Saturday, February 18, 2012

A Brush of Darkness (Abby Sinclair #1) by Allison Pang

Synopsis:  The man of her dreams might be the cause of her nightmares.

Six months ago, Abby Sinclair was struggling to pick up the pieces of her shattered life. Now, she has an enchanted iPod, a miniature unicorn living in her underwear drawer, and a magical marketplace to manage. But despite her growing knowledge of the OtherWorld, Abby isn’t at all prepared for Brystion, the dark, mysterious, and sexy-as- sin incubus searching for his sister, convinced Abby has the key to the succubus’s whereabouts. Abby has enough problems without having this seductive shape-shifter literally invade her dreams to get information. But when her Faery boss and some of her friends vanish, as well, Abby and Brystion must form an uneasy alliance. As she is sucked deeper and deeper into this perilous world of faeries, angels, and daemons, Abby realizes her life is in as much danger as her heart—and there’s no one she can trust to save her.

Review: Allison Pang brings us to a new, dark and interesting world with A Brush of Darkness. Included in this world are faeries, unicorns, incubi, and a variety of other paranormal characters. The beginning was slow, which I attribute to a lot of the world building that was going on. Moira, one of the main focuses of Abby's life and her boss, has been kidnapped, and we don't meet her to the tail end of the book. Abby's life is entwined with Moira's, so it's difficult to build an understandable world without Moira.

Brystion is the sexy and enigmatic incubus that finds his way into Abby's life. He's searching for Moira to question her as to the whereabouts of his sister. He's dark, handsome, arrogant, seductive and on a mission. Brystion is able to leap into Abby's dreams which has varying degrees of acceptance from Abby.

"Brystion is eye candy of the highest caliber, my dear, not just some OtherFolk man whore."

Brystion and Abby embark on a mission to figure out what happened to Moira and Brystion's sister. I find it odd that Abby and Brystion are on friendly terms so quickly. He's basically a stranger, and she trusts him a little too much right away. Granted, he is helping her with her dreams (Abby has a tragic backstory that has left her with terrible nightmares) and he's sex on legs, but their relationship comes together a little too easily.

I think that the concept of this book is new and interesting. I like the way the big bad entrapped all the victims - it was fresh and smart, and I enjoyed Abby's realtionships with Brystion (once his character was developed more), Robert, Melanie and Phin. The attraction between Abby and Brystion is so very hot and delicious, but as he has warned her, he is an incubus. And Incubi are SEX. Brystion knows no other way of life. Unfortunately, Abby doesn't want only the SEX, and I"m afraid Brystion won't be able to give her everything she does want.

This book also has a dark and wickedly funny element to it. Abby has a pet, Phin, who happens to be wise-cracking, horny-as-all-hell unicorn. He is also a very dear friend to Abby.

“I had a naked incubus in my bedroom. With a frying pan of half-cooked bacon, and a hard-on. And a unicorn bite on his ass. Christ, this was turning out to be a weird morning.”

The ending of this book is definitely in the 5 star range. It was exciting and the plot moved quicker than in the beginning of the story. When the "big reveal" occurs, I couldn't believe I hadn't figured it out. This is one of those stories where all the pieces are presented to the reader, but the reader has no idea how they all fit together. The ending was woven together masterfully by Allison Pang.

We are introduced to a new character, Talivar, at the end of this book. He is an elven prince and is assigned to act as Abby's bodyguard. I hope to read more about Talivar in the A Sliver of Shadow. He seems very mysterious and sexy. As a side note, I loved the shout outs to Buffy, especially at the end when Allison Pang threw in a ,"Grr. Argh." It was awesome for Buffy fans.

This was a good start to a series. I can't wait to read a Sliver of Shadow and see how Abby is acclimating to her world since the reappearance of Moira.  It will also be interesting to see how Abby's dream training is coming along.

Look for Abby Sinclair, A Sliver of Shadow, #2 on February 28, 2012.

Review by Jamie
Find me at:  @JDegLnghrn


Alexa said...

I have read very mixed reviews on this one and it has kept me from getting the book for so long. However, I really do like some of the books you Terrible girls are pushing me to read so I might like this one as well.

Thanks for the great review!

Braine @ Talk Supe said...

Ooohhh in/succubi! I always want to expand my reading to these dark creatures. The synopsis sounds funny, unicorns in your drawer and enchanted ipods. Good one Cat!

Canada said...

The cover is really inviting, that's one of the reason why I kept the book so long before I let my clever friends borrow it.

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