Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Review: Darkness Falls by JL Drake

More than a year after her ordeal, Emily McPhee finally feels safe…
Emily’s psychological scars are healing. Things are great between her and Orange Police Department Officer Seth Connors, and her biggest problem is the X-rated Halloween decorations her best friend Pete has placed all around her house. 
If only it would stay that way…
Seth senses something isn’t right, but he doesn’t know where the danger is coming from…or why. He’s sure Emily’s neighbor, Travis McKay, is hiding something, and the man pays way too much attention to Emily. 
To make things even more complicated, a new female officer appears to have her sights set on Seth, and fellow officer Alexander Avery has some sort of connection to a mysterious brothel employee. Seth has a feeling all these odd things are somehow connected—but he knows he’s missing a huge piece of the puzzle.
Pull at a thread and everything unravels.
Emily’s mother shows up with a surprise and a dirty plan to force her to sell the family home…and Seth’s father is proven to be the deceitful monster he always believed him to be. Lasko’s tainted past and twisted family ties turn out to be more complex than they ever imagined.
Every lie has a consequence, and Seth and Emily need the truth. 
In order to escape with their lives and their love intact, they must answer one critical question…

Who is the real target in this deadly game?

Tagline: “I see everything. I know their deepest, darkest secrets.”

4.5 Scared Out of My Mind Stars!

Review by Jen Hagen 

They never knew I was there, never knew I watched their most private moments, never knew I heard some of their darkest secrets.

I freaked myself out while reading this book.  I had to stop reading it before I went to bed.  The thought that somebody was hiding behind my bedroom curtains when I don’t even have floor-length curtains freaked me out along with the thought that somebody was hiding in my closet.  This was scary good!!  I felt that the second installment lacked something, but whatever it was lacking was made up ten times in this final installment.  All our questions were answered and there was never a lull in the story.  Seth’s questionable family history is revealed along with a huge twist regarding Emily’s abduction and her stalker.

Scott and Travis, especially Travis, were still messing with my head always wondering how they played into the story.  I didn’t trust either of them.  But the character that really stole the show was the puppet master.  He was controlled, deadly, and had everybody fooled.  

The idea that a trusted friend was connected to our nightmare was a hard thing to comprehend.  

Nobody expected this person to be the strings.  How did he become the puppet master?   Oh my friends that is just part of the plot twist.  You thought you knew it from the second installment how he was connected to Jimmy Lasko but there’s way more to this story.

“Just remember, my dear, a secret revealed often has pain following right behind it.  That being, said.  I think it’s time.”

Part of the dance is to make Seth and Em doubt each other’s trust.  They’ve been through a lot in the last year since Jimmy Lasko messed with their lives.  Seth and Em are unaware that their lives are once again being messed with.   The puppet master casts doubt in their eyes of trust – all it takes is a kiss and a pair of boxers and this has Seth and Em seeing their relationship with a questionable future.

“Em, you fought so hard for us last year, so let me fight for us now.  If you’re second guessing things, tell me now so I can make them right.  I don’t want to do me without you.”  His hand caught a tear I didn’t even know was falling.  

The writing was excellent, the story was fantastic, and the suspense was excruciating.  I felt like I was being old school and reading my favorite genre of years ago before I discovered angst romance.    There is plenty of Seth and Em heating up the scenes to keep any romance reader happy, but the majority of praise for this book comes from the scary factor – not scary gory, but scary freaky.  I am now going to check my attic for a sleeping bag that doesn’t belong there.

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