I began this series a few books past the begin, looking for a paranormal series that was a bit darker than the others I had read. I read them voraciously up until about book #23 (Acheron) and then gave up.
What makes this series so complex?
This is really three different series intertwined: Dark-Hunters, Were-Hunters, and Dream-Hunters. There are a lot lore and cross stories, so it is best to read the books in order.
The basic world
The world of Sherrilyn Kenyon is huge. Vampires, Greek Gods, and shape shifters to name a few. What is great about the series is that, if you do not like one book, you might like the others. The bad side is, there are 36 installments (August 7, 2012 is the latest book) and at some point the characters start repeating themselves. For details, go to Sherrilyn Kenyon’s webpage: http://www.sherrilynkenyon.com/.
The basic idea of the world is that these paranormal characters co-exist in the human world, fighting the bad guys: daimons. Daimons are beings that were created by Apollo, and to survive they must feed off of the souls of humans. Artemis created dark hunters (vampires) to search and eliminate these daimons. The leader of the dark hunters is Acheron, a tortured, but caring leader who sacrifices every day for his fighters. What makes this even worse is we find that not all Daimons are evil.
The hunter’s soul is held by Artemis and can only be released by her, which is usually at great peril to Acheron. This series is one that, while there is a HEA, there will always be pain and sacrifice to get to the happy ending.
While I enjoy the series as a whole, be aware that many of the books are repetitive in nature. For me, I stopped reading after Acheron, as he is my favorite character and no other male lead could compare. Once his book was completed, I just could not find any other story compelling to finish.
The Books: These should be read in order. [*] Means they are my personal favorites [Note: While there is a book order, the world is really made up of three series: Dark-Hunter, Were-Hunter, and Dream-Hunter]. Also note that I am skipping short stories in this list below:
- Fantasy Lover (2002) Dark-Hunter: Julian and Grace
- Night Pleasures (2002) Dark-Hunter: Kyrian of Thrace and Amanda Devereaux
- Night Embrace (2003) Dark-Hunter: Talon and Sunshine
- Dance with the Devil (2003) Dark-Hunter: Zarek and Astrid [*]
- Kiss of the Night (2004) Dark-Hunter: Wulf and Cassandra
- Night Play (2004) Were-Hunter: Vane Kattalakis and Bride McTierney [*]
- Seize the Night (2005) Dark-Hunter: Valerius and Tabitha Devereaux [*]
- Sins of the Night (2005) Dark-Hunter: Alexion and Dangeruese
- Unleash the Night (2005) Were-Hunter: Wren Tigarian and Margueite D’Aubert Goudeau [*]
- Dark Side of the Moon (2006) Dark-Hunter/Were-Hunter: Ravyn Susan Michaels
- The Dream-Hunter (2007) Dream-Hunter: Arik and Dr. Megeara Kafieri
- Devil May Cry (2007) Dark-Hunter: Sin and Kat
- Upon the Midnight Clear (2007) Dream-Hunter: Adian O’Conner and Leta
- Dream Chaser (2008) Dream-Hunter: Xypher and Simone Dubois
- Acheron (2008) Dark-Hunter: Acheron and Tory [*]
- One Silent Night (2008) Dark-Hunter: Stryker and Zephyra
- Dream Warrior (2009) Dream-Hunter: Cratus and Delphine
- Bad Moon Rising (2009) Were-Hunter: Fang Kattalaki and Aimee
- No Mercy (2010) Were/Dark Hunter: Dev Peltier and Samia
- Retribution (2011) Dark-Hunter: William Jessup Brady and Abigail Yager
- The Guardian (2011) Were-Hunter/Dream-Hunter: Seth and Lydia
- Time Untime (2012) Ren Waya and Kateri Avani