Dark Soul by Tenaya Jayne
Series: Legends of Regia #3
Source: Review by Request
Copy provided by the Author
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Thief. Murderess. Sacrificial messenger. Netriet has faced death many times but she never consented to the transformation she endured the last time her life was pulled back from the edge of death. She’s compelled to live a solitary life for fear the shadow inside her will terrify others. Lonely, Netriet longs for acceptance and friendship. Joining up with the Fair, a haven for misfits, she believes she’s found home and love with Merick.
The ghosts of Merick’s past haunt him. Helplessly attracted to Netriet, he’s sworn to help her destroy the shadow within, but losing his heart to her cripples him with fear. Mistakes and misunderstanding push her away and Merick’s forced to watch her flee into the arms of another man.
Torn between two men, Netriet’s true nature is drawn to one, while the shadow yearns for the other. At war with the darkness, Netriet must choose, or let the shadow swallow her completely.
The fate of Regia’s new republic hangs in the balance as a new enemy arises, backed by a group of violent insurgents bent on destroying everything Forest has worked for. Desperate for intelligence about the terrorist group, Forest learns the leader wants not only to claim the throne, but also her life.
One of the great things about being a blogger is that you get to shout from the rooftops whenever you find something special.
I take a ridiculous amount of pleasure from being able to draw your attention to Tenaya Jayne’s gorgeous series, The Legends of Regia…
Finding light in the darkness…
The shadow moved under her skin like oil and shoved her forward from within.
This series is a favorite of mine. Long before I became a professional reader, I picked up the Legends of Regia series and fell in love with this High Fantasy/Romance/Action/Adventure story-line.
I’ve been with it for a few years, anxiously awaiting each new installment. These books are so intricate and detailed, and the characters so complex, that I felt compelled to create a character map in my review of Forest Fire.
There’s an entire unique world filled with Vampires, Shape-Shifters, Elves, Werewolves, magic, ghosts, portals, sword-play… So much to get wrapped up in…
Fun Fact: The First book is FREE on Amazon so there’s really no excuse not to give this series a try.
Alright, back to the book at hand… The Legends of Regia series spins multiple story-lines with each book, each swirling around a central focus or event. In this book, the spotlight shines on Netriet as the central point of focus:
“You brought me back to myself. You saw me, even when I only felt her. You were my anchor. In my darkest moments, it was you that pulled me back.
Poor little Netriet, she has had a hard life over the course of this series and I was thrilled that she had her chance at finding love and contentment after so much pain, suffering, and heartache.
Netriet started out as a Vampire in the Royal Court of Queen Cristiana. She hated the obnoxious queen and began stealing from her for sport. Her thefts eventually landed her on the wrong side of a death-sentence and she was sent off to pay the price of her wrong-doing.
Death would have been a preferable outcome to the fate which awaited her. The mole inside Fortress used Netriet as a sacrificial messenger and sent her to the Werewolf King, Philipe. She was collard – with a particularly inventive and brutal device – she was starved and tortured. She eventually lost her arm to the collar’s destructive power.
In a moment of awe-inspiring awesomeness, Netriet killed her captor, Phillipe and plunged to her death down the Eastern Regian Mountains. Well, she wasn’t completely dead.
Shi, the Dryad spirit of Wolveswood resurrected Netriet using energy from The Heart of Regia… But The Heart was tainted with an evil force which wove it’s way into Netriet.
Now Netriet hides from society and battles split personality…
I told you, this world is detailed and complex…
And Netriet is only ONE character in a diverse cast!
Anyway… In Book Two, Netriet stumbled into the Fair and caught the eye of Merick. The unassuming Vampire juggler secretly saves Netriet from two Werewolves. In that moment he proved that he was WAY more than he seemed on the surface.
Turns out, Merick is hiding from a tragic past just like Netriet.
Netriet’s fragile heart is drawn toward Merick. His nearness makes the darkness in her retreat. Unfortunately, that darkness seems drawn to another male – one infinitely more dangerous.
Even though the primary focus of this book is on Netriet, we still have plenty of catch-up time with Forest & Syrus, plus much more!
Syrus spends his days at Obsidian Mountain training new Masters,
There is a Resistance forming to topple the current government,
The restructuring of Regia continues with Forest at the helm,
We get to spend more time in the Fair (which was lovely),
There is a new threat with a family connection to Forest,
The Rune-dy remains shifty and unpredictable,
There’s spells and portals, and badass new swords…
New characters, and new conflicts…
You know, sometimes it’s hard being infatuated with a series without a big fandom…
But in this case, I take pleasure in the fact that I don’t have to share my book-boyfriend Syrus with anyone – Well, except for Forest – I encourage you to check out this series for yourself why I’m in love with this badass Vampire.
But be warned, He’s MINE! *evil laugh*
“Let’s go. I’m going to put you downstairs, where you won’t be bothered by any of my other detainees.”
Merick jumped up from his seat as they came out. “Where are you taking her?”
Forest’s heart jerked in response at the look in Merick’s eyes as he beheld Netriet, bound and marching to her fate.
“Netriet is now in the custody of Fortress. She will remain in a cell until her trial.”
“Then so will I.”
“What?” Forest asked.
“Lock me up, too. I’m staying with her.”
Forest shook her head. “Against protocol.”
“So arrest me.”
“Uh…” he looked around quickly, his eyes settling on a tall vase on a stand in the corner. He looked back at Forest his eyebrows raised in question.
Forest almost laughed. She shook her head. “Breaking Fortress’ property won’t really be enough to land you in a cell.”
“How about assault?”
Ena, who had been quietly watching the exchange from her desk, stood up, her eyes wide. Merick shook his head at her. “I don’t strike women.”
As if on cue, Kindel came through the door, looking down at the file in his hands. Merick rushed at him and sucker punched him in the face. The papers in the file flew into the air as Kindel fell backward. He roared in pain and alarm as he scrambled back to his feet.
Merick backed away, his hands in the air. “I’m sorry, thought you were someone else. Too bad there are witnesses. Now, I’m sure I’ll be in trouble.”
Kindel wiped the trickle of blood coming from his nose, more rattled than hurt, an expression of total discombobulation on his face.
“Kindel, are you going to press charges?” Forest asked mildly.
“I…I don’t know…”
“Oh, please press charges, Kindel! Do it for love.” Ena gushed, causing his confused expression to quirk further.
“What the hell is going on here?!” he demanded.
Forest and Netriet laughed.
“Alright, Merick. You’re under arrest for assaulting a member of Fortress’ council. Come with me.“
An Interview with Tenaya Jayne
Sell your book in five words or less:
Dark, sexy, twisted love triangle. P.S. you’re so mean! 5 words or less, sheesh!
What was the spark of inspiration which led to this book?
I wouldn’t say there was a “spark.” My best friend, who also acts as my plotting sound-board, insisted Netriet needed her own book.
What about Forrest? She’s one of our very favorite fictional characters. We adore strong, smart female MCs!
Thanks! When she first fell into my head, I had no idea she would be so loved by the readers. I really thought to faze her out after Forest Fire and just continue on in the series with other characters, but the readers have made it plain to me that is not okay. She is, and always will be, the heart of the series.
Netriet has had a rough time in this series – Cast out of the Vampire court, became a sacrificial messenger, then a prisoner. She fought, killed, died, and was brought to life only to suffer a dark entity living within her – What was it like to craft her character?
Challenging but a lot of fun, acctually. At first, I was intimidated by writing a character who is essentially posessed. I was worried the readers wouldn’t be able to connect with her bacuase of the voice of the Shadow. I’m sure I’ll never write another character like her, so it
was cool in its novelty.
If you were on Regia and could have only one Earth relic, what would you want most?
My old school Mp3 player.
What kind of research did you do to prepare for writing this book?
Ha! None. That’s the cool thing about writting fantasy. I make all the rules.
What is your favorite quote or moment from this story?
I love when Netriet first sets eyes on Baal.
“She could no longer hear the music in the square. All that was in her ears was the laborious pounding of her heart as though her pulse had slowed, or the passing of time had compressed in the moment.
Never had she seen anyone who seemed so wrong. Not beautiful like Merick, or Syrus, yet he was sexually compelling, devastatingly so. A small smile curved one side of his mouth, that some might say was built for sin, but Netriet saw deeper. He wasn’t built for sin, he was made of it. A personification of danger, allure, power, and quite possibly…evil.”
If you were offered the chance to turn this book into a Hollywood movie, would you take that opportunity?
What can we look forward to next with this series?
There will be 3 more books, Burning Bridges, Lightning Flower, and the third is still untitled. With DARK SOUL, I laid the foundation for a hellva lot of upcoming drama. It’s going to be a wild ride!
Tenaya Jayne on Writing:
How long have you known you wanted to be an author?
Since I was about 8.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. It was a children’s story: BARNO, THE BIG ORANGE CAT. Barno escapes from a bad owner and goes around saving the day with his sidekick, Pete, the box turtle.
How do you keep your creativity flowing?
With other forms of art. Music, movies, and visual art.
How long did it take for you to write this book?
We’re loving the cover of this book! Who designed it?
The photograph is by Cathleen Tarawhiti and Erika Doucesse did the graphic art. Erika did the cover for Verdant, and I’m happy to say she’s agreed to do all the future Regia covers.
What advice do you have for new authors?
Don’t make the mistake of thinking your story idea is so amazing, it can carry your lack of skill. Talent and skill are not the same thing, and you absolutely need both!
How do you deal with bad reviews? Any advice for other authors in that regard?
I take them with a grain of salt. Some bad reviews are instructive, others are just hateful. Mostly, I just shrug them off. So, you hated my work, it’s not your taste? Fine, move on.
What additional projects are you working on?
I’m doing a re-write and a re-boot on my novella, The Slayer’s Wife. And I’ve got a handful of other stories stewing in the back of my head, just waiting for their turn.
Tenaya Jayne on Reading:
What book have you read more times than any other?
The Darkangel by Meredith Ann Pierce
What was the last book you absolutely fell in love with?
Indelible by Dawn Metcalf
Is there a book you keep meaning to read, but haven’t gotten around to it? Don’t worry, we all have ridiculously long TBRs!
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
Do you recall the first Romance novel you ever read?
I don’t remember the title, but it was a PNR by Maggie Shayne
Do you recall the first piece of Science Fiction you ever read?
The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury
Do you have a favorite Book Boyfriend/Girlfriend?
Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Acheron.
Tenaya Jayne on Play Time:
When you’re not hard at work writing, what do you do with your time?
DIY on my house. I’m always taking something apart so I can make it prettier. That, and hanging out with my 5yr old; he’s very snarky for his age.
What’s the first thing on your Bucket List?
See the Northern Lights from somewhere so extreme you have to get there in a dog sled.
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Sometimes I grab a spoon and eat Nutella straight from the jar. Not what you meant? Too bad, I’m not spilling anything jucier than that 🙂
Favorite Swear Word?
Dingdongfergamageggy, complements of my 5yr old.