Wildblood, Lauren Blackwood

A yellow cover with a girl in green in the center. She is standing amidst a yew tree branch, holding a lantern.

About the Book

Eighteen-year-old Victoria is a Wildblood. Since she was kidnapped at the age of six and manipulated by the Exotic Lands Touring Company, she’s worked as a tour guide ever since with a team of fellow Wildbloods who take turns using their magic to protect travelers in a Jamaican jungle teeming with ghostly monsters.

When the boss denies Victoria an earned promotion to team leader in favor of Dean, her backstabbing ex, she’s determined to prove herself. Her magic may be the most powerful on the team, but she’s not the image the boss wants to send their new client, Thorn, a renowned goldminer determined to reach an untouched gold supply deep in the jungle.

Thorn is everything Victoria isn’t – confident, impossibly kind, and so handsome he leaves her speechless. And when he entrusts the mission to her, kindness turns to mutual respect, turns to affection, turns to love. But the jungle is treacherous, and between hypnotic river spirits, soul-devouring women that shed their skin like snakes, and her ex out for revenge, Victoria has to decide – is promotion at a corrupt company really what she wants?

A fierce, lush fantasy by New York Times bestselling author Lauren Blackwood, Wildblood tells the story of a girl who must find the strength to defeat the demons of the jungle as well as her own to find where she truly belongs.

Book Links
Releasing February 7th

Goodreads
Amazon
Bookshop
B&N

My Thoughts

“No one escapes the Exotic Lands Touring Company, unless one would call deciding how they’d like to die “escaping”…”

For a young woman kidnapped at such a young age by an abusive boss, who wields complete and utter control over the Wildbloods he’s kidnapped, Victoria personifies strength. She’s leading a tour that will make or break her, and she has to work with the boy she hates as much as her boss. Dean betrayed her a year ago, and working with him is the last thing she wants to do. This tour will be more dangerous than anything she’s ever done because the jungle will exact its price.

“Because a year feels far longer when you’re the one living with it.”

The writing had a few stumbles, but the storyline and message overpowered any of them. Touching on so many topics such as colonialism, slavery, abuse, and more, Blackwood told these tragedies in a fantasy setting, with blood magic. In addition to Victoria’s strength, I loved the jungle. Everything they came in contact with, from River Mumma to Biggs, was so creative. The danger is continuous, it’s always something new, and you’re waiting to see what comes next and how they will handle it.

This does have insta-love, but it was done well. Victoria is the epitome of love, and we see that in all her relationships. This is such a lovely read.

Thank you, St. Martin’s, for sending along an ARC.

Review on Goodreads and Bookbub.

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