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Reviewed by K.J. Simmill for Readers' Favorite
Devlin Sinclair has a mission to uncover more about the elusive figure Medusa. Their recent alliances have struck a blow but did not really further what they knew about this dangerous figure. In the hope of uncovering their secrets, he inserts himself into the life of hacker Grace Darling and, gaining her trust, arranges to meet. But neither of them expected what their crossing of paths would bring. Grace had agreed to meet him for one reason; every six months she is overcome by such lust that she seeks out male companionship for a fortnight in order to regain her balance. Neither knew what they were getting into, both unlock parts of the other they didn't know existed, and together they uncover more than just each other as Grace recalls more about the horrific death of her parents, and how it may possibly link to the figure Devlin himself is hunting.
Dark Pleasures is the fourth book in Aja James' The Pure/Dark Ones collection. This paranormal erotica story focuses on two central characters, Devlin Sinclair and Grace Darling, as they discover themselves while unlocking secrets not only to the past but investigating the looming threat of Medusa which awaits in the future. The two characters explore every inch of one another, both fearing the powerful emotions that being together awaken. Devlin knows not to trust love, and Grace has always distanced and isolated herself. Her behavior and inner thoughts reflect how many of my adult autistic friends feel, and it is portrayed in perhaps one of the best ways I have seen; sensitive and yet capturing the essence of how some people on the spectrum can think, process, and even excel. Grace is all about logic and has great difficulty expressing herself, and I really appreciated the fact that she remains the same throughout the book, constant and true to her character. I thought Aja James not only wrote her as a strong character but remained true to her from beginning to end.
I loved uncovering the secrets of Devlin's past, unlocked through dreams, as we discover how he came to be turned, and the reasons he is so alarmed regarding the feelings he has towards Grace, as well as the reason he remains more personally reserved, even with those he thinks he can trust. There is no denying that this book fits nicely in the erotica genre, with heated sex scenes. Written masterfully without any cringe-worthy or crude feeling portrayals, it is handled with great descriptions and steamy passion. Passion, dangers, and obsession will drive the reader through this raunchy paranormal story, while investigations, danger, and secrets begin to slowly reveal more about other characters, and the threat they are working together to prevent.