Review: Dark Genesis (The Darkling Trilogy) by A. D. Koboah

A. D. Koboah’s paranormal romance novel, Dark Genesis, introduces readers to Luna, a female slave living in Mississippi during the early 1800s. Koboah’s description of slave life is honest and brutal. Luna’s mother is sold when Luna is only three, leaving other slaves on the plantation to take care of the child. Mary, who is ten, steps in to help Luna through this hardship. Luna is a beautiful girl and it doesn’t take long for her white master to take notice. Even though the slaves do their best to protect Luna from his advances, they cannot keep an eye on her all of the time. Luna is repeatedly raped by her master and then when he passes by her master’s son.

After visiting an African woman, who is a witch and Luna’s biological mother, to retrieve herbs to abort her master’s child, Luna is noticed by an evil creature. Luna has the ability to sense good and evil. She’s drawn to a chapel that her mother has warned her not to visit, but Luna can’t stay away. Luna has proven she’s a strong and resilient woman. But can she keep her strength and dignity when she’s taken by Avery, a vampire? And can she open her heart to love someone not from her world after all of the abuse she’s been through?

There is much to like about this novel. Luna’s character is the star of this novel. She’s a strong, beautiful, and charismatic woman living in a world that doesn’t appreciate her and only wants to see her as a commodity. Avery is not your typical vampire that one encounters in books and movies. He’s honest, caring, and loving. The love that develops between the two is pure and inspiring. Even though Avery is a bloodsucker, this novel makes it clear that slavery is actually sucking the life out of Luna. When she finds the courage to love another she saves her soul from the odious institution.

The story is told through Luna’s journal. One of her descendants stumbles upon the journal and sits down to read it. Only the opening pages and the last few pages are in novel format. The rest is the journal. However, the journal reads more like a novel. This didn’t bother me too much, but I have to wonder why the author decided to use this format if she was itching to write a novel. I had to keep reminding myself that it was supposed to be Luna’s journal. When Luna speaks in her journal you can hear the voice of an uneducated slave woman, which is perfect since it shapes Luna’s character. However, when she writes, it’s too sophisticated and hard to believe that these are Luna’s words and thoughts. I think it would have been better for Koboah to stick strictly to the journal format or skip it entirely.  Fortunately the writing is strong so I was still able to enjoy the story.

Dark Genesis is the first in a trilogy. I’m quite curious to see how Koboah approaches the sequel to this fascinating tale. She’s done a marvelous job laying the foundation. I hope that the rest of the story is as entertaining as the first installment. I give her novel 4 out of 5 stars.



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