Book Review: Dark Shores (Dark Shores #1)

dark shoresTitle: Dark Shores

Author: Danielle L. Jensen

Pub. Date: May 7, 2019

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

In a world divided by meddlesome gods and treacherous oceans, only the Maarin possess the knowledge to cross the Endless Seas. But they have one mandate: East must never meet West.


Teriana is the second mate of the Quincense and heir to the Maarin Triumvirate. Her people are born of the seas and the keepers of its secrets, but when her closest friend is forced into an unwanted betrothal, Teriana breaks her people’s mandate so her friend might escape—a choice with devastating consequences.


Marcus is the commander of the Thirty-Seventh, the notorious legion that has led the Celendor Empire to conquer the entire East. The legion is his family, but even they don’t know the truth he’s been hiding since childhood. It’s a secret he’ll do anything to protect, no matter how much it costs him – and the world.


When an Empire senator discovers the existence of the Dark Shores, he captures Teriana’s crew and threatens to reveal Marcus’s secret unless they sail in pursuit of conquest, forcing the two into an unlikely—and unwilling—alliance. They unite for the sake of their families, but both must decide how far they are willing to go, and how much they are willing to sacrifice.

This will be a spoiler free review. I listened to the Audible audiobook.

Why did I wait so long to read this book?!

Danielle is a freaking wizard when it comes to writing, and this book is no exception. I loved her The Bridge Kingdom and The Traitor Queen, so I expected great things. My expectations were high, and omfg this book did not disappoint.

Like, at all.

I was sucked in from the very beginning and found myself listening to it when I wasn’t at work. I couldn’t stop, I desperately needed to know what happened next.

The big thing that struck me, and kept striking me, was how cinematic this book came across. Danielle is a master at crafting a story, a brilliant world with amazing characters, but this just unfurled in my mind as if it were a movie.

So, freaking cinematic.

I was never bored listening to this book; I loved the cast of characters. Teriana and her spitfire ways, her willingness to do whatever needs to be done, to take whatever chances she needed to…I loved her. And then you have Marcus.

Fuck me. I loved him.

I don’t know what it is, but I love characters that are basically stuck between a rock and a hard place, and they must “do their duty”, all while internally contemplating if their duty is “right”. They’re also typically falling for the hot head heroine, so, Marcus does it for me. And when you pair Teriana and him together, sparks fly, and some choice barbed words are shared, and you just want to shove them together. The sexual tension was…*chef’s kiss* so good.

Then there’s the freaking ending, and I wanted to scream. Because of course it ended that way! Waiting for Gilded Serpents is legit going to suck so much.

I really, really enjoyed the world Danielle created. Roman, without explicitly being Roman. It made it really easy to imagine the world, the scope of the Celendor Empire. It very easily came to life in my mind. Then you had the Maarin, the magical bridge between the two halves of the world. Then you had the Dark Shores, with Gods and magic and so much unknown. I mean, this book literally has everything you could want in a book.

I really loved the scene that felt reminiscent of the Journey to the end of the world and back scene in POTC: At Worlds End. You know the one.

That scene was beyond vivid. I felt like I was right there, experiencing it first-hand. Again, Danielle is a freaking wizard. Marcus’ fear was palpable as his whole world basically crashed around him.

I honestly cannot recommend this book enough. If you want to get utterly lost and swept away in a story, pick this book up. You can’t go wrong with an enemies to lovers, twist and turns, jaw dropping moments book that constantly leaves you wanting more.


3 thoughts on “Book Review: Dark Shores (Dark Shores #1)

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