For me, reading a Christine Feehan book is like coming home. She is one of the first romance authors that I followed with any sort of dedication. Most of her books are the same with a little variation in plot, but that is ok. I know what to expect going in and that is why I read them.
Dark Storm introduces two characters I have never heard of before. We are back in the rainforest instead of the Carpathian Mountains and we follow characters that I would consider off shoots of the main ones. That is they have been introduced over time and were not the people who made me fall in love with this series. Dax, the good guy, and Mitro, the bad guy, have been kept in a volcano for centuries. Is anyone else like me and wonder how we can keep adding the all-powerful characters into a series that seems to be top-heavy as it is? Anyway, Dax has been kept in the volcano for a long time in order to make sure the very evil, old and powerful Mitro does not escape and go on a killing rampage. But now when the tribute to keep Mitro entombed has failed to take place he is out and wants to destroy everything in his path. Dax and his lifemate Riley must stop that from happening.
Riley comes from a long history of women who were trusted with keeping the volcano sealed. Over time Mitro has become powerful enough to stop the current tribute. Riley is there now to work with Dax and correct the wrongness that is Mitro.
The plot was a pretty simple one but failed in its execution in several ways. Riley was second in line to perform the tribute. Her mother actually started the trip with her but then was hacked up by one of the villagers. Yes, that is correct. The villager used a machete to chop up Riley’s mom and other than the ten pages in which it happened I can’t say it was mentioned again. See if my mom had been hacked up with a knife and attacked by animals I would have dwelled on it longer than the hour it felt like Riley was upset about it. That part of the book really bothered me.
Another thing that bugged me was Riley and Dax’s relationship and how it happened overall. It wasn’t until 130 pages in that they finally met. Before that we were inundated with pages and pages of bugs and plants and wildlife. I didn’t get it. It was so much info dumping and there didn’t seem to be a point to it. These things were not pivotal to the story arc they were just things that came with this story.
Then when they finally met it was like wuh-wuh-wuh…so nothing. Neither character acted like a typical Feehan H/h. Dax was too mellow and Riley was too accepting. Where was my cat and mouse behavior that I have come to love and expect from these couples? Riley never once put up any resistance to being turned. Oh, I am going to be a blood sucker…as long as I can be with you dear. Dax wasn’t very possessive either. One of the men travelling with them mentioned Riley getting naked and the protest put up by Dax was weak at best. I want my alpha jerk! What happened to him??
So yes, some people might complain about the H/h’s being the same in each book in this series but that is why I read it! That is what I want! I have come to love these crazy characters and really missed them in this book. So much so that it made me really disappointed in this installment to the story. Hopefully, with the next book we can get back the Carpathian Mountains and back to the main story arc. I am ready for Skylar’s book. Final grade- C-
“It’s the way he looks at us,” Riley griped. The humidity was so high that every shirt Riley wore clung to her like a second skin. She had full curves and there was no hiding them. She didn’t dare raise her hands to lift her thick, braided hair off the back of her neck or he would think she was deliberately enticing him. “I really, really, wanted to smack that oaf. He stares at my breasts like he’s never seen a pair which is bad enough, but when he stares at yours…”
“Maybe he hasn’t ever seen breasts, dear,” Annabel said softly.
Riley tried to smother a laugh. Her mother could ruin a perfectly good mad with her sense of humor. “Well if he hasn’t, it’s for good reason. He’s disgusting.”