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Beautiful Darkness

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Beautiful Darkness
Beautiful Darkness Book Cover, written by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Beautiful Darkness Book Cover, written by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
Author(s) Kami Garcia
Margaret Stohl
Series Beautiful Creatures
Publisher Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date October 12, 2010
Media type Hardcover
Length 512 Pages
ISBN 978-0316077057
Preceded by Beautiful Creatures
Followed by Beautiful Chaos

For other uses of the word Succubus, see Succubus (disambiguation).

For other uses of the word Incubus, see Incubus (disambiguation).

Beautiful Darkness is a novel by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. It is the second work in the Beautiful Creatures series by this author. In this work Incubi and Succubi appear and play a major role in the development of the main characters.


  • Title: Beautiful Darkness
  • Author: Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
  • Published By: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Length: 512 Pages
  • Format: Hardcover, Paperback & eBook
  • ASIN: B003UBTX6S
  • ISBN-10: 0316077054
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316077057
  • Publishing Date: October 12, 2010

Other Works in this Series on SuccuWiki

Plot Summary

Ethan Wate used to think of Gatlin, the small Southern town he had always called home, as a place where nothing ever changed. Then he met mysterious newcomer Lena Duchannes, who revealed a secret world that had been hidden in plain sight all along. A Gatlin that harbored ancient secrets beneath its moss-covered oaks and cracked sidewalks. A Gatlin where a curse has marked Lena's family of powerful Supernaturals for generations. A Gatlin where impossible, magical, life-altering events happen.

Detailed Plot

Ethan Wate and Lena Duchannes are recovering from the fact that Lena's uncle, Macon Ravenwood, an Incubus, died during their battle against Lena's evil mother, Sarafine. The two fell in love when Lena came to the small, unchanging town of Gatlin in South Carolina. Lena is a caster and unlike other caster families, her's shares a curse that was unpurposefully put on them by their descendant, Genevieve Duchannes. So, each of the family members have their fate chosen on their sixteenth birthday, as in if they are going to be Dark or Light. Dark meaning they use their powers for evil and Light meaning they use their powers for good. The night that her uncle had died, Lena's sixteenth birthday, one of Lena's eyes had turned Gold (The eye color of Dark Casters) while the other remained Green (The eye color of Light Casters), therefore leaving her in the middle of Dark and Light.

Sometime after Macon's death, Ethan starts worrying about Lena, who has been acting strange ever since. Lena has stopped writing in the tattered old journal that she used to carry around with her. She has even almost stopped Kelting with Ethan and rather prefers to block him out. Ethan, on the other hand, is having strange visions that include Macon, Abraham Ravenwood and a girl named Jane, who Macon appears to be madly in love with. On the last day of school, after Lena has told Ethan that she and her family are leaving town, Ethan, Lena and Link (Ethan's best friend) are alone on a lake because of an incident that took place at the high school's parking lot. After kissing Ethan, Lena takes off into the forest and, after chasing her, Ethan witnesses her jump on to the back of a Harley and ride off with a stranger. In hope of finding her, Ethan and Link drive to Dar-ee Keen, Gatlin's greasy version of Dairy King. Instead, they meet up with Ridley, Lena's Dark Caster cousin, who always appeared barely dressed, with the power of persuasion. Ridley is with a guy who introduces himself as John Breed and claims to know Lena. Ethan realizes that John was the one Lena had run off with.

At his job in the library, Ethan meets Olivia "Liv" Durand, who befriends him quickly. After giving Liv a tour of Gatlin, Ethan and Liv are eating at the Dar-ee Keen when Lena's car races by, obviously stating that she had seen Ethan and Liv together. During the town's annual County Fair, Ethan is shocked to see that Lena is wearing Ridley's type of clothing. Black tank that rode up on her stomach, black skirt about five inches short, streak of blue in her hair and black-rimmed eyes. Throughout Ethan and Lena's conversation, Liv shows up. Jealous and angry, Lena takes off, causing a chain reaction of chaos as she went. Afterwards, during the pie contest sponsored by Southern Crusty, Ridley, John and Lena cause maggots, beetles and grubs to crawl of every pie except one, Amma Treadeau's. Amma is Ethan's grandmother, taking care of him since his mother died. When Ethan and Link follow the three troublemakers, they see them enter the Tunnel of Love and disappear, not leaving a clue to where they went. Desperate to get some help, Ethan and Link go to the Lunae Libri, the Caster library, in hope of finding Marian, the Mortal librarian and Caster library Keeper.

Once inside, Ethan hears a laugh, guiding him to a room in which he finds Liv. Liv explains to him that she is a keeper in training and knows quite a lot about the Caster world. Marian, on the other hand, suspects that Ethan may be a Wayward, a Mortal who helps Casters in finding the way to their fates, or the one who knows the way. It is also revealed to Ethan that his mother was a Keeper. Determined to find Lena, the three friends, Ethan, Link and Liv set out through the Caster tunnels underground. Eventually, they find their way into a Caster bar, where they find Ridley, John and Lena. Ethan is shocked to see Lena dancing with John, his hands on her hips. After Lena admits that she does not want to see Ethan there, Link, Liv and him get out of there. Back in the tunnels, Ethan almost kisses Liv. In Gatlin, when Ethan goes to see Lena at her mansion, she reveals to him that she is going to run away before her family leaves and that she has put a Cast on him, one that will make sure he is unable to tell anyone. After, on All Souls Day Ethan realizes that the Jane from his visions was his mother, Lila Jane Evers and that she loved Macon, after Marian gives him the Arclight, a metaphysical prison for Incubuses. Though he is shattered, Marian confirms that Lila also loved Mitchell, Ethan's father.

Liv and Ethan both come to the conclusion that Sarafine was trying to pull the seventeenth moon out of time to get Lena to claim herself. With the help of Ridley (Who loses her powers after an encounter with Sarafine through the journey), Link and Lucille, Ethan's Great Aunt's cat, the one who keeps disappearing, they find The Great Barrier, the place Sarafine is leading Lena to, after sometime in the Caster Tunnels. Halfway between though, Ethan learned that Lena made a deal with the Book of Moons, a powerful Caster book, for Ethan's life after Sarafine killed him. It was Ethan's life for something, which unexpectedly turns out to be Macon's life. Now, Ethan understood why Lena had been acting strange and blaming herself for killing her uncle. Before the team is about to enter the Sea Cave where Sarafine is hiding, Ethan understands the purpose of the Arclight and, with the help of Liz, is able to bring back Macon from it.

Once outside, Macon has Green Caster eyes, which confirms that he has switched from an Incubus to a Caster. He also explains how Lila Jane's ghost helped him once The Book of Moons took his life by capturing him inside the Arclight. In order to help the teenagers fight off the Incubuses and Dark Casters inside the Sea Cave, Leah Ravenwood, Macon's sister and a Succubus, goes with them. Inside the cave, John is holding Lena, who has no idea where she is or what she is doing. There are also a lot of Vexes, powerful demons of the underground, who are sent back once Amma, Arelia (Macon's Mother), Gramma (Lena's Grandmother) and Twyla (Macon's Aunt) arrive. Quickly, while the others are fighting, Ethan helps Lena revive. Lena claims herself to be both Dark and Light, killing off both Twyla, a Light Caster and Larkin, a Dark Caster (Also Lena's Cousin), because on her last birthday, Lena had learned that she were to turn Dark, then all the Light Casters in her family will die and if she turned Light, all the Dark Casters in her family will die.

One night after, Link sneaks through Ethan's window and wakes him up. While the fighting was going on, Link was bitten by John, who is revealed to be a hybrid, half Caster, half Incubus. So now, after Lena confirms it, Link is turning into an Incubus.

Book Review

The following review is from the Amazon.com listing in the External Links below:

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • An Excellent Sequel
  • Reviewed On: October 14, 2010
  • Reviewed By: The Compulsive Reader

Lena and Ethan have lived through the day that they had been dreading for months, Lena's sixteenth birthday, but not without some sacrifices. With Macon's death, Lena is depressed and lost, and there doesn't seem to be anything that Ethan can do to help her, despite his own experiences with grief. Then Lena begins pulling away and taking risks, and Ethan, still not aware of what really happened to him the night of Lena's birthday, can't understand why. So he digs deeper into Caster lore and his mother's research to look for a way to save Lena and what they have before it's too late. But once you've entered the Caster world, you can never go back, and some secrets Ethan uncovers will put him and everyone he loves in far more danger than he can imagine.

Beautiful Darkness is a very detailed and layered sequel that won't disappoint fans of Beautiful Creatures. Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl's world is vivid and rich, with an old south backdrop, lore, and traditions--the setting is really what sets their work apart from the endless options in the paranormal genre. Though it picks up where Beautiful Creatures leaves off, the book covers a good amount of time as Lena and Ethan struggle with conflicting feelings about the night of Lena's birthday, the consequences, and the grief each are experiencing. Ethan's voice is especially strong in this installment, as he has to stand on his own and discovers a whole new world right beneath his own nose. Garcia and Stohl also introduce a few new characters that add new tension between the main characters and open the way to new, surprising secrets about Caster powers and the battle of Light vs. Dark. All the twists, secrets, and surprises culminate in a journey through the Caster tunnels and a suspenseful showdown between family members that will leave some dead, and some very much alive. There might be some confusion as to who is left standing at the end, but one thing is for certain: this story is not over, and readers still have another deliciously thick and dark Gothic book to look forward to.

External Links