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Review: Evernight by Kristen Callihan

Review: Evernight by Kristen Callihan
Evernight by Kristen Callihan
Series: Darkest London #5
Published by Forever
Published on: August 26, 2014
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Steampunk
Pages: 432
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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Once the night comes . . .
Will Thorne is living a nightmare, his sanity slowly being drained away by a force he can't control. His talents have made him the perfect assassin for hire. But as he loses his grip on reality, there is no calming him-until he finds his next target: the mysterious Holly Evernight.

Love must cast aside the shadows
Holly cannot fathom who would put a contract on her life, yet the moment she touches Will, the connection between them is elemental, undeniable-and she's the only one who can tame his bouts of madness. But other assassins are coming for Holly. Will must transform from killer to protector and find the man who wants Holly dead . . . or his only chance for redemption will be lost.

Lickable amazeballs topread

Lately it seems that many of my favourite paranormal romance series have written all of their main characters’ tales, and have started adding secondary ones in order to be able to crank out more installments. The main problem with this is that it’s hard to introduce new couples this late in the game, and still have readers connect with them, because they weren’t part of the author’s original world. Kristen Callihan has succeeded where countless others have failed by A) having enough foresight to provide a bit of back story with a novella (ENTWINED), and B) ensuring that her protagonists were able to stand on their own while still fitting into her DARKEST LONDON universe. EVERNIGHT is a multilayered, beautifully written book, and a stunning testament to the power of love.

Callihan continues to break the traditional PNR mold by ensuring that each new installment is truly unique instead of a cookie cutter replica of a similar story, but with a different main couple. These novels could easily be read as stand-alones, however I’ve given this series 5 stars across the board, so it goes without saying that you should definitely start with FIRELIGHT. The plot line of this book is seriously un-unravelable between Thorne’s insanity (what’s real vs. mad imaginings), the SOS’ machinations, and several other mysterious players who aren’t even revealed until the very end. Heck, even the romance left me skeptical as to whether a HEA was even possible for Holly and Will.

There’s no shortage of paranormal elements in this tale with elementals, GIM (Ghosts in the Machine), fallen angels, Sanguis demons, fae, and shifters all playing vital roles. The DARKEST LONDON world is even further expanded upon with the addition of Here (Earth), There (Supernatural plane), and Nowhere (Hell), along with the seamless blending of the PNR, historical, and Steampunk genres for which this author is famous for. I especially enjoyed this installment because Evernight is an inventor, so on top of outstanding world-building and character development; readers also get tons and tons of gadgets like clockwork hearts and spectrometers! Callihan’s imagination is limitless, and she definitely doesn’t believe in doing anything halfway.

I loved Will and Holly’s romance; they are brought together by necessity, torn apart by others’ schemes, only to be finally reunited by fate. The cost of love has never been higher with immortality, sanity, and their very lives on the line. Evernight’s clever mind, ironclad will, and raw power complimented Thorne’s brute strength, sexual magnetism, and cunningness perfectly. The dirty talk between them was deliciously scandalous, and the sex scenes ranged from crude, to tender, to light BDSM. More often than not, I found myself doubting whether either of these characters would ever be able to find happiness, but that too was part of Kristen Callihan’s exquisitely executed master plan.

Steampunk, historical, paranormal romance—categorize this book however you like, but one thing remains clear, EVERNIGHT was awesome!

Was this review helpful? If so, please consider voting for it on Amazon or like it on GoodReads!

Darkest London Series

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Author Bio

Kristen Callihan is a child of the eighties, which means she’s worn neon skirts, black lace gloves, and combat boots (although never all at once) and can quote John Hughes movies with the best of them. A lifelong daydreamer, she finally realized that the characters in her head needed a proper home and thus hit the keyboard. She believes that falling in love is one of the headiest experiences a person can have, so naturally she writes romance. Her love of superheroes, action movies, and history led her to write historical paranormals. She lives in the Washington, D.C., area and, when not writing, looks after two children, one husband, and a dog – the fish can fend for themselves.

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Tour Schedule
Aug 26 Polished Bookworm Aug 29 TBQ’s Book Palace
Long and Short Reviews Imagine a World
Wit and Sin Aug 30 Romancing Rakes For the Love of Romance
Red Hot Books Manga Maniac Cafe
Aug 27 Reading Between the Wines Book Club Aug 31 Ramblings From This Chick
Ramblings from a Chaotic Mind Awesomesauce Book Club
Books Like Breathing Sep 01 Mother/Gamer/Writer
Urban Girl Reader Rabid Reads
Aug 28 Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews Book Bliss
The Window Seat on a Rainy Day The Book Pushers
Happily Ever After – Reads

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Owner, designer and main blogger behind Rabid Reads. Avid book reader, snowboard bunny, video gamer and Supernatural fan. I love all things paranormal, werewolves especially. Oh, and I’m Canadian, eh!

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  1. I haven’t read this series yet. I know, I know. I need to get to it really soon. It is on the list to be the next series that I start. Great review.
    Melanie Simmons recently posted…Shifting Shadows Audiobook by Patricia Briggs (early review)

    • This series is 5/5 for me. That NEVER happens! I listened to Moonglow in audio, and the narrator was pretty decent too, aside from her Brit accent.

  2. I LOVE this series. They’ve all been 5 stars for me.
    Jennifer recently posted…Talking Between Reads (TBR): Library Gateway Cards

    • Same here! Like I said in my opening paragraph, most PNR series tend to fizzle over time, this one is an exception to that rule.

  3. I have not yet read this series, but have heard great things about it.
    I totally understand what you mean about authors introducing new characters into an already established series. I have come across some that work and some that haven’t (at least for me).
    It’s nice to know that she is able to do that and hold the attention of the reader. 😀
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

    • The Black Dagger Brotherhood is a good example of new characters NOT working IMO. And, Ward is a big name author, so the fact that Callihan succeeded just goes to show what a talented writer she is.

  4. Just where has this series been hiding? It sounds enticingly yummy. Must add to list.
    Judy recently posted…Audio Review: Lay It Down by Cara McKenna

    • One of my blogger peeps twisted my arm to start this series, and I was like yeah, yeah, it can’t be THAT good, but it really is!

  5. Oh, wow, I am intrigued! I agree about introducing characters late in the series and expecting us to care, but if anyone could do it, IT was always Callihan. I read and adored the first book and own the second on audio. I can’t wait to find a little bit of time and actually read it.
    Wonderful review, Carmel!

    • I keep expecting this series to start going downhill, but it never does; 5 installments in, and still just as good as ever, if not better!

  6. You’ve been having an excellent run of paranormal steampunk books lately! And they’ve been books that were late in the series, too. 5 stars across the board sounds pretty damn awesome to me! I’m such a sucker for steampunk gadgets…I’d kill for a real life spectrometer! Not sure what I’d do with it, but it’d be pretty cool to have! My library has a copy of Firelight and I’ll definitely be picking it up. Your PNR recs are always the best, Carmel!
    Danya recently posted…Review: Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff

    • Firelight was amazing! I honestly can’t pick a fav in this series because they are all so darned good, and not 2 of them are alike. I’m glad that my recommendations haven’t steered you wrong yet, Danya! 🙂

  7. I agree with you, this book was awesome… In general this series is awesome… with the exception of Winterblaze, that one wasn’t great (IMO).
    BookaholicCat recently posted…Review: One Night More by Mandy Baxter

    • I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Winterblaze, but I can understand why that one was your least fav. Kristen Callihan is a must read for me. She hasn’t steered me wrong yet!

  8. I can’t believe I missed out on joining this blog tour! #epicfail I love this series and can’t wait to read Evernight, each books just gets better with this series…so do the covers! I love the paranormal/steampunk mix that Kristen flawlessly creates. Great review Carmel!
    Lori recently posted…Cover Reveal: Dead New World by Ryan Hill

    • It was a sneaky blog tour; I almost missed it! The sign-up was buried in one of Forever’s e-mails. I know you’ve been pretty busy lately, Lori, but if you only have time to squeeze in one book, this should be it!

  9. Oh I loved this book as well and had a wonderful time with the story. But well each book is really good so I’m not surprised. I’m glad you also had a great time with the sotry. I loved Holly and William. Great review!

    • You can’t go wrong with anything that has Kristen Callihan’s name on it IMO. Thanks for the review love!

  10. Okay okay… I already bought the first book because of Jennifer and Jen Red Hot Books… now I’m entered to win them all! I just need someone to do my chores so I can read more! Thanks so much!
    Jen Twimom recently posted…Happy Labor Day: What is Labor Day?

  11. Like the sound of Will and Holly’s romance.

    • As good as their story was, make sure you start at the beginning if you do decide to read this series. It’s well worth it!

  12. I want to stArt so many series but they get push backed because I’m in the mood for stand alones more often . I really do want to start this series . I kinda skimmed the review, Carmel

    Haooy you enjoyed ^_^
    Roro recently posted…WOW #12

    • There’s aren’t enough stand-alone books nowadays IMO, but each installment in this series revolves around a different couple, so it’s kind of the same thing.

  13. I love this series, too, and agree that Evernight was a fantastic addition to this series. The crudity made me wince sometimes but it was just so Will that I rolled with it (I guess I don’t really expect crudity from people back then but, really, they were much more crude in many ways than we are!).
    Mary recently posted…Speed Date with Xavier: Night’s Honor by Thea Harrison

    • I was a little surprised by the language as well, but I guess the author was due for a ‘dirty’ installment. Hehe Plus, the old school vocabulary was more funny than crude.

  14. I haven’t read this author yet but this review makes this book sound very intriguing. I may be adding another book to my tbr pile now. Thanks!
    Mary Kirkland recently posted…Review of Phantom Desire by Houston Havens

  15. I haven’t read steampunk in a long time and this one seems like a good one. I love the sound of Will and Holly’s romance and their characters as well. I’m so happy you get to enjoy this one. Amazing giveaway as well, if it only was INT. Great post, Carmel 🙂
    Tanja recently posted…The Seven Deadly Sins Tag

    • This author is a pro at blending genres; it’s difficult to shelve Evernight under only one category. Sorry about the giveaway, it’s part of the tour, so I didn’t really have any say in the shipping requirements. o_O

  16. Another series I totally should try
    blodeuedd recently posted…Dark Aemilia Giveaway

  17. What a fantastic review, Carmel! I’ve never even heard about this series but now I’m definitely interested. It’s good to know that all the installments could be read as stand-alones, but I’d definitely start with the first one because I don’t think I can handle reading out of order. Can’t wait to meet all these characters. 😀
    Sarah recently posted…Review: Queen of Someday by Sherry D. Ficklin

    • This series has got to me one of my fav PNR’s ever! Firelight was SO good, I’m kind of jealous that you’re going to read it soon. Maybe I should do a re-read…

  18. I remember loving the first book and I think I even have the second and third. I need to pick this series back up obviously if you are still loving it so much!
    kindlemom1 recently posted…Review: Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

    • All 5 books have been 5-star reads which simply does not happen in PNR. I hope you read Moonglow sooner rather than later; it’s totally worth bumping up your TBR pile.

  19. Yet another series that’s been languishing for way to long on the TBR, especially if Callihan is able to give each installment it’s own unique story. So many times it is just the same story with a new couple, it will be refreshing to read something new. Great review Carmel!
    Traci recently posted…Coffee Shop Talk, #69

    • This series is anything but typical; I never know what to expect whenever I start a new installment, except greatness. Callihan never disappoints!

  20. How funny … I thought the cover looked familiar when I saw it, so I followed it to GR. Turns out I just saw it when I was stalking the author’s other book – The Hook Up. So, yeah … it appears I’ll also need to read these , as well.
    Christy recently posted…Claudine by Barbara Palmer

    • I believe The Hook Up is her first contemporary, but I’m a Paranormal girl, so I’m all about her Darkest London series. 🙂

  21. Sounds interesting; haven’t read this series yet

    • It’s a MUST! I ❤ Callihan’s books so hard.

  22. Yeah, these days it seems that series should mostly be kept to three or four installments. And all of the characters should at least be slightly woven throughout the other books. Otherwise, it’s just weird!
    Stephanie Faris recently posted…The Cephalopod Coffeehouse: Best Book of August

    • Exactly! Many of my fav PNR series are into their 5th book, and the characters just aren’t jiving anymore. I’m super happy that this author killed it where most others have failed.

  23. I have these on my TBR, glad to see you enjoyed this one!

    • Darkest London is 5-for-5. SO GOOD! You should make reading ’em a priority. Just saying…

      • lol! I will, I promise 😀 They’ve been on my TBR for quite awhile now and I always see good reviews for them 🙂

  24. I love this series, one of my favorites. It is the series that got me hooked on steampunk and the covers are so beautiful.

    • Once you’ve read this series, all other Steampunk tends to pale in comparison. Callihan has RUINED me for all other books in this genre. LOL

  25. That’s really awesome she was able to pull it off. I’ve read a few as well that missed the mark adding new characters in. Good to see an author rocking it 🙂
    anna (herding cats & burning soup) recently posted…Linger (In Vino Veritas #3) by Lauren Jameson

    • It’s a difficult feat to accomplish, but if anyone can do it, it’s this author. Without a doubt!

  26. Of course I have book one of this series. Quite a few series I read have new main characters with each book and I love that aspect. The overall arc is the same. Wonderful review Carmel, I really need to start this!
    kimbacaffeinate recently posted…Shifting Shadows of Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs

    • This series is so unique, and has SO much going for it. I always have a hard time reviewing these cuz words cannot possibly describe how awesomsauce they are!

  27. STEAMPUNKKKK!!! I’m so glad you enjoyed the follow-up to the novella you also enjoyed. The paranormal creatures seem like.. whoa! A ton of them, but it makes it all the more interesting! Yay that you enjoyed the romance 🙂 I love star-crossed romances and this one definitely seems like a variation of that type 😉

    Siiri @ Little Pieces of Imagination

    • The full length book tied in nicely with the novella which is how it’s supposed to be. But again, as I mentioned, Callihan is a pro at her craft, so no surprises there.

  28. Half way into it and enjoying it!
    Tynga recently posted…“When I’m not writing” with Stephen Blackmoore

    • Good stuff! I look forward to reading your review. 🙂

  29. Oooh this looks interesting! I have not read this series before but I’m a big paranormal romance fan so will definitely have to give this a go! The cover looks SO COOL!!
    Alana recently posted…ARC Review: Cherry Bomb by Jenny Valentish

    • If PNR is your thing, then you’re going to LOVE this series! I can’t recommend it enough! I’m actually a little surprised that you haven’t discovered it before now.

  30. Steampunk has never been my genre. But everyone is loving this series. So you have convinced me. I will try I out.
    Jennifer Bielman recently posted…Review: Before He Was Gone by Becky Wicks (Blog Tour & Giveaway)

    • It’s not 100% Steampunk if that helps. It’s also PNR & Historical… The best of all three worlds really.

  31. Carmel, everytime I read one of your reviews for a book of this series I tell myself that I really need to get started with them ASAP! Even more before it becomes longer and I feel daunted to start reading a long ongoing series! 5 is still pretty manangeable so I better get started already!

    Great review!
    Pili recently posted…Waiting On Wednesday #58!!

    • Every time, eh? Then, why haven’t you started it already!? 😛 Thanks for the review love! I appreciate it.

  32. I’ve read one of the shorts to this author and enjoyed it.

    • Was it Ember? That was my least fav book by this author, so if you liked that one, you’ll adore these.

  33. I have never read Steam Punk but I’ve heard really good things about this series. And if it’s a favorite of yours, it must be good. 🙂 I’m glad this was such a satisfying installment, Carmel.

    • If you’re going to read one Steampunk book in your entire life, it should be Callihan’s! Just saying. 😀