Book Review: Blood Will Out by Jo Treggiari

Summary: Ari Sullivan is alive—for now.

She wakes at the bottom of a cistern, confused, injured and alone, with only the shadowy recollection of a low-pitched voice and a gloved hand. No one can hear her screams. And the person who put her there is coming back. The killer is planning a gruesome masterpiece, a fairytale tableau of innocence and blood, meticulously designed.

Until now, Ari was happy to spend her days pining for handsome, recent-arrival Stroud Bellows, fantasizing about their two-point-four-kids-future together. Safe in her small hometown of Dempsey Hollow. But now her community has turned very dangerous—and Ari may not be the only intended victim.

Release Date: June 2018
Age Group: YA, Thriller
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
Reviewed By:  Nat

Blood Will Out started off with a really nice creep factor... a really deep, dark hole where no one can hear your screams. 😱 Creepy right.

The main characters are relatable but I still felt they could have been fleshed out a bit more. Sometimes I thought Ari and her bestie were girlfriends but then they weren't, it was a bit confusing. And I really wanted to think of Stroud Bellows as a super hot swimmer but his name might as well have been Senor Butts.

Overall, I liked the plot and the way the story was laid out. The story is told in alternating POV's, one chapter you are in the killer's journal and in the next you are living a nightmare with Ari. It was clever and brought you into the making and design of a serial killer. The journal entries reminded me of Barry Lyga's Jasper Dent series (which will ALWAYS be the creepiest).

It took a few chapters to get invested in the story but once the pieces started to fall together, I found I was a bit disappointed.  I thought I had it all figured! BAM the killer was this person, duh. I only like to predict plots in my Hallmark flicks and if a thriller is "easy" then it really loses the "thrill" factor. But I was dead wrong! (💀 pun intended 💀)

The twist was really a surprise and didn't come until the last 10 pages! I am really glad I hung in there because my entire mindset on the killer was so wrong. The serial killer fit the description perfectly: someone everyone likes, someone that can go unnoticed, someone you would never suspect... really makes me wonder about Mr. Rogers!

Fans of YA, psychological thrillers and crime shows will enjoy Blood Will Out.  

PS. I caught the reference for the book title but it still seemed odd. 🙎🏼

PPS. I was adding my review to goodreads and WOW some of the reviews were pretty harsh! Bottom line, the writing style was good, the characters were typical of YA and the twist was worthy of RL Stine's approval. #BAM

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ STAR YA Thriller's to consider:

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Book Review: Bring Me Their Hearts by Sarah Wolf

Summary: Zera is a Heartless – the immortal, unageing soldier of a witch. Bound to the witch Nightsinger ever since she saved her from the bandits who murdered her family, Zera longs for freedom from the woods they hide in. With her heart in a jar under Nightsinger’s control, she serves the witch unquestioningly.

Until Nightsinger asks Zera for a Prince’s heart in exchange for her own, with one addendum; if she’s discovered infiltrating the court, Nightsinger will destroy her heart rather than see her tortured by the witch-hating nobles.

Crown Prince Lucien d’Malvane hates the royal court as much as it loves him – every tutor too afraid to correct him and every girl jockeying for a place at his darkly handsome side. No one can challenge him – until the arrival of Lady Zera. She’s inelegant, smart-mouthed, carefree, and out for his blood. The Prince’s honor has him quickly aiming for her throat.

So begins a game of cat and mouse between a girl with nothing to lose and a boy who has it all.

Winner takes the loser’s heart.


Release Date: June 2018
Age Group: YA, Fantasy
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
Reviewed By: Nat

I am not a huge fantasy lover, in fact I typically do not review them because I feel like it wouldn't be fair to the author or anyone that reads my review. With that said, Bring Me Their Hearts was EPIC! So much so that I went on a YA Fantasy spree, I am a changed woman. CHANGED.

I cannot believe how quickly I was sucked into the world of a Heartless! I mean I still have an unhealthy love for vampires but a Heartless was just so new, fresh and creepy. I'm not sure how to describe a Heartless, maybe a little Zombie'ish with a dash of Vampire and maybe a bit like a living Voodoo Doll of death. Sounds great, right!?

Wolf does an excellent job of world building while not wasting time on unnecessary details. It drives me nuts to read about a field or the color of the sky for 10 pages. But the plot is strategically set-up to reel you in and hook you right from the start. With every detail, both past & present, being placed to simultaneously build the storylines of several characters. This is the type of series that could easily have a spin-off. I also loved the vivid detail of Zera's dresses, the layout & description of the kingdom and even the history of the d'Malvane family. I can't wait to learn all the skeletons in that family line.

Of course I immediately fell in love with Zera. She is sassy, aware of her shell of an existence and completely tormented... kind of reminds me of a menstruating teen-- you love to hate them. Dang, Zera was just so clever and entertaining. 

There of course is a love interest but to say it's complicated would be a gross understatement. There is no instalove, in fact it took some build up to even decide whose heart I wanted to rip out. There are a few characters that I would have liked to have sent as sacrifice to the witches. #theyvolunteerastribute #offwiththeirheads or #outwiththeirhearts

Prince Lucien is so broody and just what makes YA audiences swoon. Of course he has serious trust issues and his own secrets but I don't think we have even scratched the surface of this not-so-charming Prince. I really liked when his tail was bushy, kind of reminded me of my hot husband when he throws a fit. 🙄

That ending tho... well played Wolf! I mean dang that was intense and then it's all drop the mic 🎤 & Bye Felicia 💁🏼 

I have a fair compromise, give us a novella while we wait! Anything. Not picky.

Must-Read YA: Bring Me Their Hearts was such a wild cocktail of magic, fantasy, history & romance all thrown into a beautiful version of a Gollum-like creature that just wants to be free!

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