Well I suppose I should have took the title a little more literally because I have to say that I was surprised by the dark twists in this book. They caught me off guard in the best way possible. This was a very interesting story. I enjoyed the mystery, it was very well done. There were subtle hints weaved throughout the whole story that I caught, and it all made sense in the end. The author gave you enough to put the threads together, but still managed to add some shocking details that will knock you on your ass.
I absolutely loved the setting. There is just something about the bayou that is inherently creepy. The decrepit houses, standing in solitude, surrounded only by the marshy woods with their dangerous inhabitants.
Add to that the small size of the town, where just about everyone knows everyone and everything about each other, even dating back 100 years, and you have pure magic. Poor Mala had the misfortune of being from a family with a dark past that she couldn’t seem to live down. Most of the town considered her nothing more than a devil in a dress. The fact that her mother’s occupation happened to be town tramp certainly didn’t help matters. No matter how good Mala was she couldn’t quite escape the disdain for her family. Things only escalated when she found the body of a dead wealthy girl floating in her swamp.
Landry happened to be the brother of the deceased girl and he was relentless in trying to uncover what happened to his sister. Which ultimately leads him on a crash course with Mala, whom he always had a fascination with from a far. But nothing about them came easily. There was a lot of mistrust between the two, but also an electric connection. I could have done with a little less of the love/hate back and forth. I understood it, but it really could have been tamed down a smidge and I would have enjoyed it all even more.
I really adored the paranormal aspect of Dark Paradise. The ghosts, creepy family members shrouded in mystery and power, and the unique abilities were amazing!
I couldn’t get enough, and I loved discovering it all little by little along with Mala. I can’t wait to see more about her and her incredible family gift. Even Landry had a little something special, which I would like to learn more about. This was a fantastic first book in what looks to be a very magical series. I’ll just be here waiting on pins and needles for the next book.
This ARC was provided by Forever (Grand Central Publishing)via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review