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The Black Jewels #1

Daughter of the Blood

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The Dark Kingdom is preparing itself for the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy--the arrival of a new Queen, a Witch who will wield more power than even the High Lord of Hell himself. But this new ruler is young, and very susceptible to influence and corruption; whoever controls her controls the Darkness. And now, three sworn enemies begin a ruthless game of politics and intrigue, magic and betrayal, and the destiny of an entire world is at stake.

412 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published March 1, 1998

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About the author

Anne Bishop

72 books9,900 followers
Anne Bishop lives in upstate New York where she enjoys gardening, music, and writing dark, romantic stories. She is the author of over twenty novels, including the award-winning Black Jewels Trilogy. She has written a new series, the Others, which is an urban dark fantasy with a bit of a twist.

Crawford Award (2000)

Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

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5 stars
18,257 (46%)
4 stars
11,157 (28%)
3 stars
5,974 (15%)
2 stars
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1 star
1,718 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,494 reviews
Profile Image for Peter.
40 reviews19 followers
July 16, 2007
My wife bought the first book in this series and for some reason read it. The whole time she read it she complained how bad it was. Then for some reason I read it and we finished the series. The only explanation I can come up with is that magic is real, anne bishop is a witch and we fell under her spell. Even now I fall into the black obsidian stone.
94 reviews
August 21, 2008
I think this book gave me brain herpes. A good read, but horrible. The characters are caricatures. The world is nigh-incomprehensible (who includes a list of jewel ranks and titles (broken down by gender), but not a freaking map? especially when this place apparently uses interdimensional travel?!) I wish I could feel sympathetic to the characters- but they all remind me of a too-perfect job interview: "my only flaw is that I love my work... too much." The plot is well-paced, and makes good use of cliffhangers- but there's just too much else wrong with it to make me want to read the next one.

...and who names their characters Saetan (very obviously meant as an analogue to Satan, the devil, what-have-you) and Daemon- but doesn't bring along any of the associated mythology or world-pieces? Yes, supposedly Saetan rules in Hell, but Hell here is context-free (as there's no religion-system here), and Saetan is rather depicted as a bumbling daddy-figure who likes to give his "daughter of the soul" whatever she wants. Sure, that's kind of Satanic, in a sense, but not quite the sense the author wants, I think.
Profile Image for Stephen.
1,516 reviews11k followers
July 24, 2011
For her virgin effort at novel-crafting, Anne Bishop has laid down a strong piece of dark fantasy that is richly drawn, psychologically savage and dripping with THROB. I am suffering severe mind-boggle that this is really her first published work as this story has a high quality quotient and prose that displays real polish.

This first installment of the Black Jewel’s Trilogy introduces us to dark, sexified fantasy world called “The Three Realms” which are known individually as Terreille, Hell and Kaeleer. The Realms are not a place full of warm and fuzzies. All power in The Realms is concentrated in those “of the Blood” that you can basically think of as witches and warlocks. Each person born to the Blood is born to a particular color of “jewel” which determines their relative strength as well as their societal status. The darker the jewel, the greater the strength.

The power structure is matriarchal, with Blood males serving/servicing Blood females...and this leads me right into the sex. Sex is an essential aspect of how the Blood to gain and maintain political power and so is a critical part of the plot. If you are squeamish about sexual content, you may want to fantasy elsewhere. Though very little of the “doing the nasty” is explicit (this is NOT erotica), sex and sexual politics pervades every aspect of the Three Realms, and it is not the pleasure pumping kind of sex. It is dark, gritty and should only be practiced with a safety word. It’s absolutely essential to the plot and I thought the strong sense of the sensual without the need for explicit sex scenes was very well done.

Over time, the Blood has become corrupted and a scheming harpy of a witch-bitch named Dorothea now holds the position of Queen. Dorothea has systematically killed or destroyed all those who could challenge her power and has fostered an atmosphere of plotting and mistrust among the rest of the court which keeping all of the stronger Blood males in line by....well, you’ll have to read for yourself.

But Dorothea and her brood are running scared because young Jaenelle has been born and has the power to become the most powerful member of the Blood. Of course, she needs to survive long enough to come into her power.

This is dark fantasy done well. The writing is vividly descriptive and very evocative. It oozes lush. The characters that populate this tale are original and great a strong sense of connection with the plot. I especially liked two of the stronger Blood males: (1) Saetan Daemon SaDiablo, the High Lord of Hell, High Priest of the Hourglass and Warlord Prince of Dhemlan and (2) Daemon Sadi (aka the "Sadist") SaDiablo. Both of these characters just engulf the page when they are present and loom over every scene they are in. The title character, Jaenelle, is also terrifically drawn, but the reader is not allowed inside her head as a POV character so the connection is not as immediate.

In addition to the characters, I thought the magic system was very interesting and quite unique. I do hope that the rules, scopes and limits of the magic are explored in more detail in future novels as I am interested to learn more. What we get in the first one is quick flashes and teases that make you crave more.

Finally, I thought the multi-leveled plot was very well done. It was both complex, yet understandable and so you never felt like you were getting lost in the various changes of direction. Without going into detail, I do want to point out that there are significant portions of the story that can make you cringe (e.g., scenes of systematic rape and torture for both male and female characters). It is quite dark. However, in the hands of a writer as gifted as Anne Bishop, it is amazing to read.


Nominee: Locus Award for Best First Novel.
Profile Image for Rage.
1,014 reviews6 followers
May 29, 2016
This book is incredibly awful. It's embarrassingly bad. The characters (with their ridiculous names) and the world are poorly developed. The author gives us variations of the same scenes again and again - Daemon is a sexy threat, dear old dad Saetan is old and tenderhearted, Jaenelle is very powerful and young, everyone else is amazed and afraid and/or 110% evil, full stop, no nuance. The plot? Languishes.

I never had a sense of where different "realms" existed in relation to one another, for all of the babbling about "webs" and "gates" -- honestly, as far as I can tell, each "realm" is like a city, and they all sort of float around in space and some of them are in Hell, where everyone's undead and they only drink blood, not liquor, except sometimes when they get totally wasted, also a horse vampire. ??? Some people can use magic, and some people are better at it or born with more power, but it's not really explained what the difference is, except that everyone we're concerned with is a) able to use magic, b) quite powerful or at least sort of special, and c) totally sexy. I mean, forget about any kind of description beyond "gold eyes" and "long black nails," (sounds SUPER sexy already right!) all you're going to get is how handsome and attractive and slinky and attractive and scary Daemon is, and Saetan has a bad leg, and Lucivar has wings. Maybe bat wings? Not sure. Plus Jaenelle has blonde hair, which she fluffs all the day, and blue eyes, but sometimes she has a stupid expression, and sometimes she's totally intense and wise beyond her years. Everyone who's bad is fat or doesn't have an impressive bosom or whatever, and they're always hanging out in shadows cackling about their wicked schemes and drinking blood. I'm not even kidding. This book is a joke.

Daemon's always angry in a cold way, so he's always leaving frost where he goes. However, when he really gets his dander up, he's able to grotesquely torture and mutilate the people who are supposed to have control over him, so like... why does he allow them to boss him around and make him so miserable in the first place? Everyone's super passive-aggressive, like, I know you're awful and you're going to make me even more wretched, but I think I'll wait until you do and then I guess I'll retaliate. But until then I'm just going to be very sad and dark and call myself a whore and slink around being bitter and cold and sometimes putting on one earring and makeup, which apparently can make a man more androgynous AND frighteningly masculine at the same time -- and it's part of the extra sexy "frilly shirt and feathered hat" getup, saved for special seductions, because when I think about seductive men immediately I want nothing other than a David Bowie-Jack Sparrow one-two knockout punch, in heeled ankle boots. Which, actually, it sounds less ridiculous when I say it that way than it did in the book.

And all of that would be fine, if the author seemed at all in on the joke, but the narrative takes itself so seriously. Every page is absolutely dripping with melodrama. YOU'VE COLLECTED ALL OF THE GEMS IN EVERY REALM? HOLY THUNDER CATS, BATMAN, NO ONE THOUGHT IT WAS POSSIBLE!! (hands trembling uncontrollably)

The most egregious element of this book, I think, is the author's use of sexual violence, abuse, slavery, and torture, just to write some kinky stuff and give her characters something to whine about. Everything fades to black or gets kind of hazy and abstract whenever something serious is going down, and honestly, instead of leaving it to the reader's imagination, I think it would have done the author some good to actually write the minutiae of the torment she piles onto her characters. By skipping the details, not only does Bishop not have to really confront the depravity she's imagined for us, she also doesn't have to deal with how unrealistic and bizarre so many things are.

Furthermore, as several people have pointed out, Daemon is totally sexually attracted to Jaenelle, who's twelve. And I think this is supposed to be not only acceptable but ROMANTIC, because he really loves her, like her SOUL, not just her BODY you guys. But let's be real, pedophiles in the actual world where this kind of thing really happens? Are prone to thinking exactly that kind of thing. Kartane, who spends a lot of time thinking about how he's going to brutally rape young girls so that their lives are ruined, is a cartoon. This book isn't real, so he can think whatever Bishop wants. But Daemon justifies his attraction and repeatedly puts himself in a position to take advantage of Jaenelle in ways that he can justify ... which is not romantic, it's terrifying. Pretty much the last scene in the book is Jaenelle accusing Daemon of being like everyone else who just wants her body, so, to save her, he... uses his magical "seduction tendrils" to trick her into doing what he wants by destroying her willpower. If the book was like, yo that's pretty devastating, maybe this guy is not actually cool and a hero, maybe sometimes the bad guy really believes that he cares about you as he's destroying you - so we're going to deal with that by holding him accountable for his actions, that would be a neat twist that gave the story some kind of actual consequential meaning. But no, he just did that because he loved her so much omg!! Isn't he handsome and charming and tragic.

Also, if you thought that the matriarchal society was going to have anything to do with competent, awesome ladies, forget that noise. It's full of stereotypically catty and vain caricatures, the author uses their sexual aggressiveness to paint them as villains, and one of the most common cusses is "son of a whoring bitch." This book is awful.

There are so many problems that I could just keep going and going, but all I'm going to do is keep complaining about this disgusting, stupid book. I think a really serious editor could have been like hey lady this is a nice private fantasy but let's buckle down and write a challenging, compelling, and creative piece of literature, and this might have turned into something pretty interesting and powerful, but obviously that did not happen.
Profile Image for Jaidee.
580 reviews1,106 followers
December 23, 2018
2.5 "trashy, campy, cheesy, sordid" little stars !!

In grade six, my second best friend and I discovered her mother's V.C. Andrews' Flowers in the Attic series and we snuck them out the bookshelf and read them in the park while eating chips and drinking lemonade. We found those books so enticingly wicked and could not believe all the things we read about. No more Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew for us- all we wanted to do is read adult books and unbeknownst to us that these were the trashiest books out there. Ok ok there was Harold Robbins but we didn't discover him until grade seven.

Well this book reads very much like VC Andrews mating with Anne Rice who then mates with E.L. James. The writing was barely adequate at best and highly repetitive. The men were constantly "steepling their fingers" and the women were "fluffing their hair". The women constantly hissed and the men snarled. You get the picture.

The sex was quite dysfunctional and twisted and there was a fair bit of it. The women were just as predatory as the men and nobody liked anybody very much except for the new "Witch" who was twelve years old (Yikes....I wish the writer had made her eighteen-if you read the book you'll know why I wish this.) There was some interesting magical elements in the book but often the rules of the world were applied rather too conveniently to get the plot moving along.

I've seen this book labeled as dark feminist fantasy but I don't think this is an apt description. If you are looking for some excellent dark feminist fantasy I highly recommend Jacqueline Carey who writes exquisitely and has a fertile imagination with fascinating characters and plotlines.

If you are in the mood for some trash then this book is adequate. I'm going to hang my head in shame though and admit that at some point I will read Book 2 because sometimes you want to read something that is "trashy, campy, cheesy and sordid". Admit it you do too.
31 reviews42 followers
July 11, 2009
Let me get straight to the point here: I absolutely abhorred this book. I had to force myself to finish it.

I was actually really excited to start it though. It's widely acclaimed by critics -- professionals and goodreads members alike -- and the plot sounded promising. Plus, the idea of a dark fantasy intrigued me. And don't get me wrong, I wasn't really disappointed by either of those elements. The storyline was okay, and the world of the Blood did prove quite dark.

No, what disappointed me was Bishop's characterization. As I think a few reviewers before me have mentioned, the novel's requisite badasses -- Daemon and Saetan -- share the same flaw: they're both way too dramatic. How many times does a reader have to be subjected to a magical temper tantrum, or an icy rage or whatever it's called, for god's sake? Not only that, but they're both oddly fluffy when it comes to the "daughter of the blood" herself, Jaenelle. Saetan in particular suffers from extensive badass decay. By the novel's end, I remember thinking that if I had to read something like "Saetan's jaw dropped/Saetan grabbed a chair for support/Saetan's hands started trembling" in response to some unwittingly outrageous thing that Jaenelle had said just one more time, I would throw the book at a wall.

And that brings me to my biggest complaint. Jaenelle, girl of the hour, herself. Her blatant Mary Sue-ness made me want to throttle someone. I realise that it was somewhat necessary to the plot, her being the legendary prophesied queen to surpass all queens or whatever, but come on.

In sum: Bishop really didn't succeed in making me feel for her characters. They were just a little too one-dimensional for my taste.

P.S. I don't want to spoil anything for anyone, but I found the novel's romantic undertones...squicky, for lack of a better word. Highly squicky.
Profile Image for Jess.
16 reviews
February 17, 2010
Things I did not like about this book:
- Proper names (the winter solstice holiday is Winsol... Satan is Saetan... Demon is Daemon...
- Lack of character development
- Redundant descriptive language
- Elaborate and pointlessly nonsensical magic schema
- Crappy plot arc
- Completely implausible antihero

Things I did like about this book:
- There was a horse character
- The child molesters got exploded
Profile Image for Lightreads.
641 reviews524 followers
August 10, 2009
Excerpts from a stream of consciousness transcript as I read this series:

"So that's his brother? Ah, right, his brother with wings. . . . Saetan Sa Diablo? For serious? . . . Magical cockring of Obedience! . . . Aww, that's actually pretty cute. Family togetherness, d'aww. . . . Ew! Ew Ew! He just circumcised someone with his teeth! . . . Oh, look, the unicorns just showed up. . . . Someone else is in a killing rage, yawn. . . . Magical cockring of honor! . . . So he has wings, and also apparently pon farr. . . . Oh, ahahaha, the unicorns aren't going to perform the wedding ceremony are they? . . . Of course they are."

The breakdown: 90% cheerfully sexist fluffy fluff about family and love. 9% ridiculously over the top violence, sexual and otherwise. 1% plot and world building.

You guys. I just. I don't even. *hand gestures*
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,606 reviews1,480 followers
May 16, 2020
Sale Alert: Kindle Deal 16May20 $1.99

Daughter of the Blood is a brutal and twisted tale and isn’t going to be for everyone. Heck I think that with a lot of the things touched on in this book nine times out of ten it wouldn’t be for me, but Anne Bishop’s writing and ability to weave a tale kept me captivated. There is so much brutality in this against Men, Women and children that it goes really dark at times. The story also touches on child molestation and a bit of human trafficking neatly disguised as something else. There are times that the story made me uncomfortable, as it should with the subject matter, but there was no time that I wanted to put the book down as I was so engrossed in the story.

Anne Bishop has built a unique fantasy world full of complicated and broken characters. This dark world has been twisted from what it should have been. Some people, known as the Blood, are gifted and wear jewels. The color of the jewel indicates the power level of The Blood and they are given from the mist or a different realm at birth and then at other major moments in someone’s life. The Blood used to be the protectors of the land, but their power has been twisted by a bad ruler who has either enslaved the strong Blood or killed them, but there is a prophecy that Witch will come and set right what has been broken.
“They twist things to suit themselves. They dress up and pretend. They wear Blood Jewels but don’t understand what it means to be Blood. They talk of honoring the Darkness, but it’s a lie. They honor nothing but their own ambitions. The Blood were created to be the caretakers of the Realms. That’s why we were given our power. That’s why we come from, yet are apart from, the people in every Territory. The perversion of what we are can’t go on. The day is coming when the debt will be called in, and the Blood will have to answer for what they’ve become.”

There are a lot of characters in this story, but the majority of it is seen though three character’s arcs. Daemon, an enslaved Prince forced to be a whore for the aristocracy, Saetan the guardian of the dead and not really a bad guy, and Jaenelle a child with extraordinary power and the prophesized Witch that will one day put right all that was wrong in all of the realms.

Any book that can make Saetan into a mentor and father figure is a win in my mind. I really liked the twist that the characters that are normally going to be the bad guys in any other book are really the good guys in this one. Saetan is a friend and teacher to Jaenelle, she is a little girl with so much power that most fear her and what she will become, or they want to control her. But Saetan has a different plan, one that just might work.
“So she can’t move furniture around a room, but she can destroy an entire continent.”
“She’ll never do that. It’s not in her temperament.”
“How can you be sure? How will you control her?”
They were back to that. He took his cape back and settled it over his shoulders.
“I’m not going to control her, Cassandra. She’s Witch. No male has the right to control Witch.”
Cassandra studied him. “Then what are you going to do?”
Saetan picked up his cane. “Love her. That will have to be enough.”

It is slowly teased out the danger that Jaenelle is in and how this little girl sees and does things so different from the rest of the world. She isn’t understood by her family but innocently she is collecting friends from all the realms and will one day be a force to be reckoned with if Saetan can protect her until she reaches adulthood.

Daemon’s story is so sad. He has been enslaved for most of his life and didn’t know that Saetan was his father for a long time. Daemon has been waiting for Witch to come for seven hundred years, since the night the prophecy was spoken. He knows that one day he will be her consort and it is the only thing that has been keeping him sane. When he finally encounters Witch he is so surprised that she is only twelve at the time. He wants desperately to protect her from all the evil surrounding her but his position as a slave is precarious and so he plays the game and bides his time, watching over her and trying to protect her. I did love their interactions in this. It was fun to see how well Jaenelle could twist not only Daemon but also Saetan up.
“Daemon had written: "What do you do when she asks a question no man would give a child an answer to?"
Saetan had replied: "Hope you're obliging enough to answer it for me. However, if you're backed into a corner, refer her to me. I've become accustomed to being shocked.”

Like I’ve said before there is a ton of dark moments in this. If you have a sexual hot button it is probably going to press it. There is incest, pedophilia, molestation, rape, human trafficking, torture and much much more. I wanted most of the aristocracy in this book dead and while every part of the dark deeds done in this added to the story and it is written really well the moments are uncomfortable and sometimes devastating.

I really loved the world created her with the different realms, creatures, magics and lands. It is unique and interesting and I can’t wait to read more of the story. I was drawn in and completely captivated by this tale.
December 3, 2018
VERY perverse, twisted, brilliant, engaging and provoking bit of fantasy reading... It was definitely worth reading!

Not for the faint of heart, not for the squeamish either. Lovers of angst will appreciate it. People with kid sex triggers won't, at all.

The book receives 5 stars for the original world built from scratch. A beautiful and terrible world submerged in darkness, where almost everyone is twisted to some extent..., many beyond all possible and impossible boundaries.

I will go on with this series)

We know how it ends practically before it starts. That's why stories appeal to us. They give us the clarity and simplicity our real lives lack. (c)
There are some questions that shouldn't be asked until a person is mature enough to appreciate the answers. (c)
A woman with an education may be able to spend more time sitting in a chair instead of lying on her back. A sound advantage, I should think. (c)
Profile Image for Charlotte Kersten.
Author 3 books430 followers
February 13, 2023
(CW for sexual violence, slavery and pedophilia NO REALLY I MEAN IT)

Ha ha ha what the fuck. I don't even know how to start this review so apologies for any awkwardness. I'm just going to randomly dive in with my first thoughts and forge onward from there.

I have seen the argument that this book is somehow subversive and feminist because its world is a matriarchal one. I would love to know what feminism and subversiveness actually mean to the people who describe this book that way...because it’s clear to me that Bishop actually put no real thought into trying to consider how a matriarchal world could be substantially different from a patriarchal one beyond possibly consulting with a men’s rights activist about his greatest nightmares. You see, her world is one where the women in power are all petty, vindictive, manipulative, evil bitches who use their feminine whiles and legal trickery to steal little boys away from their loving fathers and groom them into becoming sex slaves with torture cock rings. In the grand scheme of things, there is at least a fairly gender neutral division of sexual predators and victims, so maybe that is something.

But also…hey, why IS there so much sexual violence in this book? Almost every character is either a sadistic serial rapist or a survivor of intense, horrific sexual trauma. Incest, pedophilia and sexual slavery seem intrinsically built into the fabric of their society. It’s abundantly clear that Bishop doesn’t actually have anything at all to say about a world constructed with these dynamics or her characters’ internal experiences of trauma. Quite the opposite - while people rightfully criticize prominent male-authored fantasy for using sexual violence in cheap and gross ways, this is probably the most egregious case I’ve seen of rape being used for sordid shock value in a way that feels truly lazy and exploitative. At the end of the day, others may feel differently about this kind of representation and authors have the right to write whatever they want, but that also means that I have the right to feel as I do about it and say that I find it tasteless, gross and disrespectful.

So, to repeat: this kind of excessive, graphic rape for no discernible purpose other than being Dark and titillating/shocking is definitely not for me, and I think it’s exploitative and damaging, but I understand that others feel differently and I respect their right to do so. When I hope that we can all draw the line, however, is when it comes to such depictions of pedophilia. Don’t even try to tell me that Daemon, a man who is thousands of years old, is not sexually attracted to Jaenelle, a twelve year old girl, or that the things he does to her are not sexual assault. There are only so many times Bishop can describe the “embers” or “hunger” "stirring in his loins" or his mouth watering while touching her or thinking about touching her before it starts to get truly and genuinely revolting to read. It just gets worse and worse as it goes on - at one point, she kisses him and he then makes the deliberate decision to initiate a second kiss instead of making it clear that what she did isn’t okay, specifically noting that she will now remember what it feels like to kiss a *man* and any boys she kisses won’t compare. At the very end, he uses his seduction magic to force her into lust with him while she is inexplicably in furry form, initiating more kissing and sexual touching in order to get her to leave her own mind-realm after she’s retreated there after being brutally raped to the point of near-death. (Well, these sure are real sentences that I’m typing right now.) He says that he only does it because he loves her.

Let me make it abundantly clear that none of this is me knee-jerk pearl-clutching over a difficult but skillful look into the mind of a predator that is in fact critical of pedophilia - I have read plenty of those, and I am able to discern the difference, thank you. All I can say is that Daemon’s feelings for Jaenelle are presented uncritically and, perhaps with the exception of the mind-raping at the end, even positively/romantically because of Bishop’s reassurances that he isn’t actually going to have sex with her until she’s seventeen and isn’t truly attracted to her child’s body - he’s attracted to her soul, her essence, the woman that she will become! Yeah, as if that isn’t a justification that is trotted out for/by real life pedophiles all the time! I’m legitimately struggling to express how simultaneously baffling and abhorrent I find all of this to be. It’s truly astonishing to me.

So many things about the plot just don’t make sense, specifically around the sex slavery. Daemon is ostensibly controlled by his cock ring or *something else* because he has remained miserable and enslaved for thousands of years, except he constantly goes on vicious massacres and eviscerates the women who own him. The in-text reason given for the fact that he’s still alive is apparently that Dorothea doesn’t kill him on the off-chance that he will one day have sex with her. But he is forced to sleep with all of these other Queens against his will (except for when he doesn’t want to and murders them instead??) so why not her? And he is eventually able to destroy the cock ring on his own and he is able to resist its full power. He also lets Jaenelle stay at the asylum that is the front for a pedophile ring because she might lose her mind if she emerges from her magical trance in a different setting - but the other option is a near-absolute guarantee that she will be raped... which does happen, as I said before, to the point of her almost dying, which makes her lose her mind anyways. So…what?

On a similar note, Saetan knows from early on in the story that Jaenelle routinely spends time in a horrible place where they “do that to children” but is perpetually stumped about why she is all haunted and broken and ultimately decides that there isn’t anything he can do except wait for her to come visit him. I thought that this might be because he can’t traverse the magical mist she creates around the place, but he is later able to traverse this mist with ease and makes it clear that he didn’t want to intervene because he wanted to “respect her privacy.” Like, WHAT? A child’s privacy to be drugged and molested and forced to eat her murdered friend’s leg (yes, that happens)???? Saetan also got “tricked” into selling his sons into sex slavery and inexplicably just let them suffer for thousands of years instead of trying to help them or rectify the situation in any way. In text, it seems like Daemon and Saetan are just absolutely incompetent, useless decision makers. Out of text, it becomes clear that Bishop just wanted as many characters as possible to be raped and spent the least time possible coming up with flimsy reasons for them to be stuck in bad situations.

I feel like this hardly matters in comparison to the rest of this review, but the world-building is an absolute mess. Bishop gleefully flings around capitalized words and magical terms without bothering to explain absolutely anything. We have Webs, Coaches, three realms that somehow all exist together (I think in different realities that can be traversed through Webs), the many colors and kinds of Jewels, the many ranks and types of people (Black Widows, Witches, Guardians, High Priest/Priestess of Hell, Queens, Princes) the Twisted Kingdom and tangled webs, Virgin Nights, Hayll vs Hell…I could go on. Most egregiously, perhaps, is the fact that everyone is constantly freaking out over the fact that Jaenelle is not just a witch but “Witch” capitalized as a title - but we never actually learn what being Witch means. Apparently Saetan’s ex Cassandra was also Witch but she isn’t anymore? So why wasn’t she able to save the realms from their doom or whatever it is that Jaenelle is going to do? The fact that I was able to remember what I did about all this and formulate the questions I did should be considered an amazing feat given that all of the nonsensical, unexplained worldbuilding is dropped haphazardly between scenes of Daemon lusting after Jaenelle and people’s dicks and clits being ripped off.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the Sarah J Maas connection. SJM was apparently very ...inspired... by this series, and now that I’ve read some of both, the similarities are quite uncanny. Daemon and Lucivar are brothers with "golden-brown" skin and black hair who are sex slaves to a vindictive and powerful woman, and Lucivar is a “half-breed” of a winged warrior race that mutilates the wings of their -and I quote- “females.” Rhysand really just is Daemon for all intents and purposes, from his physical descriptions and personality and mannerisms to the fact that their authors are both clearly desperately attracted to their characters and just as desperate to convince us that they are justified in committing egregious human rights violations against their love interests for the entirely totally 100% legitimate purposes of protecting their minds from greater horrors. YES, that is how trauma works and NO they definitely couldn’t have chosen to do a million other things - don’t question it!!!!!!!!! There’s the same obsession with males and females and calling random things masculine or feminine, the same obsession with brutes and bastards and pricks and growling and purring and crooning. As I said, it's truly uncanny.

Let me conclude by mentioning a few things that made me laugh incredibly hard:
-Daemon and Lucivar habitually greeting each other by saying “Hello, Bastard” and “Hello, Prick” respectively
-The description of Daemon sexily buttering his toast: "Philip hesitated at the doorway. Daemon buttered his toast with slow, sensuous strokes, knowing that Philip was watching him and uneasily imagining something other than toast beneath his hand."
-The scene where Jaenelle describes how Daemon let her win at cards without realizing that he let her win - this is apparently so funny to Saetan’s sons that they inexplicably bash their heads together?

In summary, this might be the worst book I’ve ever read, and reading it was one of my strangest reading experiences ever. As Bishop might put it, this book made me succumb to my tangled web and sink into the Twisted Kingdom forevermore. If you hear a ghostly woman’s voice whispering desperately on the wind -something about evil cock rings, perhaps, or the moral reprehensibility of romanticizing pedophilia- spare a thought for the poor Witch who did not survive her Virgin Night with this book.
Profile Image for Ashleigh (a frolic through fiction).
450 reviews6,930 followers
Shelved as 'did-not-finish'
April 3, 2021
DNFed around 100 pages in.

I've heard the book/series gets better but I just don't have the patience when the first 100 pages of this reads like half-written scenes meshed together to make a story. It's so difficult to make sense of what's going on besides the bare basic plot line, and there are clear details missing from the book (such as the little girl suddenly ageing up by 5 years with no indication that time had passed at all). Tried it for 100 pages (just under a third of the book) but not for me.
40 reviews3 followers
August 28, 2008
If you like feminist fantasy fiction, this is the series to read. Bishop creates a fantasy otherworld unlike any I have read (and I've read quite a bit).

Bishop’s work is highly subversive. It develops a female-dominant society based on Kipling’s reminder: “the female of the species is more deadly than the male.” Bishop does not simply put the female in the power position in a “patriarchal” structure, as Lackey does; rather, she highlights the physical and society differences between female and male and displays those differences in a society that acknowledges and accepts them. Bishop further engages in disrupting patriarchy by showing the fallacies present for women in that social system. She challenges patriarchal norms regarding sexuality, language, power and relationships between women and men. Her work, which is centered in an otherworld that is distinctly non-medieval and yet is technologically vague as to almost be modern, empowers women by showing how they can empower themselves through belief in their own power.
Profile Image for Katie(babs).
1,809 reviews540 followers
April 30, 2009
As I started reading Daughter of the Blood by Anne Bishop, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I knew it was a dark fantasy tale that the majority of my fellow readers have glommed. I also come to the realization that Anne Bishop has created a universe unlike anything I have ever read before. I wonder in the ten years since Anne created the Black Jewels Trilogy, how many authors she has influenced? If only I had read Daughter of the Blood when it was first published! This book blew me away from both a reader's and a writer's perspective. Anne’s words are so rich, and her characters so unique. Every one in this book is not what they seem. The acts written are so questionable and the consequences are so very, very dark. This is not a book for everybody. There are brutal acts against children that consist of rape and pedophilia. Mothers force their sons to have sex with them, as well as father’s selling their daughters to the highest bidder even before they have gone through puberty. The sex here is something that is not enjoyable for both the giver and receiver. Anne has written the sex act as a way to have power over someone. It is usually not done in love, but more for gratification. It is cold and harsh. If someone does not enjoy the act, they may go insane, as some young girls do during their Virgin Night. The Virgin Night is when a young girl becomes a woman. And they better hope the man they are with is gentle and loving, because if their first time is brutal, the girl will be destroy mentally, forever lost to the Twisted Kingdom, a realm where their soul goes, never to return, because they have been brutalized.

There are three Realms within Daughter of the Blood: Terreille, Kaeleer and Hell. These Realms are separated through Gates, which are guarded by Priestesses. The society that lives in each of these Realms is ruled by the Blood and the Jewel. Think of it as a hierarchy or a caste system if you will. Within these caste systems are territories ruled by a Court. The Court can either be ruled by a Queen or a high ranking member of the Blood.

There are so many characters that make up Daughter of the Blood, but there are four main ones that come to mind and will become so very important in the next two books to come. They are Saetan, Daemon, Lucivar and Jaenelle. There is Saetan, who is the High Lord and ruler of Hell. He has two sons that were taken away from him thousands of years ago. One is Daemon, the other is half-brother Lucivar. They are pleasure slaves that serve their aunt, Dorothea SaDiablo, who I have nicknamed evil skank whore queen for good purpose. She has a magical Ring of Obedience around both these brothers. She can lead them around their cocks in the most literal sense. She controls them and pimps them out to pleasure any woman who can afford the price. She especially has a sick obsession with Daemon who is 1,700 years old and has been nicknamed Hayll’s Whore. Daemon is beyond gorgeous and deadly. The so-called pleasure he gives these woman is through the power he has. He has never used his cock, since it doesn’t get hard. So essentially, Daemon is still a virgin. He has been abused horribly, and I wonder if J.R. Ward found her inspiration for Zsadist because of Daemon. Zsadist and Daemon are very much alike in that sense, that they have been forced and raped. There is no escape for Daemon, only hope for a prophecy was told about the living myth; dreams made flesh will arrive in the form of a young woman, a witch who is Witch. She will be the most powerful Queen in the Blood’s history and will cleanse the three Realms of the greed, corruption and sadomasochism, and bring peace. Daemon has waited and waited for Witch because she will be his true lover, the one who will own his soul. She is the only woman he can truly be with in every sense of the sexual, emotional, spiritual and physical.

Where as Daemon suffers more emotional abuses, Lucivar suffers the worst kind of physical. He too waits for Witch, to release him from his torment. Lucivar is actually the first one to meet Witch, in the form of seven year old Jaenelle Angelline, the youngest granddaughter of the Chaillot’s Territory Queen. Jaenelle can cross through all Realms, where she leaves her body to do so. This is where she first meets Lucivar and then his father Saetan. Saetan believes Jaenelle is the daughter of his soul. He longs to teach her craft, magic that she must learn in order to keep her safe because Dorothea and other Queens would destroy Janelle. But by the age of twelve, Jaenelle is in a bad place. Her family thinks she is mentally ill and place her in and out of a hospital called Briarwood. Briarwood is not what is seems. It is a place where little girls, like Jaenelle are left to the mercy of the Uncles, men who enjoy the taste of little girls.

Daemon is sent to be a plaything for Jaenelle’s grandmother and the other women who reside there. The way Daemon handles Jaenelle is very carefully constructed. Daemon knows that Jaenelle is the one he is meant to be with, but because of her, age he would never do anything to her. Even though he wants Jaenelle, he wants who she is inside, the woman she will become. He doesn’t lust after the little girl she is, but rather the person inside. Anne handled this relationship very well. Some may find Daemon’s feelings for Jaenelle at this time to be a bit uncomfortable, but it is a nice comparison to what Daemon goes through with the women of age he must pleasure. He is very much an innocent, when it comes to his feelings for Jaenelle, just like Jaenelle is very innocent in her actions and feelings. She finds a friend in Daemon, a companion that seems to understand her. She also bridges the gap between Daemon and Saetan. Father and son are on the path to forgiveness, all because of Jaenelle.

But Jaenelle’s innocence doesn’t last long because during a party, where the men size up the young girls, all due to Jaenelle’s sadistic uncle, Jaenelle has an outburst in order to protect her older sister. From this point on, Daemon and Jaenelle will be separated and they both will go through some truly horrible things. Jaenelle is brutalized in such a way that made me sick to my stomach. This was the one major peeve I had because the rape of a child is something I am just not comfortable with. We aren’t given details of the act, but the aftermath leads to some very hard reading. The reason for this is to set up the next book because the abuse Jaenelle goes through, breaks her mind, where she leaves her body and disappears. She will be gone forever, a shell with no soul. It is up to Daemon to rescue her. But he is not just rescuing the person that Jaenelle is, but her true being that is Witch.

Anne leaves things open that will hopefully be concluded in the second book, Heir to the Shadows. Daughter of the Blood is disturbing. Dark is not a good enough word to describe this world that Anne Bishop has created. There are many scenes that will make you flinch, and I wouldn’t be surprised if some simply cannot go on and finish reading. As for myself, the best word to describe how I felt reading, is of being consumed. Perhaps Daughter of the Blood could be compared to that of a car accident you just can turn away from. I was lost, much like Jaenelle was as she skipped through those Realms, where I didn’t want to leave. I may have been disturbed, and a bit ill at certain points, but I wanted more.

I question why Anne had to go so far with some of things in Daughter of the Blood. Perhaps it was for shock value, or she felt it just fit in the world she was writing. I would have preferred not to read some of those difficult scenes, but again, my opinion is more of a personal nature. Regardless of the dark tone and nature of Daughter of the Blood, Anne has written an amazing book that evoked so many different emotions.

Jaenelle brought forth my memories of innocent and childlike dreams. Daemon gave me those barely unleashed feelings of lust and seduction, and Lucivar made me feel such pain and suffering. I wanted to torture Dorothea and make her eat her heart. And as for Saetan, I felt a father’s love for all his children and friends. Anne’s vision of Hell is one that will stay with me forever. Funny how Hell seems kind while the other Earth like Realms seem so horrible.

Anne Bishop has opened my eyes to an incredible world that I will never forget.

Profile Image for Sarah.
3,336 reviews1,016 followers
September 30, 2018
1st read - January 2014
2nd read - September 2018

Buddy read with Aly, Ange, Annie & Anzu (Although I think only Aly, Anzu and I actually ended up reading it LOL)

Daughter of the Blood is a really difficult book to review and I think that's partly due to how uncomfortable it made me feel when I was reading it. This is a DARK fantasy story, if you're looking for an easy read then that's not what you're going to get here. However, if you're looking for a story that is as compelling as it is disturbing then this may be just what you're after. If I'd known the kind of things this story included (everything from child molestation, rape, incest, abuse, torture and much much more) then I would have been wary about picking it up but no matter how squeamish reading it made me feel there was never a point where I wanted to put the book down and walk away. I was so engrossed in this world and the characters that I just had to know what was going to happen next!

Anne Bishop has created a fascinating but brutal world, one where power has completely corrupted the people in charge. Society is ruled by those of the Blood, men and women with magic whose abilities are defined by the colour of jewel they receive at birth. It is a matriarchal society where territories are ruled by the Queens who have the strongest magic and they are served by their male counterparts the Warlords. There was peace and happiness for centuries until they fell under the power of a dark and twisted High Queen, Dorothea, a woman who thinks nothing of terrorising the people under her command. In fact she has encouraged the other Queens to treat men as worse than nothing, they are often little more than sex slaves who are under complete control of Dorothea and the other Queens that she allows to rule over smaller territories. The world is split into three different realms - Terreille, Kaeleer and Hell - but most of this story takes place in Terreille and Hell (I have to admit I'm a little confused about how Kaeleer fits into the picture but I'm assuming that will become more clear as the series continues). The realms have been divided and under Dorothea's reign Terreille has become a dark and terrifying place. There is only one hope for the realms to be reunited and prophecy has long since told of Witch, the most powerful Queen to be born in centuries, one who will either heal or destroy the world.

For centuries Saetan, the overlord of Hell, has awaited the birth of Witch and finally she is here. Jaenelle is just seven years old when she finds her way to Hell and befriends him and he instantly recognises her for who and what she is. It will take years of training before she is ready to fulfil the prophecy but that is only if he manages to keep her safe from those that seek to harm her. Jaenelle is already capable of incredible and terrifying things but she doesn't have proper control of her magic and desperately needs the lessons he can give her. Saetan is a father figure to Jaenelle and he would do anything to help her but that isn't easy when she is so determined to follow her own path, she is a wanderer who has friends throughout all three realms and in her own way she is just as determined to protect those she cares about. She refuses to stay safe in Hell when her friends need her help and she keeps secrets about things that happen because she tries to spare Saetan the pain of knowing the kind of trouble she is in.

Jaenelle also befriends Saetan's two sons Daemon and and Lucivar although her relationship with them is very different to the one she has with Saetan. Daemon and Lucivar are both slaves who are under control of Dorothea, they have spent centuries being abused and tortured biding their time until Witch comes into her power and can free them. We don't see a great deal of Lucivar here but whenever we do get his point of view he is either suffering the worst kind of torture or watching it happen to someone else. I'm actually glad we don't see more of him because his scenes were incredibly difficult to read about, I just wish I could say they were the worst in the book and unfortunately they weren't! Daemon is a pleasure slave who has spent centuries forced to do the bidding of Dorothea, but in spite of that he actually has a kind of innocence to him, one that Jaenelle brings to the surface through their friendship. Daemon would do anything to keep Jaenelle safe, he would go through any kind of pain or suffering himself if it meant she didn't have to but even he isn't powerful enough to protect her the entire time. Scenes towards the end of the book absolutely broke my heart and I have no idea how Jaenelle is going to come back from what happened to her. Thankfully the abuse she suffers is one of the few scenes that isn't detailed graphically in the story but the aftermath is more than enough to show just how badly she suffered and it makes for difficult reading.

Daughter of the Blood is a fascinating but brutal story, it is graphic and unflinching when it comes to showing the darkest that the world has to offer. This is a compelling book that hits you where it hurts and makes it hard to keep breathing but one that you can't look away from. As much as I'm kind of terrified to see where Anne Bishop will take us next I'm in it for the long haul and there is no way I can stop reading this series. The world building is absolutely fascinating and I am so invested in these characters that I want to see them get the happy ending that they deserve. Apart from Dorothea and a few others who are evil to the core - them I want to see suffer in the most brutal ways imaginable!
Profile Image for Holly.
312 reviews52 followers
May 6, 2016
Major mixed feelings on this one. I bumped my original 3 stars down to 2 after a bit of thought.

On one hand- I kept reading because I was so curious about where the story was going. On the other- this book made me squeamish and uncomfortable. When reviewers say this book is dark what they mean is it contains some really unpleasant aspects of violence, rape, incest, and pedophilia. Most of the characters were pretty awful human beings. Women rule men in this world and they do it by brute force. Which leads to some pretty twisted men.

This book made me think a lot about the reaction many of KMM's fans had to the relationship that formed between Ryodan and Dani in KMM's Iced. It was by and large a very negative reaction. I was ok with the storyline because I'm a fan of destined love. Ryodan knew without a doubt that Dani would be his other half in a few years when she became an adult. He was waiting for her. This book played with that idea too but it took it too far in my opinion. The sexual nature of this culture and the various races icked me out. I almost put the book down multiple times.

Now on top of all of this I had major issues with the writing. It was disjointed and not well set up. In the beginning it reminded me a lot of Jacqueline Carey's Phaedre series. I was thrilled because although that series was dark I really enjoyed it. They both kind of throw you into the middle of these worlds. But unlike with Jacqueline Carey's series that world building never really comes. Random terms/places/people are brought up with very little explanation. I found it really confusing. I also felt like there were WAY TOO MANY side characters of absolutely no importance. Too many names and official titles. I spent hours reading this book and I still don't understand where in the world these places are and how their magic works. And the writing was SO dramatic. One chapter convinced me that Daemon hated Surreal and the next it seems like they're best friends. I'm pretty sure Daemon is bipolar. So much angst.

So here's the kicker- even after all of that and the frankly horrifying event that happens in the last few chapters I'm still considering reading book 2. Am I a glutton for punishment? Maybe. I'm hoping that book 2 does what I kept waiting for book 1 to do- jump ahead a few years in time so I can stop being so grossed out by this blossoming love story.
Profile Image for Shannon .
1,221 reviews2,158 followers
May 15, 2009
The three realms of Terreille, Kaeleer (the Shadow Realm) and Hell are ruled by the Blood, people given the gift of Jewels of different-ranking colours. They are supposed to be caretakers of the land, and are deeply heirarchical. It's a matriarchal world, but a taint, a rot, has seeped into the Blood, and now the ruling Blood - both female and male - spend their time indulging in pleasures of all manner, often cruel. Some of the races are long-lived, and the Demon-Dead in Hell still have the use of their Jewels. Some have been around for more than 50,000 years. And they all have very long memories.

The High Lord of Hell, Saetan daSiablo, is the only male Blood - and dead person - to rule a territory, and a realm. Kaeleer follows individual Queens, since there is no Queen of Ebon Askavi and she would be the Queen above all others. Terreille, corrupt and dissolute, has been taken over by the High Priestess of Hyall, Dorothea, working in tandem with Saetan's Demon-Dead wife Heketah. They are both absolutely horrible people, who find entertainment in having men castrated. Ouch.

Saetan and his two still-living sons, half-brothers Daemon and Lucivar, have been waiting centuries for the arrival of the Queen who will rule them all and end forever the corruption of Dorothea and Heketah, which has already seeped across the closed borders into the Shadow Realm: Witch. Who, at the beginning of Daughter of the Blood, is just a 7 year old girl called Jaenelle, suffering abuse at the hands of her family and the doctor she is given over to.

There is a lot that is different about this fantasy book - and the entire trilogy - from the typical good vs. evil dichotomy. First off, it is one of the first fantasy stories I have read where I believe. What I mean is, Dorothea and Heketah and all the people they use, and all their perversions and cruelty, are intensely believable. Even though they are extreme, I think it is the way Bishop writes that draws me in so thoroughly.

Her other characters are equally well-written - and there are a lot of them, but I never felt overwhelmed. The interesting thing, to me, was that even though Jaenelle is technically the main character - in the sense that everything and everyone ends up revolving around her, focused on her - we never hear her voice. She never narrates. And this works perfectly. She is so other, by the end, that the only way to know is by understanding how those close to her - and those trying to manipulate her - perceive her.

The insipid covers of these books always put me off - that and the uninspiring blurb which gives no real indication of what these books are like. But it's a great story and very well written, and I read this trilogy in five days. It helps when they're all available! New editions with much nicer covers are available now, by the way.
Profile Image for Gary .
200 reviews183 followers
December 4, 2019
I couldn't finish this. It wasn't the darker aspects that some of the other reviewers complained about that bothered me- it was simply tedious. There were millions of names and places thrown around, none of which were likable or enjoyable. I hung in there until nearly 100 pages into the book. I can't take it anymore. I give up.
Profile Image for Zeek.
855 reviews149 followers
March 11, 2010
Anne Bishop's Black Jewel's Trilogy pinged my radar a few years back when old Blogger friends couldn't say enough good about it. Per usual, it took me all this time to finally get to it, but it didn't take me long to see the appeal.

High fantasy to be sure, The Black Jewel's Trilogy follows along the lines of what made this genre popular. Witches, Magic, Enchanted Jewels/rings, Mystical Creatures and Chosen ones- it has it all! And for those of us gals who need it- a dash of romance!

Book 1: Daughter of the Blood.

In the first book, Daughter of the Blood, we are introduced to the characters who will populate the entire Series. Janelle, the once and future queen, is just a child but is already coming into the power that will outshine all in her shadow.

The chosen one whose coming was foretold over 1700 years ago, she would be the one to put an end to the corrupt rule of the Jeweled Blood Queens- witches who rule the people known as The Blood.

But the women in power will not loose their grip so easily and it will take the wisdom of her soul father, brother, and future consort to keep her safe until the time she is ready to come into her own.

Right off the bat I became enthralled with this story. Long a lover of fantasy and romance, I knew this story had the potential to be a great read. I wasn't wrong.

From the moment Janelle enters the scene, answering the call of the lonely brother of her soul- I was hooked.

I have to admit, it was difficult for me to set aside my preconception of one character before I could truly let myself enjoy the ride though-that character being Saetan of course, the soon to be mentor and teacher of Janelle as well as her father- not of blood, but of soul.

Saetan is a sympathetic character in this tale, long relegated to the halls of Hayll and a shell of the man he used to be, subsisting on blood and darkness. Then Janelle enters his life and life begins aknew for him.

In DOTB, the characters are all locked in their own prisons- Saetan to the fragility of his mind and body and the dreams of what could be and Janelle to the hands of those who should be protecting her but are instead locking her away to keep her in line. Luciver, the brother of Janelle's soul and her future consort, Daemon, both literal sons of Saetan, are enslaved as pleasure slaves by and for the Queens of the Blood. But by the end of the first book, we find them all beginning to break free.

One will sacrifice his own sanity for the sake of Janelle's life. Another is left to uncertain future at the hands of his enslavers. One begins to realize his hopes and dreams and for Janelle, the nefarious reasons for her captivity come to a stunning climax that will make you eager to run out for the next installment!

Great beginning to a magical story! (Be warned, the plotting is complex and unfolds over three books, but it is a story not to missed!)
Profile Image for Wanda Pedersen.
1,860 reviews369 followers
August 11, 2020
It took me halfway through this book before I could tell the men apart or figure which woman I was reading about! They all act the same, that is to say badly. I can see why this book is one of those “love it or hate it” novels. So how did I end up in the middle of the road? Well, I can perhaps see what Bishop was trying to achieve—a dark fantasy with women at the top of the hierarchy.

But I found the execution of this idea to be so clumsy! It was as if she took her cue for this Dark Kingdom from R.A. Salvatore's Drizzt series. The whole witch & black widow business seemed pulled right out of Menzoberranzan and the cult of the spider goddess. And how completely unimaginative to name your two main male characters Saetan and Daemon, locating the former in Hell. For a society which claimed supremacy of women, those two men seem to actually run things. If you believe what Bishop says, the women are in charge, but she doesn't find them interesting enough to centre the story around them. Saetan and Daemon seem to trump even Jaenelle, whom they all claim to adore. (I'm somehow reminded of J.R. Ward's Dark Lover series, which had powerful vampires tripping all over themselves for goodie two shoes Beth, and not just because one of those “bad boys" was named Zsadist). *eyeroll*

It was finally the mystery around Jaenelle that kept me reading. Why was she unwilling to leave a home where she was so obviously unhappy? Plus, it was interesting to watch the manoeuvring of older people around her, much like I imagine powerful people would have circled Victoria before she became queen of England, trying to buy her gratitude and/or her regard before she ascended the throne. Everyone seems to forget that young women have more brains than adults give them credit for.

It may be awhile until I can get to book two. My library has withdrawn the copy that I had a hold on, and I assume they have ordered a replacement, since there is still a hold in existence. In these uncertain times, who knows when that new book will be received and processed? A break doesn't worry me, as I'm not champing at the bit to continue, but I am intrigued enough to continue whenever that volume makes an appearance.

Book number 374 of my Science Fiction & Fantasy Reading Project.

Cross posted at my blog:

Profile Image for bright.books.
149 reviews252 followers
February 3, 2022

Nie wiem co mam myśleć po książce gdzie gwałt, kazirodztwo, pedofilia, usuwanie męskich genitaliów, seks niewolnictwo jest uznawane za normalne?
W sensie po tej książce nie odczułem żeby te rzeczy w tej książce były uznawane za złe oprócz paru komentarzy paru bohaterów.
Dla mnie ta książka to istna patologia i jestem w szoku, że ktoś ją wydał
Profile Image for Marta Cox.
2,566 reviews191 followers
February 27, 2014
The first book in what is known as The Black Jewels trilogy and now to be released on Kindle internationally. This is a classic piece of fantasy writing by this established author and it's an absolute joy to read such unique world building. This is unashamedly a journey into a world of imagination unlike any other that you will take . So be prepared to feel both challenged and revolted by all the machinations you are about to encounter here.
An ancient prophecy foretells of a Witch who will appear and unite the three realms and free them all from tyranny. It's a land that's ruled by blood and magic and controlled by Queens who expect undying servitude. The Witch will be the ultimate embodiment of magic.
Saetan is guardian over the Hell realm but has learned of a young girl Jaenelle who although still a child has the ability to traverse all the realms. He's determined to teach her but she's slippery and refuses to share her secrets with him. Jaenelle is from Terreille and suffers greatly at the hands of her family as they believe she is of unsound mind and emotionally scarred. At times Jaenelle struggles to even trust herself and almost believes that what she sees is just her imagination. Institutionalised she is at the mercy of those who would do her harm and she sees no way to escape her fate.
Saetan has two estranged sons Lucivar and Daemon but time and the taint that's spreading throughout the lands has caused them all unmitigated pain. Both Daemon and Lucivar are enslaved by evil power hungry Queens but when Daemon feels the pull of Jaenelles blood magic it's clear that finally Witch has arrived! Jaenelles considerable powers are not yet fully honed and she will need protecting from those who seek to control power. Jaenelle is still a child but she will face danger and depravity before her destiny will be realised .
This is a very different type of book for me as it's pure fantasy rather than the urban fantasy world that Ms Bishop has recently ventured into. This is not a pretty read and aspects of it are truly vile! Males are violated and even castrated and although not erotic there is quite a strong sexual aspect to this story.
There is a lot to remember as the author introduces quite a few characters and it's an original idea to connect magical powers with gem stones . It's a richly drawn world and just pulls the reader in. At times it's hard to see how the heroine Jaenelle can ever overcome her circumstances and take her rightful place but that's where the three main male characters step up. I loved the almost paternal feelings displayed by Saetan and the honourable actions of Lucivar but the area that some readers might struggle with is the attraction shown by Daemon for what is essentially a child! I thought that the author portrayed Jaenelle as an old soul and this reader could believe that time would bring the couple together. Many societies see nothing wrong with young females finding themselves in relationships and it's important to remember this is a story set in a brutal and deadly world.
This book charts the beginning of these characters journey and it's a very complex storyline that Ms Bishop weaves. This is probably the darkest fantasy that I have encountered and is populated by those who only seek power and will do anything to achieve it. Political intrigue is rife within these pages but more disturbingly so too is brutality. A book I didn't want to put down and yet curiously at times I didn't want to read it. The fact that I had to finish it is telling I think. An amazing piece of work and thought provoking too.
Profile Image for Mayim de Vries.
577 reviews826 followers
March 14, 2016
If you are just perusing the comments wondering whether or not give this book a chance, take this fair warning: Every review of one star (and below) is true and well deserved.

A rare occurrence: I DID NOT finish this book (something that happens once in a blue moon) and I most sincerely advise you not to even start it. Life is too short to waste it on such a pitiable example of scribomania. There are far too many good books out there just waiting for you Dear Reader; the only good use of the Daughter of the Blood I can think of is to recycle it.

I gave it a shot because several years ago I read an excerpt of some other instalment to this series. At least, from what I remember, it was set in the same world(s) and could possibly feature some of the characters. Every series is like a dynasty, the farther down, the better the chance of begetting a monstrosity instead of a prince charming so I thought the Daughter of the Blood deserves the benefit of a doubt. I was so wrong! This series started far worse than other fantasy/paranormal series finish. And if you crave for something dark and sexy yet smart and well written at the same time, try Jacqueline Carey instead.
Profile Image for Shannon.
3,090 reviews2,362 followers
June 22, 2017
Finished this first book from the Omnibus and damn that ending was intense. Also, quite sad. This world is very brutal.

I find it interesting how very "adult" this series is since my first intro to Bishop was The Others and that whole series is PG-13 at worst. I wonder if this is a product of its times, since it was written back when LKH was still popular.

I'm a fan though, and I wish there was more dark adult fantasy like this out there.
Profile Image for Tom.
307 reviews68 followers
December 16, 2013
*Reread* 12/15/13 Well this was an interesting reread. The world building is actually done throughout the series so it was Awesome to reread and follow everything much clearer. It was also during a BR so it was interesting to see how confusing this is the first time around. I didn't have as much problems as my buddies the first time around but I'm glad I got the input of those as they read it for pimping purposes...haha It was still uncomfortable at times but i read every word without skimming and I can actually see myself rereading this series again sometime in the future!

Let me say this is a me series. In no way do i believe most will get it and it is an uncomfortable read at times.

*Edited* After reading the next 2 books I feel like I should throw the 5th star at this one. It is a very intense Fantasy and one of my favorite trilogies. I'll wait till I reread to make the decision though. Because that will happen!

What the hell did I just read! Wow this might be one of the hardest reviews because I’m not sure how I’m going to explain that I liked this.

Daughter of the blood blurb says that the Dark Kingdom is preparing itself for the fulfillment of an ancient prophecy. Janelle is a child with more power than the world has ever scene. Sadi tries to train her which is going to be tough being she has more power than he can even imagine. Daemon is a sex slave that has waited 700 years for the Queen to come into power and becomes wrapped around the little 12 yo while trying to keep her safe.

Well I know why they call it the “Dark Kingdom”. This was a pretty damn DARK fantasy! If this wasn’t fantasy I probably would have had a hard time getting through it. Apparently there are a lot of perverts that are into kiddies in the Dark Kingdom. Even the good guy Daemon got a little creepy. Now I immerse myself in the worlds I live in and that’s why I seem to give a wide berth in the fantasy stories that I read. Daemon swooning over little 12yo Janelle should have been creepy but knowing he was going to have to wait 7 years to tap into her wasn’t really a stretch since he’d been waiting 700 years. And to be honest most of the book he just treated her like a sister except for a couple of creepy moments. JANELLE!!! What a frigging complex character. She was creepy then cute then SCARY and she just always kept me on the edge of my seat when her part came into the story. I LOVE Janelle (not like Daemon…haha) she was such a good hearted heroine and I hope she comes out of this book with some semblance of herself.

There was probably one too many storylines going for me and the politics was drug out a little for my total enjoyment. There was a lot of world building in the first half of the book and the second half was a lot more intense. Definitely moving on with the series!
Profile Image for Anzû.
548 reviews1,108 followers
February 1, 2014
I am dropping this 25% in. I know there are many reviews out there talking how fucked up this book is. I did not drop it because of this. I did it because it's incredibly boring. It reads like a Romance novel, just with more perverted sick shit in it. And I feel like the author wanted to have all this crap in order to make it stand out. Nope.

Profile Image for D.G..
1,363 reviews343 followers
February 22, 2017

If you have any trigger, this book is likely to have it. Sexual violence (against both men and women), torture, rape, incest, pedophilia...it was all in there. It served a purpose in the story, but holy Moses, it was hard to read.

Daughter of the Blood is very difficult to get into and not just because of what I mentioned above. The first 15% is a maze of names, places and world building. It takes a while for the reader to understand the power structure and what the heck is going on. Once you do (and if you can take tough topics), the world is intricate and the plot snowballs to an exciting (although cliffhangerish) finale.

The audiobook is narrated by John Sharian, a new to me narrator. At the beginning, his voice sounded somewhat young for such a story but as I kept listening, I understood why he was a good choice. He has a great range of voices, from the coldly menacing Daemon to the innocent but cunning Jaenelle. When a character spoke, the listener were in no doubt who was speaking.

I'm totally looking forward to reading the next one in the series.
51 reviews5 followers
May 3, 2009
Read this if you like self-indulgent, "oh how cute I want to be her" type books where the beautiful young heroine is surrounded by males who want to take care of her. Bad things happen of course, so she needs lots of rescuing. Lots and lots of rescuing. Conversely, if you prefer well-written fantasy, go for something else - Jennifer Fallon or even Anne Rice, if you like.

There is some 'darkness' in this book, but it's clumsily executed. Again, if you want real bleak darkness go read Robin Hobb's Farseer Trilogy and then come back to this one and you'll realise how clumsily it's been done. There is some 'adult' content that I'm sure is supposed to convey passion and sexiness, but again, if you want to see it done well, go read Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel trilogy. Then you'll realise how clumsily it's been done here.

I will admit a bit of the "oh how cuuuuuute" reverse-harem thing tugs at my female heartstrings, but there's nothing new here. This is pulp fiction marketed to the masses - so if you enjoy that sort of thing, you'll love this.
Profile Image for Dorri.
428 reviews26 followers
January 16, 2009
I bought this book with no concept of how much I would be drawn to the world Anne created. It spoke to my soul. Then it slammed my heart to the ground. The ending is quite possibly one of the most painful I've ever had to read. It just ripped apart a fragile little dream and smiled while it did so. After I sat in shock for more than a few minutes, I checked the publication date, thinking the second book might be available soon. No such luck. I bought the book in it's first month of release. The wait for Heir to the Shadows felt like one of the most drawn out years of my life. Since reading this book, I have passed it on to about 15 of my freinds. They too are now die hard Bishop fans. And proud of it!
Profile Image for Dianne.
1,556 reviews117 followers
January 11, 2023
This is a sometimes difficult to take book. If you cannot stand reading or thinking about child abuse, pedophilia, and sadism, then stay far, far away from this book. There is no literal description of pedophilia, but the idea of it is very strongly suggested.

This is pretty much a horror novel that bends all the rules of humanity. You may ask yourself why did I give it 5 stars...I did so because this (story-line aside) is a wonderfully written book in itself. However, the next two books are needed to explain and then develop this nine-book (the three-book trilogy with 7 other revolving novels and storybooks) series. It WILL get dealt with satisfactorily.

You might also notice that I said it bends the rules of 'humanity,' but this book is not set in a human realm; it is set in Hell and the surrounding realms in Hell, the characters are what we would think of as Satan and his two surviving Demon sons, the young girl who is known as Witch - the living myth, Dreams made Flesh. The books will tell the tale of how Witch can reunite this estranged family, cleanse the realms of all of the rotten politics, disgusting (to us -let's just say that in this world murder is perfectly normal) habits of the Queens that are supposed to rule these towns, territories, and realms.

The story is told from everyone's point of view except Jaenelles (Witch), who is really the protagonist of this trilogy.

This book is filled with beautiful storytelling, even when working with a story such as this one. The description of the world is strong, and the author always makes you feel as if you are living there and that everything you are told makes complete sense.
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