Book Review: Kiss of Darkness by Loribelle Hunt

9931657Title: Kiss of Darkness
Author: Hunt, Loribelle
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Carina Press
Rating: 3,5 stars

Winter, a hybrid, has spent her life at war. A group of humans who are part demon, the hybrids, along with the lupines and nightwalkers, have dedicated their lives to defeating demons and protecting humanity. Yet, despite their united cause, the three groups share an uneasy alliance.When hybrid military compounds come under attack from demon insurgents, Winter has no choice but to turn to the lupines and nightwalkers for assistance. It’s a partnership based on necessity and she has no intention of letting down her guard with either group.
Marcus, the nightwalker Lord, has other plans. The immediate attraction between him and Winter promises a passion he can’t ignore. To claim her as his own, he’ll not only have to fight the demons who seem hell-bent on destroying her, but her own misconceptions about him and the nightwalker race. It’s a battle he refuses to lose.

I must admit that I have mixed feelings about this novel. On the one side, I loved the main character, Winter Bennett, and her two best friends, Gia and Dupree, and their interactions. I also really liked the storyline: especially the merging of human and demon souls, and the great war against demons. The world-building was wonderful, with safety houses and compounds, and this entire we’re-at-war vibe, that was carefully crafted throughout the novel. Plus, I liked the division between hybrids (as Winter and her friends are), Nightwalkers (a fancy name for Vampires) and Lupines (werewolves). Now, on to the things I didn’t like that much.

The point of view constantly switched between about six characters, which made this book very hard to read. Sometimes I had to reread entire parts to actually know who was talking. I’m a great supporter of switching the points of view to keep things interesting, but it was a bit too much here, and it would have been better had the author only focused on maybe three or so characters. The story was very fast-paced at times, but the middle part of the novel was a too slow for my liking. Sometimes I really had the feeling I had to urge myself to continue reading. But once you get past those fifty-or-so occasionally slow pages, there is enough action and nearly-dying going on to keep you occupied till the end of the novel.

What really, really bothered me about this novel, and is the reason it only got a rating of 3,5 rather than 4 is the way all males – but with that I mean, all males – in this novel respond to falling in love. They feel an uncontrollable possessiveness towards the object of their affections. And not just the Nightwalkers, or the Lupines, mind you, for whom this despicable character trait might be part of their nature, but even Dupree, dear old hybrid Dupree, doesn’t escape from the need to control every move his love interest makes. Not only did I feel like going all Buffy The Vampire Slayer on all Nightwalkers in this novel every five minutes, but it also made me so annoyed I had trouble finishing the book. I mean sure, you can add one character whose immensely posessive, but do you have to make all of them like that? Plus, I’m not saying a little bit posessive, no. I mean totally over-the-top, extremely awkward clingyness. If another man just as much as touched their love interest, those Nightwalkers went berserk. I wasn’t too fond of these traits at all, and they annoyed me, as they were a major part of the story.

However, I must admit that the rest of the story amazed me. I loved the little plot twists and turns, the overall background story, the description of the war against the demons, and the way the tension was built up slowly. I liked this novel, but I would have liked it a lot more if it wasn’t for all the male characters to be overly posessive. If there’s ever a sequel out, I would like to read it though, just to know what happens to the characters.

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