Night Pleasures – Dark Hunter Series #1 – Sherrilyn Kenyon

Night Pleasures (Dark-Hunter Novels Book 1)
I am re-reading the Dark-Hunter series, starting with this book. There is another book before this one called Fantasy Lover which has a few of the same characters but it is more of a prequel to the series and this one is the first book that introduces Dark-Hunters so that is where I am starting.

This book was packed with information so I am going to start with some terms to make it easier to read the review.

Dark-Hunter – when a man or woman, usually a warrior, is killed or murdered, he cries out for one single act of vengeance so the goddess Artemis appears to them. She takes their soul in exchange for their oath to serve her, to hunt and kill Daimons. Wherever she touches them to remove their soul, she leaves a double bow mark that looks like a tattoo. She only takes the strongest and best warriors. Dark-Hunters cannot walk in sunlight and they have animal-like senses and fangs. They are not vampires nor do they feed off of humans. They are meant to walk alone and not have relationships other than one night stands.

If a Dark-Hunter dies before while Artemis has his soul, he or she becomes a Shade. A Shade is trapped in a corporal body but has no real form or substance. They can’t touch anything or be heard by anyone except for the Oracles. They thirst and hunger but cannot eat or drink.

DH mark

Apollites – A race of people made by Apollo with the intention that he would one day replace Zeus. He thought that he could create a race superior to humans. Apollites are stronger and taller than humans with psychic powers. Angered by this, Zeus exiled them to Atlantis.

When the Apollite queen became jealous of Apollo’s beloved human mistress, Ryssa, she ordered Ryssa and her newborn’s son to be killed and ripped apart and to make it look like animals did it. In sorrow and rage over this, Apollo cursed all Apollites to die painfully on their 27th birthday because that was how old Ryssa was. They also could no longer live in the daylight and had to live only off of Apollite blood. In doing this, he also cursed his Apollite son, Stryker.

Daimon – Some Apollites live longer because they have learned to suck the souls out of humans to extend their lives but they have to keep a steady diet of souls to live. Once they have taken a human soul, they become Daimons.

—————————

Amanda Devereaux’s family is a little on the weird side. She has seven older sisters and a twin who all are into the paranormal. One sister is a voodoo high priestess and another hunts vampires. Even her mom does spells. But Amanda likes her boring normal life and wants nothing to do with the paranormal. She is an accountant whose fiancé just broke up with her because he met her family and he couldn’t handle their weirdness.

When Amanda gets mistaken as her twin and gets kidnapped and handcuffed to a gorgeous blonde man, her life gets thrown right into the paranormal and it will never be the same.

The blonde man ends up being a Dark-Hunter, Kyrian of Thrace. He was the commander of the Greek army against Rome until his wife betrayed him and he was killed by his worst enemy. He cried out for vengeance as he died and became a Dark-Hunter and has been one for over two thousand years.

Amanda and Kyrian have been kidnapped by a Daimon named Desiderius who likes to play games with Dark-Hunters, preying off their fears and weaknesses before he kills them. Desiderius lets them go but tells Amanda and Kyrian that he’ll be hunting them.

Kyrian takes it upon himself to protect Amanda and they end up falling for each other. The problem is that Dark-Hunters are not allowed to have permanent lovers. They are allowed one-night stands and that is all. Now, Amanda wants to find a way to get Kyrian’s soul back from the goddess Artemis but they have to kill Desiderius first.

The Dark-Hunters have never encountered any Daimon like Desiderius. He’s stronger and has god-like powers that he shouldn’t have. He has already killed other Dark-Hunters and has lived for hundreds of years which is odd for what they know about Daimons. And now the Oracles are saying that only the Dark-Hunter with a soul can kill him.

It was weird to re-read this book. I have never re-read a book except for Narnia when I was a child so this was a new experience for me. I had forgotten the details and what exactly happened since it has been about ten years since I have read this book and it was like reading a lot of it for the first time. But at the same time, I knew most of what happened in the book and actually knew more than what the characters in the book knew because I have read the rest of the series. It is kind of like when you read a series and then it becomes a movie. It is still interesting and you pick up things you missed but you still know how it ends yet you are glued to you seat, not wanting to miss a thing. This book was still great the second time around.

I knew what to look for and was happy when certain characters were introduced. I had forgotten about how most came into the story. Also there was a lot of story building going on in this book

We (I say, “we” as in “we readers” even though it was only me who read it just because I feel a kinship with other Dark-Hunter fans…weird, I know) meet a bunch of beloved characters in this book.

We meet Talon, a Dark-Hunter who is the star of the next book, Night Embrace.

We meet Nick Gautier who is Kyrian’s Squire. I had forgotten that he was already 24 years old at the beginning of this series.

We hear about someone named Acheron who was the first Dark-Hunter and is the unofficial leader of all of the other Dark-Hunters but we don’t actually meet him until later in the book. He has green hair in this one. He tells Amanda that he is over eleven thousand years old and that he has unimaginable powers. Amanda notices his bird-like tattoo on his shoulder which we now know what it is but not at that time.

We briefly meet the goddess Artemis. She is scary. Acheron had welts and bruises on his back from a beating she gave him. She also has a hard time with colloquial phrases. Instead of saying, “You would be toast.” She says, “You would be baked bread.”

And we hear of other names that will come into play in later books.

I loved the book the first time and I loved it the second time.

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