April 29, 2011
Since the giveaway I planned for the ARC-review of this book was cancelled because of circumstances in my off-line life I have decided to give away a copy (ordered via The BookDepository) to one of the commenters on this post. Below the review you can find how to enter.

On the run, in each other’s arms, with one last chance to survive.

A rugged Navy SEAL, Zane Scott was part of a failed mission to rescue Dr. Olivia Strohm from abduction by the terrorist group Dead Man’s Hand (DMH)—and her anguished screams have haunted him ever since. So when he gets word that the beautiful physician has escaped from her captors in Africa, he’s got personal reasons to storm the continent and save her.

Like her would-be liberator, Olivia carries the burden of a dark secret from her past. Ruthless and relentless, the DMH has threatened to hunt her down – and to systematically hurt anyone she’s close to. The last thing she wants is to be rescued—even by someone as shockingly handsome as Zane. Yet the hotheaded special ops hero has come for her, and together she and Zane just might have a shot at not only stopping DMH’s reign of terror, but also saving what’s left of their souls.

Author: Stephanie Tyler
Series: Shadow Force Series, book 2
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Publisher: Dell Books
Year of release: 2010, November 23
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Received this book for review from the author

First line: Ohmohs... Ohmohs?
How much?
The incessant calls echoed in his ear, a mix of Krio and English he wouldn't soon forget as he ran through the crowded marketplace along the narrow streets by the harbor.

Memorable Scene:
- Zane and Liv's love scene in the rainstorm and the shack > intense and hot

PROMISES IN THE DARK picks up about several months after we left Zane at the end of LIE WITH ME. Zane was a character that very much intrigued me in that book. Beneath Zane’s aloof, don't-care attitude is a man wanting to belong, to make a difference, but he has a wild, impulsive streak that gets him into situations that other people try to avoid.

Dr. Olivia 'Liv' Strohm is a strong and determined woman. She’s resourceful, has a logical way of thinking and is decisive. I really admired Olivia's character. Already did in LIE WITH ME, and even more so now after reading her own book.

I truly love Stephanie Tyler's male characters and Zane, and his brother Caleb for that matter too, was no exception but even more than the men, I adore her female characters. They all have amazing inner strength and are resilient yet they're never hard or harsh because of the vulnerability she layers them with. Yet they're not picture-perfect, they make mistakes and have flaws and this makes them realistic and likeable. They aren't fearless but don't let their fears dominate their actions or paralyze them.

Once again Ms. Tyler blew me away with the multiple story lines, in the suspense as well as in the romance. There were times I would wonder where it was going but then I'd remember I was reading a Stephanie Tyler book and I'd know it would all click together in due course. The end of PROMISES IN THE DARK definitely packed a punch, after lulling me with what seemed to be coursing toward a smooth ending Ms. Tyler hit me with some exciting twists that had me reading breathlessly and rooting for the good guys.

I loved the "aha!" moments in this book. I praise and admire Ms. Tyler for keeping it fresh and unpredictable. However much I love (and crave/need) to see things coming sometimes, I actually enjoy the surprising revelations even more. I am once more in awe of Stephanie Tyler's imagination and writing skills. With every book from her hand that I read, I'm amazed at how someone can come up with these storylines that are always fresh and original.

Though Zane and Olivia are the main couple of this book, there are more characters who are crucial in the suspense plot and who provide some intense secondary romances. These characters’ back-stories of these characters, that I can't really call secondary anymore, are as extensive, intricate and poignant as Olivia's and Zane's and with all this stuff in addition to the suspense plot and the love stories, you'd think it might become a bit too descriptive or crowded. However, nothing is further from the truth. Tyler delivers well-rounded characters with a complete background that she seamlessly inserts into the rest of the story and I never get the feeling of being overwhelmed. I love that!

Every time I start a Stephanie Tyler military romance I expect a poignant romance, rounded characters with extensive and gritty back-stories and nail biting suspense and she has not once disappointed me. PROMISES IN THE DARK is no exception because from the moment I started it I was immediately sucked into the story as I was dying to know how Zane and Olivia's story would unfold.

Romantic suspense lovers should not miss this author or this series as Stephanie Tyler delivers on both romance and suspense, is never predictable and keeps you reading until way past your bedtime.

Favorite Quotes:
He murmured in her ear, “Open your eyes, Liv. I want you to know my name. To know me—to watch me when you come and know that I’m the one doing it to you.” His voice sent a visceral reaction, a blast of heat, as if she’d been licked by fire, and she wanted to go back and walk through it again and again.

(Cael) He wondered if she ever truly let go. Then again, he’d been asked the same question, albeit mainly by Zane. For the record, the answer was Hell yes. Especially in bed. Because there was a time and a place, and bed was the
time and the place. Well, so was the floor. The table. The
car . . . Yeah, time to get his mind back in the game.

(Vivi) As much control as she’d fooled herself into thinking she had over numbers—or anything—she now realized she barely had a grip on anything.
And this man . . . he could swallow her whole in one bite . . . and something trilled inside of her, as if to let her know if that was to happen, she would enjoy every second of it.

(Rowan) Her lips curved in pleasure, a small, contented moan escaped and she realized that, as of yet, she hadn’t seen Tristan smile. Then again, she hadn’t smiled all that much in past years, and any laughter had been born out of relief rather than true happiness or humor. But she wanted to see him smile. No, she wanted to make him smile. Wanted to make him murmur her name again, over and over, until she knew he was lost in the pleasure haze.
“You’re so beautiful . . . so beautiful,” she told him, unable to stop herself from calling this broad, strong man such a thing, but it was the only word that fit him right now. She had no idea that’s all it would take, but after a second,
he smiled, brilliantly, the shine reaching his eyes, and she simply melted.

...and then Zane's broad shoulders filled the space. He waited, half in the tent and half out, his hair wrapped in a bandanna, shirt off, feet bare and pants hanging low on his hips. His eyes glowed, a blue like the Caribbean ocean with black- rimmed irises, the knife strapped to his left arm and the rifle slung with a loose band around his chest. He looked wild. Feral. Amazing.

You can enter by leaving a meaningful comment (comments like: great review, enter me...will be excluded) or answering the following question:
Do you read romantic suspense?
If yes, what do you like about it. If no, why not?
I will pick a winner soon and announce the winner on May 9th, please leave a way to contact you if you don't have an email included in your profile.


Aurian said...

Goodmorning Pearl, I really like your review ;). I just finished Cherry Adair - Hot Ice, so yes, I do read romantic suspense.
I love an author who manages to surprise me, and write an original story after all the books I have already read, so perhaps Stephanie Tyler is a good author for my to read.

Sometimes I want a break from paranormals and historicals, and read something contemporary. But still an exciting book. Good guys, normal humans, who save the world too. It's still about good against evil most times.

Leontine said...

Dear lawd, Pearl!! If your review wasn't one very seductive call to a book lover then those quotes will make one drool. Very enticing teasers you picked from this story, I loved!

Twimom227 said...

Great Review!! I forgot how much I enjoyed this book when I read it last fall... we need book 3 now... eh hem, is Stephanie listening?! I have read already, so please don't enter me. LOVE IT!

maldivianbookreviewer said...

Pearl, awesome review.
I already have a copy of this in my Kindle.
Your review has definitely made me want to read this as soon as possible! ^_^

Jane said...

I do enjoy romantic suspense and some of my favorite authors in this genre are Karen Rose and Brenda Novak. I like the action and mysteries in their books.

janie1215 AT excite DOT com

Marissa said...

You know I love RS, you're the one who start pimping it in first place. And I know how much you love Stephany Tyler. I have not read a lot of RS, but I like the combination of the danger a thriller provides you with and the romance. And RS usually has great, strong heroes who are very yummy to read about. If this book does not sell itself your review certainly will!

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Pearl has read 10 books toward her goal of 50 books.

On My TBR Shelf

  • Unforgivable - Laura Griffin
  • Snapped - Laura Griffin
  • Darkness at Dawn - Elizabeth Jennings
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  • Animal Magnetism - Jill Shalvis
  • Crazy for Love - Victoria Dahl
  • Kink - Saskia Walker/Sasha White
  • So Sensitive - Anne Rainey
  • Dark Taste of Rapture - Gena Showalter
  • The Darkest Secret - Gena Showalter
  • Vampire in Atlantis - Alyssa Day
  • Vampire Dragon - Annette Blair
  • Captive Spirit - Anna Windsor
  • Chosen by Blood - Virna DePaul
  • Rebel - Zoe Archer
  • Stranger - Zoe Archer
  • A Taste of Desire - Beverley Kendall
  • Mistress by Midnight - Maggie Robinson
  • To Desire a Devil - Elizabeth Hoyt
  • To Tame a Dangerous Lord - Nicole Jordan

Digital TBR Next

  • Driven - Jayne Rylon (reread)
  • Shifting Gears - Jayne Rylon
  • Beg Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Tempt Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Jazz Baby - Lorelie Brown
  • Playboy Prankster - Pamela Britton
  • Just Like That - Erin Nicholas
  • Sweet Inspiration - Penny Watson
  • Breathe - Donna Alward
  • My Gigolo - Molly Burkhart
  • Scent of Persuason - Nikki Duncan

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