Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Scent of Darkness by Margot Berwin

Sensual and sexy, A Scent of Darkness by Margot Berwin is a journey through the physical and the metaphysical.  After the death of her grandmother Evangeline inherits one drop of perfume that is made specifically for her. This scent is irresistible to anyone who smells it: men fall in love with her, cats go into heat.  Evangeline has always wanted to be desired, but is the scent a gift or a curse?
                Berwin is incredibly talented. She is able to create both a sense of place and complex characterizations.  In both settings, Louisiana and Upstate New York, the reader feels the sensual aspects of the place.  Not only is A Scent of Darkness a story of a magical scent, but the senses of smell, touch, taste become magic.
                Although the physical and emotional depictions in A Scent of Darkness ring true, the character of Evangeline is slightly unrealistic as an 18 year old.  She is as if a woman in her late 30’s looked back and imagined what she would do with that youth and vigor now.  She has none of the sense of confusion or rebellion that most people have at that age.
                The sex in the novel is semi-graphic, so readers who are uncomfortable with sex should not read it.  However, for a person who enjoys romance novels, A Scent of Darkness would be a nice change.  The plot is based around the romantic relationships of Evangeline, but it is more about the ideas of love and sex than the practical applications of them.   It is also not for people who are squeamish about blood, for reasons that I cannot reveal for fear of spoiling the audience.  People who enjoy action-packed plots would not enjoy this book as it is not very plot driven.

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