Thursday, December 12, 2013

Review: Born in Blood by Alexandra Ivy

Title: Born in Blood
Author: Alexandra Ivy
Series: Book One in the Sentinels Series
Published By: Zebra Books (December 31, 2013)
Source: ARC Copy Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
Genre: Urban Fantasy
My Rating: 3 Stars!

Book Description:
In a stunning new paranormal romance series—even edgier than her bestselling Guardians of Eternity books—New York Times bestselling author Alexandra Ivy lures readers into the dark, seductive world of the Sentinels—humans outcast by their hidden abilities, treading the line between life and death, good and evil, pleasure and pain… 

Born In Blood

Sergeant Duncan O’Conner has seen it all before. A beautiful erotic dancer is found murdered in her home—no suspect, no motive. But there’s one clue: she’s missing her heart. It’s enough to make the hard-bitten Kansas City cop enlist the help of a necro—one of the dead-channeling freaks who live in the domed city of nearby Valhalla. It’s a long shot, but desperate crimes call for desperate measures. 

Unlike the other “high-bloods” in Valhalla, Callie Brown considers her abilities a gift, not a curse. But when she reads the dancer’s final thoughts, she senses a powerful presence blocking her vision. This is no ordinary homicide. This is the work of a legendary necromancer who controls souls. A ravenous force that will put Callie’s skills to the test, O’Conner’s career at risk, and both their hearts on the line…literally.

This is my first Alexandra Ivy book and I will be honest, I mainly picked this up because I was in desperate need of something new and fresh to read. 

And Ms. Ivy doesn't mess around. From the very first pages we are immediately thrust into the world she created with a murder to solve, magic and mischief in the air, sexual tension already present and evil afoot. This is not a leisurely stroll in the park but rather a wild roller coaster of a ride that you need to be strapped in for. 

I liked Callie from the get go and Duncan not long after. It is very evident that they have an attraction for one another and maybe even something more even though they both grew up in very different places and under very different circumstances.

The world building was slow as to not dump too much information on you at once which I appreciated. The feel of the world and characters she created was very much original in concept and design. The characters were nicely done although not quite as fleshed out as I would have liked.

The bad guy was evil with a twist I didn’t see coming and the good guys were good with all that comes between fighting the age old battle of good versus evil. 

While the storyline wasn't anything unique or anything that blew me away, the characters and setting were, with the world of Valhalla, sentinels, soul seers, necromancers and many others that made the plot enjoyable and worth the read. The sexual tension was hot HOT and the steamy romance scenes even more so.

The secondary characters of Mave, Fane and Serra added a lot to the dynamic and feel of the book and overall this was a nice read with lots of action and romance as well as originality to make it a worthwhile read.

*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*


  1. Glad the world-building is gradual Ali, that's something I struggle with sometimes in the first book of a new UF series. I just get lost trying to sort the world out that I never settle into the characters. so glad that's not the case here. It's been a while since I've read a good urban fantasy, so even while this one didn't blow you away, it does sound like a nice break from what I've been reading lately:)

  2. Thanks Jenny, it was a nice change of pace for me lately and I do think you might like this one. :)

  3. I will be anxious to see how you feel about book two, sometimes it takes 2 or 3 books to get caught up in the series. It sounds like a solid start and I am loving the supernatural creatures.

  4. I'm pretty sure I'll adore this worldbuilding! Valhalla should be so interesting. And I've been seeing Ivy's name everywhere lately!

  5. I was eyeing this when I placed it in an upcoming Friday Forecast. I am always a fan of good solid world building and I am in need of a new UF book. This might work for me.

  6. I agree Kim. I am not going to give up on it yet. ;)

    Thanks everyone!!

  7. Good sexual tension is definitely a plus. The first book in a UF series tends to almost always be tough for me, so it's usually a 3 star book for me (more often then not). This sounds like a series I might like.

  8. Agree Candace! They really have to blow me away to get more than 3 stars with first in series.

  9. Ooh steamy romance and subtle worldbuilding? Yes please! I hate when an author info dumps and its great to hear that doesn't happen here. This sounds like a fun UF read, even if it isn't the most unique out there. Great review!

  10. curious really. I do love my paranormals and always on look out for new series. I like the sound of the world building and the characters. Excited to see this one pop up in my library so hopefully I will pick it up :)

  11. I've not read anything by this author yet, but the steamy scenes and romance sound great. Nice review!!