Monday, November 3, 2014

**Pre-Release Book Review** THE DARKEST TOUCH (Lords of the Underworld #11) by Gena Showalter

RELEASE DATE: November 25, 2014


From New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter comes the long-awaited story of Torin, the most dangerous Lord of the Underworld yet…

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.


They would be a couple, she decided. Touchpleasurehad been denied her for far too long. A fact his presence had never allowed her to forget. Hed had other girlfriends so he knew how to handle a romantic relationship. They could do this, could make this work. And they would be vigilant, cautious, never courting danger.
All she had to do was get him to agree.
There was no better time to try. “Im dirty, she an- nounced. Absolutely filthy, and Im going to take a bath.
Good for you.” So mocking.
So unaware of his coming fall.
Be a dear and help me remove my dress, she said. A strangled sound left him. It has no ties, no zipper.
You tug it on and off.
Well, good news, then. As strong as you are, you shouldnt have any problems.
His gaze swept over her and heated. He licked his lips, as if he could already taste her. What game are you playing, princess?
“Does it matter?
Yes. And why the hell are you looking at me like that?”
Like what?
Like Im a hero. Im not a hero. Im a villain.
Did he not realize that only made her want him more? Well, be a good little villain and help me out of my dress.
No. His tone dovetailed into guttural as he added, Im not going near you.
Hes definitely tempted. How thin was his control? Very well. Ill near you. Hips swaying, she closed
the distance between them. She reached out.
He jerked away only to returncloser.
She wrapped her fingers around his wrists and guided his hands to her hips.
He resisted. At first.
Relax, warrior. Were protected by our clothes.
His fingers clenched around her and held on tight. Did he think she would f loat away like a forgotten balloon?
Whats…next? he gritted.
Not exactly surrender, but close enough.
She leaned forward, careful as her breath fanned over his ear. All you need to do is feel good.
I can do that. He tugged her against him. Suddenly they were f lush, the softest parts of her cradling the hard- est parts of him. A growl rose from low in his chest as if, in this stolen moment, hed regressed into little more than an animal. Im doing it right now.
The pleasurethoughts of being careful evaporated like mist. Would you like to do more?

More. Yes. His lips parted as he fought for breath. Eyes glazing with a wildness shed never seen from any- one other than condemned prisoners, he squeezed her hard enough to bruise. Im going to take more, and youre going to like it.



I think it was in 2010 when I discovered this series and went on a Lords of the Underworld binge, so you can say I am a pretty big fan of this series.  I typically inhale these books and am left waiting an eternity (not really) for the next one to come out, so when there was an opportunity to read The Darkest Touch for a pre-release review I click that sign up link fast!  If you have been reading this series from the start (which I suggest you do) you have probably been dying to get your hands on Torin's story, like me.  I have been craving this story for years and I could not wait to see what magic Gena Showalter would weave to get Torin a soulmate.

The Darkest Touch is a hefty book at just under 500 pages.  I while I am used to Gena Showalter's writing and usually when you are reading one book you get other stories all happening at the same time which catches you up on past books and keeps certain plot points rolling (and I love that), this was pretty long.  If you have never read a Lord of the Underworld book before I would not jump into The Darkest Touch (which is book 11) and Torin's story as your first introduction to this series. While you could read this as a stand alone, part of the beauty of this series is how each book builds on each other and how all the characters from past books keep re-appearing, so I'd suggest you grab up The Darkest Night first.   Heck, I have been reading this series from book one and I still had to use the glossary (thank you, Gena for that) to look up characters and jog my memory on some things (its a lot of information to hold in your brain).

Oh, Torin!  I have waited and waited for him to find love and what a pair he and the Red Queen, Keeley make!  There is tension, there is crazy heat, there is angst and there is temptation all throughout their story.  Torin, is the keeper of Disease and can cause sickness (think plague) with just a touch from his bare skin.  Keeley is a powerful Curator that is feared in most of the realms and is on a mission to kill and avenge.  Watching these characters come together from wanting to kill each other, to can't stay away from each other was a great journey.  Gena Showalter does a fantastic job of getting you inside each character's head so we understand their feelings, vulnerabilities and their desires.  I love the way each character in this series is written, each one is unique and entertaining and Torin is one of my favorite tortured souls.  

The Darkest Touch was a lot to take in, not only in how long the story was, but in how the story progressed.  While I loved Torin getting his story finally, I think this book could have been 1/3 shorter and gotten more to the point faster and still be a great book.  The back and forth between Torin and Keeley and the angst got to be a little too much.  I did love seeing past characters pop into this book in surprising ways (you will have to read to find out what I am talking about here) and I always enjoy when we get teasers of what book we might be getting next, could it be Cameo's story finally?  Or Williams?  Even though this story wasn't everything I was hoping for it was pretty damn good and will definitely be buying up the next book in this series in a hot second.

If you have been a fan of the Lords of the Underworld from the beginning you are going to enjoy Torin and Keeley's story and get excited about what is coming next for this series.  Gena Showalter shows us once again how creative and driven this group of warriors is to find Pandora's box and free themselves from their curse all while creating new connections and units within this great "family".       Go 1-click The Darkest Touch and see how Torin's story unfolds.


If Gena Showlater can reach 15,000 pre-order for The Darkest Touch before the November 25th release date, Gena Showalter will: 
  •  Post a never before seen excerpt from The Darkest Touch 
  •  Select one winner for a Swarovksi Two-Tone Crystal Butterfly Pendant Necklace 
  •  Select winners for 1 of 10 signed posters of the Darkest Touch cover, just in time for Christmas.

To enter The Darkest Touch Pre-Order Campaign, visit for details. 


Gena Showalter is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author whose books have appeared in Cosmopolitan and Seventeenmagazines, as well as Entertainment Weekly. Her novel Red Handed has been optioned by Sony Television. Critics have called her books “sizzling page-turners” and “utterly spellbinding stories,” while Showalter herself has been called “a star on the rise.” Her mix of humor, danger and wickedly hot sex provides wildly sensual page-turners sure to enthrall. 

Exclusive Q&A:

-How do you keep track of all the characters, plots and goings on in this series now that it is 11 books long?

I’d like to say I keep this amazingly detailed document with every detail from every book and all I have to do it glance over it to remember. Yeah, I’d like to say that. It’d certainly make my life easier if I had one. But alas…I either reread the books, which has become increasing difficult because there are so many in the series, or I rely on my memory—I think I just saw my husband shudder. But I also rely on my amazing editor. She’s awesome!

-Was there one story in the series that was harder to write than the rest?

The Darkest Lie was a big ole pain to write. The hero couldn’t utter a single word of truth without suffering with agonizing pain for days. Which was why he lied about everything. Instead of telling the heroine she was pretty, he had to tell her she was as ugly as dirt. Super romantic,right?

The Darkest Seduction was a pain to write, as well. I did not want Paris paired with Sienna, his Lady love, so I tried writing him with another woman. He protested. The baby! After three tries, I finally gave in and let the guy have what he wanted.

The Darkest Touch was also a pain, but only because I had two false starts. Once I got things figured out, everything flowed and I fell head over heels for Torin and Keeley.