House of Darken by Jaymin Eve

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Title: House of Darken (Secret Keepers #1)
Author: Jaymin Eve
Release Date: June 1, 2018
Publisher: Jaymin Eve
Pages: 340
Source: Bought
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Overall: 3 STARS

SUMMARY 
Some rules are made to be broken.

When Emma moves to Astoria, Oregon, she is given two rules:

#1 – Don’t cross to “their” side of the street.

#2 – Don’t mess with the elites, especially Lexen Darken, top elite and resident bad boy.

While she finds this both weird and insulting, Emma has no actual intention of breaking these rules - until her guardians go missing. Now all bets are off. Only a single line separates her side of the street from the elites', and she's crossing it.

Captured and held by Lexen and his brothers, she learns the rules are in place for a very good reason. There's a secret world hidden in this small town which goes far beyond the one she knows and understands.

A world not for humans. 


MY THOUGHTS
Jaymin Eve's House of Darken is pure entertainment. It's one of those books where I just enjoy it and try not to question certain plot/characters because I know I'll just start picking things apart. Does it make sense that Emma moves into a gated community where one side of the street is filled with beautiful mansions while the other is rundown, small houses? No, it really doesn't at all... but whatever, just roll with it.

The plot spans over the course of maybe a week or so, and while the action and fantastical elements were fun to explore, I thought the character relationships were undeveloped. Emma simply didn't have enough time to get to know the new people in her life. I think I would've liked Emma more if her character didn't feel so inconsistent at times, mostly when it was an obvious ploy to bring her and Lexen together.

Emma and Lexen's relationship didn't have any naturalness; it was just expected that they'd be together. I like having some tension and chemistry in a developing romance, and this one felt forced. Lexen was supposed to be the resident bad boy... and I didn't see that at all. He was a protective brother and friend—there's nothing bad about that. I did enjoy unraveling the mystery/strangeness behind Astoria and learning the secret Lexen and his family were hiding. It's too bad the villain wasn't a surprise though.

I liked House of Darken, but I didn't fall in love with it. I mainly read it because I was in the mood for something paranormal, and at the time, I'd been impatiently waiting for the release for Strength to be released so I could have more Willa Knight and the hot Abcurse brothers. I still much prefer the Curse of the Gods series, which Jaymin Eve co-writes with Jane Washington. 

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