Red Blooded

January 30, 2015 - 9:25 pm No Comments

Red Blooded
Jessica McClain. Book 4
Author: Amanda Carlson
Publisher: Orbit
Page count: 369pp
Release Date: 9th Sept 2014
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

This series so far has literally been moving ‘like a bat out of hell’, so much adventure, romance, death and destruction happening between books one to three, that I was almost glad to take a breather. I say almost, because this series is addictive so here I am diving into book four with relish and anticipation.
This fourth novel starts with Jessica neck deep in training to protect herself for a visit to the Underworld. Her twin brother Tyler has been kidnapped and dragged to Hell in order to lure Jessica down to face trial for crimes she may or may not have committed. During all of this preparation for entering the Underworld, she’s busy trying to stop the coterie of vamps and witches from killing each other. Jessica is desperately trying to master any demon magic that could be flung at her, but she’s in danger of swallowing it whole and being dragged on her own to Hell instead of with Ray, her newly turned vampire reaper. But you know what they say about plans? Jessica is dragged into Hell by a Vortex on her own, and Rourke is determined to follow her even though his scent all set off all of their alarms.
When Jessica does emerge into Hell it makes great material for Carlson, who introduces us to chupacubras, imps and muted purple sky in just the first few pages. Her vision of Hell, is delightfully different, as all demons use glamour to look the image of the human appearing Prince of Hell, the buildings are weird but very much like a business domain, and half of the demons haven’t got a clue how to fight. Jessica’s internal monologue with her wolf is also particularly interesting. She uses the term ‘we’ and is constantly having debates with her less cautious wolf half, which makes this a little bit more unusual than standard werewolf fayre. In Hell she also meets a demoness, Lily who reminds us that Jessica is fated to rule Hell, not that she particularly wants to. And Lily is offering to help Jessica rescue Tyler and escape the Underworld if Jessica helps Lily escape herself. But what are Lily’s motives.
As with all of the Jessica McClain books so far, this one is filled with activity, danger, adventure and a great sense of humour. The characters are all enjoyable, particularly the Prince of Hell himself, the pace is tight and just right, and the book eds on another cliffhanger.
Will Jessica every get a rest like she deserves? At this rate, who knows?

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