Well, I just lost a huge review, because my computer is stupid, so I hope this one is just as good.
I received this book for an honest review.
Since I already wrote the fluffy stuff once, I'll just cut to the chase. Reign of Blood is a decent read. It's quick, has lots of action, is not boring, and I didn't feel like it was a chore I had to complete because I said I would like some advanced reading copies can be.
Pros: Loved the first line of the book. Wow! April, the heroine, is quite interesting. She stepped from her shallow party girl Las Vegas life right into leather wearing, dark huntress, vampire slayer without much angst. She might miss her old life, but the new one suits her. She had been lucky that her mother, brother and herself had found a survivalist's bunker outside the city so they have a safe refuge to return too after scoring the city by day in search of supplies. April is strong, her character is dynamic and she seemed real; full of uncertainty, ranging through levels of self doubt, but still strong and determined. The story, although not perfectly original (There was a chunk that sounded just like the novella "I Am Legend")was interesting. The "feral" vampires were creepy, all part zombie part vampire monster.
Cons: I wanted to say that the story wasn't orginal enough for me, but as I thought about it some more, I didn't think that detracted much. The first half of the book flowed well. It built the world nicely and seemed balanced and patient. The second half felt hurried and it lost some of the flow, world building, and well, writing style that the first half had. The only beef I had with the first half was April calling the vampires "feral vampires" at that point, she and the reader only believe there are humans and vampires period. It sort of annoyed me and gave away that something else was coming later. One more, I hated that every time April speared some vamp, they dripped "blood and ichor." Ichor's an awesome word, but repetition caused it to lose effectiveness.
(Spoilers here on...)
There were some holes in the second half of the book. Several, actually, but the one that bothered me the most was when Christian (the villain) tells April that since she was a human she was weak, and later (after she leaves him dying) that humans are strong and will end up ruling the earth. The truth is, Christian (and the reader) both know that April isn't human. There's the whole big work up how she and her family are just another type of hybrid that don't have to drink blood, but become super human if they do. There are no humans left in April's world.
Also towards the final quarter of the book, the writing sort of devolved, (I think that Ms. Purdy is a great story teller, but got rushed at the end)so maybe didn't get the proofreading needed. Here's a quote, "His wild look was gone instead the serenity of a man accepting defeat washed over him, making him look slightly gaunt but handsome once more." What? Someone accepting defeat may be resigned, but I doubt they'd be serene. Also, why slightly gaunt? If you want to say he's handsome, just say, resigned to his fate, the anger died and he was handsome once more. One of my pet peeves are writers with a thesaurus and no edit button. Sometimes the simple is the most profound! (Believe me, I'm guilty of this too.)
Overall, I'd recommend Reign of Blood to those who like YA dystopian, or YA dark fantasy. It does have scenes of gore and lots of blood, so keep that in mind. It's a fast read, entertaining and a decent story.
(reviewed 8 days after purchase)