Thursday, March 15, 2012

Review: The Darkest Seduction

(Lords of the Underworld #9)
Gena Showalter
Adult Paranormal Romance
504 pages
Available Now
Received from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Possessed by the demon of Promiscuity, immortal warrior Paris is irresistibly seductive-but his potent allure comes at a terrible price. Every night he must bed someone new, or weaken and die. And the woman he craves above all others is the one woman he'd thought was forever beyond his reach…until now.

Newly possessed by the demon of Wrath, Sienna Blackstone is racked by a ruthless need to punish those around her. Yet in Paris's arms, the vulnerable beauty finds soul-searing passion and incredible peace. Until a blood feud between ancient enemies heats up.

Will the battle against gods, angels and creatures of the night bind them eternally-or tear them apart?

Perhaps the most highly anticipated of the Lords of the Underworld series given the length of time we’ve followed Paris and Sienna’s tragic courtship, The Darkest Seduction doesn’t let us fans of the series down, the moments we’ve spent physically aching for them every time we've received small snippets of their lives in the other Lords’ books more than worth it as we get their full story in gloriously rich detail. We’ve had to watch Paris, previously full of life and charm and always quick with a laugh, lose a little piece of that light and charisma with each book, his guilt over his role in Sienna’s death and subsequent undeath starting out a small dark blot on his heart and spreading with each page read until darkness and vengeance have almost entirely consumed him. As a result, we find ourselves spending long minutes just staring at the image of Paris and Sienna on the cover, desperately wanting to crack the spine but also utterly apprehensive to do so knowing the journey to happiness for them will be long and painful.

Paris, Keeper of Promiscuity, leaps from the pages in the very first book in a deliciously sexy blaze of glory, seeming to revel in the needs of his demon while verbally sparring with his fellow Lords in a way that makes him an instant favorite, taking possession of our hearts as easily as he does all of those he seduces. As the series progresses however, we see small glimpses of the burden he bears as the Lord of Sex, the broken hearts, tears, curses, and pleas for more he leaves in his wake piling one atop the other to create a mountain of self-loathing and shame so great we want nothing more than to reach in and assure him his deeds done to satisfy his demon do not define him as a man. In this, finally his story at last, we experience his every emotion along with him, his desire to find and save Sienna in a way he wasn’t able to previously as well as his fear that Sex’s wants—separate but absolutely linked to his own–will inflict on her wounds deeper and more agonizing than the ones he’s already caused churning our guts as much as they do his.

Sienna is everything we could possibly want for Paris, a woman whose ability to forgive all his real and perceived sins acts as balm to his turbulent soul, granting him absolution and bestowing on him all the love he’s adamantly denied himself. Where she could condemn him for his inability to remain faithful, she offers only understanding, repeatedly putting his health and welfare above any jealousy the idea of his being with someone else brings forth, and proving to him again and again that the fragile trust they’re building is what’s most important to her. While Sienna’s infinite understanding of Paris’s need to sleep with someone else should they be parted for any length of time could have been frustrating–our own inability to overlook repeated infidelity, however necessary, preventing us from being as understanding as she is–Ms. Showalter spares us the torture and torment of cheating in this tale, instead giving us two characters who from the moment they come together on the pages show one another nothing but love and respect.

The Darkest Seduction, in addition to being a stunning fulfillment of a desire a long time coming, is also a crucial book with regard to the Lords’ ongoing battle with the Hunters and the search for Pandora’s Box, giving us a beautiful relationship as well as some incredibly profound developments that will hugely affect all the characters moving forward. Overall, this installment is one not to be missed, a true delight to read and one we can’t wait to flip back to the beginning and start all over again.

Rating: 4.5/5


  1. Yet another adult series that I haven't read. I seem to be collecting them. I need to catch up on Chicagoland Vamps. And now I need to read Jennifer Estep's books. Maybe I'll get to this some time.

  2. ohhh looks fun and naughty...:D I read Gina's YA series and really enjoyed them....not gonna lie I would probably love her adult stuff too....

  3. I haven't really tried any adult/paranormal reads. I'm glad that you enjoyed it.

  4. You know you need to catch up on reading when an author you love has published a series with nine books out already and you didn't have a clue! x) LOL I love Gena Showalter's YA series, and I had no idea that she wrote this adult one! My aunt will be so happy to hear this because she's been looking for a not-so-tame adult series for a while now, and this one sounds exactly right! ;)

    Really awesome review, Jenny! I'm glad that, even nine books in, this series still managed to keep your attention. It must be great! :)

  5. Alison - I'm a huge fan of this series, she writes fabulous characters:)

    Amanda - YES! Love the Lords:)

    Tina - Hahaha that's a good way to describe these books. They're not erotic at all, I think they're paranormal romance at it's best:)

    Jennifer - I love this genre, it gives me something fun and different from all the YA books. I love them, but I like reading the adult stuff too:)

    Mimi - Hahaha yes, they're a quite a few books in this series and I'm hoping we have a lot more headed our way:) I would highly recommend these to your aunt if she likes romance, Gena's got a great sense of humor that runs through these books and helps keep things from getting too dark:)

  6. I've never read adult paranormal even though YA paranormal is my fave thing ever. Maybe I should try this one out. That cover is pretty hot! :)

  7. This series has been a lot of misses for me lately, but I kept plowing forward to just read Paris's book. I think I might stop after reading this one and I'm glad that Paris finally gets his HEA.

  8. You have a wonderful talent for the written word and your review not only does great justice to this series, which is fabulous, but draws us into the series and makes us want to read these books. I loved that Paris is finally back on track and we get to see him in a better light again.
    Great review and series.

  9. Leanna - I love adult paranormal romance, and Gena's series is one of the best I think:) And this is the first cover that's had the heroine on it, the other covers just have sexy shirtless gentleman with tattoos:) I kind of like the new addition!

    Rummanah - I struggled a bit with Gideon and Amun's books, Strider and Paris I adored:) And I'm hoping William and Gilly will be coming soon, they're favorites of mine:)

    Cathy - Thank you very much:) And I'm very excited Paris is back on track too, he was killing me:(

  10. I'm with Mimi - how could I not know about this series?! This book sounds amazing, Jenny! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it so much and I definitely feel the need to check out the first book. ;) Brilliant review!

  11. *sobs in corner*

    Book 9 already and I haven't even read book 1???! Why do I have to suck so badly? I've never been a big fan of angel stories but I do love me some tragic courtships, so I need to get moving on this.

    And you're right, one can't help but stare at the cover endlessly.

  12. I can't stop loving this cover. so pretty and so hot! Much better than mantitty ;)

  13. I have debated over this series for awhle. Now I know
    I need to read it. I just don't know where I will find the time to read 9 books. The lovers in this book sound wonderful!

  14. Whoa. I haven't read this series, but I'm GONNA based on this review! Demons of Promiscuity? 4.5 stars? Sold.

  15. Oh boy, I need some time to read this!!! Really, I need to read this story! I love the cover and think it's one of the best of the series so far. I always loved Paris but wasn't very find on Selena. I hope I will like her more in this one here...

    Oh and everyone keeps saying this was the most anticipated one. Mine it Torin's story! Gosh, this boy has is soo bad.. he needs his HEA.. Poor boy!

  16. Sam - I highly recommend this series. It's fabulous:) I wrote you an email.

    Missie - GET GOING!!!! You caught up with Midnight Breed, so I have complete faith you'll be able to make your way through the Lords with similar ease:)

    Linda - I love it as well! It's nice to have the heroine on the cover.

    Heidi - I can't get enough of these boys, they're hilarious and tortured and beautifully imperfect and I love them.

    Wendy - PLEASE DO! All the Lords and their demons are really layered and fascinating and I just love them:)

    Danny - Yes, yes you do. I think this is the most anticipated just because we've been waiting so long for the two of them. With Torin, we don't know who is HEA is going to be, but we've been following Paris and Sienna since I think book 2. Torin is still the one I'm most looking forward to, though I know he's going to be last.

  17. Oh wow that cover is so steamy. And its another series that I haven't read yet but have seen around on a lot of blogs.

  18. *cries horribly*

    I want to read this series so much. I'm so behind. I know I've read a short story or two... and even one of the books. Yes, I'm organized like that. LOL I need to get this whole series and devour it. Especially since you enjoyed this one so much. Yep... needs them all!

  19. Can I give you a round of applause for this review? Stellar my friend, just stellar :)

    I have soooo much love for these boys but you nailed it on the head when you said that my anticipation is mixed with apprehension at reading Paris' book. We've been on this ride with him for so long that I want nothing more than for him to get his perfect ending, but it must be worked for...otherwise, it wouldn't be much fun for us either ;) lol

    @Missie: *pets you* You don't suck...ok, maybe a little =P Seriously, hop to it. You will LURVEEEE these books!

    @Danny: You too young lady! These have to go up, up, up on the TBR pile.

    Gena said that Kane is supposed to be next and he's the lord that amuses me most so that should be fun, hopefully :) Sadly, there are no plans for Torin yet though! I kinda like that him & Cameo...ya know...they both need lovin'

    DEAR PNR ROM LOVERS, if you haven't read this series then stop what you're doing and get yourself these books! Gena is a genius! #PSA

    ♥Isalys / Book Soulmates

  20. Oo, angel story! I don't read adult PNR or adult books in general, but just out of curiosity, does this one have a bit of Greek mythology, Jenny? You mentioned Pandora's box ...

  21. My Goodness! I am so behind on my adult books. I really need to get on the ball and catch up! I love Gena! Her books always go so in depth with her characters. Thanks for the great review! I am glad that Pair finally found someone :)

  22. How have I missed this series? I mean, I know Showalter...swear I've read some of her books... Whatevs. So I'm losing it. Don't judge me!

    I really need to read this one! It sounds awesome. Plus, the seriously hot cover does add to the appeal.

  23. I kind of skimmed your review because this is a series I really want to read! I'm not sure when that's going to happen though... but I'm really anxious! Stop reading series I haven't read yet! You're making my TBR grow by leaps and bounds!

  24. I think I read the first book in this series.... YEARS AGO!

    I'm really looking forward to her new zombie YA book... just sayin. <3

  25. AH. I could feel your frustrations and sorrow for the cover leap off your review, Jenny. You can tell they meant a lot to you while you were reading, and you feel your delight in finally having their story.

    I badly want to begin the Lord of the Underworld series, since Gena is one of my fave authors, before the series gets to be too long. Your review only added to my desire to get going on it. :)


  26. Dangit! Since this is a #9, I skipped your thoughts, but based on this cover, I'M NINE BOOKS BEHIND. Gotta get that fixed. Um, clearly.

  27. I didn't read book eight! Now I haven't read this one. I really just want to read this one. I've been waiting for this one. I've been waiting for Paris to have an HEA.

    Thanks for reviewing this one!!


  28. Err... so am I the only one who has yet to read this series then? It would appear that I'm missing out on one phenomenal series. I have heard nothing but fabulous things about Gena's books. Perhaps it is time to get myself onto the bandwagon. Is each book a standalone? Or do they follow on from each other?

    Fantastic review as always Jenny - so love the way you write and provide such deep insight into your reading experience. :)