Review: The Deepest Night

The Deepest Night
The Deepest Night by Shana Abe

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Returning to the magical world of Drakon and Stars walking on earth, The Deepest Night pauses to bring two Drakon together. In the first book, Lora lost her soulmate, Jesse. Still in love with Lora, Armand pursues her more fiercely in this story. This unrequited love is painful to witness. All hope is not lost for Armand as his heartbroken father forces Lora and Armand together in a manner they never expected. This second installment is populated with more questions than answers. The reader is still kept in the dark about Lora's past. The focus is on Armand and his family. It's also the beginning of the unwilling bonding between Lora and Armand.

Ms. Abe weaves a wonderful tale of struggle and lost. In this, she also offers up hope and redemption. She is so good at showing how a female resists against males yet over time, loses against the male's wishes. In the first Drakon series, Rue resisted becoming mated. Ultimately, she concedes and surrenders to the more powerful males. It is a reoccurring theme which makes me feel ill at ease yet slightly aroused.

In The Deepest Night, Lora's chosen mate sacrificed himself to save them all. Now, she is given another chance at love. She is unwilling to move on. Yet her lost love and Armand push her in ways which makes her less resistant to accepting Armand as a potential lover. Lora is no weakling either. None of Ms. Abe's female characters are weaklings. Why is it that they all seem to submit to a male at the end of a story? This is something which puzzles me even as it feels right. Is this a society brainwashing which makes this palpable? Or is it something more primal? Could it be - when a male can overpower a strong female and convince her he can protect her, sometimes it makes that male a worthy mate?

Lest anyone think this is a slavery of non-consenting women, I must clarify. The males in each story are not bad nor are they evil. What they do have is power which can be used to force the women into positions they would rather not experience. The balance comes when Ms. Abe's female characters cause the domineering or spoiled males to become more humble. When these heavy handed males are pushed off their pedestals of power, they become a male worthy of these deceivingly powerless females. And this is the context which appeals to me. Because there is a power exchange which balances with a give and take. One can only hope the next book in this series will answer questions about Lora's past as well as Armand's past. I look forward to another magical tale from the talented Ms. Abe. This paranormal romance is recommended for dragon lovers who prefer a strong female lead.

*provided by Edelweiss

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