Review: Out of the Dark by Ashlyn Drewek (2020)

Heat Factor: It’s like a medium to slow burn and I dig it

Character Chemistry: Kate and Eric start out running into each other coincidentally and then they’re friends and then they end up in just the most realistic and goal worthy relationship I tell you what

Plot: Eric is a (vampire) detective who ends up intervening when police officer Kate ends up nearly killed in an alley with her partner. Kate ends up on desk duty recovering with Eric and as they race to solve her partner’s murder (and avoid serious vampire shenanigans), they slowly fall deeply in love with each other.

Overall: Dude, this book opens with maggots but it closes with my heart.

I’ve been in a real paranormal phase lately and this one had such a unique perspective and some fresh takes and I LOVED it.

For starters, Eric the vampire is NOT vulnerable to sunlight. Vampires just operate better at night. Silver isn’t deadly to him, gold is. And male vampires can’t turn humans. Like, WHAT? But it works, because Eric fits in with society so much more easily. I loved that it took some of the core myths of what a vampire is and flipped it around to make it more relatable. 

Kate is kind of a mess but for pretty understandable reasons. Her dad is an ex IA officer and is an abusive alcoholic. She’s ex military and it’s pretty clear she saw some stuff that got her all twisted up. She’s coping with medications and avoiding therapy. But she’s also pretty functional and smart, and her choices show she doesn’t really need “saving”—she has broken up with an unsupportive and kind of stalker-y boyfriend, leaves her dad’s terrible house on her own free will, and gets set up in her own space without any involvement from Eric. Like, before they even forge a close friendship. So I loved that aspect of the story—she’s strong in a way that the reader can depend on.

And speaking of that friendship—for a while I wondered if I should be disappointed by the relationship build because I was so absorbed by the grisly plot and they still weren’t in the throes of passion. But when they did finally get together it was SO sweet and it took just agonizingly long but in a good way. 

I cannot stress enough how much I loved that Eric isn’t this tortured and territorial, suave, enticing vampire. In fact, I didn’t really picture him as being overpoweringly sexy at all—he seems kind of quietly strong and kind; there’s this scene where Kate is watching her favorite reality tv show and he chimes in with feedback like he’s mutually invested in the show and I swear that my ovaries went pitter patter. There’s just nothing more deeply attractive than when a person supports their partner in everything, including silly tv shows. I loved it so, so much. 

My only real criticism about this book is that the loose ends actually kept me up at night. Will this book be the first in a series? Because that’s really the only reason I could see for the book ending the way that it does. Here’s a list I came up with at 2 am:

  • Will Kate choose to turn into a vampire or not because WE DON’T KNOW
  • Will Kate elect to take the detective exam because WE DO NOT KNOW
  • What in the heck is going to happen with the new Queen of the Vampires because I JUST, LIKE, WHAT
  • What’s up with Aubrey because he’s there and then he’s gone and like, I NEED CLOSURE
  • So like, ex boyfriend is just gonna disappear now after single-mindedly trying to destroy Eric because like, THAT SEEMS UNLIKELY
  • So there’s werewolves now and like WTF ARE WE EXACTLY DEALING WITH HERE

Also, if you are the kind of person whose enjoyment of a book is just derailed when an author, for example, uses the word “wretch” when they meant to use “retch” (cough, cough, ERIN) this one did have a few very, very minor copyediting misses but I wasn’t remotely concerned with it and you really shouldn’t be either (cough, ERIN).

So all in all, I’m choosing to believe that the author wouldn’t dare leave these threads hanging and she’s going to be like, “Haha, SURPRISE! Book two drops today!!” because she wouldn’t do that to me. Right?

Right, Ashlyn Drewek??

I voluntarily read and reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. We disclose this in accordance with 16 CFR §255.

Buy Now: Amazon

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