Wednesday, February 27, 2019

#BookReview – “After Dark” by Jayne Castle


Life is tough these days for Lydia Smith, licensed para-archaeologist. Seriously stressed-out from a nasty incident in an alien tomb, she is obliged to work part-time in Shrimpton’s House of Ancient Horrors, a very low-budget museum. She has a plan to get her career back on track, but it isn’t going well. Stuff keeps happening.

Take the dead body that she discovered in one of the sarcophagus exhibits. Who needed that? Finding out that her new client, Emmett London, is one of the most dangerous men in the city isn’t helping matters either. And that’s just today’s list of setbacks. Here in the shadows of the Dead City of Old Cadence, things don’t really heat up until After Dark.


In the first book in the Harmony series, Lydia Smith used to be a prestigious para-archaeologist but lost her career after suffering a two-day black out in the catacombs that run under Cadence City. Now she works at a low-key museum and has started up her own consulting agency.
Emmett London is Lydia’s first client, but things don’t get off to a good start. When they discover a body together minutes after meeting, their lives become intertwined with the theft of a family heirloom, the kidnapping of Emmett’s nephew, a second murder, blackmail, and lots of secrets.
On the planet of Harmony, there seems to be two kinds of people: the ones who can control ghost energy (ghost hunters) and the other that can control trapping energy (tanglers). It’s pretty confusing to me.
Anyway, Lydia is a tangler, and she’s very prejudiced against ghost-hunters, especially those who work for the Cadence Guild. Lydia and a good portion of the city believe the Guild is a step up from mobsters since they act as though they’re above the law. In many cases, they are.
I couldn’t connect well with Lydia and Emmett. She acted way too snobbish and superior. As an ex-Guild boss from Resonance City, Emmett knows how to keep secrets, but he kept Lydia in the dark for far too long and fueled her dislike for people in his profession. I couldn’t feel any romance or chemistry between them. All they seemed to do was argue, make out to avoid discussing their problems, and then argue some more because she didn’t trust his intentions toward her.
The book could use a light edit to fix a few misspelled words, etc. I sometimes had a hard time figuring out what was going on.
The story ends with a few unanswered questions. There’s not a cliffhanger, per se, but Emmett and Lydia’s relationship isn’t wrapped up. There’s a second book that features this couple, so hopefully their relationship will grow with more romance and trust between them.
Overall, I liked the story for the murder-mystery plot, but I wish I could’ve related to the H/h.
3 Stars

Disclaimer – I bought this book for my own enjoyment. I am not paid or compensated in any way, shape, or form for this honest review. I will not change or alter this review for any reason unless at my discretion.

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