Thursday, 3 November 2011

Book Review: Darker Still by Leanna Renee Hieber

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire; Original edition (Nov 2011)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1402260520
  • ISBN-13: 978-1402260520

The Picture of Dorian Gray meets Pride and Prejudice, with a dash of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
New York City, 1882. Seventeen-year-old Natalie Stewart's latest obsession is a painting of the handsome British Lord Denbury. Something in his striking blue eyes calls to her. As his incredibly life-like gaze seems to follow her, Natalie gets the uneasy feeling that details of the painting keep changing...
Jonathan Denbury's soul is trapped in the gilded painting by dark magic while his possessed body commits unspeakable crimes in the city slums. He must lure Natalie into the painting, for only together can they reverse the curse and free his damaged soul.

Natalie Stewart leads us through the story of Darker Still, a haunting romance with a dark edge. Natalie is different to other girls her age – she isn’t attending parties, dinners and events in the hopes of finding a suitable match. She has just returned home from boarding school at a convent where her abnormality was hidden from society. Natalie is a mute, and has been since witnessing her mother’s death at a very tender age.

But things are about to change for Natalie. When she overhears her father and his friends discussing a supposedly haunted painting of a rich and handsome British lord, Natalie is intrigued and gripped by the story…and knows she has to see the painting for herself.

Natalie was a charming character, and the story gothic and dark but with a loving romance to take the edge off. Darker Still had a mesmerising quality to it with a fascinating storyline. However, I found the fact that the book was written in diary format stilting and distracting. While their romance was tender and sweet, Denbury’s and Natalie’s journey to love felt false and rushed, like the reader was ‘told’ how they felt, rather than showing us and making it feel more lifelike.

Darker Still is a great read for YA romance fans who like a dark edge to their books. 


Fairday Morrow 6 November 2011 at 11:10  

This book sounds interesting. I like the premise of the story. I may add it to my list of books to read- so it is nice to know that the romance portion of the book might be less developed (told not showed). :)

Thanks for sharing!

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