By the end of Obsidian, things are far from resolved and yet Armentrout gives it a clean break that doesn’t make the book feel half-baked or unfinished. Set after the events of the first book, though not directly after, feelings of satisfaction and excitement surge with the awesome characters’ reappearances, which blend in so well with what we’ve learned of them in Obsidian. Daemon is all flirty and attentive, Kat is doubly resistant of the cockiness, and Dee is squashing the urge to barf between the two of them. All the sexual tension is MAKING HER SICK, ya’ll.
The opening is instantly true to the characters, and it honestly feels like no time has passed since the first book began. WHICH IS CRAZY. Because it’s been MONTHS. And maybe that was part of the problem for me. Getting my hands on this book became my TOP priority, and so maybe Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout was bound to fall a tad short in certain areas. But in regards to the Black twins? I doubt disappointment could ever come from them.
Especially with SEVERAL flaming reminders of Daemon’s sexy charm and Dee’s internal struggles with fellow alien boys – we all know this series is about aliens, yes? – and external cheer. Kat, however, kept bothering me for most of the book. Maybe it’s her harsh snubs against Daemon and his valiant attempts to win her, that telltale “paranormal book” heroine indecisiveness, or the fact that JUST BECAUSE she’s in with the “in” crowd now she thinks she knows best and how to handle herself. I didn’t like her Miss Know-It-All personality switch.
~Freaky alien mojo, Kat’s EVIL RESISTANCE, and the DOD did what now?~
One would think when one’s life becomes crowded with aliens, one would take a step back and say to oneself, “Hey, listen, Self, maybe we’re in over our head. I mean, the guy next door is hot, totally, but is INDISPUTABLY AN ALIEN. And he has superpowers NOT OF THIS EARTH. And they might’ve rubbed off on me. I don’t think we can handle this. We are talking to ourselves, after all.” But, noooo, Kat tries to become all confident, independent, and self-assured and that just FAILS. The smart and sassy heroine I began to love in Obsidian suddenly vanishes and I’m left with a hat for butts. Her character gives way to petulance, temper tantrums, and frustrating confusion WHICH MAKES NO SENSE since she’s suddenly a know-it-all-do-all girl. I tried to sympathize with her, because, you know, Daemon was a shizzface jerk, though an extremely good-looking one, in Obsidian, always running hot and cold and EFFING WITH HER MIND, and I guess she’s entitled to make an ass of herself once she finds herself in love with said jerk. That didn’t mean, however, that I was accepting of it, that I had to like it. Because I didn’t.
Meanwhile the dreaded DOD, which stands for government alien patrol, have decided to make a very suspicious appearance in Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout. After the awesome climactic turn of events toward the end of Obsidian, something, something BIG, has caught their attention and they want answers. The stakes have certainly hit a boost with the DOD’s hunger for power and interest in Kat and Daemon’s intriguing closeness and, of course, CHEMISTRY. Just what the heck are they looking for? What kind of decimation of Daemon and Dee’s race are they actually responsible for? And what do they truly know about Daemon’s brother, Dawson, his disappearance, and the disappearance of the girl he loved?
~An un-love triangle, Dee’s sex dilemmas, and HOT alien boys~
Blake Saunders from good ol’ blistering California makes an abrupt appearance in Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout to rock the very fragile boat, falling in line with the overly done Second Book Love Triangle plot thread. He’s a surfer, he’s cute, he’s *cough* normal, yeah, yeah, yeah. WE ALL KNOW he ain’t got NOTHING on Daemon Black. But, Kat and her irritating determination to prove to herself that her feelings for Daemon are fabricated rather than fully formed on their own pursues this enigmatic guy, and only succeeds in verifying that no one gets his romantic sparks on like Daemon. She doesn't even get a tingle, not a flutter. How very expected disappointing, I'm heartbroken.
And Kat, surprisingly, is not the only one with some entertaining DRAMA on her hands. Nope, Daemon’s cute, sweet, and exuberant twin sister has her own love dilemmas all revolving around a certain adamant alien boy REALLY stuck on her. Is there romance a product of expectations or ACTUAL DESIRE? Well, Dee gets her Sexy Times on just fine in order to be sure. Daemon and Kat aren’t the only ones who know how to do the Amazing Chemistry Thing.
~Daemon Black screws up the stoic jerk act—finally~
Yes, Daemon Black needs his own especially specific mention. I don’t even understand my fascination with this douchey bad boy. What is with some of us girls and our love of total buttholes? Because that is what Daemon is, initially in Obsidian. But THEN.
Even though Daemon acts like a jerkface for most of Obsidian, what sets him apart from the REALLY BAD bad boys of no return and the authors who get it wrong is his innate and underlying compassion and kindness. OF COURSE he hides it with loaded sentences, cockiness, and snark but the flashes are there, enough to see the real guy underneath. So, in Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout the arrogance is still there, but now Daemon’s making an effort. He’s not mean or terrible to Kat; in fact, more than not he shows off his sweet side, strutting his stuff, tempting her with half-bitten cookies—I’ll leave that to your imagination—and crowding her at the kitchen sink. In being her willing body pillow. In reading her book blog. Oh, man, does Daemon do quite the 360 and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t finish this book with utter elation over his persistence.
~A bumpy road goes steady~
Although Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout’s middle got uncomfortable with all that unlovable paunchiness and all those hard bumps, the beginning is grand and the final hundred pages really make the difference. Things kick up for our romance even as the same happens with the plot! The mysteries tangle up so that they’re all of a piece and in need of solving. Suspicions are confirmed. Baddies surface and shake up trouble so that everybody’s sunk in it. And a surprise appearance sets the characters world quaking with disbelief and fear.
Armentrout has made it so that the anticipation for the next book KILLS. And now that the Sophmore Book Curse has run its course, the excitement for the third book is downright unstoppable.
Want something similar to read? Check out Touch by Jus Accardo and Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry.
Originally posted at Paranormal Indulgence, 6/4/12