Genre: Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult
London, April 1812. Eighteen-year-old Lady Helen Wrexhall is on the eve of her debut presentation to the Queen. Her life should be about gowns and dancing, and securing a suitable marriage. Instead, when one of her family's housemaids goes missing, Lady Helen is drawn to the shadows of Regency London.
There, she finds William, the Earl of Carlston. He has noticed the disappearance, too, and is one of the few who can stop the perpetrators: a cabal of powerful demons that has infiltrated every level of society. But Lady Helen’s curiosity is the last thing Carlston wants—especially when he sees the searching intelligence behind her fluttering fan. Should Helen trust a man whose reputation is almost as black as his lingering eyes? And will her headstrong sense of justice lead them both into a death trap?
In The Dark Days Club, internationally best-selling author Alison Goodman introduces readers to a heroine who is just as remarkable as Eona—and yet again reinvents an established literary genre, making it her own.
I was so excited about this book. I first heard about it on LoveReading in December and I couldn’t believe I had to wait for the book to be released! I then had to wait for my birthday as it was on my bookish birthday list. Thankfully, I finally got it and read it as soon as I had a chance. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I have a few thoughts.
I’ll Begin With The Bad
I know I said I was insanely excited, well that led to me having high expectations, which can often lead to a bit of disappointment. It wasn’t my expectations which were the issue though, it was the writing style. I got used to it quite quickly, but it took time. It’s very formal and difficult to adapt to the writing style. For those not eager enough to keep reading it could very easily drive them away.
Not only does the writing put you off a bit, but the story itself took a while to… you know… start! I was reading away and I kept waiting for the things which are revealed in the blurb to actually happen. Where were the demons? Where were the revelations about The Dark Days Club? Where was the action because, whilst I love a good regency book, that’s not what I wanted when I started reading. Thankfully, the story gets going and you are completely absorbed, but that did annoy me waiting for something more substantial than a small rebellion against her strict uncle to happen.
But That’s Just me Trying to Be Well Rounded In My Review
Look, I know I’ve been really negative, but that is not even an accurate representation of this book. Yes, it’s slow and the writing put me off when I first had to adjust to it, but once I got stuck in I was hooked. I wanted to know what was happening with Helen. What happened with her parents? I wanted to punch her uncle in the face. Where on earth has this Carlston bloke had been? Did he kill his wife? What about this mentor bloke? And, seriously, what is with this bloke that keeps hanging around? Is he a good guy? Can I trust him? Why is he such a wet blanket? Why is her brother so negative? How have there not been more clues in life? And what is the big bad lurking around?
I know that some people may have felt that it was slow. I felt it was slow, but then it’s a first book setting up a complex world and Helen is restricted by the era she lives in. It’s not like she could wonder off and not tell anyone where she was going and then come back again. She lived in an era where her time was accountable to her guardians, she was required to have a chaperone in most circumstances and her days were hardly her own. It meant that whilst there was this fantastic world out there she wished to explore but simply couldn’t.
I think this very smartly explained the stop start nature of the book and the fact that the central point was essentially what life Helen wished to pursue. She had choices to make and you can see the stark difference in the slow, sedate, and quite honestly dull pace of her everyday life in comparison to her fast-paced and exciting life with The Dark Days Club. I really enjoyed how the story developed (you know, once it did) and I was intrigued by it.
In The End, I Loved It
I gave this book five stars for a reason. I was sucked in. I was hooked. I was utterly fascinated and could not stop reading. I had all these questions and I cannot wait for the next book. This one was very much build up for the next. I can see all the potential and I think that helped in the high rating. I can tell there was a good reason for being excited and I’m glad I chose to read it. It’s fantastic and I cannot wait for the next one. Don't get put off, all the potential is here for something great. I think once the next book comes out you’ll get a more in depth story and it’ll be worth it. Now, I just need to find Goodman’s Eon books.
Have you ever read the book where you liked it for the potential of the story, especially when it’s the first book?