Reviewed: May 29, 2010
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Midnight Trilogy, Book 1
Rating: 4 Stars
Length: 272 Pages
Formats: Print, eBook
Dr. Emily Drake is a very special psychologist. She sees demons. And vampires. And shifters. And a legion of Other supernatural beings that inhabit the world alongside us. She's one of the few full humans who know of the existence of Others but she's also got a bit of a leg up - she's the only one she's met who can sense them like she can. Known as the Monster Doctor among Others, she uses her empathic abilities to aid those creatures who go bump in the night, because in Dr. Drake's world, just because they bump doesn't mean they don't have issues. The Others are like us in one very important way - some are good to varying degrees, and some...well, some aren't. The problem is that when an Other is evil, the level of carnage can multiply exponentially. When the ravaged body of a human is discovered - one who definitely went the way of fangs and claws - who else but the Monster Doctor could ever hope to help the police in general, and one very sexy shifter, Detective Colin Gyth in particular, profile and stop this psychopathic Other from painting the city red.
This is my first foray into books by Cynthia Eden and I'm happy to note that it was a very pleasant trip. Well...perhaps pleasant isn't quite the right word...
Hotter After Midnight, book one of the Midnight Trilogy, was a nice surprise. Eden has created a believable world full of interesting paranormal characters and paired it with a decent romantic suspense plot. The blend works well together and as I'm a huge fan of both paranormal romance and romantic suspense, this juxtaposition impressed me.
The lead characters, Emily and Colin, were sizzling hot together, and I think the development of their relationship was one of the more satisfying I've read recently because of the level of communication between them. It was nice to read a couple that could admit potentially embarrassing things about themselves, and having a female lead that was both unashamedly sexual and unapologetically strong-willed tempered with some professed insecurities and a realistic awareness of self was not only refreshing, but much appreciated.
The plot was strong and it moved quickly, increasing threat going hand in hand with the burgeoning relationship between Emily and Colin. There was a nice balance there. There could have been a bit more depth given to their backstory and character development, and I wasn't totally thrilled with the conclusion of the mystery, as I think it became less about solving the crimes and more about the thing responsible tipping its hand (my personal preferences lie with the former), but I wasn't so turned off that it ruined anything for me. The sex scenes were smoking hot and deliciously graphic, though once that yummy wall was breached the sexual relationship took up a bit too much of the story. I'm not complaining about that, per se, but I wonder if there'd been a bit less of it if my other slight concerns would have been more fully addressed. There were a few unanswered questions, secondary and ancillary characters that could've been fleshed out more, and a couple of things I would have enjoyed more had they been given more time to develop, but for what was here, I am a very satisfied reader and intend to continue on with the trilogy and more of Eden's books. Great read.
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