REVIEW by Matt: Bad Blood (Bad Blood #1) by Ginny Lurcock – Released TODAY! (@mattalarkin , @GinnyLurcock)

High school senior Victoria “Tori” Reeve has it pretty good. She’s rich, she’s smart, and she’s popular. What more could a girl ask for? Sure, she’s a little lonely, what with being single and her best friend going off to college and all, but she’s got her work at the Spaulding Crisis Center to keep her busy. When she gets a new boss in the very easy on the eyes form of Isaac Larsen, suddenly her volunteer work feels a lot less like work. Even if he does seem to cause Tori to break out into spontaneous fits of foot in mouth disease. Somehow in spite of her blunderitis, Isaac still seems to be interested in her in a more-than-employer or even more-than-friends kind of way.

So really she should have known that things would go sideways.

Trouble comes to Spaulding, and that trouble seems to be centered on Tori and the Crisis Center. Is she really the focus? Or does this all have to do with the new mysterious man in her life? In her efforts to find out, Tori stumbles across some secrets. Skeletons that might have been better off left in the closet. As it turns out, Spaulding is a hot spot for bad blood…

 Bad Blood Cover Image

After my own book was reviewed here, I became friends with Ginny and some of the others here at PT. This eventually led to my becoming a book blogger on this site—which is great, since I can review books without having to maintain my own blog on the subject. So normally it would be both a privilege and a concern to be asked to honestly review a fellow PTer’s book.

Fortunately, in Ginny’s case, I’ve already read her work and I know she’s a great writer, so it’s only a privilege.
Bad Blood is a YA vampire novel. It’s even a YA romance vampire novel. Yeah. You’ve seen that before, right? Well not quite like this. Bad Blood almost seems like a parody of the genre, both mocking and embracing it at the same time. At its best, it’s laugh-out-loud funny.

Our heroine, Tori, starkly contrasts with those I’ve seen in similar premises. She’s snarky, confident, rich, and absolutely takes no shit from the boys, human or otherwise. While Tori directly references Twilight a few times, throughout the novel, you can see her living what she preaches when she condemns the way Edward acts.

I haven’t read that many YA novels (I have read Twilight, for the record), and other than Harry Potter and the Hunger Games, there weren’t too many that really did it for me. I get bored with too much angst, I guess. I didn’t have that problem here. Tori felt believable as a character and a teenager, without getting on my nerves.

Actually, just about everyone felt believable, which is one of Ginny’s strengths. She’s got an authorial voice that sweeps you away and makes you instantly believe in the characters and their conflicts. And really, that’s what most of us are looking for in a good read. It doesn’t have to be a life-changing revelation—we want someone to tell us a story, that, for a moment, we believe so deeply we forget it’s just a story.

The version I read was an ARC, so it still had some typos and grammatical errors that likely will get fixed before the title is available. If you like YA at all, I’d suggest grabbing a copy.

5 Phoenix Hatchlings

5 matt

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