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Review: Half-Blood

Half-Blood by Jennifer L. Armentrout’s official release date in the U.S. is October 18, 2011. However, it is currently available to order online in both paperback and eBook formats from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

Published by Spencer Hill Press, the print edition is 304 pages.

Half-Blood is the first book in the new Covenant series by author Jennifer L. Armentrout

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Goodreads description:

The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi-pure-bloods-have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals-well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures.

Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden.

Unfortunately, she’s crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn’t her biggest problem–staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.

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There are only two possible futures if you are born a half-blood, and both involve service to the pure-bloods.

Choose to be a protector and become a Guard, a glorified babysitter, or a Sentinel and your life is put at risk defending the pure-bloods from daimons, traveling from place to place with no chance to have your own life.

Your other option is to be taken into servitude and be relegated to the background, forced to quietly serve the pure-bloods, stripped of your free will, becoming nearly invisible to those around you.

Neither option is ideal. Neither option allows for happiness. But only the pure-bloods, the descendants of gods and mortals, are favored by the gods with powers over the elements.

Being a half-blood, the child of a pure-blood and a mortal, gives you strength and speed, but next to no rights compared to those who were born pure-blooded and no elemental powers. You have no freedoms unless the pure-bloods grant them to you. And you get no love story or happily ever after.

And the most important rule of all, the one that cannot be broken, is that you can never ever mix. Getting involved with a pure-blood would mean a guaranteed life of servitude, or even execution. But Alex Andros was never one to follow orders or play by the rules.

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Half-Blood is a book that will sink its teeth into you and won’t let go, not that you’d ever want to, even after you’ve read the last word on the last page.

This action-packed, incredibly intense and utterly riveting first book in the Covenant series takes readers into a world hidden from the mortal one, where demigods, who can wield elemental powers and who continue to abide by their own laws and ancient rules set forth by the gods, still exist.

The Hematoi, the pure-blooded descendants of gods and mortals, have dominion over those who are half-bloods, the descendants of pure-bloods and mortals. Half-bloods may have no power over the elements, but they are faster and stronger than any mortal, and can do one thing that the pure-bloods cannot – see daimons as they truly are.

This power gives them a slight advantage, which makes them ideal protectors, and as Sentinels and Guards at least they are offered a slightly better, if likely shorter, future than being a servant.

So, for Alexandria “Alex” Andros the choice has always been clear – train to become a Sentinel. But when her mother takes her away from the Covenant to hide in the mortal world for reasons her mother refuses to reveal, her future as a Sentinel has all but vanished.

Not turning in her mother or revealing her location for the three years they’ve been on the run would almost guarantee her servant status if they were found. But while Alex never planned on being found, the daimons had other ideas.

Taken back to the Covenant without her pure-blood mother to help her, Alex’s fate is left in the hands of her Uncle Marcus and her step-father Lucian, the Council Minister.

Whatever her fate, it’s already been decided according to the oracle. But for Alex to have any chance, she has to believe that fate can be changed, that her future is not set in stone and that love will find a way.

Instantly bewitching, author Jennifer L. Armentrout’s writing will invite you into this world, tangle you up in this plot which is exciting, dangerous and tension-filled, and will leave you begging for the next installment.

The story moves at such a lightning pace that you will have taken this ride before you even realize it has begun, as Alex fights to get back what she’s lost, ensure her future as a Sentinel, keep the daimons from claiming anyone else she cares about, including herself, fights her feelings for someone that she can never have, and uncovers a terrifying and monumental secret about herself and why she and her mother were on the run.

There is no doubt that Half-Blood is a must read for readers of any age. The gods demand it. The only question that remains is just how many times.

Reviewer gives this book…

Like In-N-Out Burger‘s infamous secret menu this one deserves my off-the-menu 6 star rating.

On a personal note:

I was blown away by this book – clear across Lake Lure and right onto Deity Island. I knew from reading Daimon that I would be. I could just tell that this author knew how to grab readers from just how ensnared I got reading that short story.

But when it came to Half-Blood I was more than grabbed. I was transfixed. The first time I read it I did not put it down. Not for one single second. I was so totally caught up in that world that I never wanted to leave.

And when I had to, after that tiny glimpse into Pure, the next book in the series, it was like waking from a dream and all I wanted was to go back to sleep and return to the enchanting world she created.

I was fortunate to have received and early copy, but that has made the wait that much harder.

So, when I was able to pick this book back up again and return to the Covenant once more, to see one of my most favorite stubborn, reckless and brave heroines fight against a future that could take away her free will and force her into a life of servitude, I couldn’t wait.

Alex is seriously one of the fiercest heroines I’ve met. She can take a kick, punch or total beat-down and barely flinch. But she’s not so super tough that you can’t feel her pain and despair as she fights to escape the terrible situations she’s put in.

And then there’s Aiden St. Delphi. Oh, how I do love him. Aiden really couldn’t get much more perfect and still be an ideal hero. But he’s just the right amount of perfect and he is absolutely a hero. He’s brave and smart and sees Alex as an equal. He’s closed-off after everything he’s been through, but he is not so shut down that he isn’t there for Alex or for his brother Deacon.

And of course the fact that he’s totally hot, with those gunmetal grey eyes and ripped abs, doesn’t hurt. Yeah…so totally hot.

I have to mention Seth. Oh, Seth. I’m not sure I’m completely ready to trust him yet. There is just something that makes him incredibly likable, but he hasn’t proved himself to be selfless and I’m not completely sure that he won’t hurt Alex, even if it’s not his intention. I will wait and see. There’s bound to be more of this super powerful and definitely yummy Apollyon.

But it wasn’t just the characters that propelled this story into greatness, it was the plot. I was completely captivated by this story as the events played out. Both times I read it.

I may not have been shocked about one reveal because the author practically begged me to figure it out, but when it came to be, and just how it unfolded, still has me imagining what will happen next and exactly what it means for Alex, Aiden, Seth and all the rest of the pure-bloods and half-bloods. The possibilities of what might happen are epic, life-changing and existence-changing for all of them. And I can’t wait to see it when it does, even if it’s a few books down the road.

I just have to mention one last thing in this long gush-fest. I died just a little bit when certain doors were closed. I am hoping they aren’t forever locked and that they will be thrown wide open in a future book, but for now I suffer not so silently and I wait along with everyone else until next spring and Pure’s release.

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If you’d like to check out my review for Daimon, the prequel novella, click here.

If you’d like to read an exclusive excerpt of Half-Blood from the blog Books Complete Me, CLICK HERE.

Half-Blood book trailer #1

Half-Blood book trailer #2

Half-Blood book trailer #3

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This review is based on both an ARC I received from the publisher for review and an ARC I received through a charitable auction.

4 Responses to “Review: Half-Blood”

  1. blackplume says:

    This book is is my wishlist since forever! and with that rating and review, I am more eager to get a copy soon.

  2. oh my! oh my!
    I have to ask forgiveness to author Jennifer because even though there has been tons and tons of reviews of this book…I’ve never actually felt attracted to read either the blurb nor the reviews…but after Rachel’s introduction…now I’m dying of both embarrasment for not wanting it before AND of NEED, I sooo need need need this book now…it sounds so completely different and refreshing and at the same time compelling just by the review here…I can just imagine what it’d be like when I actually get the chance to read it!
    thanks for another awesome review girl…and for being the on-and-on reason of my tbr pile just growing and growing…~needs money~

  3. I will admit I terrible and always judging books by their covers, and this one has always made me pass it by. Now though I am really, really thinking I will have to read this. Your review makes me want to experience the story for myself. It sounds so action-packed and angsty!

  4. Kate says:

    Thanks for reviewing. So glad you enjoyed it!

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