Dark Secrets (Book 1) by Angela Hudson

Emoji Review by Rebecca Dixon

I read the ENTIRE series of โ€˜Dark Secretsโ€™ by Angela M Hudson and it was INCREDIBLE ๐Ÿคฏ๐Ÿคฏ๐Ÿคฏ! (FYI, Iโ€™m not affiliated with the author, not in the book biz, reading is just a HOBBY, and Iโ€™m just a regular reader that is super passionate ๐Ÿ’— about spreading the word on GREAT books!) There are NO spoilers ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป!

OK โœ…! So this is a series of 15 books (9 main books, and 6 spin-offs!) I read these BEFORE I started writing emoji ๐Ÿคช reviews (which is why there wasnโ€™t one written before!) But there are several series like this that I want to circle โญ•๏ธ back to and write โœ๏ธ an emoji review โ€ฆ and since the LIVE StreamYard for Angela M. Hudson is THIS Saturday โ€ฆ thought Iโ€™d kick it off ๐Ÿฆต with this one ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป!

This will give you EVERYTHING you need to know ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿปโ€ฆ without spoilers ๐Ÿฅณโ€ฆ to determine if this series is for you ๐Ÿ’•! There are TONS of posts about this series on FB and Iโ€™m going to try to answer all those questions ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿป!!

So first off ๐Ÿค—! What is the series even about?! Well! It actually starts off A LOT like Twilight ๐Ÿง›(sorry Angie ๐Ÿ˜†!) After a tragedy, Ara travels from Australia ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ to America ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ to live with her dad and go to highschool ๐Ÿซ ! Where she then meets a HANDSOME, GREEN eyed ๐Ÿ‘€ โ€ฆ vampire ๐Ÿ˜ฑ! Heโ€™s MYSTERIOUS ๐Ÿ•ต๏ธโ€โ™‚๏ธ and sheโ€™s SMITTEN ๐Ÿ˜! NO ONE has EVER held his attention before like Ara โค๏ธ and we soon get swept into a sweet romance ๐Ÿ’˜โ€ฆ. UNTILโ€ฆ wellโ€ฆ BOOM ๐Ÿ’ฅ! We DONโ€™T ๐Ÿ˜ต! Muhahahahaa ๐Ÿ˜ˆ๐Ÿ˜ˆ๐Ÿ˜ˆ! By the end of the first book you realize this is NOT TWILIGHT ๐Ÿฉธ! Itโ€™s an entirely UNIQUE and CRAZY ๐Ÿ˜ฒ story that kicks off at the MASQUERADE ๐ŸŽญ BALL (FYI around 80% into first book!) and the insane ride doesnโ€™t stop until the FINAL book ๐Ÿ˜ฑ!

So much to say ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป! OK! The BIGGEST thing to mention is this author is a MASTERMIND ๐Ÿง  (aka EVIL ๐Ÿ˜ˆ MASTERMIND!) at plot twists ๐ŸŒช ! You LITERALLY have NO idea what is going to happen next! EVERY book is like PEELING away a layer of an ONION ๐Ÿง… to only find out in the FINAL book you were eating an ORANGE ๐ŸŠ ALL ALONG! A very, VERY large COMPLICATED ORANGE ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚!) There is soooo much EMOTION ๐Ÿ˜ฉ in these books! You literally want to THROW your DEVICE ๐Ÿ“ฑ (seriously, Angie!! โ€ฆ you NEED a device throwing warning โš ๏ธ!) โ€ฆ and other times, you want to SOB ๐Ÿ˜ญ away with a box of tissues and a bottle of wine ๐Ÿท!

These characters!! BOY, can they annoy the CRAP out of you ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚! But at the SAME time, you still feel SO attached to their journeys! We have our main girl, Ara ๐Ÿ‘—, who starts off super immature (she is YOUNG!!) โ€ฆ but does GROW ๐ŸŒฑ as the series progresses ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป! YES, the first book takes place in highschool. BUT ๐Ÿคš๐Ÿป! After that, it launches ๐Ÿš€ into a more ADULT series (and thank you ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป thank you ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป thank you ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป Angie that she is no longer in high school ๐Ÿฅณ!) DAVID, Araโ€™s handsome green-eyed ๐Ÿ‘€ VAMP, is actually the PURE definition of EVIL ๐Ÿ‘ฟ! But heโ€™s HOT ๐Ÿฅต as well (so thereโ€™s that ๐Ÿ˜…!) Seriously, it is sooooo REFRESHING ๐ŸŒฌ to get a VAMPIRE ๐Ÿง› story where the VAMPIRES actually donโ€™t give a YOU KNOW WHAT about eating their FOOD ๐Ÿฉธ! Oh & get this!! โ€ฆ HOT ๐Ÿฅต David has a HOT ๐Ÿฅต BROTHERโ€ฆ a TWIN BROTHER ๐Ÿ˜ฎ! JASON!! Oh my goodnessโ€ฆ JASE โค๏ธ JASE โค๏ธ JASE โค๏ธโ€ฆ nom ๐Ÿคค nom ๐Ÿคค nom ๐Ÿคค! Let me tell you, LOVING โค๏ธโ€๐Ÿ”ฅ on DAVID or LOVING โค๏ธโ€๐Ÿ”ฅ on JASE is like FIGHTING ๐Ÿคบ words ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿคฃ! People tend to be DIEHARD ๐Ÿ˜ David fans or DIEHARD ๐Ÿ˜ Jase fans! And YESโ€ฆ this is a LOVE โค๏ธ TRIANGLE ๐Ÿ”บ! But! For those of you who donโ€™t like themโ€ฆ just KNOW ๐Ÿ’กโ€ฆ the author is BIG TIME into HEAโ€™s and you WILL GET ONE ๐Ÿฅณโ€ฆ for EVERYONE ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿปโ€ฆ errrr โ€ฆ EVENTUALLY ๐Ÿคฃ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿคฃ! HONESTLY, there are so many twists ๐ŸŒช & turns โ†ฉ๏ธ, I didnโ€™t even know who Ara would end up with until Book 15 ๐Ÿ˜ฒ๐Ÿ˜ฒ๐Ÿ˜ฒ! And there is NO way you can guess this ending BTW! I PROMISE โœŒ๐Ÿป!

Now speaking of booksโ€ฆ YESโ€ฆ there are A LOT ๐Ÿ˜†! BUT! For those of you who donโ€™t want to invest the time for 15 straight booksโ€ฆ there are NATURAL breaking points along the way ๐Ÿฅณ! Book 6 feels like it has a HEA ๐Ÿ’˜ at the end, so does Book 9 (itโ€™s a spin-off) and so does Book 12 (itโ€™s also a spin-off!) ANY of those times is a GREAT ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป time to take a break ๐Ÿ and read something else for a bit (and then come back for MORE emotional devastation later ๐Ÿ˜‚!) Cuz let me tell yaโ€ฆ this series is EMOTIONALLY DEVISTATING ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ! It has it’s DARK momentsโ€ฆ and a helluva lot of secrets ๐Ÿคซโ€ฆ hence โ€˜DARK SECRETS!โ€™ ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‰ There may be some triggers for some (cough* cough* torture ๐Ÿ”ช ) but outside of THAT ๐Ÿ˜†, other than ABSOLUTE EMOTIONAL AGONY ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญโ€ฆ itโ€™s not TOO bad compared to other dark series out there ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป!!

And speaking of emotional AGONY ๐Ÿ˜ฉ! HOLY BOJANGLES ๐Ÿ˜ฒ! The three spin-offs โ€˜In Another Lifeโ€™โ€ฆ WHAT. THE. HECK. ANGIE!!!!!!! ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ฉ I literally put my book down, walked to the gas station, bought a bottle of wine ๐Ÿท, got some tissues, and then SOBBED ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ญ my eyes out while yep, continuing to reading IAL Book 3 ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚! TO THIS DAY, with all the books I have read (and if you follow my reviews, you know there are QUITE a FEW ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿ˜‚!,) I think this one takes the emotional CAKE ๐ŸŽ‚! It was so GENIUS ๐Ÿ’ก, but SO HEARTBREAKING ๐Ÿ’”๐Ÿ’”๐Ÿ’”! For all who wonder whatโ€™s the deal with the IAL booksโ€ฆ itโ€™s a VISION ๐Ÿ’ญ being shown to Ara of what COULD have happened. But itโ€™s KEY ๐Ÿ”‘ to the main saga, so they canโ€™t be skipped! And if you thought the MAIN SAGA was BRUTAL ๐Ÿ˜ฉโ€ฆ WOW ๐Ÿ˜ฒโ€ฆ just imagine how bad THIS is since it is literally NOT the path that was chosen for Ara because it is MORE BRUTAL than the MAIN SAGA ๐Ÿ˜ฒ๐Ÿ˜ฒ๐Ÿ˜ฒ!

A lot of people start this series and mistakenly think it is YA. And I GET IT ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿป! MOST of book 1 feels that way! But just HOLD on to your HATS ๐ŸŽฉ folks, it is soooooo NOT YA and once you get on that emotional rollercoaster ๐ŸŽข โ€ฆ it just does NOT STOP! There is STEAM ๐Ÿ”ฅ (NOT tons, but the non-romantic plotline is SO engrossing, you literally donโ€™t care!) There is DRAMA ๐ŸŽญ ! There are MIND BLOWING ๐Ÿคฏ twists ๐ŸŒช ! There is EMOTIONAL AGONY ๐Ÿ˜ฉ๐Ÿ˜ญ๐Ÿ˜ฉ! Honestly, itโ€™s a BRILLIANT ๐Ÿ’กseries and the writing is TOP NOTCH ๐ŸคŒ๐Ÿป! This lady KNOWS what she is doing ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป! There really is nothing else out there like this series! I usually try to say when recommending booksโ€ฆ โ€œIf you like this series, then youโ€™ll like this series.โ€ But I LITERALLY CANNOT ๐Ÿšซ with this one. There is NOTHING out there like this!!!

So if you LOVE to be constantly SUPRISED ๐Ÿ˜ฒ & SHOCKED ๐Ÿ˜ต, you LOVE to read series that make you want to THROW YOUR BOOK ๐Ÿ“• (watch out, cuz it has happened to someone ๐Ÿ˜…!,) you LOVE the emotional AGONY ๐Ÿ˜ฉ of a love triangle ๐Ÿ”บ โ€ฆ but at the same time, LOVE that you KNOW ๐Ÿ’ก it will ALL WORK OUT RIGHT in the end ๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—โ€ฆ give this series a shot! Itโ€™s free on KU and you never know, it may JUST be the best kept SECRET ๐Ÿคซ of a series that is PERFECTLY DARK ๐Ÿ‘Œ๐Ÿป for you!

FYI Perfect Reading Order below (Spin-offs are CRUCIAL to main saga! Recommend getting the boxset with all books in the right order!)

๐Ÿ’—Dark Secrets
๐Ÿ’—The Heart’s Ashes
๐Ÿ’—Mark of Betrayal
๐Ÿ’—Lies in Blood
๐Ÿ’—Echoes: Part One of Echoes & Silence
๐Ÿ’—Echoes: Part Two of Echoes & Silence
๐Ÿ’œBound 1 (spin-off)
๐Ÿ’œBound 2 (spin-off)
๐Ÿ’—Bound by Secrets
๐ŸคIn Another Life 1 (spin-off)
๐ŸคIn Another Life 2 (spin-off)
๐ŸคIn Another Life 3 (spin-off)
๐Ÿ–คIn My Blood (spin-off)
๐Ÿ’—Heart of Darkness