Read Darkness Awakened by Stephanie Rowe Online

darkness-awakened

Alternative Cover Edition of ISBN 9780985179229 The Calydons are a race of ancient immortals cursed with a dark side. Each Calydon is destined to meet his soul mate, to be so drawn to her that he is unable to resist bonding with her through the rituals of his race......but their destiny is to destroy each other and all they care about the moment their bond is complete.QuinAlternative Cover Edition of ISBN 9780985179229 The Calydons are a race of ancient immortals cursed with a dark side. Each Calydon is destined to meet his soul mate, to be so drawn to her that he is unable to resist bonding with her through the rituals of his race......but their destiny is to destroy each other and all they care about the moment their bond is complete.Quinn Masters will stop at nothing to rescue his rogue teammate. To save his blood brother and ensure his brand of justice triumphs, Quinn will break every rule of his kind and partner with the sensuous, courageous woman destined to be his ultimate destruction.Haunted by a brutal past, Illusionist Grace Matthews will risk everything to save her kidnapped sister, including putting her life in the sinfully capable hands of an immortal warrior whose ravaging kisses and intense passion propel her ruthlessly toward a fateful destiny she can't afford to believe in....

Title : Darkness Awakened
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 25905199
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 449 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Darkness Awakened Reviews

  • Riverina Romantics
    2019-03-20 21:48

    This was my first Stephanie Rowe read and I was damn impressed. Stephanie is a very talented lady. Darkness Awakened is the first story in the Order of the Blade: Primal Heat Trilogy and it is the perfect start to what I know will be a truly captivating series. The Calydon warriors are a unique band of brothers. A great mix of strength, brutality, loyalty and uber sexiness and I was disappointed to read that this series was only going to be a Trilogy. I am salivating, eager to learn about all the warriors that Stephanie took the time to weave into the first story and I know three books won’t be enough to sate my hunger. Darkness Awakened is the story of Quinn Masters, a Calydon Warrior set on protecting his race by destroying rogue teammates....until one of his blood brothers falls, then he will stop at nothing to save him. Grace Matthews is an Illusionist, a woman shunned and hunted because of her powers and the kicker is - she doesn’t know how to control them. When Grace’s sister goes missing and starts killing off Calydon Warriors, Grace has no other choice than to go to Quinn – a complete stranger – for help. The part I loved most about this story was the immediate connection between the two. From miles away Quinn can smell the scent of his sheva the one woman he is destined to be with but also the one destined to destroy him. From their first moments together the heat is set to a slow simmer and doesn’t stop. They are drawn to each other, constantly desiring an intimacy that can never last due to the history of his race. Everything about this world was fantastic, each twist and turn thoroughly thought out. From the tattooed weapons the Calydon’s have etched into their skin (that become real when needed), to the elements of Grace’s abilities, to the history of the people. It was a fresh approach to the paranormal genre, one that left me guessing with its unpredictability. The only reason it didn’t make a full fledged 5 star rating was probably a side effect to my self diagnosed ADD. At times I felt the story was a little too in depth and my attention span started to wane. I like my stories sharp and snappy and although this definitely was, I also feel that there was a bit of information that could have been edited out.All in all I would definitely recommend this to paranormal romance fans. It has all the aspects of a great story - Hot, hunky, alpha warriors, heart palpitating romance, continuous action and a set of side characters that are just as exciting and entertaining as the main protagonists. ****Additional note - I just received an email from the author 'you will be happy to know that the Order of the Blade is launching with the Primal Heat Trilogy, but there will be more books in the series afterwards, but each will be a standalone. The trilogy was just a special deal to launch the series!'WOOT WOOT. Very happy to hear it!!****

  • Brittany
    2019-03-25 22:49

    Please tell me women today do not succumb to such half-assed attempts of "romance". Heck, it may just be me, but even with pre-destined mate curses,"you can ride me all night long" after just meeting does not insta-love make. Not to mention the ever annoying continued reference of "woman" to the female protag by big macho male mate. There are better ways to have the male characters come across as alpha males than having them recite cheesy pick up lines and refer to his "love interest" as woman. Hear Me Roar....no thanks caveman, I'll pass on that ride. I was initially intrigued by the seemingly different story line, but that quickly faded with the introduction of the "love"..can you call it love if all the man says is "I want to have sex with you because of a sheva curse", what am I talking about, of course I would fall in love with him, sex (even awkward sex)=love...no.

  • Sh3lly ☽ Guardian of Beautiful Squids and Lonely Moons ☽
    2019-03-03 00:45

    Free on Amazon: 18 DEC 2015.Apparently, I purchased this in 2012. Huh. Guess I should try to read it sometime. It looks yummy, but you never know with these things.

  • Stephanie Matarazzo
    2019-03-20 23:38

    Okay so here's the deal with this book. This is one of those books where I gave it one rating, but was battling to give it another... higher, lower, I haven't decided.So the world that Rowe created is very unique. I like the fact that it's not vampires or werewolves or anything that I've read before. It's a new type of fantasy novel that's original and interesting.Here's where I start having problems with it.The main characters, Quinn and Grace, start off very strong. I mean Quinn is ruthless and molded to fit the warrior lifestyle he has lived for centuries. Grace is hurting, and has hard a hard life, yet she's still strong and independent and determined. Basically, these beginning descriptions of the characters lured me in, because God knows I need some strong characters.And then they meet. And it ends.Throughout the book they continue to have strong, determined characteristics, but it seems to come at random points. Because of some century-old curse, now they depend on each other. like, literally. They have to be together or else they get desperate, but then if they do, they die. That made me recoil from the book a bit, but it was interesting enough that i kept reading. I would have liked it more if yes there is this curse, yes sometimes it takes over them. But these are characters that started off so strong, especially Quinn who has - hello! - lived with the rooted rules for centuries! But nothing, they accepted let it rule them so quickly. If this curse was so strong that it turned strong characters into mush, then I would have liked for the author to give something else to it for me to accept these characters turning into mush so suddenly.Another thing, Quinn is described by Grace as basically a Greek God reincarnated, but I don't know why the way the author described his sex-appeal just never reached to me. i couldn't imagine his sexiness, nor could I gush about it. Don't ask me why, I just wasn't having it.Other than that, I mean there were some stuff here and there that annoyed me - like the sex driven world, but not enough to base my criticism on. Actually, I lied. there was something about the ending I did't like, but I won't say it so no body gets the book ruined.Honestly, some of the secondary character's stories were far more interesting to me than what we were following.Unfortunately for me, I'm stubbornly curious. So I will read the second one - hence the two start rating - to find out how the problem is solved and the fate of my favorite secondary characters. Will I be annoyed as I'm reading it? Probably. But, oh well.If you like the true-love, passion, lust and sexiness thing though, I'm sure you'll like it. I just wasn't sold.And... that's all I could think of now t say.

  • Iva
    2019-03-10 21:39

    Wow, I'm totally impressed! Those who like BDB types of paranormal romance will absolutely love this. Quinn is just... God, have mercy! Alpha through and through, smart with just the right amount of humor. Maybe a little too emotional and mushy, but I didn't mind it a lot, it was kinda swoon-worthy. And Grace was pretty badass, not a weakling, thank God. The mythology is a little confusing, but original enough. Can't wait for Ana and Elijah's book!

  • Literati Literature Lovers
    2019-03-12 03:47

    No No No Rowe isn't a bad writer, but her world building is muddled. Let me lay it out in easy steps. There is a race called Calydon, which includes a guardian warrior class, Order of the Blade. When a Calydon finds his soulmate/sheva. Instead of everything being happy happy joy joy, disaster strikes as in the male goes insane, after a five step bonding. Therefore the Order of the Blade either preemptively kills the woman sheva or if the bonding is complete they kill the male. So Calydon's do reproduce but just not with their shevas. So we have a race of people who are doomed because of a love curse. So this opens up a lot of problems for me as the reader, especially since this killing for the good of the world has been going on for hundreds of years. WTH!! This Order of the Blade has been killing innocent woman to protect the world because the dude will go insane, so to prevent the insanity they kill the woman. Why not kill the dude! Why does the woman have to be the one killed. Because the males are so much more important. I call bullshit! I think I would have enjoyed this book, if the curse would have been something new and the hero in Quinn hadn't been merrily killing lovers up until he finds his sheva. But killing them with a heavy heart. Geez. It is an interesting world Rowe has built, but the execution of her soulmate twist just left a bad taste in my mouth. The insane rogues could not have been imprisoned. The woman could not have been sequestered away from the males that go insane, if the bonding is complete? This going on for hundreds of years is the insane part. Too many what ifs for me.

  • Elisaveta Tsekova
    2019-03-11 02:54

    DNF and won't come back....it wasn't for me

  • April ♥
    2019-02-27 02:04

    This series has a similar feel as the Black Dagger Brotherhood. A group of immortal warriors who stand between innocents and the evil that hunts them. The twist to this series is that when a warrior meets his soulmate, she is destined to destroy him. Will Quinn and Grace be able to fight destiny, or will they fall victim to the curse?

  • Jennifer
    2019-03-09 20:47

    This would have been much better had there been a prologue that explained some aspects of this world in which this story takes place. As it was, however, it was sort of silly. I spent a lot of time giggling (I know...who is this person?) since the story either made no sense, was OTT trying to be something interesting, or was just weird. The fatalistic romance element was also a little off putting. How in the world could the h forget that the H's buddies were going to kill her for bonding with the H? Oh, I know. All she had to do was think about how hot he made her and then all those sane thoughts would go flying out the window. Honestly, the MCs were being pursued by an unknown enemy and the h would think about how hot and manly the H was. Ugh.Update: I'm glad I finished this so I wouldn't be left wondering how the story ended. However, it was weird, not well developed, and too OTT with lust and such that I won't be back for more. I have a feeling the rest of this series will be more of the same, so this is where I'm checking out.

  • Katie Michaels
    2019-02-26 00:39

    Ancient warriors. A band of brothers. They must protect the earth from those of their kind who go rogue. Each has a soulmate to complete him drive him stark raving mad. Wait. What? This series takes the standard idea of the genre –that a mate is something wonderful– and turns it completely on its ear. Here, a mate is something to be avoided at all costs. Because no mated couple has ever survived the curse of their kind.Quinn is determined never to find his sheva, the other half of his soul. His work for the Order of the Blade is too important. But fate has other plans for him. Grace Matthews shows up on his doorstep, just as he is dealing with a major calamity. She is an Illusionist; she can craft illusions so real and horrifying, they can actually kill those around her. Her sister is missing and she knows the famed, powerful Quinn is the only one who can help find her.Quinn is already on a hunt of his own, for his missing best friend Elijah. The other warrior has killed several young recruits. But it makes no sense. He knows Elijah is honorable. The search should be his only priority, but once he meets Grace, he can’t turn her away. He knows she is his sheva, but his logic can’t overrule his lust and emotions. The two end up pairing up to search for both missing parties and they quickly find their missions are one in the same.I enjoyed the story. I like that Stephanie Rowe is doing something different with fated mates. The world-building is well done for the most part and easy to understand. (The only thing I wasn’t clear about was how much the human population knew about the supernatural.) Rowe does a good job establishing the members of the Order, giving them unique personalities and piquing my interest in getting to know them better.The sexual tension is good between Quinn and Grace. These two are on fire for each other, but I like that it effects them equally and there is a balance of power between them in that sense. I like that Grace is just as strong and deadly as Quinn in her own way. And by the time these two developed their bond, I was rooting for them to beat their impossible odds.The love does develop kind of fast, but I guess when you can see inside someone, it helps to get to know them better pretty quickly. I thought that the HEA was a little convenient, considering these two did something no one in the race has done for hundreds of years, because … they really wanted to break the curse? Because they were more determined than all the couples before them? Eh. I also felt like the villain was kind of one dimensional. I get why he was doing the things he did, but it was pretty superficial. I hope Rowe fleshes out the Big Bad arc a bit more in future books.Overall, though, I liked it, especially for a first installment in a series. I am optimistic that as the series continues, some of my issues will be addressed. I’ll keep you posted.Rating: B/B-

  • Melinda
    2019-03-13 23:39

    This book is a guilty pleasure - one you read late at night when the family is asleep, or if you're single, after work on the couch with a latte in your pajamas with some decadent cookies. This book is the first one in the series - it is adventurous, romantic, HOT, steamy and full of the type of sex that us girl's only dream about. The author got that part spot on - and everything else too by the way. This is definitely a book for the lady of the house, unless you like your battle scenes interrupted by romantic yet X-rated interludes. If you're that type of guy, then welcome on board. We are egalitarian thinkers after all.THE PLOT: The Brothers of the Order of the Blade are Immortal Calydan warriors who have been around for centuries. These are tall, big, buff, handsome dudes with patterns on their arms that they earn through a dream battle in their teens, The patterns are all unique and correspond to weapons, which appear out of their arms like magic. Quinn, one of the Order, has just had a trauma in the woods by his house. Many were killed- their weapons stolen. He must find out what is going on. Heading back to his house stealthily, he sees a woman on the porch. Instantly, he is drawn to her. He steps out of the trees and walks straight up to the porch. She is drenched and shivering from cold, but beautiful, with luminous grey eyes. He tells her she might as well come in and dry off and warm up. When she does, she tells him a story that changes everything. She is Grace Masters- an illusionist. Her sister Ana has been kidnapped by evil people who are using Ana's illusions to kill Calydan warriors. Grace needs to rescue Ana, who used to do only wonderful illusions like bunnies and flowers and beautiful things. Now she must be terrified because her illusions are dark and scary. She wants Quinn's help because there are other Calydan's involved and she can't best them. This is when things get exciting - all Quinn can think of is Grace. He suspects the strongly magnetic attraction he feels means that she is his Sheva - his soulmate. For a Calydan that means death for one or both of them, but he will fight it with all of his will. He tells Grace that he will help her - and the book is about rescuing Ana. There is mind control, illusions of fire, collapsing tunnels, raining blood, best friend's killed, kidnapping, an evil plot to free the most evil Calydan, acceptance, intelligence retrieved, leaders killed, sons appearing, huge battles,a knife with a message, one bad guy down and so much more. This plot morphed from just saving Ana, to saving Ana plus saving the world. It has enough twists and turns turns that it would make a dervish dizzy. Excellent job Ms. Rowe!CHARACTERIZATION : The characters in this book are complex and deep, not what you'd expect from paranormal romance on average, but there's nothing average about this book, or the one that comes after it. The word superb comes to mind. Quinn is not your standard musclehead. - without a brain. He has lived five centuries and it shows. He's intelligent, quick witted, anticipates enemy action based on experience and is well read. What more could a girl ask for? He's also charming, humorous and kind to his Sheva as well as thoroughly romantic. Can I have my fan, please? Is it getting stuffy in here? Then there's Grace, older sister to Ana, after their parents died when they were kids, Grace had to raise her and hide as well, because people shoot illusionists on sight. This made Grace tough but also vulnerable, all she ever wanted was to have her family back. She almost did, then it was gone, breaking her down further. Now she has Quinn and the Sheva bond, but that could go so wrong. She could die, or she could lose Quinn, which would mean no rescue for Ana and she could die too, leaving her alone and completely broken. I love these characters. They are fully fleshed out and unique. As real as a fictional character can be without stepping off the page. Ms. Rowe what an artist you are with your characters. Like a painter with many fine brushes and a palette full of colors, you fill in each detail independently. Using each unique color and brush in combination to create a character out of thin. Where once there was nothing, now a wonderful character stands in all it's glory with attributes, quirks, foibles, feelings and a full backstory that make it as human and three dimensional as possible.THE PACING: This story doesn't grab you, it grips your whole body, like a tractor beam from a spaceship. It doesn't let you go until you're at the end - not for a coffee break, not to fix dinner, not even to use the restroom. So, be prepared ahead of time. Think of it like going on a long trip in the car. You always go to the restroom before you leave. Don't take too many liquids with you. Have something to snack on. Make sure you have a big block of time to finish your trip. Also make sure you'll have no interruptions, like dinner, the kids, the husband, the dog, or whatever. Now you can sit back and let the tractor beam pull you in. Hold on, it's one helluva ride you're going on. After the breathless ending, the tractor beam will bring you back home safely. A little shaken up and definitely breathless but safe. It's like a sexy E-ticket ride. The pacing is swift; never slowing, always moving at the speed of sound as you race through the pages. You may slow down for the romantic parts by choice, but that's always your option. Otherwise, you'll find the tractor beam will grip you, you'll be fully immersed in the story and then Poof! Just like that, you'll be on your way home. Great books have a way of doing that.THE ENDING: You know there will be a final showdown between Grace and the Calydan warriors versus the Bad Guys and Ana. Both have illusions and both have Calydans but the Bad Guys are truly evil, which means that they will do the unthinkable and stop at nothing to win. I can say that the ending came as a surprise to me. The battle seesaws back and forth between the two sides. Will Grace and her Calydan's prevail? Will Ana be rescued or die in her attempt to get away? Will the Bad Guys kidnap Grace too? Will Quinn go rogue because the Bad Guys have Grace, so his brothers have to kill him? Find out the answers to all these questions and more. Read the book. The ending is classic.THE UPSHOT : I would recommend this book to all ladies at or over the age of 18. And to you guys out there who like classic battles with smart warriors and intelligent plots - try this out. A few X-rated interludes won't kill you, you may even find you like them and want more. I promise I won't tell. The next book in the series is Darkness Seduced and it's just as good, if not better. So buy them and read them. You won't be sorry. Just make sure everyone is asleep, or not at home and remember to prepare before you open the cover and you are lost in the world of Stephanie Rowe. It's sheer pleasure to read a book like this. Ms. Rowe, a personal thank you for the experience that you've given me. I'm putting this review on my Blog ( http://www.mlbiblio.blogspot.com) along with the one on Darkness Seduced which I should finish soon. Again - thank you!

  • Jen
    2019-02-24 23:51

    Excellent paranormal romance and I am looking forward to the next installment in the series! It is a different concept on finding a soul mate, these men think it is a bad thing to find their "Sheva", they fight developing a bond with their Sheva thinking it makes them turn "Rogue". There a five steps they have to do to complete the bond, so they fight doin them! This is a unique concept and it is nice to have something original to read .

  • Janet Juengling-Snell
    2019-03-05 01:06

    This one of the best books I've read this year. To say that I totally fell in lover with Quinn Masters and Grace Matthews would be a huge understatement. This book has strong characters on an exciting journey filled with fast past action, sexual tension and wonderful witty tongue-in-cheek dialogue. It's been awhile since a book has been able to keep me so captivated, I couldnt put it down!!

  • Janice
    2019-02-24 00:41

    I think this has just become my new favourite series and I've only read the first one! Amazing story absolutely loved it, Quinn Masters is hot... The first book was even free on iBooks which was a bonus! Can't wait to read the next one literally about to start it now!

  • Vickie Raynor
    2019-03-03 01:44

    The details in all tgat makes up the Calydon is astounding. The book had a flow to it that was unstoppable because of all the action at every turn. The fight scenes are unmatched! This is a standalone, but I do suggest reading the first book for a more detailed history. Great read. Book gifted to me.

  • Tegan Genone darkhaven
    2019-02-22 22:39

    Well first I'm glad that the book cover was changed . It sucked that the same cover was on four other authors books. This book was a really great read. The warriors are sworn to find their mates and kill them. It's really a smart series I just ordered the 2 new book can't wait.

  • Louise
    2019-03-13 21:48

    Great start to a PNR series. I love Elijah. I hope he comes back :-)

  • Sandra McKee
    2019-02-28 02:52

    I loved this story and can't wait to read the next one! This story by itself was compelling and kept me on the edge of my seat, even staying up late just to see what would happen. There are a lot of secondary characters and I did get a little confused when the warriors were all introduced because most of them came out at the same time with no real time to get to know them, but it was enough of a build up that I want to read about all of them. You could stop reading after this one story, it had its happy ending for this particular couple, however the story on a whole is left very much up in the air. I'm intrigued, and involved enough in the background that was set up that I can't wait to see what happens.

  • Helen Atherton
    2019-03-08 21:40

    Oooh this was a yummy book to read to get back into it after a break. Easy to read and loved the relationship building between them. Can't wait to read next one.

  • Cindy ~ SnS Reviews
    2019-03-24 21:42

    I am not an easy sell on paranormals and was leery to read this. But holy moly this was a great read. Stephanie Rowe has created a wonderful new series. Two thousand years ago Ezekiel and his twin brother Caleb lived with an abusive father. The King of the land was no better killing men and women just for the fun of it. Ezekiel fell in love with a girl who the King kidnapped. When Ezekiel couldn’t get to her at the King's castle it sent him over the edge. Ezekiel knew of a stream that would create mythical warriors. Ezekiel and Caleb drank from the steam and then went and defeated the King. But Evangeline died in Ezekiel arms. This caused Ezekiel to go mad and kill everyone in the kingdom including women and children. From this Ezekiel created a band of warriors called The Order that was to rid the world of evil. But Ezekiel in his madness became paranoid- began seeing evil in everything. Caleb decided his brother needed to be stopped and set out with his wife who he hoped would keep him from going rogue and 20 men to drink from the stream to create an army to defeat Ezekiel. Caleb and his army did defeat Ezekiel but at the expense of Caleb's wife. Caleb managed to imprison Ezekiel in a magical prison but he went crazy over the loss of his wife and his men had to kill him. Thus the legacy was born. The Calydon warriors’ purpose was the keep the world safe from evil and when needed to kill a Calydon warrior and/or his sheva (mate) when the Calydon warrior went rogue/mad after finding her. Dante has been the leader of the Order for 700 years but with his death Quinn Masters is next in line. After a disastrous mission that left all of his young Calydon warriors in training dead and it looking like his best friend Elijah did it, Quinn knows he must figure out what is going on. After waking up from almost dying he heads to his cabin where Grace Matthews is waiting and he knows right away she is his sheva. Grace Matthews is an illusionist. One who can call upon images to make those around her believe what she is projecting. Her sister is also one and has been kidnapped and Grace has come to Quinn for his help in finding her. They both realize there is a connection between them but Grace refuses to believe that love can make a person go mad to a point of no return. All she wants is to get her sister back. As the story progresses we find out how and why Dante and Elijah died and that the walls that are keeping Ezekiel in are crumbling and he seems to be controlling people on the outside. One of the men he is controlling is the one that took Grace's sister Ana. They also come across Dante's son Drew who they know they need to protect at all cost. This was a great start to a new series. I am already all wrapped up in this world and can’t wait until Gideon and Lily's story which is next. I am hoping that Ana's story is the 3rd book.

  • Heather
    2019-03-25 05:03

    I must say I never thought I would finish reading this book. It also took me a long time I just could not get into it. Finally around 40% it started picking up. So I am going to try to read the next book

  • Veronica of V's Reads
    2019-03-09 22:56

    This feature is a RURAL fantasy. Ha! Coined a new subgenre right 'ere! It’s like an urban fantasy, but the setting is rural—so, yeah…Anyhoo, Stephanie Rowe's DARKNESS AWAKENED is not a vamp tale. It’s not an angel tale, either. It is a romantic adventure with paranormal elements, however, and that caught my eye.Here’s what happens:Quinn Masters isn’t just a Calydon warrior—he’s a member of the Order of the Blade—an elite fighting unit charged with keeping the peace between Calydonians and hiding their existence from the human population. Order members are virtually immortal—Quinn is over 500 years old—but they are forbidden to take mates. See, for Order members, mating women is to invite madness. Never a good idea to have lunatic assassins on the loose, methinks. While on a training mission in the untamed Oregon forests, Quinn’s team of new recruits is slain by one of his own—Elijah, a trusted mentor and friend.When he recovers from his injuries, Quinn discovers Grace Matthews waiting on his doorstep. Grace knows revealing her presence is tantamount to a death sentence—Illusionists like herself have been hunted to near extinction—but she needs Quinn’s help to rescue her sister Ava from a malevolent being—the same one who turned Elijah on his fellow Calydonians. Quinn doesn’t realize Grace’s Illusionist powers at first, but he certainly apprehends her feminine powers—the attraction between them has it’s own GPS signal for goodness sake!—so he’s anxious to send Grace on her merry way.Of course, when Quinn’s home is attacked with them trapped inside, he and Grace become unlikely partners in order to escape. And, it turns out, Grace is able to track Ava’s Illusions so she has value in finding Elijah before he goes psycho yet again.On the quest for Elijah and Ava, the attraction between Grace and Quinn blossoms. So much so that the Order is ready to terminate Grace to save Quinn from mating madness. Good thing she can conjure Illusions to protect herself! The plot is active and the voice is playful. It’s not too hot and spicy, but it’s clearly got strong romantic elements. I loved the banter between Quinn and Grace. This is the first in a series and we get a good look at several Order members upon which the continuing plot rests.

  • Janice Leung
    2019-03-25 21:41

    It's funny what this book did to me. I get so many emotions from the book that I am not even sure if I am alive after finishing the whole thing. Things I like about this story:1. The concept of mates or in this story Sheva is a bit different from most paranormal series. While most paranormal genre books generally accept the idea of a mate for the male protagonist, this book doesn't. I'm not talking about the sort of male is afraid of hurting the female and hence stay away from her. I'm talking about the idea is not welcomed at all. Finding your Sheva basically means death for both persons of interest. When the stages of the mating is completed, the male tends to turn rouge and starts a killing spree. In order to stop that from happening, the members of the order will kill the Sheva. Yeah, pretty weird.2. The plot is fast-paced, meaning I don't have to drag myself into reading the story and then realising it's way too slow for me so it's going to my on-hold shelf. There's a lot of action going on and some pretty tense moments. 3. Hunky men. Hunky hunky men. There's just one thing I don't really like which is the main female characterGrace . She's not a damsel in distress (thank god) but she seems to be a bit too whiny for me. She's always in denial and I'm not sure I like that. Darkness Awakened is a good read and I'm looking forward to reading the story of Gideon and Lily, as well as Elijah (view spoiler)[ Yeah, in this book he's supposed to be dead but pretty sure he survived or resurrected somehow since the third book is about him.(hide spoiler)] and Ana. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>

  • Josephine
    2019-03-16 00:47

    I always have issue with predestinated mates. It's just goes against my idea of free will. So maybe I was predisposed to be unable to tolerate the premise of the world.I agree with other reviewers that characters began strong, so I was lured into reading further. They had a rich back story. However, I just couldn't get past a few aspects.First, for me, Rowe shouldn't write intimate scenes. I found them tedious and completely up romantic. They neither enhanced my reading experience nor felt realistic.Second, how the couple genuinely believes they can prevent the catastrophic insanity which always affects the mated male, is NEVER satisfactorily explained. If the difference between them and thousands of years of the rest of the race was even explored, I must have completely failed to understand the enormity of the difference. The only thing I could understand was she saved a group of guys, not just her mate. Is that it?!? I don't know, but because I feel no deep attachment, I find I don't much care.Finally, I felt like I sat in a lecture explaining this similar yet different world. Rather than my nose burning with the ash of stale cigarettes and the vomit-inducing intoxicating stench of a poorly maintained distillery, as the characters walked into the bar. I watched it from the safety of my clean seat munching buttered popcorn and sipping an oversized drink. Rather than falling into a world and stumbling over its differences, some poorly-bathed know-it-all stood and made me feel less-than observant as they lectured me on the "everyone knows" specifics of the characters world.I feel badly, because I had high hopes. Best of luck to the author. She has an audience, just not me.

  • Jen
    2019-03-17 05:08

    Ok so I'm really not one to leave reviews but omg this book was frickn amazing.My stomach was tied in knots between the action and sexual tension between Quinn and Grace. For one the whole calydon clan was fascinating with their weapons being able to be called to them thru their skin. The author showed a great deal of imagination with these warriors,sworn to live to die a horrible death either by friend or lover smh..... I was sucked in at the insert!! Being a Calydon warrior is difficult enough being sworn to protect innocents from their fellow calydon warriors that have gone rougue(lost their minds)they have to live alone and celibate in fear of meeting their shevas/soulmates and tumbling down in a life of pain destruction and death. What more could you want in a book.The sensual tension is crazy and the sex scenes are HOTT!!! the passion and heat that was put into the scenes were amazing Quinn and Graces need for eachother thru the Sheva bond made me sniggle with my husband lol. I am adding Stephanie Rowe to my favorite authors list!

  • Carol
    2019-03-10 01:50

    I only recently discovered Stephanie Rowe's books, and I have to admit that I'm hooked. Despite Paranormal Romance being my favourite genre, I actually discovered her cowboy books first, so I was pretty happy to discover that she writes Paranormal too.I loved this book. It was well-written and a decent length - long enough to get lost in it for a while. I was a little confused at first by what Calydons were, but I picked it up fairly quickly. I absolutely adored Quinn and I appreciated that Grace had a backbone. I loved the whole "totally doomed" thing they had going on and it kept me interested, waiting to see what would happen. Nothing beats a big, tough alpha male going all gooey for his mate.Although, the book was steamy, there was plenty of plot too. Overall, a highly entertaining story. I note that there were quite a few of these books, so they should keep me amused for a while. I've already bought book 2 and I'm looking forward to reading more of this author's work. Stephanie Rowe has a new fan.

  • Madison Warner Fairbanks
    2019-03-18 05:01

    Darkness Awakened by Stephanie RoweFirst book in the Order of the Blade series. Warriors fighting their doomed destiny of love.A strong female heroine with issues of her own. She fights to find her sister, help others, and beat the evil. I was amused each time she fought, stabbed and then felt instantly guilty and apologized. Th best was that I was engaged through the entire 450 pages (prefer 300ish) and even though there are unresolved issues because it's a series, it's a complete story. I'm anxious to read the next book to make sure ...Lily gets saved and another warrior gets his sheva.Quinn Masters is the answer to saving Ana. At least that's what Grace Matthews is counting on. Between his warrior skills and her Illusionist magic that could cast false pictures into the world, they should be able to rescue her sister. They feel an instant connection and realize their own destiny may be doomed to end in death.This book was free on iBooks and Kindle.

  • Emily
    2019-02-25 00:43

    I wanted to like this book, I really did. It was a fairly original concept, which for UF is unusual. However, the author clearly buys into a very patriarchal ideal of women and men. Using words like "wanton" and "hussy" to describe a woman marveling at perfectly normal feelings of sexual arousal? Really? If the book was set in the 1700s, maybe, but a modern woman? Also, that the warrior men are destroyed by love for a woman, their "sheva", is part of that same theme. I hesitate to label the themes misogynistic, but only because I don't really think the author is self-aware enough to understand her own thinking. It was almost like the book was written by a woman thrown out of a very religious Christian sect for being too sexually liberated- but only too liberated for that group, not for the rest of society. Not a great read.

  • Rjsmommy
    2019-03-10 20:57

    Anew series I discovered that reminds of Black Dagger Brotherhood due to the Order of the Blade brothers. They are shunned and feared by society doing the tasks no one else wants to do to protect their people and humans. They are immortal beings who have one mate but if they find them and bond they go insane and kill everyone they care about until their mate kills them and then she in turn kills herself. This is the way of the last 2000 years; until Quinn and Grace. There's plenty of "fighting the bond" and great banter not only between Grace and Quinn but between the brothers too. There's the upcoming "apocalypse" that they now have to truly band together and fight against. With the successful bonding of Quinn and Grace, many beliefs will be tested. And of course, the stage is now set for each brother to find and fight for their sheva.

  • Hbeebti
    2019-03-25 04:46

    This was so damn good. I must say that I have read other books by this author and had a hard time for whatever reason. But this book blew me away. I mean I didn't want to stop reading it to make dinner or anything else. I don't recall reading a book where when you find your mate that is a bad thing. In fact it makes the warrior go rouge and into a killing rage that kills innocent people. Talk about messed up. The warriors decides that the female must die since there are so little of the warriors. OMG I just loved it. I wish that there was a paperback version to add to my book shelves. I cannot wait to read the next book about warrior Gideon and his Lily.