Review: Crave the Darkness by Amanda Bonilla (Shaede Assassin #3)
March 5 2013
Mass Market Paperback
Received from publisher
Kick Ass Chick – Darian
From Goodreads –
Nothing comes easy for Darian. Her heightened powers make her indispensable to the Shaede Nation, but dangerous missions have driven her lover, Tyler, to his breaking point. Darian must salvage their bond, but a new assignment to protect Anya—a fellow Shaede and the first of their kind to become pregnant in centuries—stands in their way.
It doesn’t help that the two Shaedes are longtime rivals and share nothing besides mutual hatred. But when it becomes clear that someone—or something—is bent on destroying the expectant mother and her unborn child, Darian must put her feelings aside and track down Anya’s would-be assassin.
As she probes into Anya’s past, Darian digs up long-buried secrets—and a connection between Tyler and the mission that could destroy everything between them…
Crave the Darkness is the third book in Amanda Bonilla’s Shaede Assassin series and if you haven’t checked this series out yet, I have to ask what you’re waiting for? Incredibly inventive with just the right amount of darkness and fantastic characters is what waits for you when you crack open one of these books. Have I peaked your interest yet? Good. Now let me tell you about this latest installment.
*Just a heads up, I can’t really see a way to chat about this book without giving away a specific detail that happened at the end of the last book. I usually try to skirt issues to avoid spoilers but yeah…have no idea how to do that here. So here is your warning that a spoiler follows soon.*
Darian is heartbroken. At the end of the last book, Tyler left her to give her space and to help her really figure out what she wants from him. She needed to figure things out so I agree with what he did. Did I like it? Hellz no. But I understood it. Darian is not taking it well. Crave the Darkness opens three months after Blood Before Sunrise and she is still not good. And I mean, not good. She has pretty much abandoned her life and is wallowing in a huge ol’ heap of self pity. That is until Raif has had enough and sends a certain king to force her to snap out of it.
I can’t say I’m a big fan of Xander. He’s full of himself and seems to want Darian just because she doesn’t want him. But in this installment, he was good. In his sort of odd way he helped Darian. He was his usual pompous self but Amanda wrote him in a way that leaves you wondering if it really is just the chase with him or has her really developed true feelings for her. Add to that er…”developments” that happen in this book between Xander and Darian and it leaves you very curious to see where it all leads.
Earlier, I mentioned Raif. He is Xander’s brother and one of my favorite characters in this series. Over the last couple of books, he’s become like a brother to Darian. He truly cares for her (like a sister) and she is very protective of him. She is willing to do anything for him, as was apparent in the last book. I just love watching their relationship develop.
Asher is a new character and boy is he a sneaky s.o.b. And I am SO curious about him! There is a story there, let me tell you. I hope one day we get to dive deeper into it. While reading him, you know there is something up with him but you can’t quite put your finger on whether or not that something is good or bad. But really, you are leaning towards bad so you worry for Darian and for the others. But he works for the ‘royal court’ so he can’t be all bad, right? Or… Yeah, that is what goes through your mind while you’re reading. Amanda did a great job with him.
Let’s chat Ty. You want to hate him but you can’t. But boy do you ever want to! Ty’s novella (Lost to the Shade which released in February of this year) showed us his POV concerning his break from Darian. We also sort of meet the chick that is suddenly in Ty’s life at the end of his novella. (Basically, I recommend you read his novella before reading this book. You don’t have to but I feel it adds a lot to the story – layers you would otherwise miss.) Ty is supposed to be heart-broken like Darian yet he shows up with a new woman on his arm… What the hell is that all about?! You find out little bits and pieces here and there but you don’t ever get the full story. But Ty’s new chick is in trouble and he enlists Darian to help her. Um…what?! Is he out of his frikking mind?! That is what you go through while reading this book. Questions about Ty and his loyalties. Seeing him being torn up over Darian yet…not. Seriously, Amanda did a job and a half writing the whole Ty portion of the story. It’s definitely a ride with him.
The whole story is a ride really. Kade is the villain and whoa…what a villain he is. He’s such a jerk! Darian is put on guard duty in this installment, guarding a pregnant Shaede – which is a rarity. She does not want to do this job but at least it’s something to do other than wallow in self-pity. Each book in this series has focused on a different part of Amanda’s world and this time around we see angels with a heavy focus on the actual Shaedes. I liked this a lot. I liked that the adventure was closer to home so to speak. We got to see Darian in action, working for the King, and we got to see her interact with other Shaedes that were not Raif and Xander.
As for Darian, it’s odd to see her this way, so broken, in this book but even though she’s tough in the last books, you always know there is a strong vulnerability that she hides. We get to see it in this book and it was nice. It made her softer somehow without losing the essence that is her. She is really broken and sad but just as it’s about to be too much, Amanda pulls it back and has Darian ‘get with it’ and do her job. There is so much to Darian; I loved seeing new aspects to her character.
Overall, Crave the Darkness was an absolutely awesome book. I honestly have never read anything like this series and every book leaves me wanting more. These are brilliant books filled with brilliant characters written by a really talented author. I can’t wait to reconnect with this series again.
Books in the Shaede Assassin series –
Shaedes of Gray
Blood Before Sunrise
Crave the Darkness