Book Review: The Darkest Pleasure (Lords of the Underworld #3) by Gena Showalter


the darkest pleasureReyes is a man possessed. Bound by the demon of pain, he is forbidden to know pleasure. Yet he craves a mortal woman, Danika Ford, more than breath and will do anything to claim her–even defy the gods. Danika is on the run. For months she’s eluded the Lords of the Underworld, immortal warriors who won’t rest until she and her family have been destroyed. But her dreams are haunted by Reyes, the warrior whose searing touch she can’t forget. Yet a future together could mean death to all they both hold dear….

My Review:

The Darkest Pleasure is the third book in the Lords of the Underworld series and focuses on Reyes and Danika as the main “couple” of the story. Danika was introduced to us in the very first book and also made appearances in the second book, as well. Please note that it is very important to read this series in order. They can’t really be read as standalone romances because there is just so much going on plot wise.

I have to be honest, I was a bit shocked that Reyes and Danika’s book was the third book. I kind of anticipated their book being later on so that we could see more of the struggle behind their relationship and more stolen moments between them. I suppose it does make sense that their book had to be so soon, mostly because of Aaeron (spelling?) but it just seemed to really just creep up out of nowhere. Despite the fact that I thought their book occurred a little too soon in the series, it was definitely action packed, romance filled, and heart pounding!

For those of you who might be a little bit on the fence about reading this book, because you might think that it might be a little too gory for your personal taste, have no fear. That was my biggest worry about this book. Reyes is possessed by the demon of Pain and finds pleasure in inflicting as much pain on himself as possible. Meaning, lots of cutting himself, breaking bones, etc. I’m not much into gore with either books or movies, so I was a littttttle bit concerned about going into this book. Kudos to the author for highlighting his demon without making it offensive. Pain is definitely mentioned and there are some scenes that showcase that pain. However, there were no scenes that made me have to skim or flip the pages. There were no gross sex scenes or weird creepy moments between Reyes and Danika. So, rest assured, this book is safe to read!

My biggest concern with this book, and I didn’t think that it would happen, was that I found it a little bit…..cheesy. While there were definitely some shocking scenes that I didn’t see coming, I kind of felt that it just went over the top of ridiculous. I did enjoy the fact that we got to learn more about the Gods, artifacts, and more about why Danika’s family is so important. However, it was just a little too bizarre even for a paranormal book. Don’t get me wrong, I still really enjoyed the story. It just wasn’t my favorite in the series.

Another thing that I had a slight issue with was Danika’s character. Let me first tell you that I still hadn’t warmed up to her after meeting her in the first two books. I definitely wish that I would have had more time getting to know her throughout the series and maybe some more personal scenes between her and Reyes. Since I didn’t have that time to get to know her or witness those essential moments between her and Reyes, I started out this book already not loving her all that much. Danika had too much of an “in your face” personality for my taste. I did enjoy that she always stood up for herself and that she had a fierce, independent, loyal façade about her. On the flip side, I would have enjoyed a bit more of a submissive personality from her. At least during certain moments of the book. While I love strong female leads, I am also someone who really digs a slight submissive quality to my female characters. It’s just a personal thing.

Even though I had my complaints about this book, I LOVED that this storyline dived more into some of the other characters, as well as more interactions with the Gods and the Hunters. One thing that I really love about this series is that, even though each book focuses on a main couple, there is a strong plotline that continues with each book.

Overall, this book wasn’t my favorite in the series. However, that’s going to happen with each series that focuses on different characters. Reyes and Danika didn’t happen to be my favorite couple in this series and because of that it wasn’t my favorite book. However, I still really enjoyed this book, and I love the series, and I would totally recommend it to paranormal lovers!

Rating: [rating: 3]


  1. I love how this went from ‘pain and gore’ predictions to a ‘cheese-y’ romance! Lol. I remember reading a few of these books a while ago, and I think I liked them, but for some reason I don’t think I’ve read any in a while. Maybe i finished out the series?

    • It makes sense to me. I’m reading Strider’s book, and I can tell that I’m a little burnt out. I LOVE the series, but it has way more romance and less paranormal to it.

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