Friday, April 12, 2013

The Deepest Night (The Sweetest Dark #2) by Shana Abe + Featured Freebie

The Deepest Night (The Sweetest Dark, #2)
It’s 1915, and sixteen-year-old Lora Jones is finishing up her first year as a charity student at Iverson, a prestigious, gothic boarding school on England’s southern coast. While she’s always felt different from everyone around her, now she finally knows why: She is a drákon, a rare, enchanted being with astonishing magical abilities.

As war hits Britain’s shores, and Lora reels from an unimaginable loss, she finds that her powers come with grave and dangerous responsibilities. At the request of Armand Louis, the darkly mysterious boy whose father owns Iverson, Lora will spend her summer at his lavish estate. To help the war effort—and to keep Lora by his side—Armand turns his home into a military hospital, where Lora will serve as a nurse. For Armand is inescapably drawn to her—bound to her by heart-deep secrets and a supernatural connection that runs thicker than blood.

Yet while Lora tries to sort out her own feelings toward Armand, fate offers an unexpected surprise. Lora discovers there is another drákon, a prisoner of war being held in Germany. And that only she, with her newly honed Gifts, will be able to rescue him.

With Armand, Lora will cross enemy lines on an incredible mission—one that could bond her to Armand forever, or irrevocably tear them apart.

Beautifully written, deeply romantic, and filled with daring adventure and magic, The Deepest Night is a mesmerizing novel of the enduring pull of destiny, and the eternal strength of love

My Rating: 4.5/5

A brilliant sequel! If you adored The Sweetest Dark, you will love The Deepest Night just as much. 
Everything that was amazing in book 1 is just as amazing in book 2.
The atmosphere was amazing, just as it was in book 1. I felt like I was truly in WWI era Europe. And the magic surrounding Lora and Armand was palpable in the atmosphere of the book. It made me feel absolutely immersed in the story.

Lora grew in this book. For one, she began to master her transformations into smoke and, from there, into a dragon. But she became a stronger character in every way. She had to move past Jesse's death and come to terms with her feelings for Mandy and their bond together as two of the last few drakons left in the world. And, she had to do this while plunging into a war torn Europe to save the newly discovered third drakon. She definitely proved herself. I already liked her character, but, now, I truly admire her. 

We get to know Mandy much more in this book and every bit of it made me adore him even more than I already did. There was so much depth to him, from his feeling for Lora, to his confusion about his father, and his grief about his brother. He might be an aristocrat raised in leisure, but don't let that fool you. He is remarkably strong and isn't afraid to face danger or get his hands dirty. He was definitely a worthy hero. 

The romance between him and Lora is explored more in this book. Throughout it, both characters come to terms with their feelings with each other (though Lora had more trouble doing to that Mandy). I thought it was very sweet how Mandy knew already that he loved Lora and would wait for her no matter what. It was so cute. And the possibility of a relationship becomes clear to both them and the reader. Though the romance wasn't the main focus of the book, you can feel it constantly simmering underneath everything else.

Though Jesse is technically dead, that doesn't mean we don't see any of him in this book. He was there the whole time, watching over Mandy and Lora and guiding them. I still adore him. His complex emotions as he watched over the drakons and saw the love of his life start to move on to someone else made my heart ache for him. 

The plot was fast-paced for the most part. There were a few instances where it dragged a little. But, it wasn't a huge problem. I was still hooked the entire time. The thrills, surprises, and roller coaster of emotions had me on the edge of my seat. There are definitely some shocking twists in this book that made my jaw drop. And the ending has me dying to get my hands on the next book. I have to know what happens next! 

The Deepest Night was amazing, brilliant, just absolutely lovely. If you loved book 1, you will adore book 2 just as much. YA romance lovers, you have to read this series!

Thanks to Edelweiss and Random House Publishing-Bantam for a copy!
Featured Freebie:
Today, I have a YA that sounds good: Everblue by Brenda Pandos. Go forth and get it for free!

She wanted her life to change ... he wanted his to stay the same.

Seventeen-year-old Ashlyn Lanski is tired of her boring, single life. Swimming and spending time with Tatiana, her best friend, are her only sanctuary. The girls plan to leave their drab lakeside town far behind for college, and Ash hopes to finally ditch her longtime crush for Finley, Tatiana's twin brother. But when Tatiana and her family fail to return home after a family emergency, Ashlyn chooses to do something drastic to find them.

Finley Helton and his family are good at blending in as they run their sailing charter business in Lake Tahoe. But together, they guard an ancient secret. When a not so routine meeting forces Finley, Tatiana and their mother to return to Natatoria and Fin's father on a dangerous mission, Fin can't stay caged up for long.

Secrets lurk beneath the deep blue waters of Lake Tahoe, and a simple lifesaving kiss could change their lives forever.

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