Title: The Darkest Touch
Series: Lords of the Underworld
Author: Gena Showalter
Release Date: November 25, 2014
Fierce immortal warrior. Host to the demon of Disease. Torin’s every touch causes sickness and death—and a worldwide plague. Carnal pleasure is utterly forbidden, and though he has always overcome temptation with an iron will, his control is about to shatter.
She is Keeley Cael. The Red Queen. When the powerful beauty with shocking vulnerabilities escapes from a centuries-long imprisonment, the desire that simmers between her and Torin is scorching. His touch could mean the end for her, but resisting her is the hardest battle he’s ever fought—and the only battle he fears he can’t win.
I was extremely excited to be awarded an ARC of The Darkest Touch in exchange for my honest opinion. Yes. I said awarded. That’s how I felt. Like I won the lottery. Lords of the Underworld has been one of my favourite book series and I’ve been waiting for Torin’s story.
Like the other Lords, Torin has been burdened with a demon. Unlike the others, his demon has prevented him from having any kind of physical contact with ANYONE. Whenever we’ve seen Torin in the past he’s usually behind a computer screen in his quarters, never able to join the other warriors in the battles they’ve faced. In this book we get to see Torin for the warrior that he is and so much more. He is deadly, strong, sexy, funny and incredibly clever. We also see how guilt is such a big part of who he is. Anyone that he’s touched has succumbed to horrible disease and died.
I worried how Gena Showalter was going to give Torin the love he deserved when just a simple touch would result in death. Enter Keeley Cael, The Red Queen. I have to say that she is by far one of my favourite female characters written in this series. What starts off as hatred and the need for vengeance becomes so much more. Keeley has been let down by every male in her life but this has not stopped her from being strong and fearless. I mean FEARLESS!!! Not even Torin’s demon, Disease, is enough to scare her. She gave as good as she got.
I absolutely loved the banter between Torin and Keeley. It was funny and sexy. Two very good things. The humour between them allowed me not to worry so much about how it would all end for them.
I cannot forget to mention Torin’s t-shirts. I loved them!!! If Ms. Showalter is reading this, now is the time that I suggest that she somehow make these t-shirts available to the public. I would buy at least one in a heartbeat. Ok…I would probably buy more than one but let’s keep that on the down-low.
I also can’t forget the other characters in this book. The other Lords and their significant others always add more to each book. It’s always nice to touch base with them and see what’s going on in the fortress. It also left me wondering who the next book would be about. I see at least four possibilities. All of which will be very exciting to read.
I loved, loved, loved this book and definitely gave it five of the yummiest, steamiest, smoothest lattes I’ve ever had.
She appeared in front of him, displaying more tanned skin than she concealed, her hair falling around her face in lush, golden waves. Her eyes glittered with remnants of her anger. Her lips were slightly swollen and pinker than usual.
“Temper much?” she quipped.
His relief was palpable. She hadn’t forgotten him! But the relief was quickly replaced by concern. “Are you all right? Did someone hit you?”
She blinked with confusion. “No. Why?” “Your lips are swollen.”
She rubbed them, color heating her cheeks. “Someone didn’t hit me, but someone sure did hit on me.”
Hit on her. As in kissed her.
Already on edge, Torin. Utterly. Erupted.
He forgot everything he’d planned to do and say and got in Keeley’s face, snarling, “Who was it?”
Her eyes widened. “Hades. Why?”
“You dare ask why? You belong to me! We agreed. You do not kiss other men, Keeley. Ever. Have you for- gotten my rules?”
Her jaw dropped, and she gasped out a few unintelligible words as if she couldn’t quite figure out what to say to him.
He stood in place, breathing too quickly, too heavily, his throat and lungs burning. He reached for her, but as so many times before, fisted his hands and dropped them just before contact. This is crazy. I’m crazy. I have to leave.
“Are you…thinking about touching me?” she asked, her eyes widening again.
No, she had to leave. He could not be in public right now. “Go shopping. Buy yourself something pretty. My treat.” He basically tossed his credit card at her. He should be calm by the time she finished. “Come back in an hour. Maybe two. Actually, we’ll reconvene to- morrow.”
“You are,” she said. “You’re thinking… Even craving me. You don’t like the thought of another man’s hands on me, and you want to replace the memory with your hands.”
That. Yes. Hades would die, and Torin…Torin would touch this woman and never stop.
He gnashed his molars. “Last chance, Keeley. I sug- gest you take it and leave.” Soon. His control was almost completely shredded.
“No way. You’re the big bad warrior, yet I’ve had to come on to you time and time again. I’ve had to battle within myself—worth the price or not worth it. Well, it’s your turn.”
“There is no damn way you just suggested I haven’t done the same. I’ve battled.”
“When have you ever caved without prompting from me? You’ve resisted me so easily, always walking away. Sure, you’ve snarled while you’ve done the walking, but still you left me behind. So, tell me. When did you ever—”
“So easily?” he roared. Had she just said so easily? She had no clue about the intensity of his need—but he would teach her better.
Torin cupped her by the nape, yanked her close and smashed his mouth against hers. The kiss was a brutal assault meant to silence her, to dominate and possess. He held her still, making her take it, take everything. But the moment she softened against him, welcomed him inside her mouth, the darkness churning inside him switched gears. From the need to punish and master to the need to seduce and please.
This was Keeley. His princess. She deserved his best. He gentled the pressure, rolling his tongue inside her mouth, learning her all over again, tasting her. Summer berries and melted honey. So sweet. And mine. All mine. He framed her cheeks, angled her head and rolled his tongue just a little deeper. This time, she met him with a roll of her own.
That was his undoing.
Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of the wildly popular White Rabbit Chronicles, the Angels of the Dark, the Lords of the Underworld, and the Otherworld Assassins series. In addition to being a National Reader’s Choice and RITA nominee, her romance novels have appeared in Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazine, and have been translated in multiple languages. She lives in Oklahoma with her family and menagerie of dogs, and truly believes love conquers all.