Author: Dianne Duvall
Publisher: Zebra, 320 Pages (February 1st 2011)
From: the Author, Thanks Dianne!
Synopsis: In this dazzling, sensual novel, Dianne Duvall beckons readers into a world of vampires, immortals, and humans with extraordinary gifts. . .where passion can last forever, if you're willing to pay the price. . .
Once, Sarah Bingham's biggest challenge was making her students pay attention in class. Now, after rescuing a wounded stranger, she's landed in the middle of a battle between corrupt vampires and powerful immortals who also need blood to survive. Roland Warbrook is the most compelling man Sarah has ever laid hands on. But his desire for her is mingled with a hunger he can barely control. . .
In his nine centuries of immortal existence, no woman has tempted Roland as much as Sarah. But asking her to love him is impossible--when it means forfeiting the world she's always known, and the life he would do anything to protect. . .
Review: 4 Stars - Darkness Dawns is the first book in the Immortal Guardians series from author Dianne Duvall. With non-stop action from early on in the story – right through to the last page – a new twist on paranormal makes a great read for anyone who loves the Urban Fantasy genre. Duvall’s writing and characters are strong and without a doubt will hold their own in this ever growing genre.
The heroine Sarah finds her world turned upside down one early morning. Without realizing it, the events that happen that fateful morning will forever change her and the world around her. She’s feisty, with a strong head out her shoulders, which in my eyes always makes a good heroine.
When Roland finds his way into Sarah’s life he knows her life will be forever changed, he just doesn’t know that his will be too. Roland is a solitary person. He wants nothing more than to go through life… his long life, being an Immortal, all alone.
We learn throughout more about his back story and the history of Immortals. Duvall has a knack for making the Immortals history and that of characters that have been around for so many years extremely interesting. Sometimes reading lore can be daunting, but with Duvall’s storytelling and interesting characters I looked forward to learning all that I could.
Like I mentioned earlier in this review – the action didn’t stop, which made the pacing throughout the book fast, keeping me on the edge of my seat. The building relationship between Sarah and Roland worked great and the romance was at the beginning a slow burn, however, it really fit with who each of our main characters are.
With other Immortal Guardians mixed in throughout this first installment, it’s easy to see just who the next book might be centered around. One of those Immortals I can’t wait to learn more about is Marcus. He’s got a past that is only touched on, but wow, talk about interesting and different!
I do have to also mention that there’s a bit of a side story, which follows the head of all Immortals – Seth - and a woman who… well, you really need to read this book because it’s all a bit of a mystery. By the end we still don’t know much about either, however we learn just enough to leave us with a cliffhanger surrounding these two.
With a main story, side story, writing, characters and romance that all fit together with ease, Duvall will have readers eager for more after this welcomed addition to the genre. I can’t wait to read more in, not only this series, but also future titles from this author. I highly recommend Darkness Dawns to anyone who loves a good Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance. Enjoy!
FTC Disclaimer: I did NOT pay for this book, nor have I been compensated at all in any way or means for reading and writing this HONEST review.
Interview with Darkness Dawns Author - Dianne Duvall -
For readers who aren’t familiar to your Immortal Guardians series could you tell us a bit about the first book in the series – Darkness Dawns?
Music Theory Professor Sarah Bingham wants nothing more than to relax after a long, stressful spring semester. Instead, when insomnia drives her to spend a little time in her garden at dawn, she finds a wounded man staked to the ground, being tortured by two others. Little does she know when she rescues him that Roland Warbrook is far more than a man. Nearly a millennium old, he is an immortal who has acquired a new formidable foe amongst the vampires he hunts, one who has raised an army to defeat him and to destroy the rest of the Immortal Guardians. When Sarah thwarts the vampires by saving Roland, she too becomes targeted by the army and is soon thrust to the forefront of the conflict, aiding the immortals in their quest to defeat the vampires and losing her heart to the dark enigmatic warrior intent on protecting her.
Can you tell us a bit about your journey with Darkness Dawns from Idea to finished book?
I love vampire romances and wanted to write one of my own. But I wanted to approach the genre from a new direction. Often in vampire romances that feature both good and evil vampires, the evil vampires choose to fall, choose to succumb to the bloodlust. I wanted to take that choice away from them so that even the nicest person, once infected, would descend into madness, rendering vampires somewhat tragic -- though no less vile -- figures. I also didn’t want the vampires in my series to be undead and looked for a scientific explanation for their condition as well as the differences between vampires and the immortals who hunt them. Since I knew historians believe much of the vampire folklore in the past arose from misunderstandings regarding certain illnesses, a unique symbiotic virus that grants vampires and immortals the typical vampiric traits (incredible speed, strength and regenerative abilities coupled with photosensitivity and a need for frequent blood infusions) seemed a logical answer. The immortals’ advanced DNA could then protect them from the more corrosive aspects of the virus – namely the madness that results from the systematic brain damage it causes – by mutating it and could also lend them the special talents and abilities they possess that humans and vampires lack. Once these details were cemented, the characters swiftly made themselves known and the story flowed freely. I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed writing a manuscript more.
What parts of writing do you enjoy the most?
Giving my imagination free reign and creating the stories themselves, fleshing out the characters and watching them change and grow as they tackle the conflicts they face. One of the reasons I chose to write a series is because once I create characters, I hate to let them go. I like to see what happens to heroes and heroines beyond the happily-ever-after endings and bring them back in subsequent novels. I also like to see secondary characters find their own happily-ever-afters, learn their secrets and more.
What made you interested in writing paranormal romance?
They say you should write what you love. Paranormal romance combines my two favorite fiction genres: romance and horror. I’ve enjoyed it ever since I read my first vampire romance as a teenager. I like the action. I like the terrifying corners the heroes and heroines are often painted into and the seemingly insurmountable obstacles they must overcome to survive. And I find the notion of a couple falling in love and committing to each other for centuries, if not millennia, rather than decades particularly appealing.
You’ve done so many things – as an author, in the movie industry both behind the camera and in front if it as an extra – is there a job you have yet to do that you’d like to try?
Good question. I love to do just about anything that allows me to be creative. I would very much like to delve deeply into the creation of CGI graphics and special effects in film, but simply haven’t had the time. Since writing is my favorite creative activity, my goal right now is to become a more prolific writer. Until I accomplish that, CGI will have to wait.
If you could be an Immortal Creature what would you be and why?
An Immortal Guardian. I would love to have the special talents their advanced DNA grants them as well as the strength, speed and rapid healing they possess. The fact that they need frequent blood infusions is a downside; but the fact that they draw the blood directly into their veins through their fangs instead of drinking it eliminates the “ick factor” for me that troubles so many human heroines contemplating transformation in paranormals. And, since I tend to be a night owl, avoiding the sun wouldn’t be much of a hardship for me. In fact, a majority of Darkness Dawns was written after midnight.
You’ve won many awards, congrats on them all… what accomplishments mean the most to you and why?
Getting published means the most to me simply because I worked so hard to achieve it and know how difficult it is for even the most talented aspiring writers to land contracts. Darkness Dawns being chosen as Best of the Best in the Romance Writers of America Indiana Golden Opportunity Contest was also particularly exciting because I was competing against the first place winners is all of the other romance categories. And every positive review Darkness Dawns receives thrills me. I really want readers to enjoy the stories I weave and be as entertained by them as I am when I pick up books by my favorite authors.
And lastly, what are you currently working on, when might we able to read it and what about any other future projects away from the Immortal Guardians series? What can we expect from you next?
I just turned in Night Reigns, the second book in the Immortal Guardians series, which is scheduled for release in December 2011. I’m now working on the third book in the series. A fourth will soon follow. As far as projects away from the Immortal Guardians series, I’ve written a medieval romance with paranormal elements and a time travel romance that I would love to see picked up for publication. Both revolve around gifted ones and can be considered prequels to Darkness Dawns. Marcus, who first appears in Darkness Dawns as Roland’s friend, then is the hero in Night Reigns, features prominently as a secondary character in the time travel romance. I think readers would enjoy seeing him as a teenaged squire in the thirteenth century and witnessing his back story firsthand.
Thanks so much for stopping by Dianne, it was great to have you. Looking forward to reading the next book in the Immortal Guardians series - Night Reigns!
Find Dianne Online:
Website | Blog | Facebook
Order Darkness Dawns Online:
Amazon | Borders | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository
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Time for a....... GIVEAWAY!
ONE lucky winner will receive a
SIGNED copy of Darkness Dawns!
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Giveaway Ends: Feb 24th.
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