I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Dark Sacrifice by Angie Sandro
Series: Dark Paradise #2
Published by Forever Yours, Hatchett on August 5, 2014
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal Romance
A GIFT AND A CURSE
Mala LaCroix sees dead people—really. After using her psychic gifts to catch a killer, she's locked in a psych ward and must strike a deal with the devil to secure her release. Apprenticed to a dark arts practitioner, Mala vows to free herself and save her loved ones from danger. But she doesn't know who to turn to when her crush on Landry Prince turns into something more serious.
A FATE WORSE THAN DEATH
Landry has sacrificed everything to protect Mala. A near-death experience changes him forever, and now he, too, possesses supernatural powers he doesn't understand. Mala and Landry must band together to defeat the dark forces—both human and otherworldly—who would use their abilities for evil. Even as they fall for each other, they must prepare to battle for their very souls . . .
Word count: 95,000
On Saturdays, the local farmers set up a market in Paradise Park. I plan to do my veggie shopping there since I didn’t get my garden planted this year. The streets bordering the park are packed. I’m lucky to find a spot in the parking lot of First National Bank kitty-corner from the Memorial Rose Garden. Colorful tents are lined up in orderly rows in the square. Each section is separated, with the organic foods in one row and regular folk who want to sell extra produce in the other. Local shops also set up booths selling everything from pastries, coffee and tea, handmade clothing and soaps, fresh eggs, organic meat, and toys and games. A freaktastic clown stands on the street corner with a tank of helium and a gaggle of kids around him. I’m tempted to buy Landry a balloon to cheer him up.
The passenger door slams shut as soon as I shut off the engine. Landry wastes no time coming around to open my door and lift me to the ground before I can squawk in protest. He strides off while I grab my cloth shopping bag, leaving me to stare after his retreating back in shock. When he’s halfway across the street, he pauses and turns around.
“This is your idea. Hurry,” he yells.
“I’m coming.” I shut the door and run to catch up. When I reach him, he moves around me until I’m on his blind side. He starts forward again, but slows his steps so they match mine. If I didn’t know him so well, I’d think he didn’t have a care in the world, but I do. He walks like he did in jail—shoulders back and tight, chest slightly raised. He scans the area, alert for a threat.
I take his hand, squeezing when he tries to pull away.
We blend into the crowd, strolling up and down the rows. It’s a mix of people of all ages. A few people say “hi.” Most don’t. A large percentage of them stare. I feel like I’m at the mercy of paparazzi.
“Smile and wave,” I mutter from the corner of my mouth, jabbing Landry in the side with my elbow.
“You’re acting like you’ve done something wrong, but you haven’t. Don’t let these fools see you sweat. Weakness breeds violence. Like a silverback gorilla in the jungle, you need to beat your chest and fling your poop at someone.”
His snort-laugh doubles him over, and I pat him on the back. “That’s perfect,” I say. “No worries.”
He turns and lifts me into a breath-stealing hug. “Thanks,” he whispers in my ear and presses a brotherly kiss to my forehead. Wish he’d move his lips a little lower. Would a few inches kill him?
My voice comes a little thick and raspy too, and I cough to clear my throat. “No problem.”
How long has he been standing here holding me? We have an even larger audience than before. Now we really are the object of paparazzi-like behavior as people snap pictures of our embrace with their phones. I wrap my arms around his neck and press my cheek against his. “Cheese,” I say, grinning for the cameras.
A couple of high school kids start to laugh.
One yells, “Give her another kiss, Landry.”
“Yeah, Landry. Give me a kiss.” I bat my eyelashes, whispering in his ear, “I swear if you drop me on my ass in public—”
I don’t have to finish the threat.
His mouth steals across mine.
I lean into him, head tilting. My arms tighten around his neck. His lips are soft and juicy, like peaches. Yum. My thoughts scatter and swirl, leaving only the sensation of his mouth on mine.
He breaks free first and lowers me to my feet. He avoids my gaze. “Did it work?” he asks, running his fingers through his black hair so it falls forward to shield his eye again. He shifts from his forward foot to his back which somehow puts distance between us without him having to move.
I laugh, playing off the hurt. “Yeah, we gave our fans a titillating bit of new gossip to take the place of the old. Rumors about our relationship will be flying through town before lunch.” I glance around to be sure. The crowd drifts away, realizing there’s nothing more to see. Even better, nobody hurls insults or throws dead animals at our heads. “Let’s go.”
First let’s stare at the pretty that is the covers of these books! They are so shiny and pretty and I want to pet them in my hands. Knowing that what is inside of them is even more amazing and shiny and pretty makes owning these books in hard copy a must! I’ll be the first in line buying them when that happens!
Second let’s talk about the length. Dark Paradise is 96k, Dark Sacrifice is 95k, and Dark Redemption is 96k. Most new adult romance books seem to be coming in around 70k. Or roughly (very roughly) 300 pages. Don’t let the length of these novels scare you away. It’s seriously the best most engrossing 400 pages I have read in a very long time. The story that Angie Sandro weaves throughout both Dark Paradise and Dark Sacrifice have me literally chomping at the bit to dig into Dark Redemption.
Now let’s talk about what was in between the amazing cover for Dark Sacrifice. What were those 95,000 words about and how did they make me feel! Mostly I felt entertained, these books are a ride from the opening page until the end. Angie puts Mala through the ringer. At the end of Dark Paradise she has Mala in a very dark place, and she starts Dark Sacrifice with her still there. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s not a steady light.
Landry is in an even darker place at the end of Dark Paradise. Luckily for us Angie doesn’t linger in the past happenings of book 1 for too long before she throws Mala and her potential beau into another mystery. Pardon my French, but the shit really hits the fan.
The books are connected but Dark Sacrifice could stand on it’s own if you wanted to start here, but really why would you? You’d miss the start of Mala and Landry’s relationship, plus a great story.
The writing is so good. I got lost in this book and I didn’t ever want to be found. I went to work in the morning came home and read, ate lunch and read, cooked dinner and read (while I was cooking we had some pretty disastrous meals during this book). I really connected to these characters and their lives. I’m invested in them.
Sadly, the book came to an end. It’s a whopper of an ending too. Luckily book three comes out in about a month and I will be anxiously waiting to grab it up!!! It’s sort of bittersweet because I’ll have to say goodbye to Mala and company. I’ve so enjoyed my time with them too.
I recommend this book to paranormal lovers who don’t shy away from things that go bump in the night. There are some really scary moments in this book. If you are a fan of romance you’ll enjoy this series. Be warned though, book hangovers happened when I finished both books.
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