Melissa's Reviews > Daughter of the Blood
Daughter of the Blood (The Black Jewels #1)
by Anne Bishop
by Anne Bishop
Wow! I mean Wow! Daughter of the Blood is one of the most mesmerizing, powerful, unforgettable books I have ever read. If I could give it a million stars I would. This book has it all, and it makes you laugh, cry, cringe, think, and hope. Talk about making a splash with your first novel; Anne Bishop does that and more. This is the kind of complex, intricately crafted novel that almost demands multiple readings if one is to grasp all of the nuances worked seamlessly into the story. First off this book deals with very dark issues, including abuse and the kind of society that result when trust, respect, and honor between men and women is destroyed. What's saddest about it is that a few people have systematically destroyed those bonds in order to gain power for themselves. Bishop comes on strong right from page one, showing us her strange world unapologetically in all its bizarre and nightmarish glory. But don't be put off by the book's initial shock value - the author delivers a fully realized, complex plot, a unique magic system and social culture, and vivid characters. Daemon is a splendid creation, radiating with sexual energy and brooding intensity. He bursts into every scene with such charisma that I couldn't help but cheer whenever he is allowed to shine in all his terrifying glory. Bishop's male characters are balanced out by her equally stunning female characters, specifically Janelle and Surreal, who we will get to know better as the series progresses. My only complaint is that Bishop tries to include too many characters. By the end I felt I needed a chart to keep them all straight and some of the lesser ones had already faded into the background. Anne Bishop weaves these dark threads with those of hope that with the coming of the new queen, Jaenelle, that thing will change. If they can protect her long enough for her to grow up. Anne Bishop's wonderful sense of humor is expressed in many of the scenes between Jaenelle and the other main characters (namely Saetan and Daemon). This precocious 12 year old never fails to confound them, and the encounters can become hysterically funny as they try to find a way to deal with a young girl with powers beyond anyone's imagination. She's got enough power to do the unimaginable, but can't do the simple things. Their sheer terror at what she is capable of (or sometimes not capable of doing), is humorously mixed with exasperation, frustration, and tenderness. You really MUST read this book if you like dark fantasy, because if you haven't read it you really don't know what you're missing.
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