This is a Quickie Review. For the full review, please visit The Romanceaholic
Expected Release Date: October 1, 2011 (Available Now!)
Imprint: Avon Impulse
Author’s Website: http://kckleinbooks.com/
My Source for This Book: Gift from the author
Part of a Series: Possibly*
Series Best Read In Order: N/A
Steam Level: Steamy
Dark, gritty, and utterly entrancing, this book absolutely blew my socks off.
Let me backtrack for just a moment. To be perfectly honest, things got off to a bit of a slow start for me. The first three chapters had me a bit wary — Kris, with her perfect manicure, carefully tamed and colored curly hair, cartoon-character panties, and rather cowardly attitude seemed far too weak to be a heroine of any sort of post-apocalyptic, futuristic story, and to be honest, my assessment was correct. That Kris absolutely was too weak to be a heroine.
However, Chapter Four is where the book really starts to shine, when Kris is catapulted into a world of pain, fear, tough decisions, and horrible sacrifices. Completely out of her element, she does what any modern day woman would do — she flounders, badly. Stubborn, angry, frightened, indignant, mouthy, and impulsive, she is quite literally her own worst enemy in a world that she neither belongs in nor understands.
Her relationship with ConRad gets off to what is quite possibly the rockiest of starts imaginable — thinking she’s an alien spy, he’s fully prepared to torture her for information, and makes no qualms about threatening her, physically hurting hurt, and doing whatever else may be necessary to coerce her into telling him the truth. He can’t believe she could possibly be from the past, and even if she is, she’s a danger to everyone in the compound. ConRad is a hardened warrior who has lived his entire life making tough decisions and sacrifices for the greater good of both their compound and of mankind in its entirety. He’s tough. He’s brutal in his decision-making. He’s unapologetically in charge and not afraid to use his authority as he sees fit, even when it tramples on the rights of others.
And I adored him.
This book is dark. It’s bloody. It’s violent. All of the characters, not just the main protagonists, are put through literal hell more times than I can count. And yet out of that darkness bloomed an absolutely gorgeous love story against seemingly impossible odds. Both ConRad and Kris have had quite a bit of trauma in their pasts, and throwing in her tendency to lie to him, and his utterly devastating betrayal of her, and it truly seemed as if these two characters never had a chance. Yet, I believed in their romance. Two lost souls, surrounded by unspeakable horror, finding solace in each other? Utterly and absolutely delicious.
Yes, this book had a few minor issues. There were some unanswered questions in the world-building, only a fly-by mention of why there weren’t a ton of paradoxes created by the time travel, and at one point I found it very hard to believe that Kris had emotionally recovered so quickly from what was a truly horrible betrayal and some of the most brutal torture I’ve ever read about in a romance. But you know what? I don’t care. Even with all of those things, I loved this book so much I want to marry it and have its babies (if, you know, I weren’t married already, and it weren’t both illegal and creepy to marry a book), and I am desperately hoping I am able to get my hands on more of this author’s writings in the future.
A very raw 5/5 Stars*There is a sci-fi novella planned for February release based in the same world but with different characters. Details have not yet been worked out as to whether or not there will be an actual sequel to Dark Future (but oh how I hope so!).