Christopher Slater's Reviews > Eve of Darkness

Eve of Darkness by S.J. Day
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Jul 03, 2012

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The following review is from my blog Cure my Writer's Block
Wow! This book is so very difficult to categorize and critique because there are so many different aspects and approaches that one can focus on. I will try to look at the most important ones and do my best to paint a coherent picture.

Storyline
To call the storyline unique would be quite an understatement. While the idea of angels and demons fighting it out on Earth is far from a new one, the almost military or corporate structure that is involved in how things are done in this series is fascinating. Hearing the description of the many demons hiding throughout the city in plain site and all of the little things that they do to make life more difficult starts to make you wonder every time little things go wrong in your life. To say the least, the storyline certainly makes you think.

Characters
Most of the characters are well developed. The various ranks of angels display a lot of human characteristics, most often ambition, that make you love or hate them. Cain and Abel have polar-opposite personalities, and you can easily picture them fighting over toys as children. The character that, to me, seems the least believable is Eve. S.J. Day obviously wanted to make a character that was a strong woman, not the stereotypical damsel in distress. No problem. That fits in more with reality. What she ended up creating, though, is a character that supposedly is able to shift from interior designer in L.A. to metaphysical urban warrior quickly. Sure, she talks about some of the emotional turmoil involved, but the physical requirements alone wouldn't have happened so quickly and easily. Plus, how many people do you know that can go from wearing designer dresses and high-heels every day to suddenly wearing combat boots everywhere they go the next?

Religion
Here is the sticky point for a lot of people. The book certainly does address religion, seeing as how most of the characters in it are biblical. The question is, is Day sacrilegious in her portrayal. Well, as with so many things religious, it depends upon who you ask. She certainly did her research into the ranks of both angels and demons and the stories surrounding them. There is also not a character of God that the reader ever meets. He is kept at a distance, never described except once by Cain, who simply says that he is "never so tranquil as when in the presence of Yahweh." God's ideas, plans, and reasoning are kept a mystery, even to the highest ranking angels. However, this book takes biblical stories and people and puts them into the modern day world. The angels are very ambitious and always trying to find ways to get more into God's favor. In fact, they are downright unlikable. If you are what can be described as a Bible "literalist", you should definitely avoid this book and its sequels. If you are more liberal in your religious interpretations, you might find this more enjoyable.

Sensuality
Yes, this book contains "romance scenes" (worded for those that are easily made unconfortable). In fact, it contains quite a few of these scenes. It is almost another character. While, at least according to my wife, it doesn't come close to that displayed in 50 Shades of Grey, it is still not something you want to be reading to grandma. Day is not remarkably graphic in her descriptions, but she makes certain that you know what is going on without any doubt. If you blush easily, you won't want to read this one.

Conclusion
OK, most guys might just buy this book to stare at the girl on the cover. I understand. However, inside is a very unique storyline with characters that you wouldn't expect from a source that you probably never considered. However, you have to be somewhat religiously liberal and not afraid to read some scenes that would make your mother blush. The book is more written for a female audience, although guys would probably love a movie version of this for the action. It is the first in a series, so you can have several books to read to keep you entertained for a while. The narrowing down of the potential audience has forced me to lower its rating a little.

Christopher Slater
author of Trapped in Shades of Grey
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