Blood can both wound and heal . . .Willa is lucky: She has a loving blended family that gets along. Not all families are so fortunate. But when a bloody crime takes place hundreds of miles away, it has an explosive effect on Willa’s peaceful life. The estranged father she hardly remembers has murdered his new wife and children, and is headed east toward Willa and her mother. Under police protection, Willa discovers that her mother has harbored secrets that are threatening to boil over. Has everything Willa believed about herself been a lie? But as Willa sets out to untangle the mysteries of her past, she also keeps her own secret—one that has the potential to tear apart all she holds dear.
On the Origins of the Title Blood Wounds
By Susan Beth Pfeffer
Dear Amazon Reader,
On occasion I’m asked how I come up with titles for my books. Sometimes the publisher names the book, and sometimes I suggest a name we all agree to.
Blood Wounds is entirely my title. I knew almost from the beginning I wanted the word "Blood" in the title. "Blood" is one of my favorite words (another of my favorite words is "gaunt," but I’ve yet to figure out how to use it in anything besides the occasional statement of fact that gaunt I ain’t). "Blood" sounds like blood, thick and crimson and pulsing and everything else blood is and does. Also it means family, and the novel is about family. So "Blood" it would be.
Then I needed something to follow that "Blood." I liked the way it sounded with "Wounds," so I promptly raced to Amazon and typed "Blood Wounds" in its ever-useful search box, and found no books with that title.
Well, we all know that there are no books with that title because "blood wounds" doesn’t mean anything. Bullet wounds, knife wounds, sure. Wounds get caused by things going into your body. Blood is best left in your body from the get-go.
My way around the problem that the title Blood Wounds doesn’t mean anything is to say, "Think of 'wounds' as a verb. Then think of 'blood' as meaning family. See? A family can hurt you. 'Blood wounds!'"
I’ve convinced one and one-half friends and my publishing house that my title has meaning. I hope I’ve convinced you, too!
Susan Beth Pfeffer
This intense psychological drama, showing the brightest and darkest sides of humanity, offers remarkable acts of courage and disturbing images of domestic violence. Willa's frankly portrayed grief, confusion, and uncertainties will have a strong impact on readers."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"The sheer drama of the plot will draw readers, and they’ll stay for an insightful exploration of the way families go both right and wrong."--Bulletin