Requested-Review: WHISPERS IN THE DARK by Maya Banks

She came to him when he needed her the most

She came to him at his lowest point. The voice of an angel, a whisper in the dark. She’s the only thing that gets Nathan Kelly through his captivity, the endless days of torture and the fear that he’ll never return to his family. With her help, he’s able to escape. But he isn’t truly free, because now she’s disappeared and he’s left with an all-consuming emptiness as he struggles to pick up the pieces of his life. Did he imagine his angel? Or is she out there, needing his help as he’d once needed hers?

Now he rushes to save her before it’s too late

Shea has been on the run from people who will stop at nothing to exploit her unique abilities. She never wanted to drag Nathan, who’d already suffered so much, into danger, but she doesn’t have a choice so she reaches out to him for help. Finally face-to-face after having already formed a soul-deep bond in hell, their emotional connection is even more powerful than their telepathic one. Nathan refuses to consider ever letting her go again, but she worries they can never have a life free of the dangers that dog her every step. He’ll protect her with his every breath, but can he convince her that they are meant to face these threats together?

Title: WHISPERS IN THE DARK
Author: Maya Banks
Series: KGI/Kelly Family, book 4
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year of release: 2012, January 3
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Received a digital copy from author for review

First line: Shea Peterson’s eyelids flew open as she came instantly and fully awake.

Memorable Scenes:
– when Rusty invites Nathan to her graduation > choked up
– when Van, Ethan & Swanny catch up with Nathan and Shea > especially the moment with Swanny and Shea was awesome

Shea Peterson has a gift that enables her to connect and talk to people in their minds and take their pain and suffering. She’s resilient, protective of her sister, fierce and tough.

Nathan Kelly is a soldier kept imprisoned when a mission goes wrong. He’s loyal, capable, quiet and resilient. At first I couldn’t get a clear image of Nathan. I only got glimpses of his character. Understandably as the trauma of his captivity dominated his characterization but this also made it hard for me to connect with him as the hero of this book.

First I want to talk about what didn’t work for me in this 4th installment of the KGI series.

People who follow my blog and reviews know I am not a fan of paranormal elements in contemporary romance or romantic suspense, which is why I started WHISPERS IN THE DARK kinda reluctantly when I found out it had this paranormal element. There are a few authors who make RS with paranormal elements work for but this is the first time the element is introduced mid-series and I’m still on the fence how I feel about that.

At the start of the book I was really trying to suspend disbelief about Shea’s gift and trying to think of the book as a paranormal RS. But I kept wondering, where does the connection between Shea and Nathan come from. Randomness? Or is there a reason for the link? Has Shea done this before? In other words there were a lot of questions popping up in my head and I was hoping they would be answered as the story unfolded. They weren’t entirely.

The mind speak seriously bothered me in this book. Again, if it had been a PNR I could’ve overlooked it but this is a contemporary RS series and though I really enjoyed the romance and suspense I wasn’t wowed by the supernatural element that was clearly a very big part of the plot. I prefer these elements to be subtle in RS. But that’s my personal taste and preference. It doesn’t mean the book is bad or I didn’t enjoy this installment of the KGI Series because there were also things I really liked and loved about it.

I really liked the suspense part that weren’t the supernatural elements. The parts of finding Grace and identifying and going after the baddies were great and I really enjoyed that part of the suspense. I also enjoyed some surprising turns and twists in the plot I really didn’t see coming.

I loved the romance part of WHISPERS IN THE DARK. Though the supernatural element wasn’t my favorite part, the moment Nathan and Shea actually met brought the romance to the foreground in a great way. I did think the making love part came a bit quickly but again brilliantly written and it was hot as heck!

Another thing that makes me stick with this series is that, as always, the banter between the Kelly brothers and among the KGI teams was awesome. They are one constant in this series that never fails to please me. Regardless of what I thought of the plot or my dislike of supernatural abilities in romantic suspense I love Maya Banks’ writing. It’s intense, fast-paced and this book read like a dream. Once I started reading and got over the mind speak stuff I just couldn’t stop.

Though WHISPERS IN THE DARK wasn’t my favorite in the series so far, it still was a good read and a nice addition to the series. It was unique in the series, (nothing I hate more than carbon copies in a series) and fitting the characters as all previous books have been. Though the next book also has supernatural elements, I’m looking forward to it and to the other future books as I foresee lots of good stuff coming in this series.

Favorite Quotes:

“Quit looking like you just got a hand job from a drag queen,” Garrett muttered beside him.
“How the fuck do you know what I look like?” Donovan asked irritably. “It’s dark as shit out here.”
“Don’t need to see you to know you have that pinched, tight-ass look on your face. […]”

Their gazes locked, and he realized she meant to kiss him. Every part of his body and soul reached for her, strained for her, wanting her touch with a need
that verged on obsession. She licked her lips just before she pressed them to his. It was a little nervous gesture that melted his heart.
He reached up to frame her shoulders and he kissed her back, no longer bothering to hide the fact that he wanted her more than he wanted to breathe. He’d already pretty much given up breathing for her.
Their lips fused hotly. They fit. So goddamn perfect. Her body molded softly to his. Such a contradiction. Softness to his hardness. Smooth to his rough. Perfection against imperfection.

“Don’t hide from me, Nathan. Don’t hide your scars from me. I more than anyone know how you received them. They aren’t ugly. They’re beautiful. Honorable. Signs of courage and of unflagging determination.”

Oh hell. A warm, lush, naked woman coming on to him? Nothing in the military had prepared him for an onslaught like this. The never-surrender thing went right out the window, and he started waving the white flag like a dog wagging his tail.

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