"Against the backdrop of an ancient battle between the forces of Light and the forces of Darkness, Aidan struggles to control the newly awakened powers that seem to be his only hope for rescuing Ava, his little sister, trapped somewhere beyond the Veil. As he gravitates to Kara, the dangerously unstable girl who helped him realize his abilities, a terrible mistake of fate is revealed that points him back toward Rebecca, whose role is becoming more critical to the battle. And no matter what his heart wants, it might be too late to stop the pieces already in motion.
Without knowing the sacrifices that will be required of them, Aidan and his motley crew of friends - each with their own role to play - must face the demon threat head-on. They're the only ones keeping the growing army of Darkness at bay, and if they fail, the future of humanity could be lost."
Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Teens & YA
I would like to thank Skyscape & NetGalley for an e-ARC of this book to review. Though I received this e-book for free, that has no impact upon the honesty of my review.
Picking up right where the first book left off, things go from interesting to weird, confusing, and very, very interesting. Aidan continues to learn of his destiny, as well as his growing powers. Meanwhile his relationship with Kara has developed some serious side effects, things that impact not only Kara and Aidan, but also Rebecca. The three have ended up in a cosmically twisted love triangle, all thanks to the actions of one person. And while they're dealing with the ramifications of Sid's actions life continues to march ever forward, wether they're ready or not.
Between the daily demons to be handled, the situation with Kara and Rebecca, Sid's declining health, and Eric's revelations, well Aidan is more than just a bit overwhelmed. And that's not counting his struggles to learn more about his powers, their limits, and how to master them. And against the advice of everyone he deals with, old and new, he persists in his quest to save Ava and somehow reunite her body with her soul. He refuses to heed all the warnings, and should he continue down that path and succeed in bringing her back he may well be dooming everyone on the planet to a living hell. Literally.
As with the prior book the character development is well done, though in this book we get dual points of view as opposed to learning everything from Aidan's point of view as we did in book one. This time our narrators are Aidan and to a lesser extent Rebecca. While she played a much smaller role in the first book, in this one we really start learning just who she is, and it's almost impossible not to like her and feel badly for her. She certainly seems to have gotten the short end of the stick so to speak. Yet she seems to handle everything that's thrown at her with an intrinsic grace.
While there is certainly no shortage of action in this book, for me the emotional experiences were more of the meat, and also what propelled this story ever forward. And though religion plays an important role, it almost seems to be much less emphasized than in the first book. Possibly because everything was being set up in that book, and now things have been explained and are moving forward from there. Either way it makes the tale stronger and more powerful for me. Just like the previous book, the combination of character development and plot are interwoven quite well, to the point where it feels as if one can't move forward without the other. They feel seamlessly interconnected, creating a story that flows smoothly at a level of high tension that never feels fake or forced. This is a strong sequel that's not only moved the story much farther ahead, but also done an excellent job of setting the stage for whatever's to come in the next book. I know I'm anxious to discover how everything unfolds and is possibly wrapped up at the same time.
Rachel A. Marks is an award-winning author and professional artist, a SoCal girl, cancer survivor, a surfer and dirt-bike rider, chocolate lover and keeper of faerie secrets. She was voted: Most Likely to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse, but hopes she'll never have to test the theory. Her debut series The Dark Cycle, described as Dickens' Oliver Twist meets TV's Supernatural, is now out through Skyscape, beginning with DARKNESS BRUTAL.