“Why this book worked for me?  The originality of the story.”
~Under the Covers

When I first read about the Etherlin world in the Tied With a Bow anthology just a months back I have to admit I was intrigued.  The storyline and the world itself were captivating and even though it was a bit hard to take it all in by reading a novella (that might’ve been too ambitious) it did set the stage for this book.  Even though I don’t think you need to read the prequel in that anthology, it would give you a bit of background history so you go into this one knowing a bit more about the world.
Basically the world is divided, physically, by a wall.  There’s the Etherlin, where the muses live; and the Varden where vampires and lowlifes make their home.  Well, you will know vampires as ventalas and they are seen as second class citizens due to a plague that happened in the 1950s.
In All That Bleeds we feature one of the worlds Top Muses, Alissa, from the House of North, is in competition to be the Wreath Muse.  She is a bit of a celebrity in her world, complete with paparazzi’s and bodyguards.  Her job is to inspire humans to create and invent great things.  At the same time she cares for her father, who has gone a bit mad after her mother “killed herself”.
She’s not supposed to associate with ventalas (vampires) but there’s one halfling that caught her interest and she’s been secretly corresponding with him for five years.  Five years that she’s had the safety of a wall separating them so that she can be herself in her letters.
Now that somehow she’s in danger, just a few votes before the final vote for the Wreath Muse, she could only count on him to keep her safe.
Why this book worked for me?  The originality of the story.  Yes, it’s refreshing to read about a different setting and group of supernaturals!!  The slow building of the relationship between Alissa and Merrick.  There’s so much that’s keeping them apart and they still, slowly, manage to become the most important part of the other person’s life.  There’s a good amount of suspense to keep things interesting.  And then, lets face it… a good heaping dose of exquisite bad boys.  Merrick, with his expensive Armani suits, is wicked (yeah wickedly hot) but melts in her hands.  He respects her, her boundaries, and her role, but all he wants is to be where she is.  She seems to be so proper but she’s truly adventurous and a bit rebellious, even though with a sense of responsibility. Merrick and Alissa were captivating.
And lets not forget the side characters!  Alissa’s father, in all his craziness was awesome.  And don’t get me started about Lysander.  I loved him in the prequel and I loved him the little bit he was in this book and I cannot wait for his book next.  There’s just something about a scarred, don’t-care-attitude, leather-wearing fallen angel that can melt anyone.  I’m already liking his pairing with Cerise (I’m guessing) and I can tell there will be lots of sparks between them too.  The gloves will come off!

Favorite Quotes:

“Since you and I go way back, I’ll confess my identity. I’m the sits-on-high, betrayed-by-my-favorite-angels creator of heaven and earth.” Merrick stared coolly at Victor. “You can call me God for short.”

“Real and earthbound,” he confirmed. “You don’t look it.” 
“No?” 
“No.” His stare consumed her. “In that dress, you’re heaven’s mist. I can’t decide whether to fall to my knees and worship from the ground up, or to start at your tendrils and work my way down.”

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READING ORDER & BUY LINKS

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[about-author author=”Kimberly Frost”]

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3 Comments

  1. I’m intrigued by this book, it is so different from anything I’ve read before, I look forward to exploring this new world…thanks for the great review Francesca!!!!!

  2. I’m so buying this book! The cover is so pretty & then storyline doesn’t seem like anything I had read! And you know, the fact that Alissa and Merrick’s relationship has grown up slowly is a plus for me. I like love-at-first-sight kind of romance, but when the character take their time to build their relationship is easier to think “this sound real”
    Don’t know if I had made clear what I wanted to explain (I’m bad with words)