If you’ve read Eternal Seduction, then you already know Drake Black (one of my favs.) I have to say there’s something about Drake. He’s a man’s man and a woman’s dream. Anyway, for this book, I was intrigued to learn more about the female who caught his eye. Drake is a preternatural assassin who believes he’s only good at one thing; killing. Living among the vampires and the werewolves, hidden by the Veil, he usually is hired to kill. As an assassin, Drake effortlessly annihilates until one day he receives an unusual order to protect. And from that moment on his life would never be the same. His charge is Toni Tutoro, a fledgling (new vampire) and she’s an outright mess.
As fledgling, Toni turned a few years prior in the city of Chicago, in the place she called home. She learned early on that the vampires had hierarchy and rules, ones dictated the city’s Lord Christian and those above him. One of the most sacred rules is to not break the Veil that shields and separates the supernaturals from the humans. Fracturing that fragile wall can get a being killed, whether you’re human or not. Like a pawn in a deadly game, Tina did the unthinkable the instant she saw her human family murdered in cold blood by conspiring vampires. She lost is mind, demanding retribution and nearly lost her eternal life. Instead, the emotionally unstable fledgling was banned from the city, ordered to never return.
Three years later, Toni’s back in Chicago, begging Lord Christian to let her stay. Once she’s back, Drake receives his order of protection and he’s a bit out of place with the entire notion of protecting vs. killing. Still, he rallies and soon becomes intrigued by the spunky vampire vixen. Sure, Toni’s moods are like the wind and at first he’s having a difficult time trying to figure her out. But eventually, their attraction breaks down their barriers, sparking a deeper connection between the two.
What I love best about Jennifer Turner is she’s bold with her female heroines and their flaws. She takes paranormal romance and submerges it into a dark, menacing world. And she’s not afraid to take on difficult characters. In Book 1, there is Logan, a strung out, homeless junkie. In this tale, there is Toni, an emotional firecracker, with deep ties to the human world. Both Drake and Toni have difficulty fitting in and yet somehow, they fit together. There’s a ton of exciting sub plots and characters that I could go on and on about. Turner nails Toni’s evil vamp nemesis: Natasha Stryker. Odin and Oktober make appearances too but nothing is as delicious as Stefan Nelek. It wouldn’t be a DW novel without him pulling someone’s strings, now would it? I won’t tell you anything else, except that you’ll finally learn what Drake really is. He’s a *bleep!*
I enjoyed this book just as much as the first, probably more because of the new characters and the foreshadowing of what’s to come in the series. For me, Eternal Hearts is a 4.
Until next time, read a Darkness Within novel…the darker the better.