Title: Sweet Blood of Mine (Overworld Chronicles #1)
Author: John Corwin
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Raven House
Publication Date: April 26th 2012
Goodreads Summary: From Mega Nerd to Super Stud.
Justin Case and women do not mix. Man boobs, a love of Kings and Castles, and being tight with the “nerd” crowd certainly don’t win him any points either. After rescuing Katie, his crush, it turns out she might not be the girl he thought she was, while Elyssa, the school’s Goth Girl, turns out to be more. Can high school get any more confusing?
Determined to improve himself, he joins a gym and meets a sexy girl that just oozes a “come hither, Justin” vibe. Until she attacks him in the parking lot, and Justin realizes she’s no ordinary girl but a being with supernatural speed and strength. After a narrow escape and an excruciating migraine headache, he wakes up with supernatural abilities all his own: speed, strength, and the ability to seduce every woman he sees.
While that might sound like the perfect combo for any hormonal teen, Justin is a hopeless romantic who wants his first time to be special. Is that too much to ask for? But he doesn’t know what he is or how to stop his carnal urges. One thing is clear: If he doesn’t find answers there are other more sinister supernaturals who would like nothing better than to make him their eternal plaything and do far worse than kill him.
Sweet Blood of Mine is different to all the the other YA books I’ve read because the main character wasn’t super hot, super rich or super cool. In fact, he was pretty much the opposite of all of these things. Justin is an overweight nerd who leads a pretty sucky life.
After an argument with his friends, rather friend, and his family, he’s pretty much on his own, but for some reason the Goth crowd at school choose to accept him. Then after a strange encounter with a very hot woman at the gym, Justin starts to develop strange powers whereby he can make any female attracted to him. This isn’t any sort of attraction though, this is let’s-have-sex-right-this-very-second attraction. Suffice to say – Justice is confused.
Sweet Blood of Mine is a YA paranormal romance but curiously it is written by a man, which is not something you come across often. The story is also written from the perspective of the male protagonist, though I suspect that this sort of book appeals primarily to teenage girls. Perhaps this was Corvus’ attempt to draw boys into the paranormal romance genre and it might, just possibly, have worked.
As I said, Sweet Blood of Mine is written from Justin’s perspective and it’s pretty funny at times. Justin is a real loser, not a typical young adult loser who just hasn’t mixed with the right people. Justin is pretty clueless about what’s happening to him which makes this whole book a bit of a mystery as you know just as much as Justin does. Towards the end of the book you’ll be turning pages like crazy as it seems everyone from the crazy hot lady at the gym to his new Goth girlfriend, Elyssa, to his dad knows the truth, apart from Justin.
I loved the character of Justin but I can’t say that he didn’t seriously bug me at times (come on, we were in the mind of a teenage boy). As a teenage girl, I can honestly say it was quite the learning experience to read something written from a teenage boy’s perspective. Obviously, I know this is fiction, but I can’t help but feel that John Corwin nailed Justin’s character on the head and I felt like I was really in the brain of a teenage boy.
I also really loved the character Elyssa, the girl in the Goth crew, because she was so feisty and wasn’t afraid to say what she felt. She really annoyed me at the end of the book when she proved that feistiness turned into stubbornness but on the whole I thought she was great. Again, it’s really interesting to read a young adult romance from the perspective of the boy because we were reading about what boys really think about strong girls like Elyssa.
I loved that Sweet Blood of Mine featured a whole new type of paranormal creature that I’ve never come across before, which is rare these days. I also loved that this was a mixture of a mystery, romance, action and a paranormal book. It wasn’t just about romance either, there’s also some stuff about his dysfunctional family, his mum leaves at the beginning of the book and his dad turns to alcohol, as well as friendships.
The story really gets going towards the end of the book and there’s quite a lot of action that paves the way for a sequel. Once Justin finds out exactly what he is and what he is capable of the plot starts to move a bit faster and the stakes are raised. There was so much juicy material jam packed into this novel but it didn’t feel like you were being overloaded because it was all so cleverly crafted.
All in all, I’d highly recommend Sweet Blood of Mine to everyone whether you’re a boy, a girl or even an adult. This is a really different sort of YA book that I guarantee will have you flipping through those pages like crazy. A huge mix of genres wonderfully collide in this novel and it’s probably one of the best books I read in 2012.