ARC Review: Darkest Before Dawn (KGI #10) by Maya Banks

Book Blurb

THE ALL-NEW KGI NOVEL from the “incredibly awesome" (Jaci Burton) #1 New York Times bestselling author of When Day Breaks.

The Kelly Group International (KGI): A super-elite, top secret, family-run business.
Qualifications: High intelligence, rock-hard body, military background.
Mission: Hostage/kidnap victim recovery. Intelligence gathering. Handling jobs the U.S. government can’t...

The enigmatic Hancock has been both opponent and ally to the KGI teams for as long as they've known him. Always working a deep game, Hancock's true allegiance has never been apparent, but one thing is for certain—he never lets anything get in the way of duty.

But now, his absolute belief in the primacy of his ultimate goal is challenged by a captive he's been ordered to guard, no matter how much she suffers in her prison. She's the only woman who's ever managed to penetrate the rigid walls surrounding his icy heart, but will he allow his perplexing feelings for the beautiful victim to destroy a mission he's spent years working to complete or will he be forced to sacrifice her for “the greater good.”


Toot's Review

Darkest Before Dawn by Maya Banks is her newest installment in the widely loved and very popular, romantic suspense KGI series. This is Honor and Hancock’s story.

Before I get into a synopsis and review for you, let me interject a second for fans of the series. For those who have no idea who Hancock and/or Honor are, don’t fret, you’re not going crazy. Hancock is from Titan, which is a now disbanded KGI-like group (we’ve met them in previous books, Rio used to lead one of their team) but unlike KGI, Titan took on very dark missions that skirted the line between good and evil “for a country that neither claims us nor welcomes us, for protecting the very people who have tried to assassinate us” (as long as there was a hefty paycheck) and as for Honor, we’ve never met her before but OMG, this chick……let me just say, you all know Maya and she writes some kickass women and Honor is no exception. The inner strength and gumption this heroine has will have you cheering and empathizing with her as she struggles to stay alive.

So now let’s get to a bit of a synopsis……

Darkest Before Dawn starts off with a bang…..literally! We first meet our heroine, Honor as a relief worker in the war-torn middle east. She’s there to lend aid to refugees and innocent civilians who find themselves in need. All of it is on a volunteer basis and after the U.S. calls for all westerners to leave the country, only a brave few like Honor have stayed behind without military assistance. Her humanity won’t let her flee when people are in need and she stays knowing that her life is in danger. The clock is ticking and the threats are overwhelming until the building she and her co-workers are working out of is bombed. Through some small miracle, Honor is still alive but the enemies are circling, looking for trophies and a live captive is at the top of the list. Think Black Hawk Down’s, Mike Durant.

Enter our hero, Hancock. He and his team have been hired to find Honor, bring her in safe and then hand her over to be used as a pawn in a much bigger game of chess where she definitely won’t survive.

She is now very valuable cannon fodder to be used for “the greater good”.

So ask yourself this….what happens when America’s ghosts, “who are feared by all and matter to none”, grow a conscience? When they are given something more precious than “the greater good”? They call KGI and say “F- the greater good”.

What, what!?!?

Yeah that’s all you’re getting out of me because honestly, if I give you more it will ruin the romantic suspense. Seriously though, I could not put this book down but then again I love all the KGI books. From the first page, the story sucks you in and won’t let go. Is it over the top, yes. Is it full of self-sacrifice, yes. Do you have to read all about the middle-east war zone, yes. Is the heroine a bit too Florence Nightingale, well yes to that too and is the hero an uber dark possible baddie, yes but come on, we love that stuff!!!! The heroine has a soul of steel and a titanium spine who’s total cannon fodder for the baddies and our hero……just holy crap!!! There just aren’t words for Hancock. Totally unlikable at times but eventually redeems himself.

It's non-stop action, soul-rendering inner strength, self-sacrifice, super sexy alpha males, intrigue, double and triple crosses, baddies turning good, THE KELLY FAMILY (granted, they basically come in at the end) and a HEA as the cherry on top. For what it is, a romantic suspense, I loved it!

4 Stars

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