Title: Blood Brothers (Sign of Seven #1)
Author: Nora Roberts
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publication Date: 6th December 2007
Paperback: 320 pages
Source: Own Copy
Reviewed by: Laura
SUMMARY (Back Cover):
In the small village of Hawkins Hollow, three best friends who share the same birthday sneak off into the woods for a sleepover the evening before turning 10. But a night of celebration turns into a night of horror as their blood brother oath unleashes a three-hundred-year-old curse. Twenty-one years later, Cal Hawkins and his friends have seen their town plagued by a week of unexplainable evil events two more times – every seven years. Quinn is a well known investigative journalist, and despite Cal’s protests, she insists on delving into the mystery. But when the first signs of evil appear months early, it’s not only the town Cal has to protect, but also his heart.
When you pick up a Nora Roberts book, you know it’s going to be a good read. A bit like a Disney movie, you know you’re guaranteed a happy ending, but enjoy the twists & turns of the journey never the less. ’Blood Brothers’ is the first in a trilogy succeeded by ‘The Hollow’ and ‘The Pagan Stone’ with each of the three blood brothers, Caleb, Fox and Gage taking their own story. ‘Blood Brothers’ is Caleb’s book.
Unlike urban fantasy authors, you will find that Roberts is not dark or gritty, but she does do spooky rather well. From the onset she slowly grows the sense of eeriness. The signs of evil though small to start with, rapidly grow throughout the book as does the creep factor. There’s something much more unsettling about a demonic child than an adult, especially one floating outside of your bedroom window.
What makes the book work, is the strong, three dimensional characterisation. From the two leads: Caleb and Quinn, to the friendship between the three blood brothers Caleb, Fox and Gage. You even find yourself overlooking the convenient arrival of Layla and Cybil who complete the sextet and will inevitably become the love interests for Fox and Gage in the subsequent books, because they’re written and fit into the story so well.
Quinn is easy to identify with, with her direct manner, sense of adventure and belief that half a slice of pizza doesn’t count on the junk food barometer. In contract Caleb’s sense of duty, strength and calm make them an interesting couple. Their love story is a gentle, but believable one. The depth of the relationships between the characters is layered and grows nicely, which I can only imagine will continue to develop throughout the next two books.
Although I have to say that perhaps my favourite character of all has to be the fantastically named Lump the dog… every fireplace should have one.
My one disappointment with the book is that I found the finale a touch anti-climatic, and suspect I may need to wait for the final instalment of the trilogy for what I was hoping for. It is clear that this book is one of three and cannot really be read satisfactorily as a stand alone novel.
That being said, the book was thoroughly enjoyable. Roberts writes with the type of detail at times that should be tedious, but in reality is far from so. Her books are always easy page turners, and this one is great for a spooky Sunday afternoon, I’ve already started the second one.
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