Blood Spells (Final Prophecy, Book 5)
by Jessica Andersen
Release Date: November 2, 2010
2010 Signet Eclipse Books
Trade Paperback Edition; 451 Pages
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: Review Copy from Penguin
4 / 5 Stars
Trained from birth to fight with fists and magic, Patience White-Eagle knows that she should focus on the coming war for souls. But she isn't just a warrior - she's a wife and mother too, which leaves her loyalties divided between he Nightkeepers and her family.
Brandt White-Eagle broke the rules when he married Patience and fathered their twin sons - and now he's paying the price. Torn between his magic and his marriage, and separated from his ancestors' wisdom by a curse he can't remove, Brandt is fighting to put his life back together.
When an ancient Aztec god-king arises, Patience and Brandt must set aside their problems and team up as a mated warrior pair. But as they race to prevent the Nightkeepers' enemies from enacting a terrible ritual that could tear apart humanity, the threat turns even more personal, becoming a deadly test of their powers...and their love.
I really enjoyed Blood Spells, the fifth book in a series about the upcoming global cataclysm - one that the Mayans predicted many years ago. This novel is slightly different from the other novels in that it features Patience and Brandt, who are already mated and married, and the difficulties they have trying to make their marriage and the warrior aspects of their lives work together coherently, while the previous novels tended to deal with people who were single, met their mates and eventually, through trials and tribulations, found themselves together at the end. As a mother and a wife, I think I identified with Patience and Brandt and their struggles a bit more than the others because I understand how difficult trying to make everything work together actually is.
What I have always enjoyed about this series, besides the magic and mayhem, is the interesting and fascinating use of Mayan history, culture, mythology, and folklore. Many historical facts were intertwined with a demonic tale of intrigue that made this a fun novel to read and definitely hooked me right from the beginning.
Patience is a character in whom I can easily identify. She is a mother, a wife, and a warrior, with conflicting obligations and being pulled in many directions. Watching her marriage collapse in front of her after her twin children were put into safekeeping, she went into a deep depression, little knowing how to reconnect with a husband whom she loves but from whom she was growing distant. Because of this, the mated bond magic that is so necessary and important to their magic was growing weaker, causing weaknesses in their defenses they could ill afford. The byplay between Patience and Brandt and how they learned to resolve their issues was interesting as these two people needed to learn how to trust each other to do their jobs, knowing they could rely on each other absolutely. It was a perfect blend of romance, excitement, entertainment, suspense, tension, and friction that kept you reading and wanting to know more about what was going to happen.
I would recommend that you begin the series from the beginning, starting with Nightkeepers, before reading this novel however, as there is a lot going on in this novel and it is easy to become confused if you aren't already familiar with the series. Ms. Andersen often makes references to events that have occurred in previous novels with the assumption that you already know what is going on and it can be confusing if you haven't already read them.
I really enjoyed Blood Spells and was captivated right from the beginning. Ms. Andersen continues to expand on her extensive and complicated world in this novel, creating a novel that has plenty of romance and magic, with a demonic twist, suspense, action, and many twists and turns that will keep you flipping the pages in pure entertainment delight. I love the supporting characters and look forward to reading their stories in each installment. I am definitely looking forward to Reese and Dez' story in Storm Kissed coming in June 2011.