A Darker Shade by Laura K. Curtis is a chilling suspense romance that will keep readers peeking through their fingers to try to see through to the happy ending while it looks like the story is on a crash course toward the worst.
If you can’t already guess, I was hooked!
Full disclosure: I was given a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my rating in any way.
Let’s dive in!
My Thoughts on A Darker Shade by Laura K. Curtis
This had everything I look for when I read tales that are in the romance genre; a wonderful character that you root for from page one, a tense setting, obstacles to overcome, and a heartwarming ending that will make you tear up and want to cheer.
But don’t let that distract you from the other keyword when describing this book! It was also wickedly suspenseful and chilling!
But about the plot! In this tale, we have a city girl named Molly who has been sent out to a remote home in Maine to be a live in nanny and tutor. Her goal is to build a relationship with twelve year old Liza, who has stopped speaking after she lived through a trauma. There’s a lot of money at stake if Molly succeeds with that goal, and that money can go a very long way for her and her family.
But when she arrives, it’s clear that things aren’t going to be as easy as she had hoped. The owner tries to dismiss her immediately, the other woman staying at the house with her fourteen year old daughter is harsh and conniving, and to make matters worse, Molly can sense darkness in this home.
For a time, the two girls, Liza and Hailey, keep Molly busy. It’s all mainly lighthearted day-to-day events, sprinkled with a bit of drama. But then when the story begins to steer into the suspense side of things, it gets really intense!
Watching Molly grow over just a short time was wonderful. She already had a pretty good head on her shoulders when she entered the house, and she was able to quickly adapt to any situation that was thrown at her. By the end of the book, I just wanted to give her a hug!
All of the supporting characters were intriguing. Liza was an easy character to love as well. The rest I was a bit wary of. When some of them started showing their true colors, it was a bit of a shock! A couple of them had me rooting for them in one way or another.
And of course, as this story was set in Maine I just have to make a note of that. I loved seeing things I could easily recognize having lived there! Like the pizza place with the big wood-fire brick oven and farm to table menus that overlooked the bay. And I chuckled at the note about how quick the drive through the city was.
My Favorite Passages from A Darker Shade
A child of concrete and glass, I had never lived outside of a city. In my experience, nature was carefully bottled up in parks and zoos, constrained by walls, gates, and cages. Here it edged so close to the tarmac that it seemed ready to break through, as if at any moment we might take a blind curve and find the road buckled by the gnarled roots of giant trees.
A shudder shook me and goosebumps crawled over my skin like an army of spiders.
As I read, the room closed in, shadows clustering and reaching for us until it seemed the walls themselves leaned forward, listening. So clear, so sure was the sense of presence that I could not help sneaking glances toward the dusky, darkened corners, searching for whoever might stand there. But we were alone.
One thing about Maine – if you’re looking for something strange, you’ll find it here.
The shadows in the hall shifted and stretched with the movement of the trees in the wind outside, reaching for us until we flipped the light switch in the ballroom.
My Final Thoughts on A Darker Shade
Laura’s writing style is one that is sure to pull readers in with its shadowy hands. For a while, you’ll think you’re in control as you read along, but then you’ll notice that the grip has gotten tighter, and you won’t be able to pull away until you’ve reached the last page!
This is a must read for fans of suspense mixed with a little romance! I had an absolute blast reading this. This needs to be a film!
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Thanks for reading!