Jessica McClain was born the only female in an all male race. The only problem is-she’s no wolf. Called a curse, a witch and the Daughter of Evil by the superstitious wolves, Jessica decides to fight for her freedom, at age nineteen, the only way she can-in the ring.
When she’s brutally attacked right after her fight, is it enough to finally earn her freedom off Compound, or will she be forced to endure the hatred even longer .
Amanda Carlson’s Blooded is a quick peak into what reader’s can expect from her debut novel Full Blooded.
The characters in Blooded are fantastic. Other than a couple of issues with dialogue too adult for a teenager, Carlson brilliantly portrays Jessica as a put upon teenager who’s had enough of being the town pariah and wants a chance for peace and a new life. Likewise, Carlson does a great job portraying the competing emotions of Jess’ father. You really feel the desires he has to protect his daughter and the despair at her poor treatment, but also the responsibility and loyalty to his pack. I really loved finally seeing an Alpha who was unwilling to put the pack above all things. Who understands that the group (his pack) is not always more important than the individual (his daughter).
The fight scenes in Blooded were amazing! Carlson masterfully weaves the physical and emotional aspects of each altercation without taking away from either. It really set the tone for the novella and the novel. This isn’t a pretty romance, this is one young woman’s gritty, no holds bar fight for survival in the face of seemingly insurmountable prejudice and superstition.
Blooded was a great read, it set the tone for Full and really helped to explain why Jess doesn’t have a full-out nervous breakdown when her life changes drastically in Full Blooded.
It’s not easy being a girl. It’s even harder when you’re the only girl in a family of werewolves. But it’s next to impossible when your very existence spells out the doom of your race… Meet Jessica McClain — she just became part of the pack.
In the vein of Kelley Armstrong and Patricia Briggs, a new urban fantasy that rewrites the werewolf myth…
I really liked Blooded, Amanda Carlson’s prequel novella to Full Blooded, but I was not so crazy about Full Blooded.
There were a couple of things I really thought Carlson did well. I think she did a fabulous job showing the awkward balance between the inherent violence that’s part of a werewolf’s existence with the fact that that level of violence doesn’t mix well with real life. How many times can you expect to have your land lord fix your apartment after a violent event? How does one successfully dispose of dead bodies in the city without looking suspicious? And what does one do when the police come knocking?
Carlson also developed some über-creepy villains for Full Blooded and as much as I love a well written protagonist I probably love a truly “eeeeevil” bad guy even more. Without giving too much away, there are various bad guys in Full Blooded and all of them are horrible. Wonderfully horrible.
What I wasn’t crazy about was the plot pacing, story development and the ending. I was explaining to a friend that I liked this book, but I felt like at times there was a lot going on, but not much happening. This is a common problem for firsts in series. There were scenarios that explained aspects of lycanthropy in Carlson’s “world” that I didn’t think were necessary to the overall story arc and other aspects that I felt needed to expanded upon.
I was not crazy about the ending to Full Blooded. At a certain point I really felt like a new storyline had started and then just abruptly ended, leaving readers with a bizarre cliff hanger. It wasn’t one of those cliff hangers that makes me furious, but rather the whole story took a bit of a turn and made me wonder why it wasn’t ended earlier. It just didn’t feel like a natural ending.
I know this kind of seems like a negative review, but aside for issues with the actual story-telling I enjoyed Full Blooded and look forward to reading more from Amanda Carlson.
Full Blooded is a decent start to a new Urban Fantasy series. If you like Sierra Dean’s Secret McQueen or Karen MacInerney’s Urban Werewolf series I recommend you read Full Blooded.