Surrender the Dark

Author: Tibby Armstrong

Publisher: Random House

Rating: 3.5 stars

Buy Links: Amazon

Type: Novel

Received from Publisher


Blurb:  As a provocative series of paranormal temptation begins, a vampire king seduces the supernaturally gifted man hunting him. But when the stakes are literally life or death, their struggle for control is no game.

Benjamin Fuller is a hunter, born and bred. Blinded as a child by the vampire who slaughtered his family, he’s blessed with a second sight that allows him to catch and kill his quarry. What his gift can’t help him see coming is his fierce, almost carnal attraction to the mystery man who claims to be a fellow hunter and whose touch triggers both lust and revulsion. When he gains the upper hand, Benjamin vows to bring his enemy to his knees.

After many years spent in exile, the only one who can help restore Tzadkiel Dragoumanos to his rightful place as War King is a blind hunter with golden curls, a lithe dancer’s physique, and distinctive facial scars—scars Tzadkiel gave him two decades ago. The mere scent of Benjamin Fuller provokes an unwelcome rush of insatiable desire. Yet to win an all-out supernatural war, Tzadkiel must resist the ravenous hunger to possess his prey—for now.


Review:  Benjamin was raised by a fanatic family. They’re vampire Hunters. They capture and torture one of the three kings of the vampires while Ben is just a child. Ben has a moment where his humanity takes over the hate and fear instilled by his uncle that causes the vampire to free himself. Though blinded the vampire leaves him as the sole survivor and the last of the known Hunters. Revenge and duty fuel Ben throughout his life. He feels it’s his responsibility to eradicate vampires. He as two friends that help him but he has to be the one to send their sole from the body. Years lady as an adult The War King that murdered his family reappears. Ben finds he’s no match for the War King and is forced to help him. The War King’s once stronghold over Boston is gone. The power and control claimed by the witches. To regain his full power he needs to find an ancient cup that amplifies the blood he drinks from it. What he needs is the cup and the blood of the last known Hunter.

IF I was rating this book on the world building it’s a solid 4. My favorite part of this book was the turf war between magical beings. How they all play into the power struggle and the lengths they will all go to for survival. Mainly fighting beside those that were their supposed enemies before. There were some holes here and there but I was intrigued by the world created. I also don’t really know why they all ended up in Boston of all places but whatever. The book starts off overly descriptive pulling me from the story itself but does taper off as you continue reading. I had a hard time getting into the book after the initial torture scene. I did settle in once the War King comes back into the picture. Ben is kind of gruff and emo. He’s angry at his life and has guilt he obviously isn’t dealing well with. The build up to the epic battle scene kind of falls flat. It’s left open with no resolution beyond they live to fight another day.

The part of this book I found frustrating was the relationship between the vampire War King and Ben the Hunter. I usually love an enemy to lovers trope but this one felt overly dramatic. For most of the book they hate each other which I get because there’s some ugly history there. The War King killed Ben’s family but to be fair they tortured him. He would have died in their torture chamber basement if he hadn’t. He does spare Ben. Ben knows his uncle was cruel and never really questions his claims vampires are evil. Ben just accepts they’re all killers that much be destroyed. While in reality his family are also killers. Of vampires. Ben kills vamps throughout his life. To the War King Ben is the monster for murdering his people. The vamps do not drain people or feed without consent. Something Ben doesn’t know. Basically Ben is mislead by his uncle. Doesn’t change their ugly history. Despite that history and their intense hate their lust is fierce. I have enjoyed reading this type of thing before but here it felt forced. I couldn’t even really get into the guys. Their uncontrollable lust and later love just didn’t work for me. It actually drags the story down IMO. I did like it enough to read the next one. I certainly found the story compelling despite the romantic storyline. The MCs are together now so hopefully that page has finally turned and they can all get back to taking down the witches.

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