Jessie Darker goes to high school during the day, but at night she helps with the family investigation business. Cheating husbands and stolen inheritances? They’re your girls—but their specialty is a bit darker. Zombie in your garage? Pesky Poltergeist living in your pool? They’ll have the problem solved in a magical minute. For a nominal fee, of course...When gorgeous new client, Lukas Scott, saunters into the office requesting their help to find a stolen box, it sounds like a simple case—until the truth comes out. The box is full of Sin.Seven deadly ones, in fact. They’ve got five days to recapture the Sins before they're recalled by the box, taking seven hijacked human bodies with them. Easy peasy—except for one thing...There’s a spell that will allow the Sins to remain free, causing chaos forever. When the key ingredient threatens the life of someone she knows, Jessie must make the ultimate choice between love and family—or lose everything.
Published August 19th 2013 by Entangled Publishing
Source: Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Four Stars: An exciting and funny beginning to a new paranormal series.
Jessie so hates having to do penance. It wasn't her fault that her classmates paid her to take some incriminating pictures of the school principal with his much younger girlfriend. Was it her fault he was cheating? Nevertheless, her mother was furious. Jessie's punishment involves dealing with a zombie. Ugh. She hates zombies. After a dunk in the pool and narrowly missing being a zombie chew, Jessie heads home soaking wet. Something is up because the phones are ringing off the hook and paranormal activity is on the rise. A young man lands on their doorstep with an interesting tale to tell. He is one of the Seven deadly sins, and a whole lot of trouble is about to ensue if Jessie and her mother don't help him get the other sins back in the box in five days. Can Jessie return the sins to the box in time?
What I Liked:
- With the rise of contemporary NA books, paranormal YA titles aren't as prevalent this year. I was excited to settle into this one because I have been craving a good, solid paranormal book and this one definitely delivers. It has all the elements I love in a supernatural read from action, mystery, romance, paranormal, and more. This book features demons, witches, zombies, curses, ghosts, necromancers and the seven deadly sins reincarnated into human form. How fun is that?
- Jessie is a great heroine. She is snarky, adventurous, stubborn and determined, not to mention resourceful. This girl doesn't take no for an answer. She is headstrong and often lands into hot water because she refuses to listen to those who have her best interests in mind. Jessie is the kind of character who will make you laugh as you follow her antics. There aren't very many dull moments when it comes to Jessie.
- I loved the storyline in this one. There was a good solid mystery with plenty of twists and turns. The plot surrounds the opening of the box that contains the seven deadly sins. Lukas, a young man who at eighteen was betrayed when a powerful witch infused the sin Wrath into his soul, is determined to stop them. Lukas has been confined in the box for over one hundred and fifty years, seeking to undo his curse. Of course, he is up against impossible odds and the more Jessie and Lukas dig, the thicker the plot becomes. What appears on the surface as a rather simple story line is actually a plot with breadth and depth. There are lots of jaw dropping surprises in this one, and I came away satisfied that this book was so much more than I expected.
- One complaint in the YA genre is that the parents are absentee. This is not he case with this one. Jessie's mom, Klaire, is an active participant in the story. She is a tough parent, and she knows how to put Jesse in her place. Damien, Jessie's dad, has a solid role as well and he has plenty of interesting secrets. If you are tired of missing parents, you will enjoy the interaction between Jessie and both her parents.
- I loved that this one ended with a fast and furious and satisfactory conclusion. The end is dynamite. Everything snaps into place as all the twists are revealed. There are some shocking moments before everything winds down and closes neatly. However, there are some interesting story threads laid out for the next book. I can't wait to see how this series progresses.
And The Not So Much:
- The romance was a bit of a stumble for me. There was a lot of nice moments and for the most part I liked it, but I also felt it moved way too fast. The couple is exchanging I love yous in five days time after a bit of a rocky start. It is a bit too quick. I would much prefer for it to have stayed more in the solid friendship formation area with sparks of attraction, leaving room for it to grow in future books. At least there isn't a love triangle.
- I wished that there had been more detail on Jessie's late grandfather. There are so many references to him in the book and there is so little information on him. He played a critical role in the events even though he was dead. I thought it would have enhanced the story if there were more discussion on him. I was hoping to get into is diary entries, perhaps next time out. I am anxious to learn more about the whole Darker family history.
- I was a bit confused over Jessie's dad who just happens to be a demon. I wanted to know more about his life and what he did and all of that. There are just a few tantalizing tidbits on him and I was eager to know all.
Darker Days is a solid paranormal book that will remind you why you love this genre. It has great characters, an exciting storyline, snark, plenty of action, a romance, lots of paranormal entities and it ends with a bang. No cliffhangers or love triangles in this one. If you are hungering for a new YA paranormal series, I highly suggest you get this one!
"In short, he was the kind of guy that got his jollies from HBO late night and the Victoria's Secret catalog---not real time action."
"How was that possible? To go from kissy thoughts to kick-your-ass thoughts in a matter of seconds?"
"I don't know how dating was in your day, but stick a guy in a box for over a hundred years and he's not going to greet you with flowers and candy. A hatchet, maybe. And a continuous loop of Bob Saget skits---but not flowers and candy."
"I'd been drooled on by zombies, screamed at by banshees---even peed on by weres---but bitch--slapped by a girl wearing hooker heels and too much makeup? That was a first."
"But you can't avoid love because you're afraid to get hurt, and you can't choose who you fall in love with."
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.