Review: Bittersweet Blood by Nina Croft ★★★


Image result for Bittersweet Blood by Nina CroftBittersweet Blood by Nina Croft
Genre: Urban Fantasy/Paranormal romance
Series: The Order #1
Publication Date: February 18, 2013
ISBN: 9781622669592
Page Count: 246
Rating: ★★★
Review Copy: ARC
Reviewed by: Lynsey
Synopsis: Tara Collins just wants to be normal. Everyone else wants her dead. Tara’s eccentric aunt raised her to be fearful of the world and follow the rules. But after her aunt’s death, Tara is ready to take control and experience life for the first time. But she quickly discovers that everything she’s been told is a web of lies. Determined to solve the mystery of who she is truly, she hires private investigator to help her uncover the truth. Christian Roth is more than your average PI. A vampire and ex-demon hunter, Christian lives among the humans, trying to be “normal.” But recently, things seem to be falling apart. There’s a crazed demon hell-bent on revenge hunting him down and a fae assassin on the loose with an unknown target. Plus, the Order he abandoned desperately needs his help. As the secrets of Tara’s past collide with the problems in Christian’s present, she finds herself fighting her attraction to the dark and mysterious investigator. Falling in love does not fit into her plans at all, but Tara soon learns that some rules are meant to be broken.

REVIEW


Bittersweet Blood

For the most part, this book was a hit for me. I enjoyed the plot, the setting (London, whoo!), and the surprises and twists along the way. Mostly I liked the characters and the romance, too, but I felt both could have been better.

The romance between Tara and Christian happened a little too quickly for my liking, and the attraction felt somewhat baseless. It did pick up, though, and they certainly had some nice (and hot) moments together, but I'm not sure it felt like love to me. Lust, perhaps, but not love. I'm always disappointed when the 'L' word is bandied about prematurely in books. If it's used before the reader has really been made to believe it possible, it feels hinky and unauthentic. They sometimes call it 'insta-love' which is a pretty good descriptor, and I felt the slight sting of it here with this book. But that's really my only foible. Well, that and that Christian had a nasty habit of laughing/chuckling at Tara, which was most patronising and annoying.

There was a nice mix of characters, however, and some great scenes and dialogue passages. I was totally surprised at one or two of the plot twists and shocked by yet others. And, again, it was really nice to have it set in the UK for a change. Christian, when he wasn't chuckling at Tara, was a pretty hot Vamp, it has to be said. He'd range from suit-wearing, all business Private Investigator, to jeans and T-shirt clad super hottie. It was enough to turn Tara's head, and maybe mine too. He wasn't too alpha or growly, and he was certainly willing to go the extra mile for Tara.

Tara was quite naive and clueless but with very good reason. She has a lot to learn about the world and herself throughout the book, and I thought she handled all the shocks fairly admirably.

The premise was certainly interesting, too. A girl (Tara) whose childhood has been about as sheltered as Rapunzel's, suddenly finds herself out in the real world after her aunt's death, and is slowly but surely breaking every one of the rules she's lived by for all the 22 years of her life so far. Rules such as: Don't, under any circumstances, drink alcohol. Well, that's kind of a party-pooper, but nothing too tragic. But what about: Never, ever, ever take off your necklace? Now that one's just weird, and begs the question: why not?

Want to find out the answer? Then read this book. Aside from my misgivings about the romance—which may not even bother some people—it was an enjoyable read with a nice mix of characters and is definitely worth taking a chance on.

3 Stars ★★★
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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