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REVIEW: Blood Lines by Eileen Wilks

Dear Ms. Wilks:

BloodlinesI opened your book and read the introductory letter to the reader with some glee. It suggested that whatever had happened in the second book, Mortal Danger, was maybe just a fantasy and outside of the world realm that you had created with the fantastic introduction to the series, Tempting Danger. Alas, I was wrong.

Bloodlines is a hodgepodge of science fiction, western mythology and eastern mythology. It has everything from precognitives and the Gifted to werewolves and dragons to demons and sorcerers to faeries and dryads. There seems to be no myth, no paranormal aspect that is left untouched by your pen. I like fusion cuisine as much as the next girl, but many times I felt you were putting spaghetti and kimchee* together and it just didn’t taste right.

As Cullen noted

Demons, demonic poison, and the Great Bitch indulging in cross-realms assassination– the Lady speaking to an outclan know-it-all– a top secret task force investigating a mysterious power surge, and a top-notch pre-cog who thought that was just the beginning.

I’m not sure if I even know what the plot is, but I’ll try to piece it together. Lily Yu is an FBI agent who is also a sensitive, impervious to magic but knows who has it and what kind. Rule Turner is the heir and Lu Nuncio of a the Nikolai Werewolf clan. Lily and Rule are bondmates. Their story began with Tempting Danger (a recommended read). Lily and Rule have come to Washington, D.C. for Lily’s work to find a demon and Rule’s to do some lobbying. Major magical disturbances begin to occur requiring investigation.

Cynna Weaver is a Finder and an Enspeller. She is a former lover of Rule’s and also works as a consultant for the FBI with Lily’s team. She is called to Find a demon who may be responsible for attacking Rule, infecting him, and killing the heir to a southern werewolf clan, the Leidolf. Cullen Seaborne is an adopted member of the Nikolai clan. He is hunting for the dragons in Mexico when he encounters a demon. Rule asks him to return to help hunt this other demon. Cullen, Cynna, Rule, and Lily are working together to find the demon, heal Rule, prevent the Leidolf clan from trying to kill Rule and to save the world.

There is a decent thread in this book and that is Rule’s infection by the demon, the fact that he might be overtaken by it, what control he has over his own destiny. If the story had been about the werewolf politics – the Leidolf clan versus the Nikolai clan – it would have been much tighter and interesting read.

Unfortunately, all the different threads that sometimes ran together but mostly parallel never quite jelled for me. The ending, in particular, left me with a hollow feeling. Further, to say that this is Cynna and Cullen’s story is a mistake. They have a total of about four scenes together and at what point it is determined that they have feelings for each other greater than sexual attraction is lost to me, if it ever happens.

The hardest part for me is that I love Lily and Rule. I love them even in this book, but the story that swirls around them is so distracting that I can barely see the lights of the house through the blizzard of snow. C-

Best regards,

Jane

*Kimchee is a traditional Corean dish made out of various ingredients, but primarily bok choy and white radish. Tres delish. Okay, maybe fermented cabbage is an acquired taste.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

6 Comments

  1. jmc
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 08:22:48

    The cover of this book caught my eye the other day in the bookstore — it reminded me very much of the cover art for Kushiel’s Dart. But I ended up not buying it becaues I haven’t finished Tempting Danger and don’t want to start buying series books when I’m not sure I want to invest in the series long term.

  2. May
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 09:47:26

    I’m really jealous that you’ve read this one already.

    Maybe you don’t like kimchee and spaghetti together because your tastebuds aren’t evolved enough. (I’m just kidding, honest, that’s what I tell my friends when they don’t get my creations)

    I do know that the book after the next full-length Lupi book will go back to Lily and Rule, and if this one doesn’t hit the spot, I’ll be waiting until the next Lily/Rule book.

  3. Avaron Dale
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 10:02:48

    Ouchies… I’m sorry you had an unsatisfying read. However, I do want to point out that you spelled Korean wrong in the postscript there. ;)

  4. Jane
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 10:11:24

    JMC – I love this cover! It’s gorgeous and also reminded me of Kushiel series. Another tattoo cover I loved was It Sleeps in Me by Kathleen O’Neal Gear whose book I could not finish.

    May – I saw that the next one is more about Cynna and Cullen but you are saying that the one after that is a full on return to Lily and Rule? Great.

    Avaron – Actually, it is an intentional spelling. Some have argued that Corea was spelled with a C until the Japanese occupation in the early 1900s. Because Japan wanted to appear at world events before Corea, it changed the spelling to K. If you watched the World Cup in 2002(?), all the banners that the Coreans waved were spelled with a C. This is disputed by some arguing that it was the European use that changed the spelling but whatever the case, after I watched the World Cup, I started making a conscious effort to spell it with C.

  5. May
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 10:15:02

    I’m saying exactly that, Jane.

  6. Avaron Dale
    Jan 03, 2007 @ 10:20:33

    Jane – I had never heard that before. I’ll have to check around and see what’s out there on it. I try to never stop learning, so I’ll check it out. Thanks. May I make a recommendation though, if using corean as the name of the country, please capitalize it? Then I would have thought it was a style thing – kinda like Burma/Thailand. :)

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