I received this book for free from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
In the past year, I’ve taken a break from book tours. They attach a sense of obligation to books that I’ve never liked. While, that sense of obligation is still attached, I like the way Giselle runs Xpresso Book Tours. She provides the review copies really early so there’s no trouble getting it read in time for the tour. She sends out emails to tour hosts almost every day with upcoming tours so I can really pick what I want to read. Back when this tour sign-up was sent out, I decided I was going to take a gamble. I’ve been pretty over vampires ever since the craze that followed Twilight. Authors are still writing about vampires, but they’re also writing more exciting stories than “girl falls in love with vampire” or what have you. It’s refreshing.
Justus starts Welcome to the Darkness off just right. It’s immediately action-packed and fast-paced. It’s actually kind of horrific since Reed’s entire family dies. I think what’s really different about this book is that it isn’t a story about how some teenager who’s always had these powers they never understood or never knew they had. It’s about a kid who just watched his family die, then has to go through a huge change in his life. It doesn’t depend on the romance, though that is present. It’s also told form a boy’s point of view, which I always love. A huge chunk of YA is written about girls and marketed to girls. I always find it refreshing to read about boys. Justus does a good job keeping things engaging and sometimes a little on the scary side. I wasn’t as much a fan of Nathaniel. He’s a bit on the pretentious side. Justus develops him enough that I started to like him a little more by the end. If I have one complaint, it’s just the writing. There’s something about it that isn’t my speed. It distracted me occasionally. It wasn’t distracting enough to make me dislike the book. I still enjoyed it. I just think I would have liked it more if I hadn’t been ripped from the story a few times by thoughts about the writing style.
All in all, Welcome to the Darkness was a good read. I enjoyed the action and the characters, particularly Reed. I recommend this one to paranormal fiction lovers.