- Author: Darcia Helle
- Published: April 2015 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
- Category: Dark Fantasy
Eli’s dark legacy holds murder as his rite of passage. They say his ability is a gift. He calls it a curse. A life of violence and heartache leaves him with nothing left to fight for. Or so he thinks. Amanda steals his heart, but love makes him vulnerable. He must give her up or accept who he is and fight. Will he risk stepping into the darkness that could consume him?
Eli Hayes has a secret, an ability like no other. As a descendant of the Native American Timucua, he has special powers. One in particular that others would kill for. That and his dark and traumatic past, revealed gradually as the story progresses, has kept him quite isolated and deeply private, while writing best-selling non fiction. Could he, or should he, keep running from a past which haunts and threatens to destroy him? When he meets Amanda and they begin a relationship, something Eli has completely avoided up until now, his life starts to change.
I love the opening lines of the book, they really set the scene and evoke the atmosphere of the dark fantasy to come….
The allure of the night is its ability to pull you into its depths, to keep you hidden in its crevices. The darkness wraps around you. Nothing reaches you there.
And you reach nothing. Have you ever wanted to melt into the darkness? Dissolve into the shadows?
You can lose yourself in the black emptiness. But while you may lose yourself, the night always knows where you are.
When Eli gets an early morning visit from his friend, Luc, to attend a meeting of The Nahi Council he knows it can’t be good news. The current members of the council are the latest in a long line who are responsible for governing those Timucuans with exceptional and individual powers. Becoming close to Amanda has made Eli reassess his desire for seclusion and when he learns his father has escaped from a secure mental facility he has no alternative, lives depend on him and so his choice is made. He will face up to his legacy and fight, even though he’d be quite happy to forget who and what he is and live a normal life. Eli is as well aware of the impossibility of that dream as he is of his father’s crimes and abuse of his abilities, and knows it is essential he’s caught as soon as possible.
With distinctive, well drawn and engaging characters, excellent writing and an absorbing and tense narrative I thoroughly enjoyed this story. And it’s the first of a series! Eli makes a wonderful and complex main protagonist, struggling with the ramifications of his power and the options imposed upon him because of it. His feelings for Amanda are a new experience and the chemistry between them is depicted convincingly.
The distressing secondary storyline of Amanda and her father trying to come to terms and cope with her mother’s Alzheimer’s is told in an authentic, sympathetic and very moving way, showing the effects it has, not only on the carers but also the person affected by the disease.
A story with underlying truth is aways appreciated and in this case it’s the Timucua people. Darcia Helle has included a very interesting summarised history of the Timucuans at the end of the book. As stated, artistic license has been taken with the attributed powers but this is fantasy and as such, credible in the context of the story.
I will definitely be reading more of this author’s work and look forward to book two in the series.
This book was reviewed for Rosie Amber’s book review team. My thanks to Darcia Helle for a copy of the book. This doesn’t affect my opinion or the content of this review.
About the author
Words are my addiction. I love to read; fiction, nonfiction, cereal boxes, ingredient labels. If it has words, I’ll read it.
I am originally from Massachusetts and now live in the Tampa Bay area of Florida. I’m married, with 2 sons, a beautiful new granddaughter, and 5 very spoiled animals.