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Firelight: Number 1 in series (Darkest London) [Mass Market Paperback]

Kristen Callihan
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

22 Mar 2012 Darkest London (Book 1)

London, 1881

Once the flames are ignited . . .

Miranda Ellis is a woman tormented. Plagued since birth by a strange and powerful gift, she has spent her entire life struggling to control her exceptional abilities. Yet one innocent but irreversible mistake has left her family's fortune decimated and forced her to wed London's most nefarious nobleman.

They will burn for eternity . . .

Lord Benjamin Archer is no ordinary man. Doomed to hide his disfigured face behind masks, Archer knows it's selfish to take Miranda as his bride. Yet he can't help being drawn to the flame-haired beauty whose touch sparks a passion he hasn't felt in a lifetime. When Archer is accused of a series of gruesome murders, he gives in to the beastly nature he has fought so hard to hide from the world. But the curse that haunts him cannot be denied. Now, to save his soul, Miranda will enter a world of dark magic and darker intrigue. For only she can see the man hiding behind the mask.

Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Forever; Reissue edition (22 Mar 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1455508594
  • ISBN-13: 978-1455508594
  • Product Dimensions: 2.7 x 10.5 x 18.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 324,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A compelling and emotional pageturner that will have readers burning the midnight oil." "Anna Campbell, award-winning author of "Midnight's Wild Passion"""

Book Description

Debut author Kristen Callihan pens a dark atmospheric paranormal romance set in Victorian London, which will appeal to fans of New York Times bestselling authors Amanda Quick and Gail Carriger.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Darkest London book 1 8 Feb 2012
By Sarah (Feeling Fictional) TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Miranda has the ability to control fire but it is a power that has caused problems for her family in the past so she keeps it a secret and tries not to use it. Archer has a disfigurement that causes him to hide his appearance behind a mask, he has only recently returned from abroad but all of polite London society is terrified of him because of his fearsome reputation. He first saw Miranda several years ago and hasn't been able to stop thinking about her since, he knows it would be selfish to marry her but he is unable to resist the temptation.

Miranda may have been reluctant to marry Archer but she soon realises that he is completely different from what she expected and she becomes determined to get to know the real man who is hidden behind the mask. As a series of gruesome murders begin and since each victim can be linked back to Archer he becomes the prime suspect. Miranda refuses to believe that her husband is behind the deaths and she sets out to prove his innocence - even if she has to put herself into harms way to do it.

It is hard to categorise Firelight since it touches on so many genres, it is definitely a historical paranormal romance but it also has a dark and Gothic feel to it and is full of mystery and suspense. At the same time it is also a retelling of Beauty and the Beast with enough elements from the original story to make it recognisable but unique enough to stand out on it's own merits. Kristen Callihan's debut novel is beautifully written and had me captivated from the very first page, she is definitely an author to watch out for in the future!

Archer and Miranda are one of the best couples I've read about in ages, their relationship builds slowly so you get to really see them fall for each other.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Historical Paranormal 8 Feb 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Miranda is haunted by her gift. Able to manipulate fire, it is her defensive weapon that she loathes. In her father's house she feels like a prisoner. He blames them for their misfortune and little money. So when the offer for her to marry the infamous Lord Archer, her father rejoices.

At first Archer is cold and aloof, a stranger behind a mask. But as Miranda gets to know her new husband who won't touch her, she knows him better than anyone ever has before. When Archer is accused of being responsible for a series of gruesome murders, Miranda is determined to prove his innocence...and step by step remove the mask.

Firelight had an eerie and dream-like quality to it. A romance set in a horror story. The reader is kept guessing what Archer hides behind the mask, and how terrible it may be. But, like with Miranda, the better we come to know him, the less it matters.

Miranda is a sassy and street-wise character and extremely likeable. Her determination to get to the bottom of what Archer is hiding aggravates him, but he has finally found his match in her. Archer himself is like the Phantom of the Opera only noble and true. The passion they feel makes Miranda's fire feel like a cool wind.

I adored the interactions between the pair, and the puzzle of the story. Highly recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Darkest London, Book One 4 Feb 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Set in London, 1881. Since her birth Miranda Ellis has had an affinity with fire. For her entire life she has struggled to control it. At the age of ten, Miranda made a mistake that cost her family their fortune. It had been an accident, but her father, Hector Ellis, refuses to let Miranda forget it. Her older sisters, Daisy and Poppy, are married and out from under their father's thumb. But Miranda is often forced to steal trinkets for her father to sell. After all, the man has already sold everything in the house worth a few coins. Now he is giving Miranda a choice: Marry the man called the Dread Lord Archer or be put out into the streets forever.

Lord Benjamin Archer, Fifth Baron Archer of Umberslade, hides his face behind dark masks. The right side of his body is deformed due to an "accident". He has been away from London for several years, searching for a cure or to help ease his pain. He knows it is selfish to take Miranda as his bride, but he feels drawn to her. He looks into her eyes and sees the reflection of his salvation. Miranda can see him, the man, instead of a monster. Miranda can ease his loneliness and Archer can ensure that she never wants for anything.

Titled men from Archer's past begin showing up dead and Archer realizes that he can no longer ignore his fate. There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that pints to Archer as being the killer, yet Miranda refuses to believe it. Archer refuses to tell her what the accident was that had deformed him, so she begins searching for her own answers. Archer must give in to the beastly nature he has struggled so hard to hide if he wants to keep Miranda safe. And Miranda must enter a world of dark magic and fire if she wants to save Archer's soul.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Utterly gorgeous, Gothic romance! 4 Jun 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The words that come to mind after reading this book are... succulent, rich, vibrant. Yes, I loved it, but it could have been so much more.

London in the end of 19th century is a dark ugly place, where paranormals hide in plain sight. There are plenty of bad rumours and an atmosphere of fear surrounding a tortured hero - Benjamin Archer, an aristocrat and a self-made millionaire in best traditions of Gothic novels. He is rumoured to be involved in gruesome killings, but nothing has been proved. He wears a black masque, nobody knows what he looks like, and he is always alone...

Until he pays an impoverished baron/pirate a fortune to take his daughter as his young beautiful wife.

Miranda is no innocent Society Miss. She was raised on the streets of London, can put up a vicious sword fight, changes her accents with an ease and supports her dad by stealing jewelry in various pawn shops. She's got her own dark secrets, enjoys danger and tired of being lonely, so mysterious Lord Archer pushes all the right buttons for her to agree to their marriage.

However, she is not satisfied with the life of luxury Archer provides. Someone tries to frame him for recent brutal killings of old members of a secret club, and Miranda is determined to help her husband to catch the killer and prove his innocence, she is also dying to know what he hides behind his masque...

The plot is full of action and beautifully descriptive. The mythology and a range of paranormals is very refreshing. You would never guess what Lord Archer is, and Miranda's power was something I haven't seen in many books. Their pairing works really well.

However, the book was lacking depth.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A magical novel that is rich with secrets and desire, sword fights and...
A magical novel that is rich with secrets and desire, sword fights and brawls.

In 19th century England, all is not as it seems, meet the enigmatic Archer and the wilful... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Stef L
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!
Ok I am so annoyed with myself for not reading this authors work sooner! This is not at all what I was expecting and is I suppose what you could describe as a historical paranormal... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Marta Cox
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this series!
This is the first book in the series although there is a prequel novella. I love Miranda and Archer's story. Read more
Published 6 months ago by S. Lacey
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
Love this book, I was recommend it by another author, Bec McMaster who herself writes amazing books within this genre. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Gotpaintinmyhair
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable
Really enjoyed the characters and the storyline in this book. Have not read anything written by this author before but will follow this series. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Jangler
4.0 out of 5 stars Great
4 STARS ****

I really enjoyed this romantic fantasy story set in ninetieth century London. The writing was great, full of action, mystery and romance. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Gemma Kirkwood
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE IT
This book surprised me and I was half tempted to ignore it: I'm glad I didn't. I had never read it in the library, just saw it in the recommendations by Amazon and I absolutely... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than expected.
I thought this was going to be a typical romance set in the regency period of London, but it is soooo much more! Read more
Published 13 months ago by J. L. Rice
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good
I enjoyed reading this book. It was one of those that I read through the night. I could not put down. I am waiting for book3
Published 21 months ago by Anne
5.0 out of 5 stars fan-blimmin-tastic
It's been a very long time since I have been hooked on a book but I cannot tell how throughly enjoyable it was, it just had the right amount and mix of everything. Read more
Published 23 months ago by C
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