Darkness Unleashed
by Alexandra Ivy†
(Zebra, $6.99, PG-13) †ISBN 9781420102970†
Darkness Unleashed is book five in this series about eternal guardians, vampire warriors who lurk in the shadows, keeping law and order even though they walk a fine line themselves. The latest guardian in this tale is Jagr, a former Visigoth chief turned recluse who prefers to have no ties to anyone, but in order to stay alive and have protection if there is a need, has joined forces with Viper, the powerful vampire clan chief of the Chicago clan.

Viper calls on Jagr to do a special deed for Styx, an Aztec who is the current king of the vampires. His mate, Darcy, has a sister who is missing and must be found before it is too late. Darcyís sister, Regan Garrett, has been freed after thirty years of being imprisoned and tortured by a greedy and selfish imp. Regan and Darcy are non-shifting pureblood werewolves who have been genetically altered and never knew of one another, including their two other sisters, because they were stolen from their werewolf clan when they were very small. Regan has gone off to kill the imp that held her captive for so long and her actions could get her killed. Jagr is the only one Styx trusts to track her down and bring her back so she can be under his protection. Jagr is less than thrilled with this obligation but has no choice because it would be foolish for him to anger his new liege.

What Jagr doesnít know is that Regan is being hunted by a band of rogue Curs, werewolf type creatures who kill without any regards to the consequences. Jagr must find Regan before she can come to harm. Also, Salvatore Giuliani, the current king of the weres, wants Regan safe because she was once meant to be his mate. Jagr wonít let any man or creature near Regan unless itís him. The moment Jagr meets Regan, he knows she is special even though she pushes all his buttons. He would love nothing more to hold her close and hide her away in his lair, not only for safe keeping, but as his lover; someone who can break through his icy heart and the shields he has placed around himself.

Darkness Unleashed is a typical paranormal series with supernatural creatures, action packed fighting scenes and two main characters who have a number of issues to deal with before they can find their happily-ever-after together. I wish I could say that Jagr and Regan really impressed me, but unfortunately I found their personalities and dialogue flat. These two are very much like too many other paranormal romance couples Iíve read before in the past. Jagr is written in such a way where he should be dark, brooding and sexy, as well as a he-man type warrior. I found him to be whiny and very one-dimensional. Regan didnít fare much better and her reasons for things, as well as placing herself in danger for no reason grated on my nerves. These two banter back and forth, which should be a nice form of foreplay, but came across as very weak and uninteresting. And when these two come together and have sex there is more fizzle than sizzle.

The villains in Darkness Unleashed are very comical and almost eye-rolling. Their actions and reasons for certain things didnít make sense either. I really couldnít understand their motivations.

Fans of this series by Alexandra Ivy will probably be interested in the adventures of Jagr and Regan, but I found them somewhat boring and tedious. When reading a book like this makes you want to stop finishing before the end, perhaps itís a sign of series fatigue and things should be wrapped up sooner than later.†

--Catherine Anne

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