Happy Wednesday and a very happy book birthday to Shadow Kissed by Rebecca L. Garcia! This is the first book in Garcia’s new series Marked by Blood, and it is an exciting and sexy read! Let’s check it out!
About the Book:
Title: Shadow Kissed
Author: Rebecca L. Garcia
Series: Marked by Blood #1
Publication Date: April 15, 2022
Synopsis: Some fates belong to the shadows…
Olivia knows everyone at the guild is on high alert, but no one will tell her why. She’s certain the death of her boyfriend is behind it, but the truth is far worse. Darkness has come to the mortal kingdom. When the guild protecting them is attacked by vampires, Olivia is swept away from the safety of her home when her mom and best friend are taken.
Before she can get away, she’s captured by a vampire, Sebastian, who insists he’s protecting her. But when she’s taken to the City of Nightmares, the most dangerous place in the vampire kingdom she realizes she’s been made prisoner.
As she fights to survive in a world where mortals are nothing more than things to be fed on or traded, Olivia must use her wits and place her trust in the handsome, but deadly Sebastian, if she’s going to figure out a way to save her loved ones.
However, some of the world’s most vicious vampires want her dead. Others want her for themselves.
When the truth comes out, Olivia realizes the ones she loves have been shielding her from a fate worse than death. Can she escape the clutches of her bloody destiny, or will she succumb to the shadows?
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Shadow Kissed follows Olivia, a sorceress and empath protected by her sorceress mother and the Guild from vampires who covet her kind. Still reeling from the death of her boyfriend, Olivia’s sheltered life is turned upside down when her city is attacked, and she is taken by a vampire. Sebastian insists that Olivia is not his captive and that he and his friends are trying to help and protect her. Unsure if she should trust Sebastian, Olivia focuses on rescuing her mother and best friend, who were taken in the same attack. But everything is not what Olivia believed, and as secrets and lies are revealed, Olivia must decide her fate.
Garcia never fails to create immersive and unique worlds, and this new series is no exception. The world-building in this book is so vivid and original, and I like how the two worlds introduced, Baldoria and Sanmorte, contrast each other. Where Baldoria has a more contemporary and modern feel, Sanmorte feels like a mix of modern and medieval. It’s a fascinating and dangerous place, as Olivia quickly learns. The author’s writing style brings these worlds to life and makes it very easy to visualize.
Dark and suspenseful, the story has many twists and turns and nail-biting action. It’s so easy to become invested in the story and the characters because they are all so dynamically developed. Olivia is fierce and determined, and she is pretty savvy considering how sheltered she was. She is a fighter, and she never stops fighting for the people and things that are important to her. On top of this new world and new experiences, many of which are harrowing, Olivia learns a ton about herself, her mother, and her family, which is really intriguing. She also begins to fall for Sebastian.
Dark, brooding, and mysterious, Sebastian is everything I love in a paranormal romance hero. He’s a smart, sexy, handsome, charismatic vampire that can fly – what’s not to love! The banter between Olivia and Sebastian is fantastic, and their slow-building romance is filled with sexual tension. They both want different things but end up working together toward a common goal. Of course, they fight their feelings for each other every step of the way, but their connection is strong. I love them together! They both grow and change so much because of each other, and it’s clear their story isn’t over.
I liked a lot of the side characters and loved the group of friends Olivia makes in Sanmorte. Many of these characters, as well as others, keep secrets, and their intentions aren’t clear, so Olivia struggles in knowing who to trust. I always enjoy books that explore the moral greyness of people, which Shadow Kissed does well. It seems as if everyone has an ulterior motive, and it’s interesting to see how Olivia determines friend from foe. Political intrigue and plots, personal vendettas, betrayals, lies, secrets, long-time feuds, and more press down on Olivia as she tries to find her mother and friend and rescue them from the enemy. It makes for a super intense, often action-packed, and intriguing read!
Shadow Kissed is a great start to Rebecca Garcia’s new series, and after that ending, I can’t wait to read the next book!! If you like paranormal romance or romantasy, you should check this one out. Special thanks to the author for providing me with a copy of the book. All thoughts are my own.
- The romance!
- The world building!
- The characters.
You were meant to be the one who could heal my heart, not break it.
This is a great story for people who like the following:
- found family
- fake dating
- enemies to lovers romance
- only one bed
- slow burn romance
- epic world-building