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Review: Born to Darkness (Fighting Destiny #1) by Suzanne Brockmann

Review: Born to Darkness (Fighting Destiny #1) by Suzanne Brockmann

by dg_mollyJuly 22, 2012

TLDR Recap:

There’s a secret drug epidemic and war brewing. The new designer-drug Destiny enables the user to stay young forever and causes the development of a vast array of dangerous mind abilities that, more often than not, cause murderous insanity. Dishonorably discharged, former Navy Seal Shane Laughlin is broke and unable to find work. Desperate, he accepts a job from the Obermeyer Institute, and unknowingly lands smack in the middle of the drug foray. At the Institute, Shane is confronted with his mind-blowing one night stand and is immediately smitten with Michelle “Mac” McKenzie. As he works with Mac and the other operatives in their battle against the drug, he’s thrust into the dark world of Destiny production and not only fights to save the victims used for the drug’s key ingredient, but for the life of the woman he loves. Born to Darkness is a worth a look!

  • Title: Born to Darkness
  • Series: Fighting Destiny #1
  • Author: Suzanne Brockmann
  • Prominent Characters: Shane, Mac
  • Recommended Reader Age: 18+
  • Genre: Urban Fantasy
  • Sexual Content Level: moderate

*** This review is SPOILER-FREE! Read on with confidence! ***


Confident, self-assured, and selfless, Shane Laughlin is very much the Seal he used to be and was born to be a leader. With a dishonorable discharge and no real job prospects, Shane takes a job from the Obermeyer Institute, known for practicing fringe science, as a test subject. To his surprise the Institute not only houses Greater-thans, a fraction of the population that have integrated their brains to enable unbelievable mind capabilities, but also the most fantastic one night stand of his life, Mac. Shane also learns of the horrific drug making its rounds on the street, Destiny, and its key ingredient, pre-teen girls with a larger than normal percentage of brain integration making them sought after candidates for training at the Institute. Destiny gives the gift of immortality and superhero-like powers at a steep price causing instant addiction, a high probability of going on a murderous rampage, and detox by death.

Michelle “Mac” McKenzie, a doctor and Greater-than, is an Institute operative that works on the front lines in the Destiny drug war. One of Mac’s unusual talents enables her to make men “want” her by releasing pheromones and has brought her nothing but strife. She kicks ass and takes names, but secretly longs for real love. The one thing she can’t have. Working with Shane proves hard for her because she wants him, yet can’t trust that his feelings for her are real and not just a by-product of her abilities.

Shane embarks on an emotional rollercoaster ride filled with action, danger, and lust as he works with Mac and the other operatives to save the young girls used for the drug and to stop Destiny production. Shane struggles to not only convince Mac that he truly loves her, but to keep her alive as Mac recklessly fights her own inner demons and learns to trust and let go.

Reading Born to Darkness, I immediately fell in love with the characters. However, I did have a hard time figuring out which two characters the book focused on. The secondary characters and their side plots got just as much page time as the main characters. The plot, at times, was a little confusing but rich in detail. My biggest qualm was the ending, which cuts off abruptly and definitely leaves the reader wanting. Needless to say I was a little frustrated and had to double check to make sure this was a series. This is a great book for the beach (which is where I read it).

Memorable Quotes:

Tell it like it is!

“Except it’s a shocker for you, isn’t Navy? You’ve never not been in demand—you probably went into the military right out of high school and… Plus, you were an officer, right? I can smell it on you.” She narrowed her eyes as if his being an officer was a terrible thing.
“Yeah, I was officer.” He dropped his biggest bomb. “In the SEAL teams.”
She looked him dead in the eye as it bounced. “Big fucking deal, Dixie-Cup. You’re out now. Welcome to the real world, where things don’t always go your way.”

How do you fist bump yourself?

“Come on, Stephen—I’m not offended. I’m flattered. I’m more than flattered. I’m—“
“Freaked out,” Diaz finished for him.
“Yeah,” Elliot said, “but-for the record-I’m not freaked out because you apparently want to do me, every chance you get. As far as that goes, I’m mentally running laps around the room and giving myself high fives and fist bumps. When I said I was freaked out it was because I know how seriously you take your training, and I respect both you and that, even though I haven’t found even the slightest hint of scientific evidence backing your belief about your celibacy’s impact on your mental skills.”

If you liked Born to Darkness…

If you enjoyed Born to Darkness and are looking for more high-octane action and adventure with some hot Navy Seals, don’t miss Suzanne Brockmann’s Prince Joe, book one of the Tall, Dark, and Dangerous series, a story of epionage, intrigue, and atomic passion.

Final Thoughts:

Born to Darkness is a fast-paced, action-filled read with a slew of different characters and a rich plot. Though at times confusing, I would definitely read the next book in the series. Born to Darkness is worth a look!

Rating: Born to Darkness


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