In the last five years of my life I’ve read only books by the same authors. It’s a comfort for me. I know I’m going to like the book and I’m not wasting money or time on something I’m just going to DNF. Now with all this free time on my hands I’ve caught up on all my favorite series and the next installments won’t be released until next year. I’ve decided I need to broaden my horizon. Christina Dodd comes up a lot in my author you may like tab on Google so I thought why the hell not. Because Google knows everything. Right? After scoring the internet and my local library I decided on reading the Darkness Choosen series.
Scent of Darkness
She gives me Russians. Hot Russians. She gives me a sassy Romanian Goddess, a deal with the deal, and a love story that spans a lifetime. A curse, a curse, and some kick-ass women. Christina Dodd has taken some of my favorite tropes and made a work of art. This leans more towards the dark romance genre and does have a few questionable moments. I think that if you’re sensitive and easily triggered I wouldn’t read this or I’d read with caution.
At first, I was looking at Ann like “baby what are you doing.” The girl let her friends hype her up big time and I was inevitably waiting for the shoe to drop right on her heart. Then something happened and I pick up little Ann and put her in my list of favorites.
The thing about Ann is she’s relatable asf. Her inner dialogue (which we get a lot of) are things that I’m sure we’ve thought about or had that thought process at one point in life or another. She brought so much life and humor to this story. I feel like when you read a paranormal book you always get the same two reactions. Fear and fainting or unusual acceptance. Not Ann. Ann did all the things we yell at the actors in a scary movie to do. Not only the first time either. She just kept giving and giving. Then you have Jasha and all his glory. Hot, rich, Russian, and sometimes a complete ass.
I loved this first installment but I would have liked a little more of Ann’s back story. I was so interesting and honestly could have had its own prequel. I do though understand with this being the first of a series why the author needed to focus more on the Wilder family and their history.
Touch of Darkness
Honestly this second installment wasn’t better or worst than the first. I have the same complaint about this book as well. Tasya had such a huge back story that wasn’t used. When I finished the book it just didn’t make sense to me. Tasya’s back story could have been woven into the prologue it would have made their journey more climatic. Could have made the budding relationship even more dramatic. Instead when who she is was revealed was so anti-climatic because her identity came out of nowhere.
What I did like was Rurik Wilder. The way he wanted Tasya from the very beginning. Melted my heart. I clearly have a thing for men who pine after women. Rurik has this duality that made me go soft. I wanted to love him, hug him, and feed him food.
Into The Shadows
This is the one! This book made me so happy I read the first to books. I’m not going to lie the first two books were iffy for me. I soldiered on because I was invested in the overall story and found myself becoming attached to the Wilder family as a whole. As I stated in my review on the first book of this series a lot of scenes are questionable. Especially the sex scenes. I this installment my previous statement couldn’t be truer.
Adrik Wilder is a lost boy. Literally. He ran away at seventeen and since then has succumbed to darkness. Now he goes by Warlord. Warlord took the dominant male role to an extreme. I’m sorry what is consensual sex because the line here is blurred. If you complained about the blurred in the other two installments get ready to rant. I get it though. Christina was showing us how far Adrik had fallen into the darkness. Right?
Karen god bless Karen because for all the money and training she has she just let the world boss her around. I was so happy when she finally said fuck everybody and went to live her life.
What I liked about this book was that it did what the others did not. It spanned over years and I finally got to know and love the female protagonist. Do you think somebody told her when she was writing these stories that we need more from the female’s life?
In the end, it was a sweet love story. There was a lot of character development which was a nice change in the series
Into The Flame
This was the most disappointing book in the series. The highlight was the final battle between good and evil. The rest of the time I wanted to throw the book across the room.
I’m not a hard to please the reader. I’m not a sensitive reader. I’m fortunate that I don’t have triggers. This final installment had so much potential. This story could have been the best of the whole series. In my opinion, Christina dropped the ball.
Firebird has been in every installment of this series. There’s no reason why I as a reader shouldn’t have an attachment to her character. I don’t and it’s not my fault. Her plight is sad asf. Yet Christina once again focused so much on the male protagonist there wasn’t enough story left for Firebird.
I didn’t understand her train of thought when it came to Doug. I kept asking myself why after every interaction. The sex scenes were lukewarm.
Doug as a character made me side eye this whole book. I just couldn’t get with his personality. His way of thinking was childish. He was vindictive and angry for absolutely no reason. He should have been angry that Firebird didn’t tell him about his kid. It made zero sense to me.
In the end even the final battle was more comical than scary.
Overall my opinion of Christina Dodd’s novels is that their okay. I’ve read a lot worse but I’ve also read a lot better. If. you want to read something for pure enjoyment, can take things as they are, and isn’t triggered by nonconsensual consensual sex than this series is for you. I did go on and read another series by her which is a spin off of this one called Chosen Ones. I liked that series better. I feel like she had a better grasp of the stories and where she wanted them to go. In no way is my opinion the only one or the one you should ultimately use in deciding if you’re going to read her books or not. She has a lot of other books that aren’t paranormal romance that could be a lot better than this series. Maybe paranormal romance isn’t her niche and that’s okay.