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Beyond The Darkening By Kerry Allen

April 8, 2010

Amanda Tessler infiltrated the Society for the Preservation of Humanity to gather information to aid the “monsters” the organization seeks to cleanse from the earth. Her orders are to maintain her cover at any cost, but when the vampire she once loved is delivered to the facility, starved, blinded, and slated for further suffering in her lab, clinical detachment fails her.

An act of misguided loyalty lands Nathan Hilliard in the hands of an enemy bent on the extermination of his species and, perhaps more hazardous to his health, at the mercy of the woman he publicly humiliated six years ago. She has every reason to leave him there to rot, so setting him free must be a game to her, a subtler form of torture for him.

Despite his suspicions, his heart tells him the worst mistake he will ever make isn’t trusting her again, but letting her walk out of his life a second time…

WARNING: Do not read this novella in any location where random bursts of laughter would be inappropriate.  I about choked to keep in the laughter generated by Kerry Allen‘s masterful snark while I was reading it in a meeting.  Beyond the Darkening is the first in a planned trilogy of novellas that follow the (I hope) downfall of the Society for the Preservation of Humanity, a brutal organization that uses genocidal tactics to take out the public population of vampires.

The dynamic between Amanda and Nate is masterfully executed.  They have a history and Allen manages to share it without any discernible As You Know Bob moments.  As a rule, I often don’t believe the romance in novellas simply because there’s not room to do a lot of character development, but Allen has me totally buying into the HEA after 33,000 words.   Both characters are witty and charming in their own snarky way, and there’s this one scene with a bunch of misogynistic, gun-toting rednecks that brought tears to my eyes (in an, I laughed so hard I cried kind of way).

My only criticism of the work is the usual for good novellas: too short!   And I think she could come up with a better cover.  Definitely don’t just this book by its cover.  It’s a laugh a minute.

I offer up 4 cookies to this saucy read for giving me my best belly laugh in ages, and I’ll definitely be checking out Ms. Allen’s work again.

Beyond the Darkening is available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, and, I think, the iBookstore (though I can’t link you to that).

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. sweet tart permalink*
    April 9, 2010 3:34 pm

    Her cover for her most recent release is much better. I really want to read this book though. Most definitely a purchase for my Kindle!

  2. saucybelle permalink*
    April 9, 2010 3:44 pm

    Yeah I really LOVE the cover for her latest release (The Nights Before Christmas).

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Nights-Before-Christmas-ebook/dp/B003BIGFWK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&m=AG56TWVU5XWC2&s=digital-text&qid=1270847638&sr=8-2

    Since it’s set at Christmas, I’m saving it for July when I want to fool my brain into thinking it’s colder than 105 outside.

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