Darkness Watching - Emma L Adams

This review is spoiler free.

It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed a book but I’ve been stealing every spare minute to finish Darkness Watching. 

Here’s the description from Goodreads:

“Eighteen-year-old Ashlyn is one interview away from her future when she first sees the demons. She thinks she’s losing her mind, but the truth is far more frightening: she can see into the Darkworld, the home of spirits- and the darkness is staring back.

Desperate to escape the demons, Ash accepts a place at a university in the small town of Blackstone, in the middle of nowhere – little knowing that it isn’t coincidence that led her there but the pull of the Venantium, the sorcerers who maintain the barrier keeping demons from crossing from the Darkworld into our own world.

All-night parties, new friendships and a life without rules or limits are all part of the package of student life – but demons still stalk Ash, and their interest in her has attracted the attention of every sorcerer in the area. Ash is soon caught between her new life and a group of other students with a connection to the Darkworld, who could offer the answers she’s looking for. The demons want something from her, and someone is determined to kill her before she can find out what it is. In a world where darkness lurks beneath the surface, not everyone is what they appear to be…”

I really enjoyed Darkness Watching and I think if I’d had more spare time I’d have finished it in three or four nights.

In all honesty I’ve never read anything about demons before (because they scare me) but I really loved this book.

Ashlyn was a really likeable person and her super studious ways at the start of the book reminded me a lot of my best friend. Aside from being able to do magic and see demons it was easy to relate to her fears about getting into university, starting university and boy issues.

The other characters weren’t explored as much as I’d hoped but hopefully we’ll find out more about them in the next book.

The way the town was described in the book sucked me in and I had no trouble imagining it, in fact it reminded me a lot of Keele.

Darkness Watching had quite a few nice twists and turns in it and the decisions and reasoning behind things made sense and it didn’t try to baffle the reader with complicated explanations.

I wasn’t at all surprised by the guy who turned out to be ‘the bad guy’ though, I saw that coming a mile off. Aside from that though I didn’t find Darkness Watching to be predictable.

Something that really interested me was the way the author portrayed demons. In my head they were evil looking people with red eyes so the way they’re portrayed in Darkness Watching makes them seem a little friendlier than I’ve always imagined as their eye colour happens to be my favourite colour.

I also really enjoyed that it was set in England which meant I get the education system. I’ve read so many books using the US education system and I still don’t get it, (do you go to college or university? Are they the same thing or does one come before the other?) so it was nice to just be able to read Darkness Watching without having to think about. I’m sure that’s not really a major selling point for anyone but it was genuinely something I liked about it.

The ending felt quite abrupt and sudden, which left me wanting more so I’ll definitely pick up the second book to find out what happens to Ashlyn next.

Darkness Watching is an enjoyable and exciting read about magic and demons that leaves you doing a second take at any ‘dark spaces’ in your house searching them for violet eyes.

If you’re looking for an interesting book about magic and demons, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Darkness Watching.

*I was provided with a copy from NetGalley in return for an honest review.

4 out of 5

Follow:

I’m in an ezine! 

Some of you may know I also write about Formula One for a couple of websites and over the weekend one of my articles was published in the Grand Prix Plus ezine.

While I was at the Italian Grand Prix I organised an interview with one of the drivers physiotherapists and had a chat with him about fitness in F1.

After many hours of typing I sent it off to a journalist I met at the British Grand Prix and as a result it ended up in the Brazilian Grand Prix edition of Grand Prix Plus.

Unfortunately I can’t send you a link to the article because the magazine is subscription only but I can tell you I’m feeling pretty giddy about seeing my work in something that’s paid for.

I’ve written plenty of articles for websites but being in an paid ezine to me suggests much higher standards and is something I can begin building a portfolio with.

In terms of writing, this year has been unbelievable for me. If someone had told me when I first set up my F1 blog three years ago that I’d be writing for websites, going to races, interviewing drivers, watching a practice session from a team garage and having my work in a paid publication, I’d have called you crazy.

I’m very grateful for the opportunities I’ve been given and intend to make the best of them.

If there’s a moral to this story, or something that you can take away from it whatever your goal is, it’s this: don’t give up.

Yeah it’s cheesy and it’s been said a thousand times before but I’ve thought about quitting more times than I care to think about but there’s this little burning ‘what if’ inside me that keeps me going when I’m wondering why I’ve not really had a break over the weekend or when I think it’s too hard.

What keeps you going?

Pinterest . Twitter. Bloglovin. NaNoWriMo

Follow:

The Elite - Kiera Cass

I read The Selection earlier this year and intended to read The Elite when it came out but ended up forgetting about it until a couple of days ago when I was looking through my to-read list on GoodReads.

Here’s the description from GoodReads:

“Thirty-five girls came to the palace to compete in the Selection. All but six have been sent home. And only one will get to marry Prince Maxon and be crowned princess of Illea.

America still isn’t sure where her heart lies. When she’s with Maxon, she’s swept up in their new and breathless romance, and can’t dream of being with anyone else. But whenever she sees Aspen standing guard around the palace, and is overcome with memories of the life they planned to share. With the group narrowed down to the Elite, the other girls are even more determined to win Maxon over—and time is running out for America to decide.

Just when America is sure she’s made her choice, a devastating loss makes her question everything again. And while she’s struggling to imagine her future, the violent rebels that are determined to overthrow the monarchy are growing stronger and their plans could destroy her chance at any kind of happy ending.”

The more I think about this book, the lower a rating I want to give it.

To me books in a series need to stand up on their own but this really doesn’t. The Selection didn’t really stand up on it’s own but The Elite is practically lying down.

Nothing is resolved by the end of it; we’re still at the same point we were at the beginning of the book minus a couple of characters. It’s just a big infuriating love triangle.

I liked America in the first book but not so much in this book. One moment she was sure she loved Maxon, then she went running off to Aspen and was sure she loved him, then she loved Maxon, then she loved Aspen. You can see where this is going right? Exactly, nowhere.

The image I’ve formed of Prince Maxon in my head is a slightly nicer version of Joffrey from Game of Thrones. I’m not a Team Maxon fan at all (Team Aspen!), especially after the incident with Celeste. Talking of Celeste, she was vicious in the  first book but a bit of a pussycat in The Elite which disappointed me.

Why is no one Team Aspen? I can’t be the only person surely? He’s about the only thing good in his book.

The description promises us some action with the rebels, which doesn’t actually seem to happen. They just kind of pop up a couple of times and then disappear again with no real explanation as to why.

With all of the above said, I did actually finish it in one evening so it did a good job of keeping me hooked.

All of my whining aside I know I will read The One (which is due to come out sometime in 2014) because I need to know how this is resolved. If you’ve read The Selection, I really can’t see that you need to read The Elite because nothing particularly major happens.

I had a lot of hope for The Elite and I’m really disappointed in what a non-event it was. I imagine that The One will be much better as things will need to be wrapped up and we’ll finally get rid of a corner off that love triangle, hopefully.

2 out of 5

Have you read The Selection or The Elite? 

Follow: