Series: Blood and Salt #1
Author: Kim Liggett
Published: September 22, 2015 by Putnam Young Readers (Penguin Random House)
(Amazon / Goodreads)
Synopsis: Romeo and Juliet meets Children of the Corn in this one-of-a-kind romantic horror.
“When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”
These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.
Ash is plagued by memories of her ancestor, Katia, which harken back to the town’s history of unrequited love and murder, alchemy and immortality. Charming traditions soon give way to a string of gruesome deaths, and Ash feels drawn to Dane, a forbidden boy with secrets of his own.
As the community prepares for a ceremony five hundred years in the making, Ash must fight not only to save her mother, but herself—and discover the truth about Quivira before it’s too late. Before she’s all in—blood and salt.
**** I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This fact has not changed my opinion. ****
I can't remember how or when I first learned about Blood and Salt but I knew right away I needed to read this book. So when I saw that Kim was going to be signing ARCs at BEA I knew I had to be there to meet her and I was so glad I could. Because you guys, this book was so worth it. Worth the wait, worth the read, worth everything. Blood and Salt is referred to as romantic horror and it fits the bill. It has this kind of old school gothic vibe to it which was so wonderful.
Kim's writing style perfectly matched the atmosphere of the book. It was pretty in a simple kind of way. I'm not usually the kind of person who like's highlighting passages but I found myself writing down quotes and finding sections I found so beautiful or relatable. But her prose made things seem magical and mysterious at the same time it captured the thrills and drama. The only drawback to me however is that in the desire to create an atmospheric read, I lost a little something with the pacing, the beginning was a little bit slower. I was expecting to be immediately drawn in and it took a little while for things to pick up. But when they did, I loved every second.
But one thing that I will say about this book is that even though I keep talking about how mysterious and gothic it is, Blood and Salt was also really lighthearted at times. There was the perfect amount of comic relief and sweet-natured characters to balance it out. I particularly liked Rhys, skeptical and sarcastic Rys. I also really liked effervescent and kind Beth. Even Ash had her moments of fun that made her more well-rounded and complex. A lot of times these kind of off-hand jokes or light-hearted humor can seem off-kilter for a mystery or horror novel but they were really well done and made the book more well-rounded. It's not non-stop thrills, it's slow and steady adventure with some fun along the way.
Blood and Salt brilliantly combines so many different elements to craft a story that was engaging and atmospheric. The mystery, the fantasy, the horror, it all worked together in an efforltless and engaging way. When it was all over I was left desperately wanting more because it was just so good. Seriously, an amazing read.
Buy/Borrow/Bypass: BUY! If you are looking for a creative an interesting read for the fall then get thee to a bookstore and purchase this book. I would especially suggest this to people who are fans of supernatural mysteries and supernatural romances. It's a great fall read that traverses genres so there is something for everyone.
Have you read Blood and Salt? What did you think? Leave me a comment with your thoughts. Thanks for stopping by and HAPPY READING!