The time of Odin is over.
The Aesir gods now live among the humans in their bustling modern cities. Their brutal dominion over the other beings of the Nine Worlds may have ended, but their actions have not been forgotten.
Korvain is one of the last full-blooded dark elves, and is feared like no other. His ruthlessness and cold heart are legendary, but when he is given the task of killing one of the most fabled goddesses of all time, he is left with an undeniable desire to make her his own. Failure in his task means only one thing: death. Will he follow his orders, or will he follow his heart?
Bryn's whole world crumbled when she left Odin's service to protect the other Valkyries. Now living with the humans, she is the only thing standing between them and total destruction. But her beliefs are about to be shaken to the core when she meets Korvain - a volatile, completely irresistible dark elf who threatens to take away more than just her innocence....
What other book might you compare Dark Deceit to, and why?
For fans of Christine Feehan, Sherrilyn Kenyon and J.R. Ward
What do you think the narrator could have done better?
Narrator does an excellent job on the male voices, but the female voices needed work.
Any additional comments?
Fans of Christine Feehan, J.R. Ward and Sherrilyn Kenyon are going to love Dark Deceit by Lauren Dawes.
The Aesir gods' power has waned with their lack of followers. The valkyries have abandoned Odin, yet remain loyal to each other. The rest of the pantheon are scattered and a "dysfunctional" family at best. Dark elves, formerly hunted by the Norse gods, are assassins and Korvain is amongst their best. Loki...well you'll just have to listen to it to find out what Dawes does with her version of Loki. All I'll say is that you won't think of him the same way again.
Korvain is sent to assassinate Byrn, Odin's favourite valkyrie. Now, you know where this is heading - of course he falls in love with her. The romance between the two is written well and is both sweet and very passionate, and counter-balances the violence of the plot nicely.
This novel is rife with ancient feuds, pantheon politics, crime, and murder and is appropriately set in a dark, urban, grimy environment that you'd expect from a crime noir novel. I liked it.
I also liked the choice of narrator, which surprised me as I'm not generally a fan of American audio narration. (Apologies to my US friends.) Jeremy Cohen is easy to listen to and the clarity and pacing of his voice meant I'd no trouble keeping up with the story. He produces a broad range of male accents, making it easy to pick characters, and has the kind of voice you'd expect in crime noir. (He could easily play Sam Spade). This is ideal in Dawes' dark world. (My only complaint was with his narration of the female roles - I came away feeling the valkyries were a bit whimpy.)
Overall I enjoyed it and fans of Feehan, Kenyon and Ward will love it.