Thursday, August 12, 2010

THE DARKEST HOUR, coming soon from Maya Banks

I consider myself extremely fortunate to have won a copy of an ARC of THE DARKEST HOUR from Maya Banks in a Twitter contest. I'm not ashamed to admit that I squealed a little - okay, it was quite loudly - when I saw that I was the winner. This book is, in my opinion, the very best work from Maya Banks to date. I've read all of her "Sweet" series and most of the "Colter" series and despite being them a little more gritty and raw than books I typically choose, I enjoyed them very much. I've also read her "Kings of the Boardroom" Desires and especially adored those characters. THE DARKEST HOUR is a bit of a mix of her previous works, the edginess is there and the Alpha males are there in a very big way, but there's the sweetness and the rich emotions of the Desires too.

About the book:
It’s been one year since ex-Navy SEAL Ethan Kelly last saw his wife Rachel alive. Overwhelmed by grief and guilt over his failures as a husband, Ethan shuts himself off from everything and everyone.
His brothers have tried to bring Ethan into the KGI fold, tried to break through the barriers he's built around himself, but Ethan refuses to respond… until he receives anonymous information claiming Rachel is alive.
To save her, Ethan will have to dodge bullets, cross a jungle, and risk falling captive to a deadly drug cartel that threatens his own demise. And even if he succeeds, he’ll have to force Rachel to recover memories she can’t and doesn’t want to relive—the minute by minute terror of her darkest hour—for their love, and their lives, may depend on it.

You'll find a great excerpt here - take a minute and check it out - once you've done that, I know you'll want to go to Amazon and order your own copy. Trust me on this, you want it!

My review:
It's been a year since Ethan Kelly's wife, Rachel, was killed in a plane crash while on a humanitarian mission in the jungles of Colombia. His devastation is relentless and controls every aspect of his life, every day of his life. A year to the day after Rachel's death, Ethan receives a priority package with GPS coordinates and photos that suggest Rachel is alive. He convinces his brothers, whose business is Kelly Group International (KGI), specializing in kidnap and hostage recoveries, to help him in rescuing Rachel. His brothers are doubtful that the female in the grainy photos is Rachel but realize that whether it's Rachel or not, the person is a victim and is being held against her will. Upon arrival at the specified location, they're met with intense resistance and eventually remove Rachel. Sadly, she's suffering a partial amnesia and doesn't fully recognize, or trust, some of the Kelly brothers. The conditions in which Rachel has been held, and the changes in her because of the harshness, are heartbreakingly difficult for Ethan and his brothers. She definitely isn't the same woman they knew and it pains them greatly to know the trauma she's suffered for an entire year without them knowing.
In a way, Rachel's amnesia and the drugs that her captors have been pumping into her, are a bit of a blessing as far as masking the passage of time. In every other way, it's a sad injustice. She's grateful to have been rescued, but now has to deal with the stark realities of an addiction she had no control over as well as a family that for the most part she doesn't remember. The Kellys quickly realize that repeated accidents now befalling Rachel aren't accidents at all and someone is out to get her. Ethan is struggling as much as Rachel, knowing that when her memory fully returns she'll remember secrets that he hasn't been strong enough to reveal. Secrets that just might tear them apart forever.
THE DARKEST HOUR is intriguing and suspenseful and Maya Banks, in writing Rachel's drug addiction, takes her heroine where I personally believe few authors would dare. Descriptions of jungle conditions and dangers, the desperations of Rachel's withdrawal, and Ethan's pain and confusion over her psychological state, become almost tangible. I found myself repeatedly experiencing those little tugs in my chest at the multitude of emotions that the characters experienced - a sure sign of a well-written love story. A side story involving Ethan's parents adds circumstances that serve well in exposing the dynamics of this fascinating family. I give THE DARKEST HOUR my strongest recommendation and can't wait for the December release of NO PLACE TO RUN, followed by HIDDEN AWAY in March, 2011. Romantic suspense fans do not want to miss the Kelly brothers! And don't forget the upcoming FOUR PLAY a two-author anthology with Shayla Black.
I'm going to celebrate the release of THE DARKEST HOUR with a Maya Banks giveaway. No, I'm not giving Maya herself away, but I have six books up for grabs - three books in the "Sweet" series together with the three in the Desire series. Some of these are autographed and some aren't. The reason I'm willing to let them go? I have all of these books on my Kindle now and am trying to clear out some of the print books that I have on Kindle, so it's a big win for a lucky reader here! Interested? Sure you are! Leave a comment saying so, and if you let us know your favorite book by Maya Banks, even better! No worries if you haven't read her work yet, you can admit that too! I'll allow plenty of time for entries and will draw a winning name on Thursday, August 19.
Please remember to read the disclaimer on the left - if the winner doesn't reply within the time specified when announced, another winner will be drawn. I do not track winners down.
Thanks for taking the time to check this one out!


Scorpio M. said...

I confess, I have not yet read a Maya Banks book but I have certainly heard of her work and her strong fan base. The "Sweet" series had caught my attention over the past year & Maya's been on my try list ever since.

Thank you for such a generous giveaway. The Kindle is paying it forward. =)

jenma76 at hotmail dot com

Judy F said...

Great review. You always do rock them.

I am not sure if I have read her before or not. This one sounds interesting

Laurie said...

I've recently read two of her Desire romances:
The Tycoon's Rebel Bride- Jesse & Bella's story and The Tycoon's Secret Affair- Piers & Jewel's story. I enjoyed both of them!

I would love to read to experience the Sweet series! Security company, Houston, Texas... sounds like a steamy setup for adventure and excitement!!

I 'm really behind on Maya Bank's books. I'll have to look for her Colter's series and her latest The Darkest Hour!

Sarah said...

Great review! This book sounds really different from most of what I've read by her. I love her Sweet series! Don't ask me to choose a favorite.

Jennifer Mathis said...

i haven't read any of Maya's books but I'd be happy to try them :)

heidi330 said...

I have not read any of Maya's books but I would love to soon. please add me to the contest..


Anonymous said...

i realy loved sweet persuation
thanks for the great giveaway
have a good weekend


Jane said...

I'm looking forward to "The Darkest Hour." My favorite book by Maya is "Undenied."

Estella said...

I love Maya's books!
My favorite is Colter's Woman.

s7anna said...

I love Maya Banks - I'm a HUGE fan of her Colters series...can't wait for the next book in this scintillating series.


tetewa said...

These both would be new series for me, they sound good!

Stacy S said...

I've never read her before. They do sound good.

Jodi said...

I have read one of her books Seducing Simon. It was great and have more on my wish list!

Jodi said...

I have read one of her books Seducing Simon. It was great and have more on my wish list!

mariska said...

I haven't read any of Maya's books. 've Been trying to win them on other blogs but still no luck for me so far.

So please enter me in :)