Author: Amanda Carlson
Series: Jessica McClain, #4
Released: September 9th 2014
Lenght: 320 pages
Source: Publisher for review
Buy: The Book Depository
After Jessica's brother is kidnapped and taken to the Underworld, she will stop at nothing to get him back. But before her grueling training is finished, Jessica's power mixes unexpectedly with the circle and she's dropped into the Underworld without protection or her escorts.
Well, it’s official: when it comes to urban fantasy, Amanda Carlson can do no wrong. Her fourth book in the Jessica McClain series is her fourth success in a row, which is no small feat. Admittedly, it might be my least favorite of the four, but that’s only because the competition is so strong. All things considered, this is one of the strongest, most consistent urban fantasy series still being published.
Red Blooded takes Jessica McClain to the demon realm in search of her twin Tyler, who was taken from her at the very end of the previous book. Instead of going with a group of paranormals and friends, Jessica ends up there alone through a series of unfortunate events, and she wanders around quite a bit before reuniting with the others. Instead of bringing a new freshness to the series as I’m sure it was supposed to, the complete change of setting succeeded in alienating us from the secondary characters we’ve grown to love. In addition, the entire demon realm adventure seemed directionless and it was difficult to understand why Carlson chose to make such a move.
On the other hand, the demon realm itself was a very vivid and imaginative setting. I loved She’ol, the demon capital, and all the different kinds of demons there. Their social structure was described fairly well and untangling the rules of their society provided a lot of entertainment. That’s the sort of thing urban fantasy readers usually enjoy, and here it was done very well.
As always, I found Jessica’s relationship with her wolf and their rather odd dynamic quite fascinating. She’s not a regular shapeshifter like the ones we’re used to. Jessica and her wolf are two completely separate entities that share a body, and they communicate directly, especially when in danger. On the down side, Jessica is slowly turning into one of those all-powerful urban fantasy heroines, the ones that have no limits whatsoever, and it’s slowly becoming too much. The line isn’t far, though, and Carlson’s going to have to be very careful not to cross it.
Right now, however, this is a very strong, very reliable series and I hope it stays that way. With all the cross-genre novels that are currently being published, true urban fantasy books are increasingly difficult to find, and Jessica McClain series is UF in its purest form. That fact alone makes it special and worth your time.
A copy of this book was kindly provided by the publisher for review purposes. No considerations, monetary or otherwise, have influenced the opinions expressed in this review.
I accidentally ended up with an extra copy of Red Blooded (love you too, Orbit), so we agreed to send it out to one of you guys. This giveaway is international, I'll send this out anywhere with a zip code. I've also made entering as easy as possible. Good luck, everyone!