Black Blood (Black Bloods #1) by John Hennessy

Black Blood (Black Bloods) (Volume 1) - John L. Hennessy

Despite the pills that Aberdeen Dareday is forced to take each day, she feels deeply.  Abby works hard to suppress her emotions and fit in with all of the other humans living on the alien ship who have been saved by WWIII by the Khahireans.  When her veins turn black and the Kahahireans turn on her, Abby is forced to flee the only home she has ever known.  This is when Abby learns that she has been lied to her entire life.  Facing reality is not easy because it means learning that not only have the Kahahireans duped humans but were creatures, sorcerers and vampires are real.  Abby is force to run for her life because not only are the Kahahiereans on her trail, the other abnormas are fascinated by her strange blood.  Can Abbey find a way to survive in this brave new world is save humanity from its captors?

Black Blood grabbed from the very first chapter.  It's absolutely a different take on a dystopian novel and I simply love the fact that it is one of the few examples in this genre in which we don't have a White, male cisgender heterosexual saviour.  Abby has to learn how to read people for the first time having had no experience with emotion and it leads to some awkward situations.  She's never sure how or if she should express herself. Abby often becomes overwhelmed by her emotions but it works to her advantage because of her magic.  With a single thought she can kill and set someone on fire.  Though Abby is scared of what she can do she has to keep pushing forward in order to survive.  

We are introduced to several supernatural creatures in Black Bloods but learn little about their society beyond their weaknesses.  Were creatures for instance are instinctively drawn to silver even though it has the ability to kill them.  Abby is unique amongst the abnormals because she is immune to silver sickness and gold does not bother her.  I wish that Hennessy had Abbie learn to fight instead of using woo woo to have her instantly be able to defend herself and escape sticky situations.  Abby is also a reader in that she can read any text in any language.  Apparently, this is a rare skill but it reads as Abby pulling another magical skill out of her ass in the nick of time to save the day. 

Much of the book is spent trying to figure out exactly what Abby is and when the big reveal does finally happen, it's so rushed.  I feel like I didn't really get to enjoy the ending.  Just about everyone Abby and her love interest Ash meet tries to kill them yet when they meet to humans despite being repeatedly told that everyone tries to kill Black Bloods, when they meet Nora and Collin things change.  All Abby has to do is prove that she is a witch and say that she wants to save the word and voila, these humans invite them into their home and agree to help.  Huh?  Clearly, Hennessy plans to have Nora and Collin play some role in the second book in this series but it caused me to break my belief in the story.  We need to be given some reason why Collin and Nora are so trusting.  This makes the set up for book 2 awkward.

Because of the limitations of Abby was raised she has never had a romantic relationship.  She was told repeatedly that sex is not something enjoyable.  The humans in captivity feel this way because of their emotions have been shut off.  Abby is unique in that she cannot wait until she can be mated.  On the outside world Abby finds herself feeling sexually attracted to almost every male she meets.  A simple kiss is enough for her head to spin and the word, "cock" leads to arousal.  I don't mind romance in dystopian but much of what occurred felt like I was being hit over the head.  Yes, a young woman still in her teen years is going to have raging hormones particularly when she is not allowed to explore her sexuality but in her interactions with Ash there was none of the shy build up which happens when people find each other attractive.  Mostly it's all about Abby thinking about how attractive Ash is and that she saw him naked.



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