Twilight Fall by Lynn ViehlLynn Viehl returns us to the lush and visceral the world of her Darkyn in Twilight Fall, and I was glad to take the trip. The Darkyn novels are one of my all-time favorite vampire romance series. Superbly written with a dark, gritty edge and sharp wit, they are a feast for readers hungry for passion, romance, danger and intrigue.

In Twilight Fall, the suzerain of Chicago, Valentin Jaus, is still nursing a wounded heart (and arm) over the loss of the lovely Jema to Thierry Durand. The memory of her haunts him, as does the uselessness of his surgically reattached limb. He doesn’t complain, but his pain is obvious to the quiet gardener, Liling Harper, at the Lighthouse Rehabilitation Center, a private nursing facility.

Liling and Valentin’s paths cross at the bedside of Luisa, the young burn victim who was once under the care of Dr. Alexandra Keller, wife of Michael Cyprien, leader of the Darkyn. Liling has befriended the girl, helping her with her English, while Valentin keeps watch over the girl. 

The blond-haired, blue-eyed Valentin’s commanding aura intrigues Liling to the point she finds her daydreams and fantasies filled with images of him as a powerful lover, dominating her in ways that compel her surrender without question. Valentine is equally intrigued by Liling, though he knows not why.

But Liling has a secret, abilities she must hide because there are those who will stop at nothing to find her and use her. And when her hunters discover she’s alive, Valentin is drawn into the fray, and soon finds himself willing to do anything for the lovely Liling, who has touched his heart in a way no woman ever has.

Liling and Valentin’s story plays out across plot threads continued from previous books in the series, telling me that Ms. Viehl is indeed taking us somewhere deliberately. More is revealed about the Brethren, mortal enemy of the Darkyn, and some of it is downright chilling.

As always, I was thrilled to see Alex fairly prominently in this book. She is absolutely one of the most delightful characters I’ve ever read in a vampire romance — brilliant, sassy and cynical with fangs, and she’s bedding the hottest vampire around. Other familiar faces also make an appearance, and I’m sure we’re going to see them again as the Darkyn’s tale continues in Stay The Night (1/2009).

Have you read Twilight Fall? If so, post a comment and let others know what you thought!

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The votes are in and Lynn Viehl’s Evermore, the fifth book in the Darkyn series, is the reading group pick for January. So head on down to your local bookstore and grab a copy and get to reading! When you’ve finished, head on over to the forum and join in or start the discussion.

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> Vote for the February 2008 Reading Group Pick

Evermore by Lynn ViehlLynn Viehl is a master of smart and sexy. Her Darkyn series is one of the best around — gritty, visceral and written with a keen eye for detail and gift for character. Evermore, the fifth book in the series and due out in January 2, 2008, is no exception, bringing together elements of mystery, danger, suspense and loving eroticism in a beautiful cocktail all but guaranteed to satisfy the thirsty romantic in all of us.

Truly, there are few things more powerful and compelling than a story of long-hidden love being brought to light, then requited. Mix in a battle between good guys and bad guys, then throw in a few characters whose loyalty is a mystery, and you’ve got one hell of a book. Give most of the characters fangs and hunger for blood, and you’ve got one hell of a vampire romance book.

In Evermore, the lovely Jayr has been seneschal to her Darkyn master, Byrne, for centuries, since she gave up her mortal life to save his — and she’s been in love with him all that time. Not once, however, have they shared anything more intimate than the annual blood-sharing ritual renewing their oath of loyalty as master and servant, leaving them both aching and in want for more as Byrne secretly pines for her, too.

Things are about to change, however. Byrne has made a choice to leave the Kyn and seek isolation as his unique Kyn gift has left him worn out and on the brink of losing control over it. Before he goes, though, he is determined to find a new master for Jayr and organizes a medieval gaming tournament to find the most suitable candidate. But as you can always count on in books, and often in life, things don’t go exactly according to plan and Jayr and Byrne soon come face to face with their unrequited love and passion. Will they be able to deny it?

Ms. Viehl does her usual superb job of building and maintaining tension and mystery throughout the story. The love story at its heart is tender and passionate, one that tugs the heartstrings without becoming overly sentimental.

Have you read Evermore? If so, please feel free to leave a comment and let us know what you think.

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