Friday, August 9, 2013

A Darkness Strange and Lovely

Title: A Darkness Strange and Lovely

Author: Susan Dennard

Genre: YA/Fantasy/Paranormal

Release Date: July 23, 2013

My Rating:

Following an all-out battle with the walking Dead, the Spirit Hunters have fled Philadelphia, leaving Eleanor alone to cope with the devastating aftermath.  But there’s more trouble ahead—the evil necromancer Marcus has returned, and his diabolical advances have Eleanor escaping to Paris to seek the help of Joseph, Jie, and the infuriatingly handsome Daniel once again.

When she arrives, however, she finds a whole new darkness lurking in this City of Light. As harrowing events unfold, Eleanor is forced to make a deadly decision that will mean life or death for everyone.

~ Goodreads

Amazing, amazing, amazing!  ADSAL (A Darkness Strange & Lovely) and SSAD (Something Strange & Deadly) are both equally stunning books and I'm still wondering how Dennard does it.

ADSAL picks up about a month after the Shadow Hunters left Philadelphia for enchanting Paris, France.  Eleanor is less than happy in her current situation; her mother is a nutcase, her ex-best friend is acting cold and stoic towards her, and she is steadily draining her funds trying to pay for her mother's medical bills.  Paris is a breath of fresh air after what happened in Philadelphia, but it does not last long.  There are soon new problems concerning the dead arising in the city of fashion and love.  Will Eleanor and the Shadow Hunters once again keep their heads above the water or will they be swept under by the strong current?

The writing is absolutely fantastic.  It might just be that I love anything Victorian (books especially!), but I loved the elegance with which they spoke.  It was so...sophisticated.

"Let us drink tea and sit near the fireplace.  Very comfortable, no?" ~ I love putting no? at the end of sentences!  It makes me feel so European ;)

Eleanor is a wonderful lead heroine.  She's brave, spunky, headstrong, and, most importantly, has the courage to keep moving into the future.  Not once did she falter in her stride toward stopping the Dead take over the city.

Eleanor and Daniel!  Woop-woop!  Let me just say, I fell in love with Daniel in the beginning of SSAD and hated him by the end.  Now, in ADSAL I have mixed emotions towards him.  (Just a warning, but ADSAL does not have that much romance, so if you were hanging on to the series only because of that, you'll be disappointed)  He's still the sweet, rough, and tough man we met in the first book, but just a more polished version.  Eleanor doesn't get to see Daniel until the last half of the book, so the amount of interaction was severely reduced (whyyyyy?).  I feel like there should have been more romance, but that's just me.  If Dennard has squeezed in two or three more romance scenes, I would have been a very happy girl.

Action (yay)!  Gore (ewww)!  There is a lot of gore glory in ADSAL, so let this be a warning.  If you don't like or can't handle blood trickling from ears or smelly rotted corpses, you might have to skip a couple of pages...

Overall, I'm giving ADSAL a 5/5, because this was a wonderful sequel to an equally wonderful debut.


  1. The writing does sound lovely! I would love to be eating scones in Europe, with my pinky up and putting "no" at the end of a sentence, so I agree :) And I love the sound of the heroine, those are my kind of MCs! Great review :)

    1. Same here! Eleanor is definitely one of a kind :)



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