I bought The Dark Days Club a long time ago on my kindle (my only preference for buying books these days), started it, got to 7% and then didn’t pick it back up again for a good year. Recently I’ve been trying to plough through some of the novels I’ve bought and not read, instead of buying new ones. Savvy.
Goodman sets her novel in Regency London, with Lady Helen Wrexhall as our protagonist and heroin. As Lady Helen struggles to rid her inherited reputation as the daughter of a traitorous woman she is unwittingly brought into the folds of the Dark Days Club, a small band of supernaturally gifted Reclaimers who are built to destroy the larger population of Deceivers.
Under the guidance of social outcast Lord Carlston, Lady Helen discovers there is more to her life than just balls and sewing and much more to her Mother’s story than her Aunt and Uncle know.
Given my penchant for the Regency period and fantasy-based novels, I thought The Dark Days Club would be right up my street. I really enjoyed the slow build up of Lady Helen’s relationship with Lord Carlston but really that’s about as far as I can stretch.
Goodman kept within the restraints of a woman’s boundaries in the early 1800’s which I admire, but it meant Lady Helen was able to do very little and the story unfolded very slowly – not a fault of the Authors, but the feminist in me raged every time I read anything relating to how a woman ‘should behave’.
I didn’t love the supernatural element to the novel; I couldn’t quite get my head around how the Deceivers ‘worked’ or how the Reclaimers destroyed them, I also thought the club name was a bit ridiculous. I appreciate that fantasy does err on the side of ridiculous anyway, I’m not suggesting it wasn’t realistic enough – I read enough supernatural novels to accept the world of which i’m reading for what it is, I just didn’t like that they called it a ‘club’….like the Brownies.
I have a feeling things will be different in the second instalment of the trilogy, based on how the first ended, but i’m just not invested enough to want to read on. A good novel, well written and well researched, just not a favourite.