Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Stained (Stained #1)” as Want to Read:
Stained (Stained #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Stained (Stained #1)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  219 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
Thorn works after dark. That’s when she combines her gifts as a tattoo artist and her powers as a natural born witch to weave magick into her ink. Her tattoo parlor, Stained, on Berkeley’s quirky Telegraph Avenue draws clients from all walks of life. Her work is in high demand from the supernatural community and the undead.

With her raven familiar, Thorn’s been on the run a
Paperback, 274 pages
Published October 14th 2011 by Mess of Geckos
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Stained, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Stained

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mar 05, 2012 Pamela rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book, which was written by a former student and debater of mine when she was in high excellent! I loved that it was a bit of a love story, too. I couldn't wait to get back to it each day. I liked that Thorn, the main character, was a strong woman, yet a vulnerable woman, too. She could take care of herself, but liked her man to be a man, and be there for her, also. The villain, Caleb, well, let's just say, I didn't think they got him in the end. I had a feeling he wasn't down a ...more
Wes Young
Mar 28, 2012 Wes Young rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Admittedly, this is not the kind of book I would typically read when left to my own devices, but I had the good fortune of receiving this book from Goodreads First Reads giveaway and I was game for it. Stained has all the elements of a fast-paced, seedy, murderous thriller. It is also a very extreme "good vs. evil" story (extreme in that the characters are overwhelmingly good or evil, there is no real obfuscation). And while witchcraft is what sets this apart from most mystery genre books, all t ...more
Mar 16, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
From the moment I opened the kindle edition, I knew I was going to love this book. A strong, smart, intelligent, talented female witch with a conscience as a tattoo artist who uses her art to help people? Sold! Combined with the fast paced, yet incredibly detailed plot line with a story arc that I never saw coming, fabulously well developed characters (including a hysterical raven familiar), and a distinct lack of heavy romance / love triangles and McBrayer has a winner on her hands. As a stand ...more
Feb 18, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loved it hoping she has another book out soon would def buy it
worth every penny
Apr 19, 2012 Kristin rated it liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy, 2012
To the average person, Thorn appears to be your average tattoo artist. She does great work on tattoos and has a long waiting list of customers waiting to get their next ink fix. What people don't know is that she is actually a witch. Not only that but some of her "special" customers want an enchanted talisman worked into their tattoo for protection, wealth etc. However, when her "special" customers start becoming targets of a serial killer whom cuts out these talisman, Thorn is not only in dange ...more
Amy Dark Night Reads

Thorn is a tattoo artist that just happens to be a witch. She is the only tattoo artist that can tattoo vampires, because of her healing magick. When her supernatural customers start to turn up dead, Thorn becomes the #1 suspect. She is the last person to see them alive. Se, a detective investigating the murders, has an instant attraction to Thorn and trys to help clear her of the murders. Thorn will not only need her own magick but the magick of her dead grandmo
3.5 stars. I started this book as an Irish BDSM challenge. When I got to over half the book and there hadn't even been a kiss yet, I had made a bad choice for the challenge. I was so into the book though that I finished and am glad I did. Thorn is a tattoo artist who happens to be a witch and blends talisman into her designs. Someone starts to murder her customers and remove only the enchanted part of the tattoo. Enter the hunky cop.

The story is solid and fairly well written. There were a couple
Feb 25, 2012 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
The opening of this book made me cringe and question whether or not I should continue. I am so glad I did. This book held my attention and kept me wanting more. I really like the characters and the way the author included magic, vampires, and Irish culture. There was just enough romance to satisfy the itch for it without it turning into a romance novel. The ending was OK, this book could turn into a series if the author wanted. I would definitely read more from this author.
Mar 07, 2012 Becca rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very good Urban Fantasy. The witchcraft was treated respectfully and the description of characters and setting was excellent. There are some errors which a good editor would have found, but nothing too distracting. It is set up to be an ongoing series although the end of the book is not a horrible cliffhanger - I really hate those!
Feb 21, 2012 Jenni rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book and hope that the author decides to make this into a series. I feel that there is more to this story, and the book ends open ended... I bought it on kindle and I'm keeping it in my librabry.
Marik Berghs
Really love the characters and hope this is a beginning of a series. Nice premise and lots of urban fantasy, which I especially enjoy. I love the raven, no spoiler, just saying. This is an enjoyable read with colorful details and a hideous villain. Interesting setting, spooky serial killer, vampires from San Francisco, tattoo parlor on Telegraph Avenue, what's not to love? Did I mention a touch of voodoo? Two sympathetic characters overcoming their mutual mistrust to catch a killer and save thei ...more
Marsha Mundstock
I loved the book! Hadn't done much reading in awhile....when I started this book, I could not stop. I had to hide my iPad to get other things done! It was an easy fast read for me. No boring lulls. Would recommend this book for anyone.
Marsha M.
Apr 13, 2012 Tarra rated it it was ok
The beautiful cover and book blurb really pulled me in. Witches, vampires, tattoos! I'm game. Unfortunately, this book didn't live up to my expectations. I keep vacillating between two and three stars. I like the concept and ideas behind this UF book, but so many things didn't work for me. You can read my comments to get my stream of conscious rantings.

As said, I liked the idea. Pretty cool about a witch who weaves spells into her clients tattoos. Irish magic backdrop, I'm always ready to read s
Becky Shambley
"Stained" is an enjoyable, colorful and astonishingly well written novel. As someone with a background in Paganism, I was overwhelmed by the author's obvious efforts to getting the details of a witch's practices correct. While the book is fantasy, there are many books that take creative license beyond the relate-able. such is not the case with this book. Ms. McBrayer's research and hard work shine through in the spells that preface each chapter, the descriptions of the traditions passed from one ...more
May 01, 2012 Alix rated it it was ok
Shelves: ebooks
I don't really know how to rate this book. I didn't detest it... but nor did I enjoy it really. I kept picking it up and downing a chapter or two, then putting it down for a few days while I read other things, before returning to it - simply to get it finished.

It kind of felt - a lot at times - like I'd picked up book two or three in a series without realizing it, and had just tried to jump right in. But this isn't book two or three in a series, so that really puzzled me. It just felt like a lot
Laura Morrigan
This was a good fun read. It had me hooked, despite issues with grammar and sentence structure and the occasional word that felt thrown in there from a dictionary. I would love to put a good editor on this book, because I feel that then it could really blossom.

I liked the idea of a witch using her magic in tattooing, because, like my Celtic ancestors, I think tattooing can be a spiritual process, and involve transformation, helping you take charge of your own skin and bring out who you are. I li
I absolutely loved it! A mix of paranormal, fantasy, suspense and romance, Stained was well written with strong characters and a strong plot. The idea behind Thorn working magic into tattoo's was interesting on it's own, with someone cutting off the talisman's she's worked into her art for a nefarious purpose was even more curious. People tend to form perceptions based on superficial aspects, but they would be quite wrong about Thorn. Thorn was a strong, multi-layered character that I was fasci ...more
May 01, 2013 Ashley rated it really liked it
I got this book because a facebook friend said it was on Kindle for free for a week or so. It was her sister's book. I was pleasantly surprised. It is a metaphysical type book - in other words it is about magic. And they take the magic part seriously - it is just part of the character's life. That being said, it wasn't the sort of magic based fiction I have read before. I enjoyed this immensely and truly hope this author puts out more books like it. I loved the relationships between the characte ...more
Maureen Hoar
Jun 14, 2012 Maureen Hoar rated it really liked it
This was a fun book. I really love books that contain fokelore that interests me. I am Irish American, I love tattoos and I love paranormal romances. This book had them all! Thorn owns a Tattoo shop. She is very specialized. She is a witch and she weaves enchanted tallismans into her work. When her patrons end up dead with these tallismans cut out, the police become very suspiscious. This is bad for Thorn. She has been on the run from her half brother. He wants her power and is willing to kill t ...more
Aug 01, 2013 Brandy rated it really liked it
I giggled, I held my breath... Great story line, plenty of action and a nice twist. I recommend this book if you like magickal read and a variety of characters w/ unique personalities. & the raven rocks! Aside from being able to read this free (Thanks to Ms. McBrayer), the book is really good. I normally read historical fiction, but lately I have found my reading expanding to the unexpected but very welcome!
I really liked it. Just now I looked at a review and the person thought that there was not enough angst from the killer--pooh! They rarely think that they will get caught or else they simply think that they are immune to punishment (former jail nurse). I was interested in the way that the author treated the issue of witchcraft, and found the romance angle to be a bonus. I read the audio edition and really enjoyed the performance by Valerie Gilbert.
Jun 01, 2012 Julia rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone who likes stories about witchcraft
Shelves: vampires
This was a good solid story about witches, with a little bit of vampires thrown in. The main character, Thorn, is a witch who owns a tattoo parlor. I really enjoyed the first few chapters, getting to know Thorn, and getting the plot of the serial killer set up. But then, the story evolved into a basic hunt for the serial killer, with Thorn becoming both a target, and the only person who can stop the killer. Overall the book was an enjoyable read.
Aug 29, 2012 Jon rated it it was ok
This book combined some of the worst urban fantasy tropes of recent years. It had a "plucky" female heroine, a "tough guy" love interest, useless vampires and one of the worst magic "systems" I've ever read.

I wanted to like it, i truly did, but I couldn't. It had potential, and lived up to none of it.
Dec 25, 2013 Christa rated it it was ok
Interesting concept for a book. Thought I would really enjoy this but instead found myself putting it down and picking back up. The climax was extremely short and the writing was driving me crazy. I finally pushed through to the end. It's safe to say I won't be reading the second one whenever it comes out.
Lavenia Otts
Feb 12, 2015 Lavenia Otts rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
an interesting paranormal series

Stained is about another witch named Storm. She is a tattoo artist near Berkeley, California. She is being stalked by a dark witch. Great storyline.
Loved this book, wheres then next one, I can't wait.
Susan Gagnier
Ended up being pretty good, a nice filler anyways, onward to the Iron Fey now though a series with no cliff hangers since I have them all I'm told :p
Lea Barrymire
Feb 21, 2012 Lea Barrymire rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm partial to paranormal stories and this a good one. Magick, vampires, an evil witch and a yummy cop. I really enjoyed this read!
Jun 30, 2012 Tina rated it did not like it
Choppy writing, didn't flow. Started it, put it down, and almost didn't finish it--had to talk myself back into it.
Ashley Mayer
Stained was an okay story. It was a little slow and the characters were predictable but there was some interesting parts to the story.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Book Giveaways: Signed Copy of Stained by Jessica McBrayer 1 7 May 19, 2012 10:12AM  
Free Books, .99 &...: Signed Copy of Stained by Jessica McBrayer 1 10 May 19, 2012 10:12AM  
  • Bitten
  • The Gift of Fury (Count Albritton #2)
  • Nightworld
  • The Toil and Trouble Trilogy: Book One
  • Destined, a novel of the Tarot
  • Play Dead (Dog Days, #4)
  • Left Hand Magic (Golgotham, #2)
  • Chasing Power (Hidden Talents, #1)
  • Not Without Risk
  • Linksaufsteher: Ein Montagsroman
  • Brood: Horror Mystery for Paranormal Thriller Fans (#1)
  • Phoenix's Fate (RARE #2)
  • One Crazy Summer
  • Cameron's Law (Adelheid, #1)
  • Deadly Obsession (Brown and de Luca, #4)
  • Pinked (Book 3 of the Pierced Series)
  • Step (The Senses)
  • Implicated
Jessica McBrayer lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She lives in a house that looks like the prow of a
cruise ship and is surrounded by hills too steep for mountain goats, although every other animal seems to
make it their go to place. Jessica shares her home with her husband, her two children, assorted animals
and her mother who is a writer too. She is a member of
Romance Writers of America.
More about Jessica McBrayer...

Other Books in the Series

Stained (2 books)
  • A Murder of Crows (Stained #2)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“If there was anything that could kill a witch faster than a village of idiots, it was fire.” 0 likes
More quotes…