My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Scarred. Damaged. Living with a terrible secret. Agent of the Underlight Wesley "Hauk" Haukon has nothing left but the fight for liberty against the oppressive Order of Ananke. He's starting to lose hope…and then he sees her.
Despite her night job as a burlesque dancer, grad student Jolie Benoit has always played the mostly good girl. That all changes following a scorching sexual encounter with a stranger whose face she doesn't see. After she's kidnapped by thugs and rescued by a man with a very familiar voice, Jolie becomes a pawn in a struggle she never knew existed.
Hauk knows he cannot have her, and resolves to protect his heart and his secrets. But as they work together and grow closer, he finds new reason to keep fighting. Dare he risk hope in a new life, one where Jolie can see past his ravaged face and where their friendship can grow into something more?" -goodreads.com
I love the concept of this book as it takes on the classic fairy tale in a more modern relatable sense. This was a nice short read that combined fantasy and romance into an adult fairy tale of finding beauty through character rather than looks.
"'Stick with me, beautiful. I can't promise a good time, but if history is any indicator, I can promise it'll always be interesting.'" (loc. 1298)
I believe this book could have elaborated on several elements to make me like it more. Character descriptions could have developed more, as well as a deeper explanation on "The Underlight" and what it entails. I found the magical and steampunk elements were scarce, which makes it seem like it's not of much importance. The plot could have used some development as well, as the sole plot line seemed to just be rescuing Jolie's kidnapped niece, and although there was her conflict of emotions over Hauk, it just didn't seem enough for me. I think the book could have done real well for me if it was longer and more elaborate.
First Line: "Hauk's steambike race down the dark highway, seven of those damn mercenaries from The Hands of Atropos in pursuit and gaining." (loc. 87)
Last Line: "The mythical snow of the Underlight fell around them, the candlelight from the Yule tree glowed against their skin, and on the year's longest night, Hauk let the light of hope be reborn." (loc. 1925)
Galley provided by Carina Press via NetGalley
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ebook, 152 pages
Expected publication: November 19th 2012 by Carina Press