he fought. “Love you,” he rasped. Can’t lose Sin. Can’t... But even as he spoke, his heart emptied.
One moment his love blazed, a light inextinguishable by war, persecution or travesty, the next it was nothing but a snuffed-out torch.
Puck blinked up at Sin and felt...nothing. He hadn’t forgotten their past, or the many ways his brother had aided him throughout the centuries, or everything Sin had given up on his behalf, but he cared not at all.
Muscles unlocking from bone at last, he stood. Silent, he backed away from his brother. He would go for a walk, think about what had happened and what he should do next.
“Puck—”

He strode out of the tent, never once glancing back.

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Gena Showalter’s THE DARKEST WARRIOR –Review & Excerpt Tour Schedule:
June 27th
Diane's Book Blog – Excerpt
NallaReads – Review & Excerpt
Milky Way of Books – Excerpt
June 28th
June 29th
The Reading Cafe – Excerpt
Total Book Geek – Excerpt
June 30th
Feel the Book – Excerpt
I Smell Sheep – Excerpt
July 1st
Booknerd1107 – Excerpt
Kinky Desires – Excerpt
The Book Disciple – Excerpt
July 2nd
Crazii Bitches Book Bloc – Review & Excerpt
Reads All the Books – Excerpt
July 3rd
Sofia Loves Books – Review & Excerpt
Words We Love By – Excerpt
July 4th
Only One More Page – Excerpt
Rainy Thursdays – Excerpt
July 5th
Evermore Books – Excerpt
Reese's Reviews – Review & Excerpt
July 6th
Book Lovers Hangout – Review & Excerpt
Jax's Book Magic – Excerpt
Ruby's Books – Review & Excerpt
July 7th
BJ's Book Blog – Excerpt
Dirty Girl Romance – Review

  About Gena Showalter: Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the spellbinding Lords of the Underworld and Angels of the Dark series, two young adult series--Everlife and the White Rabbit Chronicles--and the highly addictive Original Heartbreakers series. In addition to being a National Reader's Choice and two time RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan (Red Hot Read) and Seventeen magazine, she's appeared on Nightline and been mentioned in Orange is the New Black--if you ask her about it, she'll talk for hours…hours! Her books have been translated in multiple languages. She’s hard at work on her next novel, a tale featuring an alpha male with a dark side and the strong woman who brings him to his knees. You can learn more about Gena, her menagerie of rescue dogs, and all her upcoming books at genashowalter.com or Facebook.com/genashowalterfans  

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