Monday, July 11, 2011
Darkenss Lit Up My Day!
Greek Gods? Love 'em! Shape shifters? Can't wait to see what they'll "pop" into next! Vampires? Oddly intrigued, but hate to admit it. Witches, wizards, and warlocks? Put a spell on me baby! New Orleans French Cajun culture... oui! Put it all together and what do you get? No, not seven separate books, silly. You get Darkness Becomes Her, by Kelly Keaton, and you are going to love it!
Ari had a strange childhood. Given up at the age of four, she was bounced from horrible foster home to horrible foster home until she was taken in by loving bail bondsmen, Bruce and Casey, who not only love her, they teach her to kick some butt (and full weapons training of course). But Ari needs to know what happened to her mother, so she tracks down the mental institute her mother was committed in when she died. It is there she learns her mother committed suicide shortly after giving Ari up. Ari collects her mother's possessions and in the box, she find a letter from her mother telling her to run, and run fast. Ari ignores the letter at first, but when a big scary man speaking another language attacks her and is impervious to bullets, she knows her mother wasn't crazy after all.
Barely escaping with her life, Ari is determined to find out what really happened to her mother. So she ventures into New 2, what is left of New Orleans. Around the time Ari was given up, a wave of hurricanes all but destroyed New Orleans. The US wanted to abandon it entirely, but a group of 9 New Orleans families came together and bought the city from the country, making it the only privately owned city in North America. New 2 is rumored to be lawless and a paranormal haven, but not many people dare to enter (except a few silly tourists). The culture still exists, but as Ari arrives, she realizes so does a whole population of "freaks"- strange people who turn out to be as paranormal as the rumors said they were. Apparently the 9 families who own New 2, Novem, are made up of vampires, witches and warlocks, and shape shifters. They work together to take care of the city and keep it safe from the real nasties out in the ruins.
When Ari arrives, she is "adopted" by a group of freaks who live in an abandoned house. Sebastian, the leader, agrees to help her find information about her mother. Instead, they find Sebastian's grandmother knew Ari's mom and even paid her hospital bill when Ari was born. When they go to the Novem, of which Sebastian's grandmother is part of, they find there is a terrible curse on Ari's family where the women in her family all die by 21, but not before delivering a baby girl. Sebastian's grandmother agrees to help her fight the curse, but before she can, Ari is kidnapped by a supernatural soldier and taken to a hidden prison. It is there she learns the truth of who she is. She manages to escape and help the other prisoners- a harpy, a shapeshifter woman/spider, and even Sebastian's father, who he thought was gone forever.
The prisoners tell her it is the petulant Greek Goddess Athena who imprisoned them, and it is Athena who cursed Ari's family. It turns out, Ari's curse goes farther back than she or anyone else expected. Now she has the Novem who want to keep her as a weapon, an angry goddess who is simply a jerk, and Ari finds out she can be a real danger to everyone, her friends included, when she comes of age. But Ari won't just give up. She is determined to take control of her life, even if it means showing a Greek God who is really the boss!
This was SUCH an interesting book and it took so many twists and turns I had no idea what was going to happen. I read it in one sitting and was really annoyed when anyone interrupted me because it was so addictive! The interwoven myths and supernatural creatures are so cool, and the truth behind Ari's curse dates right back to Greek mythology. There is another book planned for next year, and I have already pre-ordered it! I can't wait!
There is some forceful language in the story, but most of it is totally deserved (wouldn't you throw out a curse word or two if an awful goddess cursed your family for countless lifetimes and is trying to cook your brain?!). The content can be violent at times, but is nothing gratuitous or violent for the sake of being violent. Instead, it is just the nature of such a story with life and death situations around every bend. This is a great book for almost any student, as it is fast-paced, exciting, and the characters are awesome. You won't be sorry if you pick up this book... but you might be trapped where ever you do because it is too good to put down until you reach that last page!