Lilica Swan isn’t quite human or otherworlder; she is the best—and worst—of both.
She is willing to do whatever proves necessary to save her sister from the seductive and deadly Alien Investigation and Removal agent, Dallas Gutierrez, even bonding her lifeforce to his by effectively marrying him. But the bond will fade without consummation. Can Dallas resist his insatiable desire for the powerful beauty? Or will she lead to his ultimate downfall?
Worldbuilding: New Chicago setting. Interesting world of Sci-Fi-ish alien hybrids, with AIR fighting against them on principle – morally ambiguous, thereby interesting. Trinity’s sex zombies were a riot, tbh. The manifestation of the alien powers came across more as paranormal than Sci-Fi, I think. It was an interesting mix.
Characters: I liked Lilica the chameleon, so loyal and devoted to her sisters. Her powers were kickass and she had nerves of steel too. I liked her more as the story went on, because interacting with Dallas brought out a playful side of her that I really enjoyed.
Dallas was alpha, funny, and a bit of a slut when the story began. That made him a bit tougher to like for me, but things changed as soon as he met Lilica. She brought out a serious seduction-mode and possessive side of him that I enjoyed a lot.
So it can be said that they brought out the best of each other, hehe. Their banter was lolworthy and I enjoyed their chemistry.
Plot: The story had a nice pace, though in the beginning I felt things were maybe a bit slow. During those times there were also instances of violence against captives/prisoners which sort of ruined my good mood. I was worried this story might go in the direction of dark romance, for which I had no mood at all. But then things got on the right track and I enjoyed the second part of the novel a lot more – from the point they’re actually together onward, to be more specific. The enemies to lovers flavor in the beginning transformed into a forced/accidental mating plus virgin trope, and coupled with the awesome banter, it made for a very engaging and enjoyable part of the story.
Writing: Third person, past tense narrative, his/her POV. I really liked his voice, because he was snarky and fun.
Curb Appeal: The cover is kinna strange. The attraction for me was the author name and blurb, but the confusion about genre persisted throughout the red for me – the series name made me think of paranormal, the blurb hinted at Sci-Fi, the cover helped none, lol.
I wanted to read some of Gena Showalter’s new work because it’s been some years since I read one of her Lords of the Underworld novels. Those I read stuck to mind as fun and interesting novels with smoldering hot chemistry and intense characters. I think it was that kind of vibe that I was jonesing for. Dark Swan had another kind of vibe – not a bad one, just different. It didn’t click all the way for me – the second part of the novel did, but not so much the first.
But it was a fun read, and I recommend it to fans of hybrids stories and Sci-Fi-ish romance that’s not heavy on the Sci-Fi elements, and of course to fans of the enemies to lovers version of forced/accidental mating spiced with the virgin trope.
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