Darkness Unmasked, DARK ANGELS Book #5
by Keri Arthur
Shortly after her fight on the astral plane, Risa receives a phone call from Madeline Hunter, the leader of the vampire council, ordering her to investigate the death of Hunter's close friend and lover - Wolfgang Schmidt. His body has been discovered wrapped in a web-like substance and has been completely drained. As the body count continues to grow, Risa must summon her gifts to find the dark spirit before it strikes again.
Meanwhile, as the search for the keys that keep the gate to Hell closed grows more intense, Risa begins to unravel mysteries that will have startling consequences for her.
*ARC received from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review
Keri Arthur has woven another compelling web of action, intrigue, mystery and suspense with Darkness Unmasked!
Being a chronic reader, it is my personal opinion that one of the highest compliments a book can receive is when it doesn't matter what you should be doing, you'd rather be reading. And an even greater testament to the utter captivating nature of the tale when that statement is turned to action, wherein everything in 'real life' is pushed aside for the opportunity to be totally immersed in the magic of the story. This series has done that to me 5 times over now - the outside world simply disappears when I have a DARK ANGELS book in hand, and I don't move until that last incredible page is turned...
This release is slightly darker and grittier than the previous installments. There's just as much action, but the violence is more intense, the villainy more sinister, and the emotions more raw. The romance is slightly different as well. It was simply written, leaving much to the imagination.
With the journey this series has taken it is almost impossible to write a plot driven review without spoilers, and because I don't do that, I will simply tell you that while a lot of series start to lag at the 5 book mark, somehow I feel like this thrill-ride is just getting started. There was a quote that about sums things up: Risa is at the climax of the story and is told, "Be careful, Risa Jones, there are more games being played than you realize." :). I'll also say that the twists that were introduced in this part of the story arc were diabolical in their brilliance & served to just further the emotional bond that Keri has been able to forge between her characters and the reader, as well as the characters themselves. No other books elicit the type of emotional response that these do for me; I always feel like I'm right there with them, and every single book has become a new favorite, leaving me emotionally spent and yet only wanting more. Darkness Unmasked easily scored another 5 Skull rating from me. I highly recommend it, and the entire DARK ANGELS series - to everyone. These books have everything you want in a perfectly written Urban Fantasy - strong and well developed characters, superb world building, suspense and mystery with plenty of surprises, heart pumping action and intrigue, and just enough romance and witty dialogue to smooth out the edges.