The Wicked Deep

The Dark Light by Sara Walsh

The Dark Light by Sara WalshThe Dark Light by Sara Walsh
Published by Simon Pulse on August 28th 2012
Pages: 483
Goodreads
four-stars

Mia is torn between two guys—and two worlds—in this epic, romantic fantasy.

Mysterious lights have flickered above Crownsville for as long as Mia can remember. And as far as she’s concerned, that’s about the only interesting thing to happen in her small town.
That is, until Sol arrives. Mia’s not one to fall for just any guy, but she can’t get Sol—or the brilliant tattoo on his back—out of her mind.
Then Mia’s brother goes missing, and Mia’s convinced that Sol knows more than he’s sharing. But getting closer to Sol means reevaluating everything Mia once believed to be true. Because Sol’s not who Mia thought he was—and neither is she.

First off let me start by saying that the blurb for this book is completely misleading. “Mia is torn between two guys” ehh… not really, actually not at all. I don’t want to go into exact detail otherwise I’ll totally ruin one of the big surprises of this book, but I will say that there’s really not a love triangle like they’d like you to believe. Sol the new resident hotty and pegged “mysterious” boy is of course linked to Mia but the other boy they try to allude you with, Andy, doesn’t really affect the story. In fact, he’s not really in the story at all. I just wanted to give you all a heads up, because if you were like me, expecting and excited for a love triangle — I didn’t want you to get your hopes up. Okay, enough about love triangles! It’s time to get down to business.

The Dark Light was nothing like I expected yet more than what I hoped for. With a synopsis talking about strange lights, a new gorgeous boy and a missing sibling, a story could pretty much go in any direction, which is one of the reasons I immediately wanted to read DL. I’ve never been a big fan of mysteries, at least not in the Sherlock Holmes or NCIS sense but for some inexplicable reason I was drawn to this book. It might have been just because of the shirtless, buff and tattooed guy on the front (no shame here) but I’m sure the whole “strange” lights played a part as well. With the story options endless, I had a wicked fun time coming up with various possibilities.

Now here’s where I try to convey my love for this book yet do so in a way that doesn’t completely ruin the big reveal. Although the solving of the “lights” mystery is pretty early on in the book, it’s but the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the big picture i.e. the meat and bones of the story. Let me start off by saying WOW followed by HOLY COW. I of course had a few guesses as to what fantastical element was at play but was completely off! (Which I loved) Walsh takes this book in a completely different direction than I expected. Some books can be easily figured out, but not The Dark Light. Until we’re literally told, I doubt anyone could figure out what’s really going on which solidifies the wonderful creativity and imagination Walsh has.

So then there’s the characters. You’ve got our main heroine, Mia who struggles with parenting her half brother, Jay due to the irresponsibility of their uncle, and actual parental figure, Pete. Sol of course is the new guy who brushes into town and keeps to himself while Andy, a fellow student and potential love interest of Mia’s, just sort of the blends into the background along with Mia’s best friend Willie. There’s of course a sleuth of other minor characters used to support the story, but they don’t really spark for me. I loved how Mia’s so protective of her little brother, going as far as searching and literally battling her way to get him back. She has all the makings of a great main character but I just couldn’t really get invested in her. The only real character I felt any connection with was Sol. The entire time I was reading I was mentally begging for more background info on the guy. His story was the one I eagerly ate up. As for the rest of the characters, for me, they sort of faded into the background.
Regardless of the weak character connections, I still loved this book. A lot. I didn’t necessarily rush to finish reading it like I do with most books I love, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the story. It’s creative and rich and entirely entertaining. I haven’t read anything alluding to book two, but after Dark Light’s ending there HAS to be a continuation. Although I neither hated nor loved the entire cast of characters, from the story standpoint I’m still entirely too invested in them to not see what happens next.

 

four-stars