Review: Tempted by Blood by Laurie London
Title: Tempted by Blood
Series: Sweetblood #3
Author: Laurie London
Publisher: HQN Books
Format: Paperback, 384 pages.
Published: February 21, 2012
My Copy: from author
Deep within the forests of the Pacific Northwest, the battle for supremacy rages on between two Vampire coalitions:
Guardian enforcers sworn to protect humanity, and Darkbloods, rogues who kill like their ancient ancestors
He might be known for his effortless charm, but Guardian Jackson Foss is hiding a terrible secret. For months, he has battled the emergence of his dark nature—deadly urges that threaten to consume him. And those cravings only intensify when he meets Arianna Wells, the human he’s been assigned to protect. Smart and perceptive, Arianna doesn’t seem like a dangerous temptress. Yet she awakens in Jackson an unstoppable need that, if left unchecked, will brand him a traitor
a crime punishable by death.
But soon their bond may be Arianna’s only hope. For stalking her in the shadows is a merciless enemy—one who will stop at nothing to claim her completely
Laurie London has built-up her reputation as a red hot vampire fiction writer with her Sweetblood series and Tempted by Blood is the hottest book yet! Even though it’s been months since I finished reading Embraced by Blood; once I dove in to this third installment it felt like no time had passed at all. Even though the overall premise of this series is hard to forget, Laurie does a great job of bringing the details to the forefront and then expanding upon them even further. I didn’t find that the characters were as engaging this time around and the plot didn’t have that sense of do-or-die about it. As a result, this was my least favorite novel out of the three.
I really liked the fact that Arianna is a blogger. Granted, this aspect probably doesn’t appeal to everyone but for me, it’s what allowed me to form that initial connection to her. We bonded over our geekiness so to speak. There are a number of instances where I found myself nodding in agreement because her reaction was exactly what mine would have been. Plus her blog’s called Paranormalish, how cool is that? A girl after my own heart! Unfortunately, that’s where the synchronicity ended. I had a hard time connecting with Arianna on any other level. She’s not a bad heroine per say but she’s not on the same level as MacKenzie and Lily from the first two books either.
A guardian’s biggest fear is reverting back to their feral nature and becoming the very thing that they hunt, Darkbloods. Jackson fears that this is what’s happening to him and feels trapped in his own skin. He can’t tell anyone because it’s an automatic death sentence so instead he hides his urges by playing up his whole man whore persona. I enjoyed witnessing his internal battle of wills. Laurie does a great job of conveying how close he is to breaking. I felt genuinely stressed out for him! Jackson is just barely holding on and then in walks Arianna. Talk about adding fuel to the fire!
I found the plot line of Tempted by Blood to be a little on the slow side. The first two books have a real sense of urgency to them that’s somewhat lacking this time around. The story is interesting but it’s not a page turner. Maybe that was London’s plan. She’s moved the action from the battlefield to the bedroom so instead of it being go-go-go it’s hot-hot-hot! I think it was a fair trade because I’m definitely not complaining.
Tempted by Blood achieves a nice balance of blood, sex and violence which are the key elements to writing good vampire fiction. Unlike its predecessors, it’s heavier on the nookie side of things and lighter on the action side. I’m giving this book a three but it’s a high three. I’ll definitely be back for more in July when Seduced by Blood releases.
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I review Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance books with a focus all things werewolf. Based out of Ottawa, Canada