Sons of Darkness

Written by:
Gail Z. Martin
Narrated by:
Jeffrey Kafer

Unabridged Audiobook

Ratings
Book
6
Narrator
6
Release Date
October 2020
Duration
7 hours 25 minutes
Summary
We are the Night Vigil.

We keep the Vigil, looking for the ones who can still be saved, the ones who aren't too far gone. We're the misfits and the muck-ups, unwanted by Heaven or Hell, given one last chance to atone for all the mistakes and missed chances, the pain we've caused others and ourselves, the good things we were afraid to do, and the bad things we embraced with open arms.

Unfinished business ties us to the mortal world, to make atonement, find absolution, satisfy retribution, get things right. You won't find a sorrier group of halfway house heroes. No illusions left-about ourselves, humanity, or what's really out there in the darkness. Just a purpose, to go down fighting the good fight. Because this is our last chance.

One final chance to make it right, the thin red line of humanity against the evil that goes bump in the night, your best hope to make it through the hour of the wolf.

When a series of disappearances, suicides, and vengeful spirits cause havoc and death along a remote interstate highway, demon-hunting ex-priest Travis Dominick teams up with former special ops soldier and monster-hunter Brent Lawson to end the problem with extreme prejudice.
Reviews
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Iain H.

Welcome to the book one in an exciting new series Night Vigil. Not had much exposure to urban fantasy so this is a fairly new genre to me, so as little as i have to compare this too i really enjoyed this first in the series. A fairly easy to follow storyline, mixed in with believable action and if there was music I could hear a rock soundtrack from start to finish Both leading characters were troubled but very well written and although we find out a little about each man, I would love to know more and hope than we learn more back story as this series progress. As you all know I’m a very visual listener and this was a journey , the scenes and locations all came alive in my imagination as I listened along. Let’s talk about the artwork for a second, so vivid as you can see from the banner and picture, it’s a visual feast. Let’s welcome the narrator of this fine tale , a new name to me but someone I will definitely want to hear more from, Jeffery Kafer, his tone and way he reads the story and characters, every word sets the scenes perfectly. Gail is a new author to me , but I like her writing style is straight to the point and weather the research was real or fictional a lot of work went into the background and characters and creatures . If you are looking for something that bit different to distract you from wherever your head may be then I recommend this as a good starting point.

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Jenna R.

Ex-priest Travis Dominick and former soldier turned private investigator Brent Lawson have something in common: They know what goes bump in the night and they're here to deal with it. This action-packed paranormal urban fantasy has all the best elements of a crime thriller while still maintaining the heavily paranormal category urban fantasy feeling. When links begin to show up between paranormal cases and it becomes clear that an entire town is under the influence of demonic forces, this unlikely pair have to set aside their differences and work with the believers among the town to rid it of its curse. Every single character in this book is fleshed out and well rounded, and the reader is given ample opportunity to empathise with them and get attached. We feel for Travis and Brent. We feel for random townsfolk. We feel for actual zombies. Gail knows how to make us care about every character who walks across the page, and I love it! This book is full of action with main characters and plot circumstances that make me think of a mix of Dresden Files and Supernatural with a sprinkling of Tad Hamilton's Dirty Streets of Heaven. The character development and interaction is more Dresden and Hamilton, while the paranormal mystery could easily be a lost episode from Paranormal itself. Fans of any of these will have a great time. My critiques are minor, but I do feel the need to mention a couple of things. First, some of the backstory details we're fed come in the form of inner monologue tangents or verbalized responses to questions asked by other characters that don't necessarily warrant that kind of detail. In the beginning, I was really worried that this book was a victim of world-builders disease and I was going to be constantly annoyed by snippets of information I don't really need shoehorned into the story in awkward ways. As the book went on I stopped noticing it, so either it got better or it wasn't actually as bad as I first felt it was and I got used to it. Second, there were some unique, stand-out phrases (like "hard-used") that were utilized in clusters in the beginning and I was worried that they would start to become annoying overuse instances, but in every case by the time I took note that it had been said a lot in the last few minutes of playback, that ended up being the last time I noticed it. Once again, it got better as the book progressed. Because of these things, because I kept getting pulled out of the story to consider them, I was worried that I wasn't going to like the book. Even though it turned out great, these troubles at the start are the reason I'm rating it a 4 and not a 5. To be more succinct, it wasn't a smooth start, and as much as I loved the book by the end, I didn't forget about the start. Jeffrey Kafer's voice and performance narrating this book were very good. It was easy to listen to and his voice suits the tone of the book quite well. I was rarely confused about which character's head we were in, and while that's partly due to Gail's strong writing, it's also largely due to how Jeffrey handled the different characters in his performance. I will say that I felt the default 1x playback speed for this book was rather slow. I acknowledge that I'm a fast listener, not everyone is, and listeners like me can always speed it up. I was forced to be aware of how slow the default speed was because of the platform I was invited to listen on (audiobooks.com in this case, not audible) where the computer browser cloud player doesn't allow speed adjustments and the mobile app only goes to 2x. I found myself wishing for 2.5x. I think that would have been the most comfortable playback speed for me. (For reference, my Libby settings is usually 1.75-2x, which means I listen to the average audiobook book at about 3/4ths the speed I wanted to listen to this one.) Overall this was a great paranormal mystery read and I am absolutely going to keep the series and other books by this author in mind for future reading. I'm also impressed with this narrator and will feel confident selecting books with his name on the narrator credit line. I recommend this book (in any format) to lovers of grittier fantasy, especially if you love paranormal or mystery elements, and I think this book will appeal to fans of Dresden and Paranormal. I was granted complimentary review access to an audiobook copy of Sons of Darkness through the audiobooks.com platform in order to participate as a reviewer on the February blog tour for this title with Audiobookworm Promotions. Thank you to all involved in affording me this opportunity! My thoughts are my own and my review is honest.

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Carra S.

It’s not often I read or listen to a book that isn’t a romance, but I’ve really enjoyed this authors romance novels and the main characters here in Sons of Darkness, Travis and Brent, have been mentioned in other books and their story naturally piqued my interest. I was definitely not disappointed and was as sucked into this book as I’ve been with everything else the author has written. The idea of a group of loosely connected people with supernatural “gifts”, most of whom use those gifts to atone for their actual or perceived sins is intriguing at the very least, and something I think many can identify with, at least the atonement angle. Brent and Travis being brought together, first by apparent happenstance and later at the urging of someone close to Brent, makes for an interesting partnership and they do complement each others’ strengths. You definitely won’t want for action, tension, or drama here as there always seems to be another evil to take on—and the more they face the more it seems they are all connected in a very big way. You get the chance to encounter several types of supernatural creatures right alongside the characters, and it’s a constant “what’s going to happen next” the whole way through. With the promise of more adventures to come, Sons of Darkness is a great introduction to Travis and Brent that will snatch your attention and not give it back until it’s done. I loved the mentions and support from characters from the author’s other books, and am looking forward to reading more in the Night Vigil series. This story is getting 5 stars from me, and whether you’ve already read the author’s other stories or this is your first you’re going to get hooked. The narration: This is the first story I’ve listened to with this narrator, and I think he did a good job at the differentiation of character voices, particularly for Travis and Brent. The pacing was spot on, and emotion was clearly communicated especially in scenes where the tension was ramping up. I’m looking forward to listening to more of his work, and am also giving 5 stars for the narration.

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Susan V.

Sons of Darkness is a great start to another Gail Z. Martin series. Urban Fantasy is one of my most favorite genres and this is a very fun addition to the genre. I loved the serious side to this story with Travis and Brent both treating hunting monsters as a calling. Both guys have had some special training and have their personal scars that motivate them to protect society in general from these monsters. Travis is ex-clergy and that made him extra interesting. He’s got his solid reasons for leaving the church but much of it has stayed with him. Brent is ex-military and much of that has also stayed with him. Basically, both these guys have a lot of baggage and they work it out by taking down monsters. lol Maybe not what a therapist would suggest but it makes for a great story. One of the main themes in this tale is grief and what it can drive people to do. Some process grief better or faster or in a more healthy way than others. Those that struggle with loss also struggle with other supernatural entities in this story. This is a more subtle attack than the guys are used to tackling and it takes them some time to find a way to successfully push back the darkness. Meanwhile, we learn their favorite burger toppings and preferred donut. Ha! I enjoyed the humor and these little touches of normalcy. I also liked how there’s a few nods to another Gail Z. Martin series with the references to Simon Kincaide, from the Deadly Curiosities series (which I quite enjoy). Overall, it was a fun, well balanced supernatural mystery. If you’re a fan of The Dresden Files or the Kitty Norville series, then I think you would enjoy this book. 5/5 stars. The Narration: Jeffrey Kafer is always a joy to listen to. He does this book justice. I really liked his serious, no-nonsense voice for Travis and his regional accent for Brent. Kafer was excellent with the emotional scenes where people are dealing with grief. I also liked his little old lady voice. The pacing was perfect & there were no tech issues with the recording. 5/5 stars. I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Gail Z. Martin. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

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ANTOINETTE M.

These men may be considered misfit, undesirables, muck up of the worlds (Heaven and Hell) but they were here to show us that there were more. Travis and Brent were that something more than their lives could hold. And something less to be granted life in either world. They were here to prove that it was that something more, that something right they were capable of. Theses man showed us that we need not fear the things that go bump in the night for they were here to bump back. The listen was quick and very entertaining. Jeffrey did the job just nicely. He gave clear voicing of each character. I say this with the fact that I listen at minimum of twice the speed and I still felt like Brent and Travis were friends that I just needed to know just a bit more about. Gail Z. Martin creates such entertaining urban fantasy. You find a world that is vivid and entertaining with complexities of world, characters and plot.

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Jessica Bronder

Travis Dominick was a priest that fought the paranormal but he had a change of heart and is no longer a priest. He still uses his abilities and a network of others that he has helped to stop the things that go bump in the night. Recently he has noticed that women have been disappearing along a stretch of highway related to a black pickup truck. He has also found that bad things have been happening in the smaller surrounding area. Brent Lawson is a former ops soldier/cop that has turned private investigator. After a run in of his own Brent seems to be a demon magnate. Although he prefers to work alone his, dead brother is telling him that to survive what is to come, he better team up with Travis. Both men work together well and have one heck of a mess to deal with and surprisingly work well together. I felt for Travis with everything he went through but glad that he is still trying to help others after his past. Brent is pig headed but compliments Travis well. And the nasty demon mess, they have their work cut out for them. I absolutely love Gail Z. Martin’s stories and am super happy to be part of this tour. If you like paranormal stories you need to check this one out. I can’t wait for the next book in the series but I think I can keep myself happy by reading others books that Gail is written. I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to listen to and post an honest review.

Sons of Darkness
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