Title: Blood Magic
Author: Tessa Gratton
Series: The Blood Journals #1
Publication date: 26 April 2012
Format: Paperback | 416 pages
Genre: YA | Paranormal
The murder of her parents has left Silla damaged and lost, and Silla's insistence that her father is not to blame only alienates her further from her friends and family. When a mysterious spell book arrives, Silla hopes it will lead to some answers about her parents' killer. In her first attempt at magic, in an old graveyard near her home, Nick, the new boy in town spies on her; he recognizes the magic that Silla is performing as the same magic his mother performed with him, before she went mad.
Before long, Silla and Nick connect, though Nick is unwilling to share his history with blood magic with Silla. When Silla's friends start showing signs of possession, Silla, Nick and Silla's brother, Reese, must contend with a deadly, immortal woman who will stop at nothing to take the book of spells from them.
Well this was certainly a lot darker than I expected. Very surprising.
For those of you who have read quite a few of my reviews, you'll know that I love a dark, atmospheric tone to a story. If it's done right I immediately become completely enthralled - that was definitely the case with this book. I was, at points in the story, a little stunned by the level of horror or, I suppose you could call it, savagery. There were a few gory moments and a lot of blood for obvious reasons, but there was also some slightly disturbing moments where characters go a little crazy in their plight for revenge. So, yeah, surprising for a YA book.
I really liked the characters of Blood Magic. I thought they had a great depth to them, especially in their backstories. Silla was a joy to read about with her personality - this book was partly about Silla discovering who she really is on her own, without the support of her whole family. I loved reading about her finding out her true strengths as well as her weaknesses and how she overcame them. Nick was great in his own way. He was more or less clueless at the beginning of the book and yet by the end, he was pretty much the one holding everyone together in my opinion.
What I found a little frustrating with this read was the plot. I felt that it wasn't developed at the right pace for me to get the full level of anticipation I'm used to. Sometimes the plot would progress so quickly that I felt I was missing an entire book, and then other times there would be absolutely nothing happening plot wise and the focus was entirely on the romance side of things. If there was a perfect balance between the magic side of the story, and the romance, I would have considered this one a keeper.
Overall I liked this one and I would definitely recommend it. For the most part, it was brilliant to read. Full of action and suspense with an intense romantic relationship to boot!
My rating: 7/10