A dark and tender post-apocalyptic love story set in the aftermath of a bloody war.
In a city where humans and Darklings are now separated by a high wall and tensions between the two races still simmer after a terrible war, sixteen-year-olds Ash Fisher, a half-blood Darkling, and Natalie Buchanan, a human and the daughter of the Emissary, meet and do the unthinkable—they fall in love. Bonded by a mysterious connection that causes Ash’s long-dormant heart to beat, Ash and Natalie first deny and then struggle to fight their forbidden feelings for each other, knowing if they’re caught, they’ll be executed—but their feelings are too strong.
When Ash and Natalie then find themselves at the center of a deadly conspiracy that threatens to pull the humans and Darklings back into war, they must make hard choices that could result in both their deaths.
Right from the start, this book reminded me of Veronica Ross’ ‘Under the Never Sky’ with its alternate first person view and its division between two races. And like that book, I had high hopes for this but it fell just a bit short.
So here you have Natalie, a human who is also the daughter of an Emissary. She’s the privileged girl who’s seen horrific things done to her family, but she’s a good person and doesn’t completely agree with how the government is running things. Ash is a half-blood Darkling- half human and half vampire-like being who lives in the human part of the city and is just trying to live as much as a normal life as possible. They meet at school and from there they go from not really liking each other to falling madly in love.
Frankly, I’m getting really tired of the “falling in love in an unrealistically short amount of time” cliché. Without giving anything away, I give them a bit of break on that because they didn’t seem to have much choice in the matter. Secrets are revealed to each of the characters and with them they will make sacrifices.
The pace of the story seems a bit rushed with its time frame set within a few weeks and there wasn’t much to be impressed by. However, what I did like about this book was the alternate POVs which I always find entertaining and the characters are likeable enough though a bit bland. I also like how there’s many types of Darklings which I hope we get to see more of in the second installment.
Rating: ★★★☆☆ 3/5 stars