Bestselling author Staci Hart brings you an addictive romantic mythology series where love is the ultimate game, and Aphrodite always wins.
(Hearts & Arrows, #3)
by Staci Hart
A Contemporary Romance
I never wanted to leave her. But I had no choice.
I’ve spent the last three years raising my daughter and wishing for things I couldn’t have. When I came back to New York, I thought I could find my way back to her. But that path was lost, grown over and hidden from everyone, especially me.
Her obsession over her best friend’s death is dangerous, and the man she’s after could put her life at stake. She’ll never let it go, not until he’s behind bars or dead.
She just doesn’t realize it might not be him who pays in the end.
If only she’d let me help her. If only she’d let me in. When she sets her mind to something, that’s it. But there’s an exception to every rule, and I plan to be the exception to this one.
And I’ll protect her until my very last breath, whether she wants me or not.
Find From Darkness on GOODREADS
4.5 “Rock-Paper-Scissors” stars
After everything that happened at the end of the second book, Shift, Aphrodite is devastated and in a bad place as she treks through uncharted territory. If she could avoid going back to Olympus she would but it’s time for another competition so she is forced to meet her problems head on.
She couldn’t hide any longer, couldn’t avoid turning the page, and she didn’t like what she knew was coming…
Everything had changed, and there was no going back. And in that, she found she was lost.
Even worse, she was afraid.
It’s game time and Aphrodite is competing against Artemis, the Goddess of Hunt. Aphrodite and Artemis have much in common, having both lost their loves, bringing them nothing but pain. However, where Aphrodite thinks love is a driving force in the universe, Artemis now thinks it’s useless. This will definitely be an incredible game as Aphrodite shows Artemis just how powerful love can be, especially when Josie and Jon are chosen as the players.
Josie is a private investigator who goes after bail jumpers. Closing in on her latest mark, she finally catches up with him only to be met by Jon, another PI with whom she shares a heartbreaking history. Jon’s mistakes in the past have created nothing but pain and Josie wants nothing to do with him, her hurt still very much alive. But Jon will do anything to get her back and has his work cut out for him.
She had changed, closed herself off, and he didn’t believe it was just him she’d locked out. She had been hurt, and that hurt had hardened her to the point that the woman he had known was almost gone completely.
From Darkness is a second-chance romance that is darker and more intense than the previous books and the emotion, romance, suspense, and action keep you flipping pages. I love this series and Staci Hart’s ability to seamlessly combine two stories into one. Though this book can technically be read as a standalone because it is about a different human couple, the gods are the same and it’s exciting to follow their lives from book to book as the gods’ story continues.
The mythological side of things was entertaining and we get more of what Aphrodite was going through as well as Artemis’ backstory. The book was well written and the story stays true to the characters. Aphrodite believed in love no matter how much heartache she experienced and her strength shone through. I loved how relatable Aphrodite was with her human emotions, yet she still had her godly powers. I also thought the character growth Aphrodite and Artemis go through was well-developed. The command Aphrodite held when she voiced her opinions, especially at the end, was awesome and I loved when she realized exactly what she needed to do. Artemis had to work through thousands of years of emotion and seeing her experience her revelation was satisfying.
As with the other books, the gods play a huge role in the competition and I enjoyed watching them manipulate the game and the effect their actions had on the humans. The human’s side of this story may actually be my favorite of the series. Josie and Jon are well-crafted, complicated characters who face difficult decisions that ultimately ruin everything good between them. I was fully invested in their lives and rooting for their HEA.
“How do you find happiness after so much hurt?”
“It’ll find you when the time is right.”
Josie was utterly heartbroken when Jon left her. Her devastation was palpable and I felt the conflicting emotions when he re-entered her life. Her anger, pain, was tangible, and I my heart ached for her.
She was strong, albeit stubborn, and I connected with her on an emotional level, understanding and feeling what she went through. I wanted nothing more than her to find peace and move on from the pain.
Jon was wonderful. He made a huge mistake with Josie, and though I think he definitely could have handled the situation a million times better, he did what he thought was best. I felt his regret deep in his soul, and even though I didn’t necessarily agree with all of his actions, I forgave him when I understood the reasons for his choices.
As Josie and Jon spend more time together, they slowly they fall back into the easy bantering and teasing they once shared but there is still a huge wall between them. I loved watching Jon fight for Josie, his determination never wavering.
“I know you. You can tell me all day long that you hate me, but you care. I know you do, and I’m gonna prove to you that I’m worth it. If you ever find a way to trust me with your heart again, I promise you, I will take care of it. I swear I will, and I don’t care how long it takes to convince you.”
They shared a connection that couldn’t be severed no matter how much pain they suffered and you could feel it’s strength whenever they were together, one character fighting it and the other savoring it. The sexual tension crackled between them and it only grew the more they deny it.
She was a burning match, and he was gasoline, and when one touched the other, everything would be devoured until all that was left was ash.
This book has less sexy time than the others but it is no less fulfilling when they finally come together after so long. It was sensual and fierce and gorgeous. It was perfect.
There were no more questions. There was no wondering. There was only the two of them, their broken hearts mending with every beat, every breath.
The mystery side of the story is intense and suspenseful. There was a killer on the loose and it was exciting and thrilling to watch the chase. There were some nail biting scenes and my heart raced and in the end I loved the way things played out.
I have to give a shout out to Heff. He is amazing, swoony, and a total sweetheart, and I want him to have all the happiness in the world! I am still rooting for his HEA!!
Overall, From Darkness is an amazing addition to the Hearts & Arrows series and I want more! I loved it!
*ARC generously provided by the author and Social Butterfly PR in exchange for an honest review*
Hearts & Arrows series
About the Author
Staci has been a lot of things up to this point in her life — a graphic designer, an entrepreneur, a seamstress, a clothing and handbag designer, a waitress. Can’t forget that. She’s also been a mom, with three little girls who are sure to grow up to break a number of hearts. She’s been a wife, though she’s certainly not the cleanest, or the best cook. She’s also super, duper fun at a party, especially if she’s been drinking whiskey.
From roots in Houston to a seven year stint in Southern California, Staci and her family ended up settling somewhere in between and equally north, in Denver. They are new enough that snow is still magical. When she’s not writing, she’s reading, sleeping, gaming, or designing graphics.