DARK­EST HOUR BE­FORE DAWN

Foreword Reviews - - Spotlight - JOSEPH S. PETE

Char­lie Co­chet, Dream­spin­ner Press, Soft­cover $14.99 (224pp), 978-1-63533-608-5 Ac­tion scenes are writ­ten cin­e­mat­i­cally, and it’s not dif­fi­cult to imag­ine fights play­ing out on a movie the­ater screen.

Char­lie Co­chet’s Dark­est Hour Be­fore Dawn is the ninth in­stall­ment in the THIRDS se­ries, a para­nor­mal gay ro­mance saga about a mil­i­ta­rized law en­force­ment team of The­ri­ans, hu­mans that shape-shift into an­i­mals. It fo­cuses on the fiery but on-again, off-again ro­mance be­tween Team Leader Se­bas­tian Hobbs and Chief Med­i­cal Ex­am­iner Hud­son Col­bourn. The briskly paced novel is packed with ex­cit­ing ac­tion, steamy sex scenes, melo­dra­matic pas­sion, and ten­der mo­ments of ro­mance.

THIRDS is an elite team that sub­dues shape-shift­ing bad­dies with tran­quil­izer darts or a “quick punch to the muz­zle.” Hud­son and Se­bas­tian rekin­dle a flame and draw nearer. Seb strives to pro­tect his team­mate and lover as en­e­mies hunt Hud­son down, he goes feral, and his brother Al­fie re­turns from the grave.

The book fea­tures sharp and hu­mor­ous di­a­logue like “If I don’t get at least a six-tier wed­ding cake with enough sugar to power the next shut­tle launch, I’mma cut a bitch.” The novel ex­cels at ac­tion, whether in ensem­ble fight se­quences or boudoir scenes. Sex scenes are erot­i­cally charged but never gra­tu­itous. They’re grounded in char­ac­ters that are de­vel­oped fur­ther, such as by hav­ing them flirt while shar­ing memories about past bat­tles in air hockey, pool, and Mario Kart.

Erotic scenes are well writ­ten and de­tailed. Prose veers away from cliché and to­ward feel­ing: “A shiver racked through Hud­son, and he closed his eyes. Be­ing in Seb’s arms brought a flood of want through him.” Writ­ing rips along with fe­roc­ity, lead­ing to in­ti­mate and of­ten con­fes­sional pil­low talk that lends an emo­tional depth.

Ac­tion scenes are writ­ten cin­e­mat­i­cally, and it’s not dif­fi­cult to imag­ine fights play­ing out on a movie the­ater screen. The plot zips along. The ro­mance burns brightly. Co­chet gives rea­sons to care about the char­ac­ters. The novel would be in­ter­est­ing to any­one who’s read the pre­vi­ous THIRDS books, who ap­pre­ci­ates well-writ­ten gay ro­mance with a su­per­nat­u­ral bent, or any­one who’s re­ally into sto­ries with shape-shift­ing an­i­mals.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.