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Scent of Darkness

3.07  ·  Rating details ·  493 ratings  ·  112 reviews
Evangeline is eighteen years old when her grandmother gives her the ultimate gift-a scent she has created just for her. From the moment Eva places a drop on her neck, her entire life changes.

Previously unnoticed, she becomes the object of intense desire for everyone around her. Men dance close to her; women dip their noses deep into her hair; even the cats outside her bedr
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published January 29th 2013 by Pantheon (first published January 1st 2013)
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Stacia (the 2010 club)
Aug 07, 2012 marked it as did-not-finish
I hate failing. I really do. From what I could tell, there was nothing wrong with this book. The idea was a good one and the writing was actually pretty good. For whatever reason, I felt like I had to drag myself back to reading every time I walked away. When I realized that I hadn't even made it to the halfway mark after trying and trying and trying, I finally decided to throw in the towel.

To try and gain some insight as to why I wasn't jiving with Scent of Darkness, I took a spin through some
MaryannC.Book Fiend
Jan 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Wow! I was totally wrong about this book in the beginning when I first started it. I almost put it aside because I wondered at first where it was leading, but boy am I glad I saw it through! The majority of the story takes place in New Orleans, a city steeped in history,mystery and secrets. This is a story of the power of scent, it's almost magical qualities and the power to influence. Like the scent centered in this book, the author has found the right essence of intrigue, mystery, and sensuali ...more
Jun 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-by-aimeekay
Originally Reviewed At: Mother/Gamer/Writer
Rating: 4 out of 5 Controllers
Review Source: Author/Blog Tour
Reviewer: AimeeKay

I’m torn. I loved the writing in Scent of Darkness; however I hated the main character.

Berwin’s writing was amazing. Her descriptions of the world, the people, their thoughts and emotions all were absolutely stunning. The way she put her words together was moving and kept me turning the page to read more.

However, I really disliked Eva. She was selfish and she just annoyed me.
Mar 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
This was certainly an interesting book. With its focus around scents, smells and a naturally beautiful body odor, it really reminded me of Patrick Suskind’s Perfume: The Story of a Murderer. The sensual descriptions of olfactory responses lent a certain amount of beauty to the novel - at times cartoon like scents almost washed out of its pages with the power of their description! Unfortunately, Evangeline was too passive of a character to be truly likable and with her narration, it was easy to b ...more
Jul 14, 2017 rated it liked it
~3.5 stars. I don't exactly know what to make of this story. It was a strange read, and yet it kept me turning the pages to find out what was going to happen. I liked the writing style, which provided a good amount of atmosphere without falling into too much description (although I could have used more description of the characters, to help me visualize them). The characters were unusual, and I can't really say I particularly liked most of them; nevertheless, they certainly drew me into the sto ...more
Jan 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
When I first heard of Margot Berwin's Scent of Darkness, I was instantly intrigued. It sounded different, very different, from my usual read, and I was especially curious about the whole scent aspect. Luckily, Scent of Darkness turned out to be a tantalizingly good book, one that had me hooked from the first page to the last.

Scent of Darkness begins the story of Eva, a seemingly ordinary girl. Raised by a single mother who never seemed to care, Eva always appreciated her summers in the New York
Feb 14, 2013 rated it liked it
Scent of Darkness: A Novel I'm really at a loss as to how to explain my feelings about Scent of Darkness now that I've finished. There are so many things that I completely loved about this book, and so many others that just won't sit right in my mind. If there was one thing I could say definitely at this moment in time, it's this: Scent of Darkness is more than what it seems to be. Let me try to break it down for you.
First off I have to praise Margot Berwin's writing. Without a doubt, this is w
Bonnie Brody
Jan 04, 2013 rated it liked it
Evangeline is eighteen years old when her aunt Louise dies. Aunt Louise, her closest of family members, is a wizard with scents. She has created a scent for Evangeline but after her death it is left in a spare white room with an obvious sign - open at your own risk. With the encouragement of Gabriel, the young man that Evangeline has a huge crush on, she opens the vial, and a wondrous scent emerges. It is one that is not identifiable but draws everyone to the person wearing the scent - and that ...more
Jan 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It’s been rare lately that I’ve stumbled upon a book that capture me so entirely that I finish it the same day I started it. Scent of Darkness by Margot Berwin is the latest book to receive that honor from me. It sucked me in on the very first chapter and by the evening, I overstayed my welcome in my cold bath to finish reading it.

Scent of Darkness revolves around eighteen-year-old Evangeline, whose single mother barely gave her any thought. The person who loves Eva the most is her grandmother,
Lolly K Dandeneau
Sep 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I loved it until.... I will review this after it's release. I clung to the beginning and sort of felt the story slipping away from me. I have to admit it reminded me of Perfume by Patrick Suskind so it colored my perception. I think there will be a lot of people who love this book and (for shame) it would make a good movie, I know we aren't supposed to say that about literature. After all, movies butcher books... Review in a few months... I will say one thing, the bits and pieces of her the arti ...more
Courtney Johnson
Dec 05, 2016 rated it it was ok
This was a weird book. Basically, it was about a girl whose scent was so irresistible that everyone loved her and loved her scent. She couldn't figure out if these two guys, Michael and Gabriel, loved her for her scent or for just for herself. In the end, this really turned out to be a voodoo and tarot card book set in New Orleans. We find out that her grandmother did not create the smell, but rather it was the scent of her own blood. Basically, it was just really creepy.
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book transported me to another world. Berwin's writing tantalizes all the senses and uses magical realism to breathe life into the story of Eva and her mysterious scent. The dark pull of New Orleans practically permeates the whole book. Toward the end, the story gets a little macabre and the answer to Eva's search leaves me wondering about the futility of her story.
Feb 18, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: didn-t-finish
No, just no. I couldn’t finish this book with all of its unrealistic characters and moody/teenage prose. This story would be great for a fanfic site where every detail and thought was expressed from the viewpoint of an “outsider” girl...but this isn’t literature. The author had a great idea, and flopped when it came time to follow through
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not really the greatest book I've read. Learned some interesting things though. Eva was quite the super confused character and that kind of pissed me off but at least it ended how I wanted to compensate things.
Jan 22, 2014 rated it did not like it
I'm not sure what it was about this one, but I was turned off pretty much from the start. I found it odd all the talk about scents, but it did make sense in context of the book. In the end, this one wasn't for me.
Sandrita Gz
Apr 11, 2016 rated it liked it
I thought the concept was interesting but I didn't feel like it was pulling me in. It was a good distraction from my airplane rides I guess
Aug 04, 2017 rated it did not like it
Eva is the grandaughter of a woman who was known as a scentmaker; I can't quite call her a perfumer as she mostly made disgusting scents that smelled of blood and jasmine which evidently smells like death. The first 50 pages are filled with gothic doom and gloom as Eva's grandmother dies and she inherits her gloomy, dark, stone house in upstate New York. In this book you can foretell almost everything by its scent, including whether people are good or bad. I'm not sure if this is supposed to "ma ...more
Courtney Churchill
The book is unique in its own way. The way the scents and aromas were being described I could almost smell them at times. New Orleans was perfectly sketched making me miss the time I spend there. I could easily picture myself back along those scorching streets.

The characters were not plain but due to Eve’s passiveness I could not grasp any kind of life from them. The whole book I felt disconnected from them and only focused on what the scent was and how it was dealt with. I didn’t care what hap
Mrs. Midnight Reader
Тази книжка ми беше подарък и ми вървеше много тегаво... Наистина тъмно, мрачно, тъжно! Давам три звезди, защото авторката пише наистина задълбочено и красиво, но беше книгата, която бих избрала сама.
Със сигурност ще се хареса обаче на хората, които харесват мрака и тъмнит истории с лека светлина в тунела :)
Dec 30, 2017 rated it liked it
What a strange book. It was intriguing with the involvement of the sense, but still pretty odd.
Nov 29, 2018 rated it liked it
It wasn't bad, but it wasn't my favourite. Fast read with a half decent story. Slightly disappointing ending but still ok.
Jan 05, 2019 rated it liked it
Ethereal and strange, not in a bad way... but this could have been better if I'd cared about any of the characters.
Jul 08, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Feb 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: blog-review
A few weeks ago, I read a short review in Entertainment Weekly for Margot Berwin’s Scent of Darkness. It sounded intriguing and when I found out my local library had a copy, I quickly requested a hold. I can’t describe how I feel about Scent of Darkness because I just don’t know what to say.

Berwin’s Scent of Darkness is a coming of age story. Eva grew up with a mother who resented her because she was the product of a one night stand. Being Catholic, her mother didn’t get an abortion and made it
Jan 02, 2013 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: some
Shelves: up-for-review
-deep breath- Ok… so… this book was… interesting. It took me a bit to get into it. In my eBook copy, there are 235 pages and 70 chapters, which means, on average, there are about 3.5 pages per chapter – and within those chapters, the author & editor decided to add in those little marks to divide the chapters, themselves, up even more. So it’s very choppy and disorienting at first.

When you get used to how she writes, and also, when the story ACTUALLY begins, is about 50 pages in, to where Eva
Feb 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of a book tour in exchange for a fair and honest review.

A coming of age tale set in both New York and New Orleans, Scent of Darkness by Margot Berwin was not at all what I expected. Mixing an interesting cast of characters, symbolism from the New Orleans Bayou and the physical sense of "scent, Ms. Berwin's tale is at times dark, haunting and strangely erotic. While developed somewhat slowly, the romance in this book takes both the character
Romancing the Book
Jun 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Reviewed by: April
Book provided by: Publisher
Review originally posted at Romancing the Book

A very unique story, Scent of Darkness is told in an abstract sort of way that almost leaves the interpretation of the story and its characters to the reader, allowing different readers to take away different ideas. This is how I felt as I read and finished the story in any case. The writing style that Margot Berwin uses in Scent of Darkness flows rather beautifully, almost like a novel in prose. Both of
Jan 19, 2013 rated it it was ok

I got a copy of this book to review through the Amazon Vine program. The concept sounded very intriguing to me. The writing was very sensual and deliberately paced. While I enjoyed the beginning of the book, I found the wrap up of the story to be bewildering and unsatisfying.

Evangeline is eighteen when her grandmother passes away and leaves her her house. In that house Evangeline finds a gift from her grandmother, a scent that will make Evangeline incredibly desirably to all who smell her. Evang
Jul 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013, fiction
Originally reviewed at Owl You Need is a Good Read

I really wanted to like this more than I did. I was told to read this book by someone that has very similar book taste to my own and so I thought I would love it. I think this was just a bit weird for me. I liked the idea behind the story but not really the story itself. Fragrance + a grandmother who is a master of scent = super special scent that can change your life. Neat! Well...maybe not to so neat.

I think one of my main problems was that I d
Jenny Q
Dec 20, 2012 rated it liked it
Giveaway! Enter by February 23 @ Let Them Read Books!

Scent of Darkness is a beautifully written novel of a young woman coming into her own, full of lyrical prose and lush description. The promise of a scent left to Evangeline after her grandmother's death, a scent that would change Evangeline's life forever, was very intriguing, as was the mystery surrounding the creation of that scent. The scent opens up plain and shy Evangeline's world, thrusting her into a spotlight she's unaccustomed to, mak
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Margot Berwin earned her MFA from the New School in 2005. Her stories have appeared on, in the New York Press, and in the anthology The Future of Misbehavior. She worked in advertising for many years and lives in New York City.
Her first novel Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire was published in 2009 by Pantheon. Her new novel, SCENT OF DARKNESS, also by Pantheon is coming out