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A merciless prince feared by all…

Cursed by a vengeful witch, William of the Dark will die if he ever falls in love—murdered by the woman who steals his heart. His lone shot at redemption is a book filled with indecipherable code. Break the code, break the curse. Now, centuries later, he’s condemned to a string of one-night stands…until he finds the only woman in the worlds able to set him free.

A rare creature of myth and power…

One of the last living unicorn shifters, Sunday “Sunny” Lane works from the shadows as a cryptanalyst, on the run from assassins and poachers. Then the darkly seductive William abducts her, holding her captive in Hell. The closer they get, the more she hungers for his touch…and the stronger a mystical desire to kill him becomes…

Both forever doomed?

At war with his brother, Lucifer, and determined to become a king of the underworld at long last, William must resist the irreverent beauty who threatens his future. But every day Sunny tempts him more, his hunger for her unmatched. Will he risk his heart—and his life—or will the curse ensure his end?

374 pages

First published February 25, 2020

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About the author

Gena Showalter

258 books27k followers
Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of over seventy books, including the acclaimed Lords of the Underworld series, the Gods of War series, the White Rabbit Chronicles, and the Forest of Good and Evil series. She writes sizzling paranormal romance, heartwarming contemporary romance, and unputdownable young adult novels, and lives in Oklahoma City with her family and menagerie of dogs and cats.

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5 stars
2,482 (51%)
4 stars
1,342 (28%)
3 stars
625 (13%)
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142 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 651 reviews
Profile Image for Jenny.
298 reviews19 followers
May 24, 2021
'Sunny' the Unicorn shifter as the love interest, I think I just peed myself laughing - neighhhh!

The Darkest King’s new cover reveal


Goodbye William, you were once an interesting character but now you be Unicorn whipped.


And here it is the final Fuck You to Gilliam fans in all its glory.



Gena: It’s not about what you want it’s what you need
Me: well thanks



Profile Image for Sophia Triad.
2,239 reviews3,518 followers
March 6, 2020
Surprise! William's story is next!

William and Sunny

If sex had a voice, it was William's.
Husky, low and deep, an auditory caress that reached every atom of her being.
-Sunday "Sunny" Lanr

...and apparently Sunny is a shifter unicorn!

I sincerely hoped that
1. She is not a dumbell,
2. She is not an Anya lookalike
3. She is not compared to Gillian all the time
4. She does not behave like a warrior princess with pink nail polish and glossy lipstick
5. She can convince me that William can fall in love with her in the span of just one book
6. She does not transform William to a eunuch who can only perform for her.

William was never my favourite male character in this series (Strider and Lazarus I will love you for ever), but he still deserved a decent girl.

Although Sunny was an interesting character, for me she was lacking. I felt absolutely nothing for her. She wasn't memorable or challenging.

And the thing is that if you choose as an author to back down from a story that most of the fans have emotionally invested in it (William and Gillian), the alternative female should have been at least spectacularly magnificent. And unfortunately Sunny is not. She felt just like another random immortal who somehow was forced to fit in the big picture. But she only earned a tiny place in the group of these larger than life immortals.

My favourite unicorn shifter is Pia from Elder Races and I feel that it is a desecration to compare her to Sunny.

I cannot believe that I admit that, but Gillian definitely got the best deal and she earned a better mate than poor William.

I am not sure how I felt about this book. I think the author tried too hard to convince me that William and Sunny belong together, but not very successfully. And it is a shame, because the Lords is one of my favourite series EVER.

I may write a few things more later. Or not. I am not really in reviewing mode lately LOL
Profile Image for Kat valentine ( Katsbookcornerreads).
644 reviews876 followers
March 19, 2021
The big bad wolf huffed and puffed and blew her panties down!

Another fabulous book by Gena showalter!!!! The darkest king was everything that I wanted and waited for!! For years I've read her Dark Lords of the Underworld and William has captured my attention from the beginning! William is one of the most self absorbed,self loving blow your own horn guys who thinks that he's every woman's dream and boy is he right about that. So when gena announced last year that darkest king would be big wily's book I was excited but at the same time a little unsure. When gena hooked gillian up with puck instead of him I was secretly glad I loved their relelationship but I didn't see her as his fated mate.William needed someone who's ego was strong enough to deal with such a self absorbed and over the top character like our panty wetter and she had to be not only strong but alittle bad assed and able to go tit for tat and I think Sunny lane was just what he needed! Beautiful but deadly! I loved her so much! Not only is she beautiful and smart and hilarious she's A fucking unicorn how cool is that!!! Together their unstoppable and the chemistry and hot steamy sex between these two was kindle melting worthy!!! We finally found out a some more about Williams past like how he and Hades and Lucifer came to be and more on his brother Axel a member of the sent ones. Loads of action with plenty of twists and unexpected happenings with a great storyline that continues all these years later to hold my attention and keeps me hooked needing more. The lords and their ladies made appearances and one of my favorite characters Rathbone shape shifter and one of the kings from hell and all around hot as fuck bad boys made his way into Williams book and i can't wait to see the woman that tames this sexy beastie!!! I got a feeling that his time is coming soon. Until next time Luv's 💕💋
Profile Image for Laura :).
3 reviews1 follower
August 28, 2018
Gena Showalter did a FANTASTIC job with Gillian, Puck, and William’s story. I’m so HAPPY that they aren’t together because they WEREN’T a good fit. She is intertwining more plot and secrets to be revealed and as someone who has read this entire series up to the very end, yes. I was rooting for William and Gillian but I’m so excited for a brand new character that we have not seen yet to be with William! Like dude... SOMEONE so BADASS that we have not yet been introduced to is going to be William’s everything!!

“william’s mate will lead him on a merry chase” like woah. bruh. sign me the fuck up.
Profile Image for Tanya Romanucci.
14 reviews9 followers
December 15, 2019
UPDATE December 15th 2019
I can't believe the release date is only 2 1/2 months away!
I feel like I've been waiting years for this release and don't know what I'll do with myself once its finally in my hands!
UPDATE July 20th 2019
Can we talk about that cover!!
I'm still waiting patiently and I'm still excited!!!
FINALLY!! In one year William's secrets will finally be revealed! I'll probably be counting down the days till the release date!!

I've read other peoples comments about how they're disappointed, how they're finished with this series just because William didn't end up with Gillian! But let me tell you how happy I am with this twist and can't wait to see what Gena has in store for us readers!
Profile Image for Joan.
438 reviews52 followers
February 21, 2020
Williams' long-awaited steaming pile of crap book and is apropos to wrap up this sub-par, poorly-written, third-rate series. Puck this.

But I am delighted at the laughable, slap in the face to the Gilliam haters...Willy is being paired with a freaking unicorn shifter! I am laughing so hard. Those rooting against abuse survivor Gilly as "too soft" were hoping that golden boy Willy would be paired and tamed by a hardass, smart-mouth, ball breaker like that harpy sister Aliyah (sp). Well, the joke's on the vicious Gilly haters...go ride that unicorn!

Pairing beloved characters with goats and unicorns, Showalter must be tripping. This is what she thinks (former) fans need. It will be interesting to see Gillian haters try to save face by defending this ridiculous pairing.
Profile Image for Eda**.
700 reviews442 followers
April 17, 2020
** 1-1.5 "I SURE TRIED" STARS **

After deciding to just avoid reading this mess months ago, OF COURSE I caved in and gave this a chance because I've spent 8 years very much invested in these characters and I'm a softie when it comes to this series.

UGH. It was a mistake. I regret it. And you know what? The biggest problem wasn't even the #Gilliam betrayal... The cringy dialogues, the odd sex, ugh THE NEVERENDING UNICORN PUNS !!! Everything was so icky.

I'm just glad it's over.


One of the last living UNICORN SHIFTERS Sunday “Sunny” Lane works (...) Then the darkly seductive William abducts her, holding her captive in Hell (...)

Wait... Unicorn shifters?


Even after the #GILLIAM betrayal, I was willing to give this series another chance.

But GURL... Gena is making it so hard to keep supporting her.

William's HEA is... I just... I can't.

I want to laugh my a** off, because I mean COME ON GUYS... F**king UNICORN SHIFTERS lol, but I feel too disappointed and genuinely sad to do so.

I give up.

Thank you Gena Showalter for the first 11 books of this phenomenal series, I will forever cherish them. I still reread my favourites whenever I feel a little down and they always manage to lift up my spirits.

However I refuse to be a part of this clown show any longer.

Yikes man... YIKES.

Profile Image for Azet.
1,021 reviews229 followers
March 20, 2021
OMG this book totally rocked everything i expected it to be-smoldering erotic romance,witty humor,epic action and unforgettable adventure about the infamous Anti-hero in the series William the Ever Randy in "The Darkest King" which is the 15:th instalment in the "Lords of the Underworld"series.William is cursed to get killed by his fated soulmate when he falls in love with her,and he desperately needs a codebreaker to break through the magical book where a code is to be broken to take away the curse.Through information from the Red Queen he knows that the codebreaker will be none other than his fated soulmate,and he decides to take her captive.

Sunday “Sunny” Lane is a unicorn-shifter and the one woman i have longed to read about ever since i met her in the former book.What a darling she was!I love her sassyness,wit,humor,her illogical mind and how goofy she is.I just wanted to hug her to pieces and she made me laugh my ass off!She is a match for William in strength and mind-and she DID LEAD HIM ON A MERRY CHASE!It was hilarious in the wicked way she handled him and the way she put out her "punishments" that made William go crazy with passion.I absolutely adooored this heroine,what a stunning woman for William and a brave and loyal warrior in soul.No wonder William couldn`t help but fall head over heels for her!She had him around her Little finger and she knew it!

William of the Dark, the Ever Randy is the prince of darkness,incarnation of war, the epitome of sex and the king of violence, savagery and carnality.He is the one man i have been mouthwateringly excited over ever since he appeared in the second book in this series.He is also known as the infamous mercenary and legendary womanizer who loves to kill and have sex like he needs air to breathe.He is so self-loving,arrogant,dangerous,wicked and the ultimate sexy badboy who takes what he wants and apologises to nobody.But when it came to Sunny he was so expressive,honest and vulnerable.Watching him falling in love with Sunny was like coming home and eating candy and chips on a Friday evening.My absolute fave hobby!William`s fierce need,attraction,devotion,care for Sunny made the romance so explosive that i was fanning over my head.He knew she was his soulmate,and still he was unable to resist her.Where before he always put himself first,in this book we see him putting the love of his life above himself and anybody else.Sunny was the sun and air for him-she was his fascination and happiness and he loved her with every breath he took.

“You tried to kill me. Therefore, you owe me a life-debt, and I will collect. From now on, you are my property. Every breath you take is my gift to you. Meaning, yes. I own you, body and soul.”

-William the Ever Randy to Sunny Lane

Gena Showalter created such a fine sizzling love-story between William and Sunny.Both are badass,dangerous and beautiful creatures with hearts of gold.Sunny always called on William`s shit.They always teased each other from their bad moods.Their way of arguing, bargaining, bantering and the way they fought to be together made them a paradise of a couple to read about.William never knew faithfulness and true love until he met his Sunny Lane.These two are one of the strongest power couple in "Lords of the Underworld"-series,and i am so grateful Showalter wrote this amazing romance for William and Sunny-they made my day so much brighter!

It is interesting that William and Axel are twin-brothers,and i love the bond they shared in this book.I also wonder if Axel and Evelina are fated?There seemed to be something electric between them!Hades makes me both want to kiss him and then slap him afterwards.I have no idea about this male,he is so infuriating,evil and bloodthirty-but do love William in his own way.I am also wondering if one of William`s and Sunny`s daughters will be soulmate to Gideon`s and Scarlett´ son!?That was something Keeley mentioned,and oh boy am i into it!I am also suspecting that Showalter have stories ready for the all other Kings of the Underworld,and i can`t wait to read more!
Profile Image for FlewB'DoobeyDoo.
298 reviews22 followers
March 15, 2020
3/14/2020 Complete.

What follows is a painful recording of my thoughts of a book that has been heavily anticipated, fanatically praised/criticized by readers, and one that has sat on my mind for a long while now. Please understand that this is just one persons point of view.
Sorry if it doesn't match yours homie, but leave your hate at home, cause no one has time for that.

Oh sweet mother of mehh....

Up until this point I had previously forgotten that I had even pre-ordered The Darkest King, with the best of intentions of just 'giving it a chance.'
I like to think I'm a second chance kind of girl, plus being that this is a series I had been heavily invested in up until the PUCKY incident, I felt somewhat obligated to buy this book.

Well, it came in the mail in February....and I literally let it sit on my shelf as a conflictedly tried to not get my hopes up.
I know that this book wasn't going to be what I (Yes, I . Don't AT me homie) had dreamed for William.
Or in other words, Gilliam.
Which, I knew was not happening. I know this, yet my brain is still finding it hard to process.

I understand that this is Gena Showalters world. These are her characters, her story, and she can do what ever the Freesia she wants with it. Was I a part of the pack of WTF HAVE YOU DONE when we first learned that G and W would NOT be a thing? Yeah. It's what I equate to the worlds most painful bait'n switch to ever happen in a romance novel. Because as much as i respect her writing enough to understand that she was 'wanting to go a different route', you can't fault your readers for being upset about something that was hinted at and sculpted over a majority of the series.
It can't be helped.
And to expect much less upset from your fans, wouldn't be giving yourself credit girl. I think the fact that readers got so upset was because we were so invested and in love with your characters.

So when I finally talked myself into just doing it, I picked up this book and read it. And as I sit here trying to sum up the conflict I'm feeling in my soul, I feel like I have to explain something.

Gena Showalter was an author I found in a very difficult time for myself. One who showed me that love ain't perfect. That someone out there will love you for just what you are, scars and all. And to say her Lords of the Underworld series became a balm to me would be putting it lightly. And I will be the first to admit that books are an escape. An escape to go to a world where fate has a man in store for you, who will help you heal your soul and will love you through all eternity.

(so now moving forward from my emotional Mumbo-jumbo shizz)

The reason I feel I need to say this, is because from first finding Gilly in the series, we see someone broken. William was also broken. From the encounters, gazing and otherwise anticipation being built, I along with others, were lead into the belief that they were meant for each other and that it was their destiny to heal one another.

Fast forward past Puck and TF switches and all that jazz to now.
Post-The Darkest King.

Do I think I would have genuinely enjoyed this read if I wasn't feeling disappointment about the direction that was chosen? Yes. Without a single doubt in my mind.

Sunny, was entertaining. She was funny, cooky, bad-a$$ and I really enjoyed her. Even though at this point I'm sorta over William cause just the constant "I sleep with anything that moves" is just sooooo not my thing And I honestly would have loved this book, and the pair of William and Sunny.

But.....I just found I really couldn't get into it.

I just, IDK, felt like I was trying so hard to like these two together. That I wanted so badly to be roped in by the story line or the building of the world, to be able to forgive that fact that a shipped couple was no longer intact. I wanted this so bad, and I tried so hard guys.
But, I just couldn't.

The story literally goes no where. We are so focused on hell, sex, "don't fall in love with me or I'll kill you", enter sex puns galore, enter unicorn puns GALORE, daddy/family issues abound and it all just felt like a was reading a side quest.
You know. Like in video games where you wander away from the main storyline to play this side quest that has no purpose what so ever, except to make the game go on longer.

Guys, I don't know if you can tell, but this review is freaking painful for me. And GOYD DAYM there were times in this book that physically pained me to read.

Like (but not limited to):
-"To him, women were like spices. Some days you wanted sweet, some days you wanted spicy. Or salty. No reason to stick with the same flavor.
-Constant referencing to how he usually only slept with married women, this woman, that woman, 'I'm a HUGE manwhore, yadadada OH PISS OFF WILL YA> WE GET IT ALREADY YA SKEEZ.
-The killing of a Fruggin Puppy you GAHDAM Sadistic Monster.
-All the times I found myself tripping over the choppy context and strange wording that made me have to read, re-read and try and figure out what the heck it was trying to say.
-Cash money grab-bag of every freaking character listed together at a shindig together at the end. (cause showing me all the past couples I enjoyed ((and some who I honestly don't really remember)) is not going to put a band-aid over Puck and Gillian dancing steamily on the dance floor).

Gah. What a mess this has seriously left my mind here. While I want to continue on with the series, and the possible characters being hinted at, I find my heart not nearly as interested. I think the issue lies in that I can't really put my heart onto any characters anymore; seeing as they may or may not actually happen.

My enthusiasm is so low right now. And I want so badly to like this guys. But I think that's where I need to step back here. Because I shouldn't have to force myself to like something that was once just second nature to love.

So, with no little amount of heartache I'm feeling at this moment, I'm stepping back to say this. If you are to pick up this book without having previously read any other in the series, than I am more than sure you will enjoy it.

I'm sorry to say, it's leaving my heart in a state of mehh.

Which, in case you were wondering, feels kind of like poo.

There was just so much potential to really hit a home run.
And then in one moment..
There wasn't.
So yeah. That's all I suppose.

2 the-escape-readers-emotional-nightmare stars🎇

Pre-Reading Review

Going to be totally honest.

When i reviewed the last book (Puck/Gillian) i was NOT impressed with what a lil'Biotch Gena made William into. Sure he's been badass in the past, but man, i still can't get his behavior in the last books Pucky taste out of my mouth.

Alright, so i didn't hate Puck and Gillian. Did i love it. MEHHHhhhhhhh. Did it bother me that the dude was half beast. No way, I'm all for a 'lil bit of somsome. I like to think I'm a pretty open minded broad. BUT, as was previously hinted in past books from the series, Gillian was hinted at numerous times to be Williams fated one. So i suppose the
"Big Switch" left my somsome feeling quite bitter. (FOR THOSE WHO SAY IT WAS A PATERNAL RELATIONSHIP, go back, re-read, if their actions were considered Father/Daughter-esque, someone needs to call CPS.)

So, in total: I am so on the fence for Williams book. I've loved and supported Gena in her past endeavors, but that last book put William in a pretty shitty light to me. Dont paint William to be all weak and pathetic and whiny just to make me like P/G better, then expect me to forget said Whiny, pissy behavior.

The dice is yours Gena Showalter.

Hell hath no fury like a romance readers 12 year built-up shipped couples destruction.
Profile Image for Grace.
3 reviews
January 5, 2019
what's the point of this story if william is not ending up with gilly?

i don't understand how the author can make us happy???


all those years of shipping gilly and william and then the author just smacks me in the face by not pairing them.

and do you know how much my heart is going to hurt to see william with another romantic interest????? BUT NOOOOOO....THE AUTHOR DOESN'T CARE.

over this series. glad that it's finally going to be over.
290 reviews3 followers
August 1, 2018
And let me guess...the female lead is going to be some smart mouthed, feisty, ball buster that will give William a run for his money because that's exactly what this series needs is another OTT female! HARD PASS, in fact, I'm still nursing my snit from Gillian's big ole FU book that I'm gonna pass on the series for quite a while. #stilldisappointed
Profile Image for kookyquinn.
499 reviews45 followers
February 25, 2020
BEST BOOK OF 2020!!! No. I don’t need to finish out the year to make sure that statement is accurate. IT IS.

I laughed, cried, cheered, shouted and swooned.


I’ve been waiting YEARS for William’s book and Gena did not let me down. It was everything I hoped.

Everyone who’s been throwing temper tantrums like spoiled children because the heroine is a WOC unicorn shifter? I’m giving all y’all ignorant trolls the double fisted unicorn salute. I absolutely adored Sunny and want to be her BFF.


Side note: I’m tired of the books that are topping romance charts because they’re filled with teenage bullies and the hero and heroine being awful to each other. Bad writing that depends on shock value. Hard pass. Learn to write amazing amazing romances that are captivating, fucking edited and, shocker: ROMANTIC.

Open letter to romance (or supposedly romance) authors: More books like this. Less angsty brats.
Profile Image for Jey.
4 reviews
February 28, 2020
I certainly do not understand if everyone is reading the same book that I am and write so high reviews, but to each their own and I respect their opinion, just as much as you respect mine, and with that being said this entire book felt empty of everything, character & plot development, and don't even get me started with the cave style dialogue that it's getting old and ridiculous 🤨🤔. I mean a unicorn shifter as a love interest for William, glitter bombs and rainbows..... It's just sooo laughable and Absurd!!! I'm sensing someone is having an animal fantasy fetish or something? first Gilly with a goat and now William with a Unicorn... WTH??? I was struggling to keep reading.
The entire book felt like a whiplash of contradictions, and bipolars attitudes.
Not a good book in my opinion and I could have being definitely happy without reading it, but it was William and I had such high hopes, but nope, for me personally it was a total disappointment.....🤨.
Profile Image for Naomi.
564 reviews23 followers
February 27, 2022
We’ve all been waiting for William’s story for years and all I can say is that, it was worth it. I loved learning all about William, his past, his secrets, his feelings! Yes! William the Ever Randy has lots of them. Sunny is a new character and she is amazing! She’s exactly what William needed, she’s not afraid of him, she doesn’t fall at his feet and she challenges him in the best way. Showalter delivers with The Darkest King, she took risks and they paid off. This book also introduces a few new characters and paves the way for future stories which I’m sooo excited about! Hades and Axel both play a big part and I loved loved loved reading more about them. King is also full of action, plot twists and, dear lord is it steamy! Anyway, William and Sunny work, they made me fall in love with the LOTU world even more and I can��t wait to read the next one!

Disclaimer: I was able to read an early copy of this book as I work for the author.
Profile Image for Lana ❇✾DG Romance❇✾.
2,056 reviews12.2k followers
April 10, 2020
He wouldn’t be happy until he’d possessed her, body and soul.

15 books. 15 FREAKING BOOKS! Over ten years I have been waiting for this moment. Never in my life did I practice this much patience. I'm telling you people, I don't know how I've made it. After Paris, William's book had to be one of my most anticipated Lords. We're talking about the ultimate manwhore here. And you know what they say about the bigger they are? I couldn't wait to see the woman that would bring him to his knees.

Now before I get into my review, let me address the pink elephant in the room real quick like. Gillian. I spent years and over 8 books utterly CONVINCED these two would end up together. The build up was there. The chemistry was there. I was THIRSTY for these two. Thirsty I tell you. Then Gillian's book was announced...and she didn't end up with William. So color me pissed here. But my love of all things Gena Showalter wouldn't allow me the doubt. So I dove into The Darkest Warrior with no hopes and ended up absolutely loving it. Was I happy that Willy and Gilly don't end up together? At the end, I got it. I really did. So I was eager to get to William's book.
Welcome to Pleasure 101, baby. Class is in session, and Professor Climax has a hands-on assignment prepared. Screamers earn extra credit.”

Enter, stage right, Sunny. One of the last known surviving unicorn shifters. That's right. A freaking unicorn. Who is also a badass. A badass, unicorn shifter, that goes from sweet and cute to vicious in 5 seconds flat. I kind of loved her.

Sunny may also be the only being alive that can help William break his curse. The problem with that is that she happens to be his mate, who is cursed to kill him once she falls for him. Talk about complicated.
Ah. I understand the switch. You’re a bad shot, so you need a bigger target. No wonder you selected my cock.”
“Good point,” she said, returning the barrel to his face. “There’s nothing bigger than your ego.”

The chemistry between the two of them was downright incendiary. As per Showalter's usual, the banter was also on point. The woman writes some of the best banter. And Sunny sure knew how to give as hard as she gets. These two didn't hold back any punches when it came to their complicated relationship. It was a delicious enemies to lovers story with plenty of twists along the way.

The reason I'm taking off a star is this book had some pretty embarrassing grammatical errors. At one point she jokes to William about being "artificially incriminated". Usually, I'm not a big stickler for grammar, but when an ebook is over $11 and is traditionally published, then yes, I'll be taking off a star. My expectations for grammar are pretty dang high at that price point. It is what it is.

Did I love this story? Hell to the yes. This marks the end of the Lords saga but there's a spinoff coming and I cannot flipping wait. I'm sure it will be a hot minute until we get Hades's book but I NEED it. The other set ups also sounds pretty delicious.

If you're hesitant to read this one because you were rooting for Gilly and Willy, give it a shot. Gena made a believer out of me with this and trust me, I had concerns. BIG concerns. But I ultimately loved William and Sunny together.

Finished copy provided in exchange for an honest review

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Profile Image for The Anxious Bookaholic.
187 reviews38 followers
March 2, 2020
Review to come


Oh my god, I am so excited about this book! What are William's secrets? How will he deal with falling in love with someone so soon after losing Gilly? Who is going to be his partner? Does anyone have any speculations about the potential Mrs. William?

Also are we gonna see more of Siobhan? Honestly I am so happy that William's book is next that the only thing that can make me happier if Gena comes out and says Viola's book will be following.

Putting 5 stars from now just in case some of y'all come up with that pettiness and grade it 1-star. Don't think I haven't seen the mess in The Darkest Warrior comments section.
Profile Image for Camber Gray.
6 reviews3 followers
Want to read
July 24, 2018
I am beyond excited for this book. To all the haters, y'all beating a dead horse. If William didn't end up with Gilly before now, then it wasn't going to happen. I know its been years and we all wanted to see it but lets be realistic for a minute. If it was meant to be then Gena Showalter would have wrote the book years ago.
Profile Image for Rachael*Caribbean*girl*bibliophile.
1,671 reviews360 followers
March 2, 2020
Spoilers ahead, 3.5* not quite 4 but what the heck?

I was not a fan of the idea of the William/Gilly pairing and loved Puck so I'm so down for this! Can't wait!


We begin this tale with Ever Randy's tragic backstory and the beginning of his relationship with both Lucifer and Hades as well as the circumstances of his curse. Many years later he's trying to find someone to translate his book. With Keeley's help he zeros in on some who can do it.
Sunny is one of the few remaining unicorns of her pack after Lucifer slaughtered them, finding William at her hotel she plots with her friend to lure him to her room and finally kill him. While things don't go according to plan she does succeed in her goal, until William' s body goes missing. When he returns and kidnaps the entire group Sunny is determined not to go down without a fight no matter how attracted she is to the panty melter. But with war taking place hell may not be the safest place for a unicorn fated to help William defeat Lucifer

Ok I'll say again I was NOT a fan of the William/Gilly pairing for the simple fact that William claimed to love her but he slept with many many OW which she knew about. I mean from my recollection of the men of this series once they met their ONE they weren't with any others so no way could Gilly have been for William

Right this one was pretty ok, Sunny was the typical snarky, fiesty Showalter h and William was his usual all powerful mouthy self
I'd have liked to see William around other women just to settle my mind with his highly active past but he was utterly devoted to Sunny
The author attempted to explain William's past actions but she should've just let him own it and move on, the attempt was just pathetic
This book isn't much different from this author's previous offerings but it worked well enough for me
I'd be interested in seeing the secondary characters get their own books especially the boys from hell
Lucifer is defeated for now so I'm interested to see where things go from here
All in all I'll count this one as a win

No cheating
H was a HUGE(capitalized and in bold) Manwhore
h hadn't had sex in a long while and never had an orgasm with a partner(seriously????)
Profile Image for Spectral Snake.
19 reviews
February 26, 2020
This book doesn't work for me. It's a bad joke. Oozing cringiness
Almost gave up in the middle, but managed to finish it because of my now destroyed love for this series.
First of all, the unicorn puns and jokes. They stopted being funny after first ten or so. The whole matter with unicorns just felt cringe as fuck to me.
I have a major problem with the ending. It felt rushed and lazy written.
Really!? That is what she feels her readers need? Also the very disneylike and totally out of place in this series tone, climat(?).

the sex scenes...I skipped all after the first one. they were just sooo cringey, plus more unicorn bad jokes. Constant sex references, there was just too much of them. It all felt like a 15yo kind humor.

another huge turnoff was when Like this is a cure for everything. That was wrong for me on so many levels. This moment trully ruined my experience with the book.
Maybe I expected too much.
I think I'm done with this series after this.
September 29, 2021
I have not been a big fan of William from the beginning. I found him amusing, and he was an interesting companion to the Lords. But he has many character traits that are a turn off for me. As Showalter started setting up his story to a deeper extent in the later books, I wasn't that intrigued. I realize I am definitely in the minority. Having said that, as a completist, of course I was going to read his book. I am happy to say that I liked the book a lot overall. While William is still not my favorite, I understand him a lot more and I feel like his backstory was given justice, and also, I loved the way that his story arc concluded. Sunny was a very good match for him. I like that Sunny is not timid or shy, knows how to stand up for herself, and to get her way, but also stands up for those she loves. Her heritage was really cool. If you know me, you can imagine how much I enjoyed that.

Although I enjoyed this book, I think some aspects were glossed over and were not well explained. I listened to the audiobook, and some of the scene transitions were too abrupt, and I was left wondering when something happened and what I missed. The story was really complex, with a lot of moving parts, but I feel like things were kind of rushed. I recently read The Evil Queen, which was 19 or 20 hours, and with good reason. I feel like this should have been longer as well, to give time to wrap up the varied plot elements. I do get that this story is clearly going to spill over into some other series that Showalter has going, which I am happy about. Perhaps she didn't want to reveal too much about those elements and that's why some things were left vague or unexplained. I am trying to keep this review spoiler-free as possible, so I can't say more than that I loved Axel's character and I want more. For the brief time that the other Lords (and their Ladies) showed up, that was great. I think that as Anya is William's bestie, I feel she should have been in this a little more than she was. Although I get that perhaps Showalter didn't want to take showtime away from Sunny.

There were a couple of things I really didn't like that were, shall we say, triggers for me. I won't go into too much details, but be warned if you're an animal lover. Also, I was really worried that Showalter was going to go into the kink stuff with this book. She teased at it, but definitely didn't cross that line, thankfully. Maybe she thought since William has slept with countless women it would be weird if she keep the sex scenes too vanilla.

I do like that while William was protective and affectionate with Gillian, it's clear that Sunny is really his other half and she owns a part of him he could never give away to anyone else. That felt convincing and authentic to me. I think the way that the evolution of his feelings for Sunny was very effective over the course of the book. While the love scenes were sexy and lusty, there was also a lot of tenderness as well. If readers like a rake hero getting tamed by love, this one is a good choice, for sure.

I started binging this series last year, and it really got me through a dark time with the COVID outbreak and a lot of personal stressors. While there is a whole lot of dark in these books, there's also plenty of humor and lighter moments, and these books fulfilled my need for an escapist read when I very much needed it. I had read the first four books and enjoyed it, and just hadn't had a chance to dive back in. I'm so glad that they were on Audible Escape, and then I got to the point that I bought a few of them in audiobook. I didn't have to buy this because my library had it. The moderator Max Bellmore made these a lot of fun. I got to the point where it just doesn't feel right not listening to the audiobook. I recommend the audiobooks if you get a chance.

I hope that William fans were satisfied with his long awaited story.
Profile Image for EunolaTTV.
6 reviews
June 16, 2023
I’m seeing so many people complaining about Gena not pairing William with Gilly. But the thing is it’s her story, her plot line. And then there’s people saying she paired Gilly with a goat but if you know Greek mythology where she is basing the majority of her plot off of. Pan is a satyr and also the god of lust and oh wow Puck is a satyr. coincidence?

That’s all I have to say. I’m going to keep reading this series until it ends.
Profile Image for Helen.
108 reviews2 followers
February 25, 2020
It's everything you've been waiting for and more!!

William's story is amazingly written! I can't even begin to say how and why I love it so much without giving things away. All your burning questions are answered in this wonderful story of lust, love, betrayal and reconciliation.

Sunny is definitely the one for him! She gives him hell like no other Lord or Angel/Sent One has gone through with their woman and that's saying something! Their first meeting ends in lust and bloodshed. The insults she hurls at him throughout had me rolling so hard! As did the banter between the two, along with William's son's, Axel and Hades! Who would ever think that the king of hell knew what breakfast cereal he's most like 😂

Hades and Axel are huge parts of William's book and I loved every second of it! I can't wait for their stories to be written! I actually had tears in my eyes for Hades in this book. I just felt so bad for the evil yet loveable king! He's definitely at the top of my favorites list😉 I don't think Gena could have written this book any better and it's definitely been worth the years of waiting! She's a master at writing books you don't want to put down and are sad to see end while craving the conclusion all at the same time.

I received an early copy by Gena but this in no way affects my opinion of the book or my review. Besides to say I'm ecstatic she put me in the book along with two of my friends Wendy and Naomi!! Definitely a bucket list item I didn't even know I needed!
2 reviews1 follower
December 1, 2019
Once the book actually does release, it would be nice for prospective readers to not have to wade through all the Gilliam complaining to get genuine reviews. If you’re not happy with the direction of the story, move on. The author shouldn’t have to apologize for wanting to stay true to her vision over pleasing a faction of readers. Yes, people pay to read these books, but that is a choice no one has, or will ever force you to make. None of the people making flippant, poorly thought out criticisms seem to consider the fact that Gena is a real person with real feelings and how deeply their comments might cut her. Not to mention, the entitlement over a person’s art/creation is offensive. Honest reviews and constructive criticism are one thing, slamming the book with one star reviews without having read it is another.

Regardless of how many years one might spend rooting for a certain couple or not, does that suddenly erase the enjoyment we’ve all derived from the first THIRTEEN books? Were people only reading to find out what happened with two characters that have spent the majority of this series being in the background? Get a grip, people.
Profile Image for Vinita.
45 reviews9 followers
January 9, 2019
Dang I didn't mean to add stars ;x I am very much looking forward to Willy's story!! Can't wait to meet his woman! I'm actually glad it wasn't Gillian, and I really adore her and Puck together. I hope I love Willy and his lady (or man) just as much =D
Profile Image for Romanticamente Fantasy.
6,559 reviews188 followers
June 30, 2020
Recensione in Anteprima
Maria Antonietta - per RFS
“L’amore è un mito e la monogamia è insostenibile. Io non desidererò mai una relazione a lungo termine.” (Tratto dal libro)

Bentrovate fenici, è con grande piacere che ho letto in anteprima per voi The darkest King, l’attesissimo volume della serie I signori degli inferi. L’attesa è stata ben ripagata e la Showalter finalmente ci ha deliziate con questo volume tutto incentrato sul famigerato e irresistibile mandrillo William l’oscuro, già conosciuto dalle affezionate lettrici per le sue doti amatorie.

Ritroverete personaggi e luoghi noti ma, come al solito, la magia della nostra autrice sta nel reinventarsi continuamente attraverso situazioni e ambientazioni strambe, irreali al limite della fantasia. Il romanzo è un paranormal fantasy per eccellenza con una parte erotica che non manca mai e dà il giusto pepe alla storia. William è il figlio adottivo di Ade che è uno dei dodici re degli inferi, il mistero sulle sue origini è stato da sempre per William motivo di sofferenza e per questo lo ama moltissimo, al punto da diventare la sua spia. Il suo potere sta nella capacità di rigenerarsi, quindi aspettatevi scene in cui sembra morto e spiaccicato come una mosca, ma tranquille che si ricompone come se niente fosse. Quando la rabbia lo invade, emana odore di ambrosia che è il suo segno distintivo.

Il filo conduttore su cui si snocciola la trama è spezzare la maledizione che perseguita William e che gli è stata inferta da una strega.

“Ti maledico William l’oscuro, ti condanno a una vita di infelicità e guerra con quelli a cui tieni. Una vita senza veri compagni, ma… se mai ti innamorerai… se l’oggetto dei tuoi sentimenti ti ricambierà, la condanno a perdere la testa oltre al cuore. Ti attaccherà più e più volte e non si fermerà fino a quando non sarai morto.”

(Tratto dal libro)

Insieme alla maledizione, la strega Lilith di Lleh gli dà anche una benedizione attraverso un libro che contiene un codice magico che però deve essere decifrato. L’unica cosa che William riesce a scoprire nel corso degli anni è che il decifratore è una ragazza, nonché compagna di vita, impossibile da credersi visto che lui è uno sciupa-femmine e usa le donne a suo piacimento.

Sunny Lane è un unicorno mutaforma, è nata con una magia che le impedisce di dire parolacce facendogliele sostituire con nomi di fiori, il suo cibo preferito. Un personaggio davvero strambo e originale, mi ha suscitato tanta simpatia per il suo modo di parlare e la fissazione per le liste, addirittura una di fantasie sessuali. Lei fa parte di una specie delle più potenti e infide al mondo, gli unicorni hanno una natura doppia che li fa ridere un momento e subito dopo uccidere.

La ragazza ha sopportato un matrimonio disastroso, la perdita della sua gente e secoli di isolamento, il tutto grazie a Lucifero che è il fratello di William, sotto il cui nome ha saccheggiato villaggi interi. Ed è infatti col giuramento di vendicarsi di Lucifero che Sunny promette a William di decodificare il codice.

Sunny è il primo unicorno con cui William ha mai interagito nel corso degli anni per cui non conosce nulla sulla sua natura. La prima parte del libro infatti ci fa il quadro approfondito della trama spiegando il passato e la natura dei protagonisti fino al giorno del loro incontro anche se alcune parti le ho trovate un po’ ridondanti e grottesche. Quest’ultimo aspetto potrebbe essere una scelta dovuta al personaggio di William che anche negli altri libri si è rivelato sempre troppo superficiale e mattacchione.

Il personaggio di Sunny invece mi è piaciuto di più anche forse per la duplice personalità che rende vivido il racconto e molto particolare. Molto interessante è la parentela di William con gli esseri infernali che nascondono oscuri segreti e verranno svelati con molta parsimonia tenendo il lettore incollato fino all’ultimo per avere un quadro completo e un finale al cardiopalma tipico della nostra brava autrice.

Le scene sensuali non mancano e sono una piccola scoperta in un crescendo e intermezzate dalla simpatia tipica di William.

Chissà se William l’oscuro troverà davvero la sua anima gemella! La maledizione potrà mai essere spezzata? Vi consiglio di addentrarvi nel regno degli inferi e scoprirlo.

Buona lettura fenicette!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Yessenia Andaverde.
1,169 reviews43 followers
October 21, 2021
This was a disappointment. The first 50% of the book is the author trying to sell us the couple. Please, there were numerous mentions of Gilly as a simple crush, as her not being William's true love. All to appease the readers who have been following this story from the beginning and believed Gilly and William would end up together. I count myself in this group.

The first half of the book was Gena trying too hard. Even Gilly and Puck's book was better than this one.

Things started to get better when the sex scenes started. However, I could never connect with Sunny.

The book course was laughable. From the very first moment Sunny starts to really translate it, its rouse was obvious. And that ending? It was quick and unfulfilling, like a virgin boy's first time.

It took me 3 days to finish this book. In one of these days I had nothing planned but reading. Reading all day long, and I still could not finish it. I even started another, better, book while reading this, which is unheard of.

If you get to this point in my review the conclusion should be obvious: don't read it. Don't waste your money and rather save for the next book in the series.

At least Gena is done with Willy and Gilly, who promised to be the best couple but ended up with other people. Such a let down.
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