4 out of 5 stars
"I am cruel and I am selfish, but this need I have inside me, this need for you and no other, is stronger than anything else I've ever encountered."
~Reyes aka Pain
The Darkest Pleasure, book 3 in the Lords of the Underworld series, is my absolute favorite so far. While adding merit to the idea of 'a whole lot of pleasure in a little bit of Pain', Reyes really took center stage in this installment. What was pleasantly surprising, he shared it. Not with another Lord but with our heroine, Danika. That in itself was refreshing for me due to being lukewarm at best when it comes to Anya. Danika is a kick ass heroine who still maintains her softness and vulnerability. Do not doubt her because of her size, she backs down from no one, good thing when having to go nose to nose with Pain eh? Quite the popular girl, everyone seems to want a piece of her, but for very different reasons. Her role in the bigger scheme of things was surprising, tricky and nicely done.
Truly a tortured man, Reyes faces many hard choices. His very existence is a struggle between himself and his demon and now that he's so drawn to this beautiful girl, the girl running for her life because his best friends has been ordered to..well, let's just say Reyes gets pushed to the brink. He's a true alpha with a heart of gold. He's ruthless and dangerous. His self loathing due to his need to self mutilate is palpable. At the same time, this beast of a man will touch your heart with his blushes and open willingness to say 'I love you' whether it be lover or friend.
The Darkest Pleasure gives the reader a better understanding of who is playing puppet master and how all of these forces link together. And then there's Paris. Damn him. Even though I haven't gotten to his book yet, he still draws me in, he too wants a 'mine'. The Lords continue their mission to find the missing pieces both as a whole to ensure their survival and the missing pieces within the man himself.
Why not 5 stars? The number of characters can still be a bit much at times, or keeping the matching demons straight I should say. I ended up just writing notes to have on hand. lol I love paranormal books, obviously, and the creatures within them. That being said, I do have my limits. Vamps, angels, demons...yes, yes and yes. Gargoyles, mer-people, anything with pointy ears, trolls and in this case a creepy little minion with what appears to have quite the lisp. Just...no. Then there was the case of Danika being on the run. She changed her appearance but still goes by Danika? Hmm...alrighty. Lastly, and this is tricky (not wanting to spoil) let's just say there is a scene where a character is being pulled from point A to point B and is literally just up up he goes, through the ceiling, a roof, clouds...didn't I take my 5 year old to a similar movie? Anywho, that scene didn't work for me.
Overall, fast pace, steamy hot read with a strong male lead to ultimately, die for. ;-)