Review: Dark Sun Rising by B.L. Bonita

Tuesday, October 9

Title: Dark Sun Rising*
Author:  B.L. Bonita
Series:  N/A
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Samhain
Format: E-Book
Date/Year:  October 9, 2012
Reviewed by: Andrea

*This book was provided to the reviewer by the author in exchange for an honest review

Summary from the publisher:

His sin is the color of his skin. Her love is his salvation…and the greatest danger.

Life in a mountain town is hard for gently raised Charlotte Phillips, who has come to Hatchet Creek to help run her cousin’s emporium. When her cousin suddenly dies, she learns just how rough-and-tumble is the life of a business owner—especially when she steps in to stop the brutal whipping of a local colored man.

Avery Samms made the mistake of rejecting the advances of a married white woman, and he pays with the flesh on his back. With no doctor in town, he’s sure a slow agonizing death is his fate. Until a beautiful angel shocks everyone—especially Avery—by taking him home. Her heart may be in the right place, but now her business, even her very life, is in danger.

As Avery recovers, their connection grows stronger every day. There’s passion in her eyes, and purity in her heart that heals soul-deep wounds no one can see. One moment of irresistible desire bonds them in forbidden love.

Even as they plan to escape to a far-off haven, jealousy and revenge threaten to rip their world apart. Under a savage western sun, they must fight for their love…and their very lives.

This book has been previously published and has been revised and expanded from its original release.

Product Warnings
This book contains a gorgeous hero and a spirited heroine, pistol slinging, knife wielding, bigotry, bad guys, bad language, and smokin' hot love scenes.

My Musings:

Dark Sun Rising is a difficult book for me to rate because I was torn in two different directions throughout most of the book.  I guess the best way for me to explain it is to break it down into what I liked and what I didn’t like. 

What I liked:
  • Avery is a great character.  The first time the reader meets him, he is being whipped in the street for a crime he did not commit.  Seeing a strong, vibrant man so vulnerable and helpless pulled at me.  How could I not immediately fall for a guy like Avery?  The more I got to know him, the more I liked him.
  • Charlotte is just as likeable.  I love smart, strong women that I can respect and Charlotte fits into that very well.  She knows exactly what she wants and she is willing to fight for it.  I admire a woman willing to stand up for what she believes in and refuses to back down under opposing pressure.
  • The sex scenes are out of this world.  These are some of the best sex scenes I’ve read in a long time, they’re smoking hot!
What bothered me:
  • For being such well-rounded characters, there are times when they’re terribly one dimensional.  Avery and Charlotte were well developed in the beginning and then once I got to the end, the action overtook the characters.  They lost some of their depth and faded into the background.
  • As the story progressed, Charlotte lost some of the humanity that initially drew me in.  Her reactions to events felt wrong at times.  They were over small, insignificant things, but they didn’t strike me as how a real person would react.
  • The social etiquette didn’t feel right for the historical setting.  Charlotte felt like a modern woman being forced into a historical role. 
  • The other thing that bothered me was the bad language.   I thought the dialogue was surprisingly crude for ladies of that time period.  This is surprising because I enjoy dirty talk in sex scenes and in general I use quite colorful language myself.  I’m not sure what the problem was, but the foul language in the historical context didn’t work for me.
None of these problems are huge on their own.  When taken as a whole, they were a constant distraction which kept pulling me out of the story. 

A 2.5 rating for me generally means I wasn’t into the book, either the characters or the plot didn’t catch my attention and overall the book was just OK.  That is NOT the case with Dark Sun Rising.  The basis of this story is very good, it’s just buried under a lot of muck that kept pulling me out of the story. In the end, I was left feeling that better editing would have helped this book realize its full potential.  


Overall: 2.5
Sensuality level: 4.25

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BL Bonita October 9, 2012 at 1:45 PM  

Thank you for the review, Andrea. :-)

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