Review of THE ABYSS by the Dark Romance Group
OpenCAD International, November, 2004
In typical romance, the handsome and upright (but occasionally arrogant and conflicted) hero finds redemption at the hands of the beautiful, virginal, and spunky-but-not-too-spunky heroine--leading to a happily ever after. Nothing wrong with that, right? But sometimes, it's fun to read something just a little different. The Dark Romance Group (www.dark-romance.com) pulled together a group of their authors to create an anthology of 'romances' with a difference. Eighteen stories, thirteen authors, and at least that many variations on the theme of romance gone different.
THE ABYSS contains mummies, vampires, the god of destruction, a cold-blooded thief, a consentual slave, a man whose love is a fantasy, a budding romance where both the hero and heroine are lying to each other about their identities, even a professional assassin who falls for--something different. Pretty clearly, dark romance is a wide-open field and THE ABYSS does its best to convey some of the breadth possible when authors take off the constraints of traditional romance publishing and let themselves go.
Most of the authors represented in THE ABYSS (CT Adams, Jordan Alexander, Allie Bates, Tabitha A. Bradley, Charlotte Boyette-Compo, Adrianna Dane, Amy Eastlake, Morgan Huxley, Steve Lazarowitz, Brenna Lyons, Terry Pray, Rob Preece, and Patricia A. Rasey) are extensively published in independent electronic press and the collection offers a uniformly high quality of story, writing, and production value.
THE ABYSS isn't for everyone, but it also isn't all gloom and doom. There are moments of humor, clever twists, and human insights. Dark doesn't have to mean depressing and, while there were definitely some downbeat endings, the overall sense of the book is positive rather than negative.
In the interest of full disclosure, I should note that two www.BooksForABuck.com authors are included in the collection (see more reviews of books by Amy Eastlake and Rob Preece). As a bonus, those buying directly from the Dark-Romance Group will receive three eBooks for free.
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