A Darkness Strange and Lovely (Something Strange and Deadly #2), by Susan Dennard
Publish Date: July 23, 2013 (audiobook published November 6, 2018)
Published by: HarperTeen
Audiobook Narrated by: Emily Woo Zeller
Length: 12 hrs 7 min (406 pages)
Genre: YA Paranormal/Historical Fantasy
My Rating: ★★★★☆ (4 out of 5 stars)
With her brother dead and her mother unwell, Eleanor Fitt is alone. Even the Spirit-Hunters—Joseph, Jie, and the handsome Daniel—have fled to Paris. So when Eleanor hears the vicious barking of hounds and sees haunting yellow eyes, she fears that the Dead, and the necromancer Marcus, are after her.
To escape, Eleanor boards a steamer bound for France. There she meets Oliver, a young man who claims to have known her brother. But Oliver harbors a dangerous secret involving necromancy and black magic that entices Eleanor. If she can resist him, she’ll be fine. When she arrives in Paris, she finds a whole new evil lurking—forcing her to make a deadly decision that will go against everything the Spirit-Hunters stand for.
In Paris, there’s a price for this darkness strange and lovely, and it may have Eleanor paying with her life.
So I definitely enjoyed listening to this one more than the first one for some reason. Usually second books always feels like a drag to me, but strangely this one actually caught my attention more. Maybe it’s because I was more invested in all of the characters or because there was more to the plot and magic system to learn than before, but I loved listening to it. I think my only issue was Eleanor’s descent into Necromancy and how it was clearly changing her. Part of me understood and agreed with the reasons she used her magic – to protect herself from Marcus and her friends and the rest of society from the dead – I just wish it didn’t have to come at the cost of her friendships with everyone deteriorating and her own personal morals starting to decay as well.
Otherwise, though, a very enjoyable audiobook listen full of action and suspense, new magic characters, and much more to look forward to in the next one.