Thursday, 10 July 2008

Into The Darkness by Delilah Devlin

This is not a romance but a sordid and distasteful trailer-park urban fantasy. Vampire genre. Why do I describe it as ‘trailer park?’ The author bio. How were my prejudices confirmed? This astounding paragraph towards the end of the novel where the main secondary character remembers her murdered baby girl; “Her Daddy had just taught her to say ‘shit.’ He thought it was funny. I got mad.” Yup. I can just imagine the scene. Characters have been to college but they still work in video stores and hump at the office in plain sight of anyone. Lovely. Scenes take place in tacky motel rooms.

The main couple have some sort of relationship going but that doesn’t stop them doing it with a lot of other people. The hero and heroine spend most of the novel in a locked room and there is just too much non-consensual activity between them…perpetrated by her on him. Because of this fact the author tries to interest the reader in bump and grind between secondary characters. Unfortunately the main secondary character does it with just about anything that walks on two legs. Nor was I interested in the millionaire life-style of the people who had kidnapped and imprisoned the hero and heroine. My sympathies often lay with the hero who is basically humiliated and disrespected through much of the story. To say nothing of the fact that there is a general theme of a community using and abusing complete strangers. (As food)

The heroine’s name is Natalie. She starts off in the novel as a fairly naïve and innocent character. By the end of the story she is exposing herself to convenience-store clerks. Occasionally she makes the struggle to display some integrity which basically consists of laying in bed with the covers up to her chin. As opposed to most of the time where she is raping the hero. For large parts of the story her actions are determined by her hormones (rather than her brain or her heart) and her potential fertility is openly discussed by her captors as a reason for denying her freedom.

I suppose you have to be unapologetically culturally southern to appreciate this kind of novel. And believe me when I say I am not referring to Cajun culture.

Because this novel is obviously the beginning of a series, threads pop up and then disappear for large parts of the story. Just who is the person who killed Natalie’s parents. And why? Appalling is a good word to use to describe this book. It is also very very dirty and doesn’t rise above sewer level at any point.

In the final chapter, Rene goes through the portal with Natalie because he believes he'd 'rather die than live without her.' Why? This is the woman who abused his body. Who will continue to do so because she's a 'Born' and he's a 'Revenant.' I guess that's the vampire word for doormat. And Rene's the first guy in a romance I've read who qualifies to hold that title. Poor sap. In true trailer-park style, instead of breaking free from his abuser, he chooses to stay with her. Too scared to take back his self-respect. Sad.

Mostly I read romances where falling in love makes the main couple happy. None of the rampant carnality in this novel results in any happiness whatsoever.

Read this book only if you generally despise humanity as it will just confirm your low opinion of the species.

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