While the plot for Darkness Rising was interesting enough, it plodded along so slowly that I was sorely tempted to skip ahead to the end be done with it. Somehow, my willpower prevailed and i managed to read the whole damn thing but then I lost my patience towards the end and speed read the climax and what happened once things died down a little. There was very little development in the larger plot (that of the keys to hell)AS for the characters, I actually prefer the secondary characters to most of the primary ones. Risa is annoying and a VERY bad judge of character and Lucian is an epic slime ball!! His behavior in this book raised so many red flags and she ignored ALL of them. Sure, she took the time to register the strange behavior and then promptly made excuses for him. The sex must really be amazing! As for Azriel, he is so much better than that scum bag!! Here is a a guy who's saved your life on numerous occasions as well as your friends and he is the one you don't trust! Hmm, that makes a lot of sense. NOT!!! And then of course there's all that complaining: she whines about the fact that Azriel can read her mind and then complains when he withdraws his emotions into himself. Yikes!! Some people are never satisfied. AS for people being able to read Risa's mind, the list is rather long so i don't even know what the big deal is! At least so far Tao and Illiana are sensible and likeable.Am i gonna read the other books in this series? Yes, but its gonna be speed reading because anything more will be a waste of precious time and effort.