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Beauty Awakened (Angels of the Dark Series #2) [NOOK Book]

Overview




New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter returns with another captivating Angels of the Dark tale, as a tormented warrior is brought to his knees by the most delicate of humans….

His name is Koldo. He is scarred, powerful, his control legendary—and he lives only for vengeance against the angel who viciously removed his wings. But if he yields to the forces of ...
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Beauty Awakened (Angels of the Dark Series #2)

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Overview




New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter returns with another captivating Angels of the Dark tale, as a tormented warrior is brought to his knees by the most delicate of humans….

His name is Koldo. He is scarred, powerful, his control legendary—and he lives only for vengeance against the angel who viciously removed his wings. But if he yields to the forces of hatred, he will be eternally damned.

Nicola Lane was born with a defective heart, yet this fragile human shows surprising strength as demons stalk her every move, determined to end her. She is the key to Koldo's deliverance…and his downfall. Though he fights duty, destiny and his first addictive taste of desire, his toughest battle will be the one for Nicola's life—even if he has to sacrifice his own….


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  • Beauty Awakened
    Beauty Awakened  

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"One of the premier authors of paranormal romance." -#1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole

"The Darkest Surrender is another sure-to-please hit...Gena Showalter knows how to keep readers glued to the pages and smiling the whole time."--New York Times bestselling author Lara Adrian

"Showalter delivers yet again!"-RT BookReviews on Wicked Nights

"The versatile Showalter...once again shows that she can blend humor and poignancy while keeping readers entertained from start to finish."-Booklist on Catch a Mate

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781460306420
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 2/26/2013
  • Series: Angels of the Dark Series , #2
  • Sold by: HARLEQUIN
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 7,530
  • File size: 444 KB

Meet the Author

Gena Showalter

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of the acclaimed Lords of the Underworld series and more than thirty other books. She lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Visit her at GenaShowalter.com.


Biography

Gena Showalter is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Paranormal Romance, Contemporary Romance, and Young Adult novels from a multitude of publishers. She has appeared in Cosmo and Seventeen magazines, on MTV, and has also been featured on many regional and national news programs.

Good To Know

Gena credits much of her success to her wonderful fans, amazing family, and the three slobbery English bulldogs who sleep under her desk. She is a self proclaimed coffee addict and when she's not writing she likes to...well, we're not sure. We've never seen her do anything but write.
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Read an Excerpt

Koldo stalked down the ICU ward of the hospital. He and the warrior with him were hidden from human eyes and protected from human touch. The doctors, nurses, visitors and patients misted through them, completely unaware of the invisible world playing out alongside theirs. A spirit world that had given birth to this natural world, the human world.

A spirit world that was the true reality for all creation.

One day, these humans would discover just how exact that statement really was. Their bodies would die, their spirits would rise—or descend—and they would begin to understand the natural world was fleeting, the spiritual eternal.

Eternal. Just like Koldo's irritation seemed to be. He didn't want to be here among the humans, on yet another silly mission, and he really didn't like his companion, Axel. But his new leader, Zacharel, wanted him busy, distracted, for he suspected Koldo teetered on the verge of breaking a heavenly law.

Zacharel wasn't wrong.

After everything Koldo had endured in his father's camp…after escaping and spending centuries searching for his mother, Koldo had finally found her—and locked her inside a cage in one of his many homes.

So, yes. Koldo teetered. But he wouldn't ever cause the woman irrevocable harm. He wouldn't even lower himself to break one of her nails. For now, he simply hoped to teach her the horror of being trapped by circumstance, as she had taught him. As she was still teaching him.

Later, he would… He wasn't sure. He no longer liked to consider the future.

Because of his abhorrence of Cornelia, Koldo had landed in the Army of Disgrace. It was a terrible name for such a choice defensive force, but it was one that fit nonetheless. The members were the worst of the worst, the baddest of the bad…male and female Sent Ones who were in danger of damnation.

For various reasons, all twenty soldiers had ignored prized heavenly laws. They were meant to love, but they hated. They were to help others, but they really only hurt. They were to build up, but they only ever tore down.

Three months ago, the members had been given one year to mend their wicked ways, or they would be stripped of their abilities and kicked into hell.

Koldo would do whatever was necessary to keep that from happening—even deny himself true vengeance. He refused to lose the only home he'd ever known.

Axel grabbed him by the arm, stopping him. "Dude! Did you see the meat bags on that girl?"

And there was reason number one why Koldo had a problem working with Axel. "Could you be any more disgusting?" He jerked from the warrior's hold, contact with another not something he enjoyed.

"Yeah," Axel said with an irreverent grin. "I could. But someone, and I won't say your name, K, my man, needs to get his mind out of the gutter. I wasn't talking about her chesticles."

Koldo ran his tongue over his teeth. "What, then?"

"Hello. Her demons. Look."

His gaze slid to the room at his right. The door had been in the process of closing and now clicked shut, blocking the occupant from view. "Too late."

"It's only too late when you're dead. Come on. You gotta see this." Axel strode forward and ghosted through the entrance.

Koldo's hands curled into fists, and he battled the urge to punch a wall. They had a mission, and distractions only extended their time in a place crawling with demons laughing at the pain the humans suffered and whispering into the ears of anyone who would listen.

Can't survive, they said. There's no hope. And these humans…so many were puppets, with clawed hands tugging at their strings. If they failed to fight back, they would become casualties in a war between good and evil, either in this life or after death. One way or another.

That's just the way things worked.

The Most High ruled the heavens. "He" was actually a sacred trinity consisting of the Merciful One, the Anointed One and the Mighty One, and He was the King of kings, His word law. He had appointed several underlings throughout the skies. Germanus—or Deity, as some of Koldo's kind called him, referring to a title, nothing more—was one of those underlings. A king answerable to the King.

Germanus led the Elite Seven—Zacharel, Lysander, Andrian, Gabek, Shalilah, Luanne, Svana—and each of those seven led an army of Sent Ones. Zacharel, for instance, led the Army of Disgrace.

Sent Ones looked just like angels, but they weren't actually angels. Not in the sense the world knew, at least. Yes, Sent Ones were winged. Yes, they waged war against evil and helped humans, but in actuality, they were the adopted children of the Most High, their lives tethered to His. He was the source of their power, the essence of their very existence.

Like humans, Sent Ones battled the desires of the flesh. They experienced lust, greed, envy, rage, pride, hate, despair. Angels, in actuality, were servants and messengers of the Most High. They experienced none of those things.

Mind on the mission.

Koldo straightened his spine. Zacharel had tasked him and Axel with killing a specific demon here at the hospital. The demon had made the mistake of tormenting a patient who knew about the spiritual world around him, a male who had called upon the aid of the Most High.

The Most High was love personified, willing to help anyone who asked. Sometimes angels were dispatched, sometimes Sent Ones. Sometimes both, depending on the situation and the skills needed. This time, Koldo and Axel had been chosen. They had been nearby, headed to a training session, when Zacharel's voice had whispered through their minds, imparting instructions.

Axel peeked his head through the center of the door and said, "Dude! You're missing it!"

"The person in that room is not our—"

Grinning, the warrior once again disappeared.

"Assignment," Koldo finished to no one but himself. His anger intensified.

Control yourself.

He could move on and fight the demon he was supposed to fight, no problem, but according to Zacharel's orders, he wasn't to proceed without his partner.

Grinding his teeth, he marched forward. He slipped through the iron obstruction without any difficulty, stopped and glanced around. The room was small, with multiple machines attached to the motionless blonde female on the bed. A redheaded female sat next to her, chatting easily.

The redhead had no idea there were two demons standing behind her, pretending not to see the Sent Ones in the room.

"Two of the guys in my office got to arguing about who could run faster," she said, "and soon bets were flying."

Her voice had a whispery quality, as if filled with smoke and dreams, and it settled over Koldo like warm honey. And yet, with the soothing came a tensing. Every muscle in his body knotted up, as if preparing for war. He…wanted to fight such a delicate human? But why? Who was she?

"I felt as if I was standing in the middle of a stock exchange or something."

Laughter bubbled from her, such beautiful laughter, pure, with nothing held back. The kind he'd never experienced himself.

"They decided to race in the parking lot instead of have lunch, and the loser had to eat whatever's in the plastic bowl in the break room fridge. The one that's been in there for over a month and is now black. I heard the cheers as I was pulling out of the lot, but I didn't get to see who won."

Wistful now. Why?

"You would have voted for Blaine, I'm sure. He's only five-nine, so he wouldn't tower over you too badly, and he has the cutest blue eyes. Not that his looks have anything to do with his speed, but I know you, and I know you would have wanted him to win regardless. You've always been a sucker for baby blues."

He could only see the top half of her, but judging by the fragility of her bone structure, she was a tiny thing. Her features were plain, her skin as pale as porcelain, and her eyes as gray as a winter storm. Her mass of strawberry hair was pulled into a high ponytail, the ends curling all the way to her elbow.

There was an air of fatigue surrounding her, and yet, there was a sparkle in those winter eyes.

A sparkle the demons behind her would soon snuff out.

He forced his attention on the pair. One was posted at her left and one was posted at her right, and both had a proprietary hand on her shoulder. They were Koldo's size, with dark, pupilless eyes that reminded him of bottomless pits. Lefty had a single horn protruding from the center of his forehead, and crimson scales rather than flesh. Righty had two thick horns rising from his scalp, and dark, matted fur.

There were many different types of demons, and they came in all different shapes and sizes. From the first of their kind, the fallen archangel Lucifer, to the viha, the paura, the nasili, the slecht, the grzech, the pica and the envexa. And sadly, many more. Each sought the destruction of mankind—one man at a time, if necessary.

Amid the types of demons, there were ranks. Righty was a top-of-the-line paura, and all about fear. Lefty was a top-of-the-line grzech, and all about sickness.

Demons liked to attach themselves to humans and, through whispers and deceit, infect them with a toxin that caused their anxiety levels to spike, in the case of the paura, and the immune system to weaken, in the case of the grzech. Then, the demons fed off the ensuing panic and upset, weakening the humans further and making them easy targets for destruction.

The girl must have been a veritable buffet.

Just how sick was she?

Lefty gave up trying to ignore Axel and glared at him as he danced around, slapping his face and saying, "I'm hittin' you, I'm hittin' you, what're you gonna do about it, huh, huh?" in the good-ole-country-boy accent he sometimes liked to use.

Koldo despised demons with every ounce of his being. No matter their type or rank, they were thieves, killers and slayers, just like his father's people. They left chaos and confusion in their wake. They ruined. And this pair wouldn't leave the girl unless forced—but even then she could welcome others.

His chest burned as he switched his focus to the girl on the bed. But…his gaze lasered through the wrinkled cover, the thin hospital gown, and even skin and muscle. What he saw astonished him.

To him, the blonde was now as transparent as glass, granting him a glance at the demon that had wormed its way inside her body. A grzech, different from the one plaguing the redhead. This one had tentacles that stretched through the blonde's mind and into her heart, draining the life from her.

The Most High often blessed Sent Ones with specific supernatural abilities during difficult situations, things like this X-ray vision, as he'd heard others call it. Until now, Koldo had never experienced anything like it. Why here? Why now? Why this girl and not the other?

The questions were overshadowed a second later, when, in the blink of an eye, Koldo learned exactly how this had happened to her, the information seeming to download straight into his brain.

Born at twenty-six weeks, the blonde and her redheaded twin had struggled to survive the heart defects they'd been born with. Multiple surgeries were needed, and both almost died countless times—each time nullifying any progress made. Throughout the years, their parents had become fond of saying, "You have to keep yourself calm or you'll have another heart attack."

Innocent words meant to aid the pair—or so it seemed.

Words were one of the most powerful forces known—or unknown—to man. The Most High had created this world with His words. And humans, who had been fashioned in His image, could direct the entire course of their lives with their words, their mouths as the rudder on a ship, as the bridle on a horse. They produced with their words. They destroyed with their words.

Eventually the blonde had come to believe the slightest rise in her emotions would indeed cause another painful heart attack, and with her belief, fear had sparked to life.

Fear—the beginning of doom, for heavenly law stated that what a person feared would come upon them. In the blonde's case, the fear had come upon her in the form of the grzech. She'd caught his notice, and she'd been such an easy target.

First, the demon breathed his toxin into her ear, whispering destructive suggestions.

Your heart could stop at any moment.

Oh, the pain…it's unbearable. You can't live through that again.

This time, the doctors may not be able to revive you.

Demons knew human eyes and ears were a doorway to the mind, and the mind was a doorway to the spirit. So, when the blonde had entertained the terrible suggestions, constantly rolling them through her mind, the fear had multiplied and become a poisoned truth, causing her defenses to crumble, allowing the demon to slink inside her, create a stronghold and destroy her from the inside out.

She had indeed had another heart attack, and the necessary organ had weakened beyond what human medicine could repair.

Did the Most High want Koldo to help her, even though she wasn't his current mission? Was that what this unveiling was about?

Sighing, the redhead leaned back in her chair, returning Koldo's attention to her. Once again, he saw flesh and blood rather than spirit. The Most High's gift hadn't extended to her.

He didn't have time to wonder why. A waft of cinnamon and vanilla hit him, quickly followed by the sickening scent of sulfur. A scent the girl would not be able to shed, as long as the demons stayed with her.

"It's about time for me to go," she said, rubbing at the back of her neck as if the muscles were knotted. "I'll let you know who won that race, La La."

Did she have any idea that evil weighed her down and stalked her every move?

Did she know she was full of demon toxin, just like her sister? That, if she didn't fight, she would end up in the same circumstance, the demons worming their way inside her body?

Koldo could kill Lefty and Righty, but again, other demons would sense what easy prey she was and attack her. As unknowledgeable as she clearly was, she would surrender again.

For any kind of long-term success, he would have to teach her to wage war against the toxin. But to do so, he would need her cooperation and time. Cooperation she may not give. Time she may not have. But…maybe she was the one the Most High wanted him to help. Maybe Koldo was to save the redhead from the blonde's fate.

Either way, the choice to aid her—or not—was Koldo's. Germanus and Zacharel might issue orders, but not the Most High. Not even when He revealed a truth. He never overrode free will.

"You want in on this, buddy?" Axel asked him, continuing to slap at the now-snarling demons behind the redhead. "'Cause I'm about to take things up a notch."

"A notch above annoying is merely irritating," he said, inwardly fuming because he already knew he was going to pick the mission. Survival always came first.

Why was he fuming, anyway? He liked the sound of the girl's voice—so what? Who was she to him? No one. Why should he care about her and her future?

"We have a duty," he added. "Let's see to it."

Immediately guilt attempted to rise. No matter who she was—or wasn't—he was cold and callous to leave her to such an evil end, wasn't he? His father would have made the same choice. His mother would have— He wasn't sure what she would have done. She still seemed to love everyone but Koldo.

"Ah, come on, hoss," Axel said. "Stop and play, that's my motto."

"You come on," he called to Axel. "Now!" Before he changed his mind.

"Sure, sure." Axel worked his way behind the demons and kicked one in the back of the knees. The other twisted swiftly to bat the side of Axel's head with a meaty fist, sending the warrior propelling through the far wall.

Koldo stepped in front of his brethren when he returned to the room, preventing him from springing into a full-on attack. "Touch him again and you'll discover my talent with the sword of fire," he told the demons.

Loyalty mattered to Koldo. Deserved or not.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 143 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(74)

4 Star

(33)

3 Star

(16)

2 Star

(10)

1 Star

(10)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 143 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2013

    CAUTION!!!! THIS IS NOT A REVIEW ON THE BOOK, BUT ON THE AUTHOR........

    CAUTION!!!!
    THIS IS NOT A REVIEW ON THE BOOK, BUT ON THE AUTHOR........

    What to say? I feel very conflicted about my review. It feels wrong to be writing this but.... WTH! I was hoping Last Kiss Goodnight was an exception, but I guess not. It felt like Sunday church school. I've deleted this sentence like 10 times because I just don't know how to continue without being harsh, but I think GS might be at a point where she is going to be acquiring a completely different kind of reader and saying goodbye to her old ones (you know, the ones that obsessed, laughed, cried and set reminders on their phones for her release dates? ya, those.) I gave her last book 3 stars because I couldn't bring myself to rate her any lower. It just felt wrong. But now I'm just so upset :( I think, to new GS readers, this book is perfectly adequate and if it was a Young Adult book, it would have been great. But for me it was a complete let down. She just jumped off my purchase list. I'm not quitting her, but I will definitely be getting her books from the library from now on. I read 331 pages of Young Adult at best, Christian Fantasy Romance easily, at worst, but definitely not what I thought I purchased. Not making that mistake again. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me, but fool me three times? Oh no no no!

    I have extremely low expectations for the following books, and don't even want to think about what she's going to do to the Lords. It's really quite tragic, I feel like crying just thinking about it. The worst part is that I don’t mind her new PG-13 way so much…….. well, okay fine, I do mind it, a lot actually, but I could live with it if it meant having her in my life. It’s the overkill that REALLY bothers me. I don’t even nag to my kids this much. I mean WOW! It felt like a really draining therapy session, or a visit to my mother in laws. The moral lessons should definitely be kept to a minimum. Less is more is a good rule to follow in this case.

    With that said and all kidding aside, I actually feel really sad and let down at this new turn in her writing. I look forward to her books sooooo much, and to be left with this feeling of dissatisfaction is a real bummer. I always read her books on the release day, usually in one sitting and right away get on the phone to let everyone know how good it was, what to expect and give away spoilers to those who want them. I read it two days ago and haven’t called anyone. I’m always so excited and can’t wait to talk to someone about it. I feel no excitement at all. How sad is that :(

    25 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 1, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    What's Going On With This Author?

    Okay, seriously what has happened to the author? This book (and honestly the series so far) doesn't even seem like the same Gena Showalter who forced me to stay up into the wee hours of the morning just to finish one of her novels. Actually, I know what happened. According to her website, Showalter has found God which is great for her, not so great for the readers if it means a complete change to her writing style. Granted, a series about angels skates pretty close to the Christian tradition, but you only have to take a look at JR Ward's series to see it can be done without a lot of preachiness. Beauty Awakened reads like inspirational fiction which, again, is fine but not what her readers have come to expect. All of the snap, crackle and pop of her early writing as well as the sizzling chemistry between characters is completely gone. This book was about as sizzling as The Cat in the Hat. Never have I read a Showalter book where the sex scene was so vague and undescriptive. The funny thing is, for someone who's become more circumspect involving intimacy between characters she certainly has no trouble writing graphic violence which I really think has been ratcheted up lately (there's a scene involving the removal of an eye that is particularly grisly), not to mention heaping abuse, sexual and physical, on her characters which seems like overkill. Those issues coupled with the heavy Christian tone are the reason for the dismal rating. Abandoning this series won't be that much of a problem (although I'm still a teeny tiny bit intrigued by Thane, Bjorn and Xerxes), but I'm really worried about the continuation of the Lords of the Underworld series. Kane's story is next, and I can only hope the author rediscovers her mojo or another series will be ruined for me.

    22 out of 26 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2013

    Another preachy disappointment

    This book is disgusting. Ever had a loved one die of heart failure? Well they just didn't think enough "happy thoughts" and probably had a demon inside them.

    I could go on and on about this Sunday school wannabe drivel, which as a former LoTU devotee saddens me, but I won't. Suffice it to say that Showalter's newly discovered outlook on life is severly negatively affecting her writing ability.

    I'm giving her one last shot - Kane's story - before writing her off completely and boycotting her forever.

    Sad, she HAD such promise and used to be such an amazing writer.

    18 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    This book really lacks the writing skill I've come to expect fro

    This book really lacks the writing skill I've come to expect from Gena.  It's a continuation of
    her "testimony" from her website. Hopefully now that she has it out of her system, she can get back to her
    exciting storytelling. What's happening to writers these days! First, Charlene Harris, then Christine
    Feehan and J.R.Ward, and Gena has  lost the ability to keep up to their standard of writing. I can only
    hope Kresley Cole and Alexandra Ivy don't follow down this path.

    15 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2013

    WOW...!!!!!!

    THIS REALLY SUCKED!!!!
    I'd really like to offer an intelligent, ADULT review for an author that I have loyally followed for over a decade, but I find my intelligence sorely taxed by the dismal, juvenile, sermonizing crap that she has offered in the last year. I couldn't even finish this oneand as sad as I am to say it I won't waste my time and money on another one. The idea of her tangling Kane or any of my other faves from LotU or Alien Huntress up in this adolescent, kumbaya mess is disturbing. I' d rather use my own imagination than have another perfectly good hottie, alpha male or kick-butt herione turned into wimpy, whiney dull-as dishwater character in one of Ms. Showalter's new books.
    I wish her and her publishers the luck of their new target audience which obviously ISN'T those of us that have lined their pockets for the last couple of decades. I'll find another ADULT romantic fiction author to give my money to.

    13 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2013

    Decent

    The well written love scenes from "Lords..." & Wicked Nights are completely missing from this book.

    The end leaves MUCH to be desired.

    I REALLY hope Kane's book is written the way she normally writes.

    10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2013

    I am a huge Lords of the Underworld fan, but this new series is

    I am a huge Lords of the Underworld fan, but this new series is seriously lacking in the romance department.  The book was interesting and well written, but it it just didn't do it for me.  Sad, because I was really looking forward to this new series of hers.

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2013

    Dissapointed

    Not like how she used to write. Has she overextended herself for her publishers? Her description for sex scenes was that of a ya novel. Used to be a die hard fan but im not too sure anymore.

    8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2013

    very disapointed in this book, although it had potential for a g

    very disapointed in this book, although it had potential for a great story it falls FLAT! I wish i could return it but I purchased it on my nook so i am stuck. I do not recommend this book, although i would recomend her previous series Lords of the Underworld. sorry

    7 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 26, 2013

    Heartbreaking, Funny, Action-Packed and Sexy!, BEAUTY AWAKENED,

    Heartbreaking, Funny, Action-Packed and Sexy!,
    BEAUTY AWAKENED, the 2nd installment of Gena Showalter's Angels of the Dark series is finally here and it was so worth the wait!

    The book starts off with a young Koldo at the age of 7 years old. This was by far the most heartbreaking chapter I have ever read. A little boy starved for his mother's attention and love and getting nothing but hatred and abuse in return. No matter what he did to please her, she hated him and punished him more. We finally learn what happened to Koldo's wings and I sat here with a box of tissues balling me eyes out through this chapter. We also find out who his father is and I just can't decide who was worse, his mother or father. I finally decided they were both just as equally horrible. Poor Koldo!

    Koldo is a warrior in Zacharel's Army of Disgrace, a group of warrior angels that are in danger of falling. I loved Koldo when he was introduced in WICKED NIGHTS but now he has my heart forever. I'm a sucker for the tortured souls and we all know Koldo went through torture when we learned his wings were removed but in this book we learn the full extent of the hell and anguish he went through. Koldo was the warrior with few words and no emotions, but he does have emotions. He just covers them up and pretends to not care because he is scared of rejection. Through everything that he has been through he still fights for what's right and he's a hero which he proved in WICKED NIGHTS when he made huge sacrifices to save his leader Zacharel. When he learns to open up and discovers his feelings for Nicola he is also very possessive but in a sweet, melt your heart kind of way.

    Nicola and her twin sister Laila were born premature and with underdeveloped hearts. They have lived their lives not truly living at all due to fear of overdoing it and having a heart attack. They both know they don't have long to live but they are too weak and scared to fight. Nicola isn't a kick ass hero like Annabell was in WICKED NIGHTS but she is awesome in her own rights. Nicola is the stronger sister, always looking out for and taking care of Laila who is the weaker more afraid sister. She's easy going but not a doormat and she's not afraid to stand up for herself and let anyone push her or her sister around. She's kind, good hearted and funny and I really enjoyed her character.

    Koldo first notices Nicola while on a mission in a hospital. He finds Nicola leaning over a very sick, almost dead Laila. He notices right away that they are both being poisoned by demons who are shadowing their every move and are filling them with toxins. They feed on their fear, sadness, pain, doubt and any other negative emotions and the demons are slowly killing them both. Koldo takes an interest in Nicola and decides he's going to teach her how to get rid of the demons and keep them away for good. Because to have any shot at living, they need to keep the demons away for good.

    A lot of the healing Koldo teaches Nicola and Laila was all about the power of positive thinking. Some people may be put off by this but I truly believe that positive thinking does help. If you think negative thoughts then those thoughts will start to bring you down. We may not have demons sitting next to us feeding us negative thoughts and toxins like the sisters do, but to me negative thoughts and words are toxins. If you think negative about yourself you start to believe it and live it. I love how Gena incorporated this into her story.

    This book is NOT full of steamy sex scenes like some of Gena's other books. There is pretty much one full on sex scene but there is plenty of sexual tension. Both Koldo and Nicola are virgins and Nicola needs to take things slow otherwise her heart can give out. This book has just the right amount of sex and tension for these two characters and I think Gena told their story perfectly! Honestly, I get tired of the hero and heroine jumping into the sack by the 100th page of books. It takes a talented author to write a romance book with only one actual sex scene and keep it sexy but if anyone can pull it off its Gena and she totally nailed it!

    We get to see a lot of Axel and Thane is this book. While Axel acts extremely immature, you can't help but LOL at his crazy antics and the absurd things that come out of his mouth. Thane was on a mission to take out the demons responsible for killing someone they all cared dearly for. AND....for all you Lords of the Underworld fan girls out there, William makes an appearance! Squee!!

    Overall this book was incredible! It was heartbreaking at moments and LOL funny the next. It was sexy without a lot of sex and full of non-stop action. BEAUTY AWAKENED book pulled me in from the very first page and consumed me to the last.

    *ARC provided by author in exchange for an honest review.

    I give BEAUTY AWAKENED 5 out of 5 skulls

    6 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2013

    Still love G.S but miss the older style of writing

    This book isnt as bad as many of the reviewers are saying. For me its not in the same league as her usual kick ass heros, and witty women. But its about angels and something like angels. Now if youve read about angels in other books there is Usually a religious undertone so stop complaining about it being to preachie if you dont like the frame work for this book pick one of the older ones, they never dissapoint. The build up in the relationship was nice with some tension, not as hot as usual but a good read. Will i keep reading G.S. books definately! It sounds like a few of the other charaters will have a hotter story line and who says a committed relationship has to be dull.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 5, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I'll make this short... The book was great. I loved the charact

    I'll make this short...
    The book was great. I loved the characters and I am in love with Koldo. This is the second installment to a new spin-off series. If you have not read the other series by GS than you will adore this book. However, if you're like me and have read and re-read everybook she wrote than you will have complaints similiar to the ones listed below. I still love GS books. I did enjoy this read and will continue to read her stories, but I do wish she would give us more of the love scenes from her other books. I gave this book 4 stars based on the book it self. If your new to this author I highly recommend you read her other books as well. If you are not reviewing this book than I suggest you leave your complaints on another site.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2013

    So disappointed!

    Expected better. It is suited to a young adult reader. Absolutely no sizzle like her previous books.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 7, 2013

    Awesome

    I love Gena's books, I think she is one of the best writers ever..... This book is awesome and keeps your attention. Great work!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 12, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    5 Stars! Gena Showalter did it again! A wingless angel and a gi

    5 Stars! Gena Showalter did it again!

    A wingless angel and a girl tormented by demons. Is there redemption?

    "BEAUTY AWAKENED" pulled me in from the very first page and consumed me to the last. I'm in love with the Sent Ones “Angels of the Dark” . Gena Showalter is an amazing author and knows how to tell a story that keeps you entertained and intrigued. 

    What we get with “Beauty Awakened” is positive thinking, action, sexual tension and a little humor in this book. 
    The healing Koldo teaches Nicola and Laila is all about the power of positive thinking and if you think negative thoughts then those thoughts will start to bring you down. “You speak what you believe, and you believe you’re doomed. If there’s one thing I’ve learned throughout the years, it’s that what you believe is the impetus for your entire life.” The sexual tension is just right between the main characters and we get one full on sex scene. It takes a talented author to write a romance book with only one actual sex scene and keep it sexy and Gena nailed it! We also get to see a lot of Axel in this book. While Axel acts extremely immature “he adds the comic relief in this book”, you can't help but laugh at his crazy antics and the absurd things that come out of his mouth. We also get an appearance/snippet of William from the "Lords of the Underworld” series.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 29, 2013

    I really loved WICKED NIGHTS, so I was a bit reluctant to read B

    I really loved WICKED NIGHTS, so I was a bit reluctant to read BEAUTY AWAKENED assuming the second book in the series couldn’t possibly live up to the first. Well, I’m happy to report all my assumptions were incorrect. I should know by this point not to ever doubt Gena Showalter - she’s the queen of adult paranormal!

    First, let me say I fell absolutely in love with Koldo. His past was so rough my heart just broke for him. It’s pretty bad when you want to leap into the pages and hug a fictional character. Oh, but don’t think the sadness lessened the sexy because he was all of that too. Also, I just adored Nicola. She had some pretty big challenges of her own, yet she was so strong. You couldn’t read this book without cheering for her. But, the best part was when the characters came together. There was chemistry flying off the pages.

    The angel backstory and likable secondary characters left plenty of room for this series to continue. I really can’t wait for BURNING DAWN and I hope this is more than a three book series.

    Fans of Adult Paranormal Romance, Alpha Males, Strong Females, Off-the-Charts Chemistry, or Angels should definitely check out the ANGELS OF THE DARK series.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2013

    Is it just me?

    Or does it seem like all anyone wants to read is erotica.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 3, 2013

    Oh, how I miss my former Gina S.  I read her latest book on Kold

    Oh, how I miss my former Gina S.  I read her latest book on Koldo..........left lots to be desired. I have been a loyal fan since discovering her very
    first book a couple of years ago, and have read EVERY book she's written.  Koldo's story was a good PG-13 read but greatly lacked the same sizzle and
    pizzaz of ANY of the others I've read.  I was frequently bored, and easily distracted - it was a difficult read because it was so, ummmm how
    shall I say this?  Preachy?  I don't have a problem with Christian literature, quite the opposite, I love it.  But if you're going to write a series-based
    book then stay true to the series!  I do not claim to have any expertise whatsoever as a writer, but I have oodles and scads of experience as a
    reader, and I say this book is a true departure from GS's genre style. If Faith-based stories are her new inspiration, I think that's commendable.
    But break the ties all together and start a new line of books with new plots and characters. Don't just turn the world she's created upside down and
    all luke-warm.  Change lanes and go in a totally new direction, honestly and openly. 
    I feel very disloyal because I have loved her work for so long.  She has made her characters believable and interesting - even the bad guys are
    fabulously detailed and deliciously rotten.  All the characters in this book are hohum and, well, shallow and fickle..  They lack depth and personality.
    Gina, I'm sorry.  I know this is a harsh review. Facts is facts, mam!
      

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 7, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I could not finish the book. I read the first book in the series

    I could not finish the book. I read the first book in the series and thought maybe it was just a slow start to a great series, however, I am not a fan. I loved LOTU series and thought this was going to be a great spin off but I was really disappointed. I had a really hard time getting into the charcters. It pains me that I had to stop reading the book at page 134. Maybe I will give it another try.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 3, 2013

    Amazing I Loved this book BEAUTY AWAKENED is the 2nd instalment

    Amazing I Loved this book

    BEAUTY AWAKENED is the 2nd instalment of Gena Showalter's Angels of the Dark

    Cornelia was renowned for her exquisite beauty and she showered many with her kindness. There was one child however that no matter how he tried to please her she only held hatred in her words and actions for her son Koldo. The only life the child Koldo had known was the tortured by his mother and then when she was finished with him she had sent him to be thrown in a pit of serpent and to be tortured even more brutally by his father, but Koldo was not a child anymore.

    Koldo is a Sent Ones these are the Mighty One's warriors chosen to fight the evil demon of hell. Koldo however is part of the group known as the 'Army of Disgrace' these are the baddest of the bad the Sent Ones who were in danger of damnation and are led by Zacharel. Zachrel holds concern for Koldo so had made sure to partner him with a new partner each day and sent him out on mission to try to keep him from acting on his anger and doing something nothing they did would save him.

    Nicola and her twin sister Laila were born premature and both suffered with a heart defect. Always being bought up sheltered in all they did and having it drummed into them that if they weren't careful they would have a heart attack had made the girl forget how to live and be happy. This constant self doubt and insecurity also left them vulnerable and opened the way for their thought to be controlled by the demons.

    While Koldo and Axel were on a mission at the hospital Koldo is drawn to a room in which he finds a blond woman in a hospital bed with a redheaded woman sitting beside her. Koldo and Axel also notice the two demons standing either side of her drawn to her but compelled to his duty Koldo leaves and demands Axel go with him to complete their mission. Koldo knows he must go back and help the redhead, he hopes he can save her and when he does return he comes out from the shadows and makes her a bargain she can hardly refuse a chance to extend the time her sister has left but she must do as he requests when he requests no questions asked realising Koldo's request is not sexual Nicola immediately agrees.

    For both Koldo and Nicola their lives are about to change what was the reason for their union will turn out to be so much more. Koldo never thought he was deserved of love and never needed acceptance after the rejection and torture of his parents. Nicola had never imagined a life without heart break and fear, they are about to realise how wrong they are.

    Gena has truly done it again I loved this book and found myself totally immersed in the characters and storyline. I look forward to reading the next instalment to this series. Be sure to also pick up Book 1 in this series Wicked Night's which is Zacharel's story

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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