Thursday, February 24, 2011

Listen Up - Beautiful Darkness by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Published: October 2010
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Audio copy from: Library and Overdrive
Narrated by: Kevin T Collins
Summary: Goodreads

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Sometimes life-ending.

Together they can face anything Gatlin throws at them, but after suffering a tragic loss, Lena starts to pull away, keeping secrets that test their relationship. And now that Ethan's eyes have been opened to the darker side of Gatlin, there's no going back. Haunted by strange visions only he can see, Ethan is pulled deeper into his town's tangled history and finds himself caught up in the dangerous network of underground passageways endlessly crisscrossing the South, where nothing is as it seems.

I read Beautiful Creatures last year and loved it so much I decided to listen to it afterwards. You can read my review of the audio version of Beautiful Creatures HERE. I loved it, in fact it was just about my favourite book of 2010. So when Beautiful Darkness came out - and you're going to laugh at me here - I didn't want to read it in case it wasn't as good as the first one! Yep, I know, stupid. Anyway, with Christmas and everything else going on, I finally got around to listening to Beautiful Darkness last week - and of course, I loved it just as much as the first one, if not more.

Kevin T Collins returns as the narrator for the audio version and it was so nice to have that continuity. I just love the dark atmosphere on the audio. The wind whistling, doors banging, music playing. Speaking of which, Michelle McGonigle is back with her eerily haunting rendition of 'Sixteen Moons' or in this case 'Seventeen Moons'.

The story of Ethan and Lena continues in ways I wasn't suspecting, with things getting even darker this time around. Ethan has become my ideal of the perfect boyfriend. He is so supportive and protective of Lena it almost made my heart break. I don't want to give away the story, just in case there is anyone out there who hasn't read this one yet, but things are not all hunky dory in Gatlin. Even stranger things are happening than last time, and new people are coming to town. Lena is deeply depressed over the death of her Uncle and Ethan is trying to help her, to no avail.

There were some wonderful twists to the story and I loved them all. Some I expected, and some coming out of left field. Link's character is really fleshed out in this book and his madcap humour was responsible for some light relief (actually he reminds me of my son a bit, so I have a serious soft spot for him).

I am now waiting with seriously bated breath for the next volume of the series, due out in the Fall of this year, and you can be sure I won't take so long to read it this time around. If you are interested in reading Christinabean's review, you can find it HERE. She loved it too! There is also a 4th volume coming in the Fall of 2012. Way to keep up the suspense, girls!

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