Book Reviews Giveaways Guest Review

Guest Review and Giveaway: Born of Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Today we have something a little different for you: we received a review copy of Born of Night by Sherrilyn Kenyon and due to our crazy schedule, we realized that we couldn’t possibly read and review it. BUT, since our friend Harry Markov of Temple Library Reviews showed some interest on the book a while back, we asked him to write a review for us – and he was more than happy to oblige! Here is what he has to say:

Title: Born of Night

Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon

Genre: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: St Martin’s Paperbacks/Piatkus
Publishing Date: September 2009/October 2009
Paperback: 560 pages

Stand Alone or series: Book one of the League series

How did we get the book: we got a review copy from Piatkus and sent the book to Harry.

Harry’s review:

Born of Night” by Sherrilyn Kenyon sounded good at first. The book trailer whispered sweet things in my ear and the cover seduced me. I said I wanted it and Ana gave it to me. However it turned out that “Born of Night” is a big book. A sense of foreboding came over me, when I looked at the five hundred and thirty pages and then made sure that this is a book in the UF and paranormal romance vein. But first the blurb:

In the Ichidian Universe, The League and their ruthless assassins rule all. Expertly trained and highly valued, the League Assassins are the backbone of the government. But not even the League is immune to corruption…

Command Assassin Nykyrian Quikiades once turned his back on the League—and has been hunted by them ever since. Though many have tried, none can kill him or stop him from completing his current mission: to protect Kiara Zamir, a woman whose father’s political alliance has made her a target.

As her world becomes even deadlier, Kiara must entrust her life to the same kind of beast who once killed her mother and left her for dead. Old enemies and new threaten them both and the only way they can survive is to overcome their suspicions and learn to trust in the very ones who threaten them the most: each other.

I started reading… It was the most conflicting five days I had ever spent with a novel as far as my reading experience is concerned. By the end I wanted to both have sex with it and have the book burned, while I watched with a glass of wine in my hand and an evil laugh. For starters the writing style didn’t agree with me much. Kenyon is one of those writers, who are fond of pairing nouns and adjectives all the time and the pairings don’t bring out a new nuance in the prose. I am talking about the ‘indignant anger’, ‘playful banter’ and ‘stinking garbage’. These can be generally overlooked, but Kenyon also enjoys repeating facts and bits mentioned before and are well known or completely obvious.

As the story progresses the reader is introduced to the Sentella, an assassin organization with principle and heart, good men and women with brutal pasts, who are like one big family to a degree and usually banter. Instead of just letting the reader buy the concept and through reading say ‘gee, these assassins have brutal pasts, but are good guys that banter like a family’ Kenyon emphasizes on ‘brutal pasts’ and the banter, which is shouting at my face rather than telling or ideally showing me this. But yes, I did love the assassin organization, the personal pasts designed for each character and how they owe their loyalty to Nykyrian. It felt good to meet these characters and learn more about them and care for them.

What I hated was how their pasts were revealed, especially Nykyrian’s. Kenyon has allowed too many easy solutions to the questions surrounding the assassins’ backgrounds. Kiara is this naïve Mary Sue character with childish curiosity and apparently acts as the human version to the serum of truth, because whenever she starts asking questions, everybody spills paragraph upon paragraph of their personal drama. And the model behind each conversation is like this: Kiara’s question – …’s answer – Kiara’s provocation – …’s angry response to prove Kiara wrong in her closed minded view. This totally ruined it for me, even though there is much thought into the characters and the dynamics and ties between one another.

While I am still on Kiara, she is a contradiction. One moment she is all open minded and sees that these people have been battered by life and are more or less forced into their lifestyle and when the plot demands to be moved forward or the reader needs information about a character then Kiara is self-righteous and all knowing, condemning them. She whines and places herself in danger, because she doesn’t think. Sure, her past as a victim to assassins justifies her hate and resentment to assassins, but then again I would suppose she would be smart enough to build a stronger survival instinct as to never warm up to the Sentella or taking it extra longer to do so or decide to go with the Sentella to a planet that screams danger.

Yeah, so far it seems that I utterly hate this novel, but there is one redeemable quality and that is Nykyrian. It’s true that he is a bit of a Gary Stu. Tragic past? Check. Can survive almost every dangerous scenario? Check. Has mad skills? Check. Desired? Hell yeah. Bad boy with a golden heart? Check and check. Yet I connected with the guy, believed that he was as tormented and unloved as Kenyon told me he was. Reading his awkward reactions to going in a relationship with Kiara was endearing and kept me going and going. And that relationship grew nicely complicated, entertaining to watch spin and then wham a head on collision train wreck, which left my jaw hanging low. Kenyon took this thing to a good place and totally sunk my battle ship by introducing the most impossible succession of chance meetings that are considered implausible to happen on Earth and nearly laughable to occur in a story, where the characters can travel between worlds as it you are visiting a neighborhood in your city.

By the time I was done I banged my head on the wall, because I had hoped for a reasonable happy ending. Kenyon defied all laws that govern over happy endings and delivered the cheesiest, most sugar coated Hollywood packaged finish I have ever seen. Yet, the novel kept me emotionally active, reactive and engaged, which is hard to achieve these days and the story does have its good moments. After all, Kenyon is a bestselling author and although I myself couldn’t buy this I bet there are readers, who want wish-fantasy story lines. As far as I am concerned I won’t be repeating this experiment.


Giveaway details:

Would like to read Born of Night and see for yourself? We have one extra copy to giveaway along with another 3 Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books:

The contest is open to the US ONLY and will run until Saturday, December 12 at 11:59pm (PST). To enter, simply leave a comment here. ONE entry per person, please! Duplicate and/or multiple entries will be disqualified. Good Luck!

You Might Also Like


  • Leeann Burke
    December 9, 2009 at 6:18 am

    I have read some of Mrs Kennyon’s books from her dark hunter series.I truly enjoyed reading them. I didn’t pick up a copy of this book on my last trip, but I wanted to on my next trip. Now I’m not so sure.

    Thanks for the review

  • Virginia C
    December 9, 2009 at 6:19 am

    I’d love to win! I admire Sherrilyn Kenyon very much, but I have yet to read one of books. This would be a great way to start : )

  • Lynette
    December 9, 2009 at 6:52 am

    I love it when a man reads a romance novel and isn’t snarky about it. I love seeing a man’s perspective and it does make me long to have a copy to see if I feel the same way.

  • Amanda Makepeace
    December 9, 2009 at 7:03 am

    Oh yes please!! Ever since I saw the cover to Dream Warrior I’ve wanted to read these books! 🙂

  • Sue
    December 9, 2009 at 7:44 am

    Yes, I would love to read her novels. I have heard about how good her books are but I never got a chance to buy it. Thanks for the chance to win.

  • Jennifer
    December 9, 2009 at 8:10 am

    Please enter me. Sherrilyn Kenyon is one of those authors that’s been on my list forever, but I just haven’t had the chance to pick up any of her books yet.

  • Amanda
    December 9, 2009 at 8:29 am

    It sounds like an interesting plot-line to me. Consider me entered!

  • Teresa W.
    December 9, 2009 at 8:48 am

    This is one of my favorite authors, count me in!

  • Jamie
    December 9, 2009 at 8:50 am

    I love Sherrilyn Kenyon. Please count me in.

  • Miranda
    December 9, 2009 at 9:00 am

    I love Kenyon’s books. Please enter me too. Thank you

  • Jessica Kennedy
    December 9, 2009 at 9:12 am

    I’d love to read this new series! Thanks for the chance to win a copy! 🙂

  • Cassey Orre
    December 9, 2009 at 9:24 am

    I love this author! she writes amazingly, i’ve read all of her books that are in the library! I would love it if you entered me also! thanx

  • Sarah
    December 9, 2009 at 9:30 am

    I started one of her books awhile ago, but never finished it. However, I’m tempted to get Dream Warrior just to stare at the cover…

  • zeek
    December 9, 2009 at 9:44 am

    ooo, I’m in! I’ve been meaning to get to these! THANKS! 🙂

  • Tiah B
    December 9, 2009 at 9:52 am

    Harry, you should review romance novels more often. That was awesome. 😀

    Please don’t enter me. I just wanted to comment.

  • Daelith
    December 9, 2009 at 9:53 am

    Put my name in for the drawing.

    I have wondered about the first book of this series since it was written in 1996.

    Thank you.

  • Donna S
    December 9, 2009 at 10:08 am

    Great review. I would love to be included. I have been wanting to try her books out but just havent had the chance to yet.

  • Marie
    December 9, 2009 at 11:17 am

    I love her books! Please enter me!

  • Raquel Vega-Grieder
    December 9, 2009 at 11:20 am

    I Would Love To Be Included In The Contest. Most Of My Friends Are Big Sherrilyn Kenyon Fans. I myself Have Not Read Any Of Her Books But I Was Hoping To Get My Hands On A Few After Christmas. I Have Read Some Excerpts Of Sherrilyn Kenyon And I Am So Interested In Getting Her Books. 😀 .

  • Harry Markov
    December 9, 2009 at 11:56 am

    So, thanks to all the people, who liked the review. I was quite passionate about it, because it could have worked enough for me to rock me at the ending, but flopped there…

    Paranormal Romance is fun.

  • Kaye Lipscomb
    December 9, 2009 at 12:21 pm

    I love her books – and I cannot wait to read this new series!!! And winning would be awesome!!

  • Danielle
    December 9, 2009 at 1:06 pm

    It is always interesting hearing a man’s thoughts on any sort of romance. Great review, Harry.

    Sign me up!

  • Kristina
    December 9, 2009 at 1:08 pm

    I would love to read any of these. I’ve read a few of the author’s Dark Hunter series.

    ➡ 😀

  • Rosie Carlo
    December 9, 2009 at 2:44 pm

    I’ve been a Kenyon junkie since day one, so please count me in for this contest! Thanks!

  • GSM
    December 9, 2009 at 2:59 pm

    Kenyon’s books are great. Thanks for the contest.

  • etirv
    December 9, 2009 at 3:30 pm

    I would like to be entered!

  • I Heart Book Gossip
    December 9, 2009 at 3:46 pm

    Please count me in. I am a huge fan!

  • Tracey D
    December 9, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    I have heard great things about Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books. I look forward in reading them.

    Tracey D

  • Chelsea B.
    December 9, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    Hmm. Interesting review. I’ve only read one of Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books, but I thought it was pretty good. Cout me in for the contest!

  • Mariska
    December 9, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    i’ve been all over the place to win Sherrilyn’s books. And this giveaways will be perfect for me to start to collect hers !

  • Paige
    December 9, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    I would like to read Sherrilyn’s books.

  • Nicole Downing
    December 9, 2009 at 6:24 pm

    Sounds great 🙂

  • The Book Vixen
    December 9, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    I would love to read her books. I haven’t yet but can’t wait to start 😀

  • SaraC
    December 9, 2009 at 8:04 pm

    I’d love to win and read this!

  • Courtney
    December 9, 2009 at 9:18 pm

    Count me in! I would love to read these.

  • Dan
    December 9, 2009 at 9:25 pm

    While the review might make me think twice about buying the book, it does leave me interested enough to want to try it by winning it 🙂

  • Heather
    December 9, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    Harry I think that you nailed this book. You can definitely tell that it was a very early book by her. I am glad that her writing has gotten better over the years as she is one of my favorite authors. The other books in the series look to be better.

    Don’t enter me as I already have the books, I just wanted to comment.

  • Veronica F.
    December 10, 2009 at 12:34 am

    I’ve heard of Kenyon’s name and work so much, but have yet to get a chance to read her books. Redundancies & funky word pairings aside, I’d still love to win her books and have a chance to read them. count me in!

  • Julie
    December 10, 2009 at 1:09 am

    It’s interesting to read a guy’s review of a romance novel; thanks for your input!

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  • Liza
    December 10, 2009 at 5:06 am

    I have never read Ms. Kenyon. I appreciate that chance to giver her a try.

  • Cara Powers
    December 10, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    This would be my first paranormal romance (besides Twilight) and I’d read it for the “Take a Chance” challenge.

  • Collette
    December 10, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    I have Dream Warrior but I’d love a chance at the others. And Kenyon is indeed cracktastic.

  • Lisa B.
    December 10, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    I’ve read a few of Sherrilyn’s Dark Hunter series and I have to say I was never disappointed. Her writing is so vivid. I’ve heard a lot about this new series. I’m intrigued.

  • Sue
    December 10, 2009 at 11:26 pm

    I’d love a chance! Thanks for the giveaway.

    s.mickelson at gmail dot com

  • CrystalGB
    December 11, 2009 at 8:57 am

    I love Sherrilyn Kenyon’s books. Please count me in.

  • Robyn B
    December 11, 2009 at 11:45 am

    I would love to enter! Please count me in.


  • carol
    December 11, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    I’d love to read it. Thanks for entering me.

  • Raelena
    December 11, 2009 at 3:46 pm

    I would love to read these books! Count me in please

  • alana
    December 11, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    I’m in!

  • Linda Henderson
    December 12, 2009 at 6:47 am

    I would love to win these books. I have heard great things about her books, but I’ve never read one.

  • Van P.
    December 12, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Sounds great, please enter me 🙂

Leave a Reply