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Blood Engines (Marla Mason, Book 1) Mass Market Paperback – September 25, 2007

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Blood Engines (Marla Mason, Book 1) + Poison Sleep (Marla Mason, Book 2) + Spell Games (Marla Mason, Book 4)
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Spectra; Reissue edition (September 25, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553589989
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553589986
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (84 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,312,619 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Pratt is a deft storyteller whose blend of suspense, magic, and dry humor kept me entertained and turning pages. Blood Engines is one of the most absorbing reads I've enjoyed in a long time, gluing me to the couch. I adore Marla, her done-at-all-costs character is someone I can relate to and want to cheer for. Best of all, I didn't figure the ending out until I got there. It's a book widower, and I can't wait for the sequel."—Kim Harrison, NYT-bestselling author of For a Few Demons More

"Blood Engines wastes no time: by page three I knew I was reading an urban fantasy unlike any I'd previously encountered. The characters and world are real, immediate, and unapologetically in-your-face, throwing you into a story that trusts you'll keep up with the fast pace without flinching. It charges along with crisp pacing, a fascinating range of secondary characters, and a highly compelling lead in Marla Mason. She may be one of the genre's requisite sharp-tongued females, but her ruthless pragmaticism gives her a completely different feel from her fictional contemporaries. I genuinely look forward to the next book!"—C.E. Murphy, author of Coyote Dreams

"A fast-paced, thoroughly fun, satisfying read."—Kelley Armstrong, author of No Humans Involved

About the Author

T.A. Pratt lives in Oakland, California with partner H.L. Shaw, and works as a senior editor for a trade publishing magazine.

More About the Author

T.A. Pratt is the author of the Marla Mason series of urban fantasy novels. He lives in California.

Customer Reviews

I'm glad I "invested" in all the series books at once for future reads.
Kindle Customer
The characters on the other hand are quite interesting - unfortunately not the main hero Marla.
Amazon Customer
The plot could have been kind of interesting, but I really didn't like the main character.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn M. VanDusen on October 7, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When I first heard about Blood Engines, I was actually on the website of the wonderful Kim Harrison, author of the Hollows series (and if you haven't read it yet, go do it!). Mrs. Pratt has made a stunning entry into the world of scifi/fantasy. Her characters are a bit over the top, but they have a real-world feel to them. It's refreshing to find a female lead who is more than willing to mess with other people's idea of morality in order to protect that which is most important to her- the city of Felport. This book is packed with high-energy and powerful characters, each with a distinct agenda and all with their own quirks.

The book uses a stunning array of mythology, theology, practicality, and action to advance the storyline. The characters' motivations are well explained and detailed, there is more than a little use of humor and shock when dealing with the odd phenomena that seems to happen to Marla and her cohorts, and the villains of the piece are suitably nasty. This is one book I didn't want to put down. The only thing that tended to annoy me were the descriptions- we'd start getting a sense of what was going on from them, and then Marla's distaste for anything but information pertaining to her motivation would cut it off abruptly. Other than that, a great book.
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49 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Wiley VINE VOICE on November 21, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Sorcerer Marla Mason has to stop Susan Wellstone from casting her spell. If she doesn't, it will have horrific consequences to both Marla and the city she guards, Felport. To stop Susan, Marla has traveled to San Francisco with her partner, Rondeau. But something is wrong in San Francisco, something seriously wrong that is leaving a trail of dead sorcerers. Marla doesn't want to intervene in the business of another city, but she will have to if she has any hope of saving her own city.

BLOOD ENGINES introduces readers to Marla Mason, a sorcerer who at first glance appears to be rather cold and forbidding. T.A. Pratt shows us the glimpses beneath this façade, glimpses that reveal the caring heart of this woman dedicated to protecting and preserving her city. It took me awhile to warm up to Marla, but as the story progresses I learned to admire her willingness to sacrifice even the people and things she cares about for the greater overall good.

T.A. Pratt creates characters who aren't simply good or evil, but rather have shades of both just like anyone else. Bradley "B" Bowman is the easiest character to like, as he doesn't appear to have any artificial artifices and his motives are much more apparent on the surface. Even Rondeau has his darker moments, as his background history is fascinating and I'm hopeful there is a story forthcoming about that. T.A. Pratt also does a fantastic job at incorporating various mythologies and legends into the motivations and histories of the characters, leaving readers with a fascinating tapestry of tales within tales.

BLOOD ENGINES is the first in what looks to be a promising new series. There are some uneven moments as one would expect in any new series, but these issues pale in comparison to the overall premise of this entertaining and fast paced story. BLOOD ENGINES is easily recommended.

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41 of 45 people found the following review helpful By William Hicks on November 9, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Finally something for those of us who like urban fantasy but are not too fond of romance novels.
A powerful. mostly immoral sorceress, Her possessed sidekick and a former hollywood star are out to save San Francisco, not out of any 'good' motive but because the bad guy has torqued her off and has something she needs to save her own life.
Fans of the Dresden Files and the early Anite blake books should love this, anyone who likes urban fantasy will probably not be disappointed.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Lesley70 on February 10, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Sorcerer Marla Manson is in San Francisco with her companion Rondeau, looking for a magical artefact that could save her life. Back in her hometown of Felport, a rival for her position as guardian of the city, is preparing a spell that could destroy her. Unfortunately the sorcerer who had the artefact has just been murdered. He's only the first victim, and it soon becomes clear that if Marla wants to save herself, she's going to have to save San Francisco and the rest of the world first.

First the stuff I had problems with. The beginning is rather like being hit over the head with a mallet. It's very 'tell the reader what's going on by having two characters talk about a situation they're already aware of'. This info-dumpy style pops up throughout the story. Though it does become less intrusive.

I loved the actual adventuring in San Francisco but found the whole reason for being there, to be weak. Causing me at several points in the story (whenever Marla mentioned the terrible spell her rival, Susan, was attempting to cast) to be on Susan's side, wishing she would just cast the spell already. Additionally the timing for this terrible spell felt contrived. Marla needed a reason to be in San Francisco and that was it.

Marla is difficult to like as a character, though this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Initially she appears completely amoral (one rule for her, a different rule for everybody else), but she has a strong sense of integrity not readily apparent. Indeed it's only as we come towards the end of the story that you appreciate she does have more depth than it first appears.

Now, for what I loved about this book. It has some of the most original stuff I've read recently in urban fantasy. People being killed by golden frogs and hummingbirds.
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