Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Early Review - Firelight (Darkest London, Book 1) by Kristen Callihan (4.5/5 stars)

Reading level: Adult
Genre: Historical Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Size: 400 pages
Publisher: Forever
Release Date: January 31, 2012
ISBN: 978-1455508594
Stand Alone or Series: 1st in the Darkest London series
Source: eGalley from NetGalley.com
Rating: 4.5/5 stars

I got an eGalley of this book to review through NetGalley.com. This book was a wonderful historical fantasy paranormal romance. It was impossible to put down and the two main characters were absolutely awesome. The second book in the Darkest London series is scheduled to release in August 2011 and will be titled Moonglow.

One night when she was younger Miranda meet a strange man in an alley and she has never been able to forget him. Now Miranda is plagued both by her strange ability to call fire and by her father's horrible debt. Miranda is horrified when she finds that he father has sold her off to a nobleman with a reputation for being dangerous and mentally unstable. When Miranda finally meets the masked Lord Archer she sense something familiar about him. She finally realizes Lord Archer is actually the man whom she meet all those years ago. Someone is trying to frame Lord Archer for multiples murders and Miranda ends up in the thick of a magical and mysterious plot.

The two main characters are what hands down makes this book. The witty banter and heat between Miranda and Lord Benjamin Archer is unbelievably well done. Miranda is a Lady yet she has been thieving for her father for some time so she has some..uh..less ladylike skills in sneaking and fighting. She is tough, yet dedicated to those she loves.

Lord Archer is a wonderful male lead. He has that whole masked man thing going on which lends a mysterious and painful aura to his characters. His character channels both a little Phantom of the Opera and a little of the man in black from Princess Bride. He was just an absolutely perfect dark and mysterious male lead.

The heat and chemistry between these two characters (both who are lonely and harboring terrible magical secrets) is absolutely outstanding. I could not put the book down and could not wait to see what would happen next. I actually got goosebumps at points. I just don't know how else to say it; this is one awesome couple and reading about them and seeing how they can work as a team was just wonderful.

The world itself is interesting. It is set in historical London. Magic isn't all that well known. Werewolves are alluded to in the story at one point, but the magic Lord Archer is involved in is more the ritualistic/demonic type. There isn't a ton of world-building, but what is there is well done and easy to understand.

It looks like this is going to be one of those paranormal series where two different characters are featured for each book. This book pretty much wrapped up Miranda and Archer's story completely. The next book looks like it is going to focus on one of Miranda's sisters.

Overall this was an absolutely outstanding read. I couldn't put the book down. The two main characters really make the book; they are just very wonderful characters and the chemistry between them is incredibly well done. The world is interesting but basically just a alternate version of historical London; there is magic present but not a whole lot of paranormal races are discussed. I would recommend this book for fans of the Night Huntressseries; or any other urban fantasy/paranormal series out there featuring a strong heroine and hero with a strong element of romance throughout the story. This book was very well done and I will be curious to see if the follow-up book, Moonglow, can be as awesome.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- Horror and Urban Fantasy Challenge
- 150+ Books Reading Challenge

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