Dark Stranger (The Dream) by I. T. Lucas is the first book in the Children of Gods series. I went into the book with high expectations, although my experience with the author was non-existent. However, my fascination with the premise led me to pick up this book.
What is the story about?
The story introduces readers to a world where gods inhabit the earth. There are those who are good and seek to protect humanity while there are those whose thirst for power seeks to wage war and create havoc. These are known as Doomers. The protectors are dying out as they cannot procreate with their kind. The ability to protect their clan lies in them gaining access to a dormant strain of their DNA allowing them the ability to carry on their lineage. Amanda Dokani a god and a neuroscientist believed she has found the DNA in her research assistant Syssi. If only she could convince her brother, the head of the North American clan, that Syssi was his soul mate and the future of their clan depends on them both.
This being the first book in the series, I was expecting an exciting build-up to the events that would follow in the rest of the books. In addition, based on the synopsis, I expected a fast-paced, edge of your seat and steamy read. Unfortunately, I did not receive what I had expected. Instead, I got a story with a slow pace and lots of sexual tension. In spite of the slow pace, I was not bored. This instalment set the pace for the other books to come. It provided background information on these supernatural beings, which I found fascinating. Learning about their origins, their fight for survival and how they blended in with humanity made for an interesting read.
I normally read stories told from at least three (3) POVs. My experience this time around was different a this story was told from multiple third person omniscient POVS. At first, I thought I would have issues, but this was not the case. The story is written in such a way it was easy to follow and the transition between POVs was flawless. I was expecting action and steamy scenes, but it never materialised in this instalment.
The book ended with a cliff-hanger which was not surprising. This is a series of nine books, broken down into three books for each couple.
Kian is a 2000-year-old god and the head of the North American clan. He is an alpha in every sense of the word. He is arrogant, dominant, possessive, caring and protective. The author’s portrayal made it easy to like him. Kian is a complex character. He appears tough, but beneath that lays a lonely soul desperate to love and to receive love. However, fears from his past crippled him. He has been that way for 1,976 years.
Syssi is a character that I had a difficult time with, and sad to say I did not connect with her. She was intelligent, funny at times and painfully shy. Her portrayal was contradictory. She is able to sense danger due to her precognitive capabilities. However, these abilities were under-utilised.
I found the secondary characters interesting. They each had their story to tell. The author’s decision to give us their POVs helped to make their roles intriguing and piqued my curiosity, which, made me want to know more about them. I am especially intrigued by Amanda, Kian’s sister and Dalhu, one of their sworn enemies. Their past is riddled with mystery, which I am eager to uncover.
This was where I had my biggest issue. First and foremost, I did not connect with Kian and Syssi as a couple. Their connection was more physical than emotional. Then to make matters worse, I did not get the hot, scorching and steamy love scenes I was expecting based on the book’s description. Well, I guess my expectations were too high because what I got was nothing to write home about. All of Syssi’s intimate encounters with Kian took place in her dreams and even those were blah. When I thought that, finally her dreams would become a reality they were interrupted by a phone call. I was like “seriously”.
Dark Stranger the Dream is not a bad start to the Children of Gods series. There were aspects I enjoyed and some not so much. I am curious to know how the events eventually unfold, so I will be picking up the second book in the series. If you are a fan of serials and paranormal stories, then you will enjoy this book.