Sunday, 6 July 2014

Book: A Dark Heart by Margaret Foxe

I received a copy of A Dark Heart, book 2 in the Elders & Welders Chronicles, in exchange for my review.

When Christiana is faced with the choice of letting the love of her life die or whether to save him even if saving him could damn her, she saves him. But Elijah Drexler has his demons and lashes out at Christiana for saving him from them. What he can't deny though is the powerful attraction he has towards her, both for her blood and for her body. Nine years after he was saved, Elijah has been using his powers as a vampire to help him bring to justice people that would have got away with it, with one goal in mind; to kill the man that destroyed his childhood, but when doing so risks bringing Christiana into the frame he begins to worry, about her but more strongly about how she will react to discovering his true origins.

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Where to even start with this book (and how amazing it is!) I read (and reviewed) book 1 in the series Prince of Hearts last year and loved it, and A Dark Heart has been sat in my review pile for a while. I think in the intervening time I forgot just how good this series was, I was captivated from the first page and was drawn straight back into Foxe's Steampunk world.

Don't let vampires put you off either, though men (and presumably women) like Elijah are referred to as vampires, they are in fact much more complicated than that. In Foxe's world there are immortals (like Sasha from book 1) and their bonded (like Christiana who is Bonded to her relative, Rowan) and vampires like Elijah who are effectively the Bonded of the Bonded. I've made it sound complicated when actually it is actually really well explained in the book, and in fact it is the complexity that I particularly liked about it.

The romance between Christiana and Elijah was another complexity to the book. There were several levels to it. All the way through Christiana was clear that she loved him, whereas Elijah was more resistant to the idea of loving her. It made him frustrating at times but the reasoning why made sense. When they actually did sort it out they were sweet together, and then they could be steamy together too. It was a very deep and complex relationship, made even more so by the bond between them.

Elijah as a character was more than just a vampire, or just the love of Christiana's life. He had a past, and the past that was actually very disturbing in places, though thankfully the author knows how not to go too far to put the readers off. Elijah's past gives him motives for his actions as well as showing that a person is what they make of themselves as opposed to what has been done to them.

What I liked even more than the characterisation of the two main characters was that the secondary characters also got a look in, particularly Sasha and Aline (the main characters of the previous book), and Rowan (who I have suspicions about the next book), though there were more minor characters that were developed such as Matthews and Percy. And, even though they were the 'bad guys' I did feel that O'Connor and certain other bad men were just as well developed.

Sorry for the long review! There just seems to be so much to say about this book! The last thing I will say is that there are mysteries I still want answers to and that the ending was nothing like what I expected! This is definitely a series to read!

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