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Bloodline (Whyborne & Griffin) (Volume 5) Paperback – September 26, 2014
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
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Speaking of emotion, it also doesn’t take long before the first gut-punch of sorrow rears its low-hanging head.
This is the most personal and personally affecting of all of the stories so far in this series. The settings, subjects and circle of characters are all much more intimate. It was difficult to separate myself even from the supernatural aspects when things got tough. The heartache is more devastating.
**I wanted to take this cup from her, but no one can swallow the dregs of another’s grief.**
Paired with this, though, is the affection Ival and Grif share and is just as inseparable. The candor, support and desire between them are all deeply embedded and lovingly entangled.
The cast of supporting characters is colorful, including the best of all in Christine. She doesn’t have a lot of page time in this story, but what she does have is 100% Christine in her strengths of friendship and honesty.
Ms. Hawk knows this man Percival Endicott Whyborne. His sometimes unintentional humor. His growing confidence coupled with that streak of little self-awareness when it comes to the affect he can and does have on those dear to him. His desire to do right, not just by others but now for himself.
I thought the mystery was going one direction and then it took a turn and there were two. They were definitely connected but no one knew how, not yet.
Paranormal + historical + mystery + romance + friendship = this book and my contented joy at the rollercoaster of adventure I experienced in reading it. :D
Intensity is a constant companion in this story, even when it dips to nearly imperceptible levels. The conflict is so personal, I found myself often curled up while reading, muscles bunched. The creatures play an unexpected role in this story. In fact, there is a role reversal between human and monster.
This tale is the full realization of what the world of Widdershins has desired to become. These people, they’ve survived, their collective wills to live as they please is a force of strength we all search for and depend on.
If you’ve read the previous books in this series, I’m rather certain you will be thrilled by this latest immersion into the magic that is Whyborne and Griffin. If you’ve yet to try this crafty mix of adventure, romance, the supernatural, mystery and fun, then get thee to Widdershins! Post haste!
Jordan L. Hawk you are a wonderful writer.
Before I can go into the story I have to say once more how I simply enjoy the romance, the love between Whyborne and Griffin. You know they are different for the time period, and they risk so much just loving each other, but Ms. Hawk shows enough home-life that the reader can see how normal they are. They cook, they clean, they have a great cat, they love their best friend Christine, and Griffin adores Whyborne's mother almost as if she is her own.
I also like that both are characterised as men with personalities that most people have. They are not flouncy caricatures of gay men.
Now to the story. This particular story has a lot in it. There is Whyborne's mysterious ancestry, a secret of one of his sibling's, manic cousin's, and the first dent in Whyborne and Griffin's relationship. I think of all the stories so far this one is my favourite. I could read it again tomorrow!
This book provides a lot of startling discoveries to Whyborne and his family as multiple plotlines from previous books come together in this story:
-The Endicotts' true natures
-Whyborne's mother and her illness
-Why Whyborne always smells like the sea to Griffin and others
Let me tell you that I didn't see ANY of that coming!
The main thing that bothered and frustrated me in this book was Whyborne keeping secrets from Griffin and Christine. I get why he did it but still...secret keeping bugs me and it always blows up in the character's face in the end. Luckily, Whyborne and Griffin's issues were resolved fairly quickly and both of them took the blame-Whyborne for being reckless and keeping secrets, and Griffin for being so against practicing magic that Whyborne felt he HAD to do everything in secret.
We meet two of Whyborne's cousins in this book: Fiona and Theo Endicott. Honestly, I didn't like them...even before I found out they were bad news I didn't like them if only because they convinced Whyborne to lie to Griffin and Christine.
Whyborne learned an important lesson in this book...power is very tempting and can easily corrupt you. With all the arcane power of Widdershins at his fingertips Whyborne proves himself to be the opposite of a power hungry sorcerer. Although a taste of power leaves Whyborne feeling invincible and above others, he quickly comes to realize how wrong that is and works to stop his cousins from destroying everything he loves.
My favorite new addition to the family was Whyborne's twin sister, Persephone. Her lack of knowledge of any and all human customs cracked me up. I especially loved the scene where she appeared outside of Griffin and Whyborne's bedroom window:
I opened my eyes in the predawn light to discover a ketoi clinging to the window and staring back at me. I yelled and jerked upright. Then my muddled mind recognized the dark eyes blinking curiously at us. “Persephone,” I gasped. “What the devil are you doing?”
“Let me inside,” she called.
Griffin froze beside me, every muscle stiff. Not knowing what else to do, I wrapped the top layer of blanket around me, trying for some semblance of modesty while I went to the window. “What are you doing?” I repeated.
“We need to talk. Let me in.”
Uncertain what else to do, I unlocked the window and slid it up. She eeled through, the claws on the tips of her fingers digging into the wood. No doubt it was how she’d scaled the house. And come to Mother’s window, now to think of it. God. Mother. She didn’t know we were descended from sea-born aberrations, or that her youngest daughter still lived, or any of it.
“Couldn’t you knock on the door?” I asked Persephone, clutching the
“But you were here,” she pointed out. She peered at Griffin. “Why is
this one hiding?”
“Because it isn’t proper for you to just—just crawl into a man’s bedroom when he’s not dressed,” I exclaimed. Although as she wore nothing but a flimsy loincloth of gold netting and a few gems, no doubt she had rather different ideas of modesty.
“I’ve seen land men before,” she said with supreme indifference. Cocking her head to one side, she sniffed the air. “This one is your husband?”
“What?” Her questions kept catching me off guard. “That is, no, of course not. Only a man and a woman can wed.”
“Truly? Land people are stupid, then.” She held out a clawed hand to
Griffin. “This is your custom, yes? My land name is Persephone, and my
sea name is Sings Above the Waves.”
For once, Griffin looked even more flummoxed than I felt. He extended his hand cautiously. “I’m, uh, Griffin Flaherty. Pleased to make your acquaintance.”
“You don’t sound pleased.”
Dear God, did the ketoi have no manners, or was she blunt even for them? “You crawled in the window of our bedroom!”
Her tentacle-hair writhed, almost thoughtfully. “Ah. This is not polite. I have erred. Forgive me.”
“Just—just wait downstairs,” I told her. “Please.”
“Yes.” She turned and departed. Her long, webbed toes made her gait awkward, and I heard her shuffling gingerly down the stairs a few moments later.
“Well.” Griffin slid out from under the covers, shivering as he reached
for his clothes. “I already like her better than Stanford.”
I love it...she's just great...
Oh! I almost forgot! How could I forget?! Whyborne proposes to Griffin at the very end and I almost cried! He had the ketoi find a white and black pearl, one for each of them, to set into rings they could use as wedding rings. It was such an adorable and perfect way to end this book! And i love that Whyborne was the one who proposed...
As always, Julian G. Simmons does a wonderful narration of these books!
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