4 out of 4 stars
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A Price of Blood is the second book in the Songs of Blood Saga by Renee Peters and Rae Stilwell. I also reviewed the first book in the series and fell in love with the historical setting and charming characters, so I jumped at the chance to review its sequel. The first book introduces the Anowen coven of vampires, led by Lian Redmond. However, Peters and Stilwell’s vampire lore is quite different in that each vampire, when turned, adds to the “song” of the coven. The state of a vampire’s song gives the other members of the coven a clue as to the vampire’s emotions and well-being, but only those in the coven can hear the collective songs.
A Price of Blood picks up right where A Song of Blood left off. Lian is determined to focus on the health of his coven, which he had been neglecting up until then, but he is also making plans to ensure the continuity of his bloodline, if you could call it that. The focus of the first book was on Lian and the human Delilah, whose song Lian could hear without him even turning her. However, the focus this time around is fairly evenly split before the coven as a whole and the romance between Dorian and Joanna. Also, there are ripple effects from other covens in the area due to Lian’s actions in the first book, allowing the authors to introduce new and interesting characters.
At first I was thrown off by the fact that Delilah and Lian’s romance wasn’t part of the plot anymore. But it didn’t take me long to warm up to the idea of an ever-evolving plot and characters. In fact, the authors’ decision to take this route meant that the reader got to know some of the other characters much more thoroughly, which was one of my biggest complaints with the first novel. Also, rather than just being a historical romance novel with a supernatural twist, the thickening of the plot added depth to the book. Usually I’m fine with reading just the first book in romance series and leaving it at that, but I don’t think I’ll be satisfied until I read to the very end of the Songs of Blood Saga.
Although the authors definitely seemed to have taken reviewers’ advice for the first book by fleshing out characters and allowing readers to bond with them more, it seems like I found a few more errors and typos this time around. There were only nine or ten errors in the entire 300-page book, so I don’t think it’s too bad, but I definitely remember the first book having excellent editing. Other than that, I didn’t see any problems with the book itself or the plot developments.
This book had a little bit less humor than the first book and definitely served to move the plot along, but it was still enjoyable and I found myself getting more and more attached to the series overall. Despite the grammatical errors, I think A Price of Blood has earned 4 out of 4 stars. It’s much calmer and easier to understand than the first book, allowing the reader to connect with the characters and setting much more easily. You do need to read the first book before reading this one, however. You wouldn’t understand much if you didn’t. I, for one, am eagerly looking forward to the next book in the series!
A Price of Blood
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