Darkness Brutal, as the title implies, is a rather dark read featuring a battle between good and evil. I’m not a huge fan of angel/demon scenarios, this one did hold my interest until the end. Ultimately, it was only a three star read for me, but it did rate a four star review from one of the toughest reviewers on Goodreads, Khanh. She’s brutal and she thought this was one of the best YA urban fantasies she’s read in a long time. So, who knows? You may love it.
Aidan O’Linn’s childhood ended the night he saw a demon kill his mother and mark his sister, Ava, with Darkness. Since then, every three years the demons have returned to try to claim her. Living in the gritty, forgotten corners of Los Angeles, Aidan has managed to protect his sister, but he knows that even his powers to fight demons and speak dead languages won’t keep her safe for much longer.
In desperation, Aidan seeks out the help of Sid, the enigmatic leader of a group of teens who run LA Paranormal, an Internet reality show that fights demons and ghosts. In their company, Aidan believes he’s finally found a haven for Ava. But when he meets Kara, a broken girl who can spin a hypnotic web of passionate energy, he awakens powers he didn’t know he had―and unleashes a new era of war between the forces of Light and the forces of Darkness.
With the fate of humanity in his hands, can Aidan keep the Darkness at bay and accept his brilliant, terrifying destiny?
This is a pretty interesting read if you can handle demons and angels. It uses what you (and the narrator) don’t know to keep twisting the story and driving the suspense. It was a little frustrating, but, to be fair, you often don’t realize that people are withholding info until it is reveal time. The overall plot line is pretty heavy on a strange mix of religion and demonology. I’m sure my deeply religious grandmother would not approve of the combination, and it will probably be an uneasy read for people who aren’t sure how they feel about interpretations of religious history/texts with magical and mystical elements. Pacing is fairly consistent, and there is a lot of action, but the big issue of a sexual attraction/romance does bog down the story with a lot of will we or won’t we. Character development was a little iffy. Aidan is clearly drawn and given a good dose of dark and light. The other characters often feel like characters instead of people. There were a lot of people living in the “safe house,” and they got confusing, especially the guys. One of them who was barely introduced as an individual played a key part towards the end of the story and I kept trying to remember who he was before he became important. Overall, this is probably a book I could have lived without reading, but for the right audience, it could be very engaging. Mature language and frequent references to sensuality make this most appropriate for mature high school readers.
I received a copy of this book through the Kindle First To Read Program.