Blood Debt by Nancy Straight
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Goodreads Says: Her whole life, it had just been the two of them. Before her mother’s last breath, she gave Camille the information she had craved her entire life: the identity of her father. Daring to contact him, Camille was welcomed by an entire family she never knew existed. But nothing comes without a price, as she discovers when her family claims a legendary heritage tracing back to a centaur touched by Zeus.
As she learns the secrets of her Centaur bloodline, she is drawn into a forbidden love with Drake. Her life may be the blood debt required to pay for her mother’s transgressions. The same person who once held her mother captive, and forced her into decades of hiding, now controls Camille. Her only chance is to seek a piece of her mother’s past that will win her freedom and the life she desperately wants
Right off I have to comment on this cover because how can I not? It is absolutely beautiful. I'm drawn to the cover model and her universal look. Not sure how to explain it other than that I feel she could represent a multitude of nationalities/ethnicities. In a book world that lacks POC's on covers it's nice to imagine the possibilities.
The synopsis given is pretty much on point so I won’t rehash it here.
What I liked:
*I really enjoyed the premise of the book. Camille, believed to be an only child and her mother’s only surviving relative, reaches out to her father after her mother dies of cancer. Not only does she have a father but a ready-made family waiting for her in South Carolina. It’s not only a discovery of a family she never knew she had but a discovery of her very mystical heritage.
*The Centaur lore is one I’ve never really read about before and I don’t really have anything to compare it to. All I know is that I liked how it was told in this story along with all of the Greek mythology that was woven intricately into this lore. It was intriguing and the way the Centaur history was told in the book made it very believable. It was strong and very well written.
*The romantic scenes were definitely written well. You felt the connection, the tension, the desire and the pull.
What was so-so:
*This story took off from page one. You don’t really have a moment to catch a breath until about a little after midway through. I mean there is something happening all the time. This is a plus and a negative. Let me explain. Camille is introduced to a boatload of people once she visits South Carolina. Because of the fast pace and so much info included or needed for the story it didn’t allow for the reader to really get to know some of these key characters (like family). It’s almost as if you had to trust some of the words on these pages on faith.
*This leads me to the romance. Yes the scenes had all the fire needed but again we don’t really get to know Drake, the guy who falls for Camille. All we know is that he can’t stop thinking of her. Yes, he seems nice enough but the time they spent with one another was not enough to justify love or the kind of love we were reading on these pages. There was something else but it might be too spoiler-ish for some. Let’s just say a declaration was made and I just thought it was kind of abrupt and kind of reaching regardless of the circumstances.
One other thing I felt was so-so was some of the transitions. They were kind of wonky. Something in the plot needed to be revealed so that it could thicken said plot but the way it was introduced did not flow at all. It needed to be fleshed out a bit. It kind of felt as it had to be said and introduced, didn’t fit anywhere and so it got stuck just so, right there. It only happened twice but it was significant.
Did not like:
*Camille is 22/23 years old. Yes, some 22/23 year olds can be immature but some of the stuff she pulled really bugged me. She liked to argue just for the sake of arguing when in reality she felt the same way the other person felt. She would say as much but argued just to be defiant. It was weird.
With that said I still enjoyed reading Blood Debt. Upon finishing I immediately felt as if the real journey had yet to begin and I was excited to find out what happened next. Its uniqueness won me over and I’m hoping the second book is a bit more fleshed out.
ARC was provided by author via the Making Connections Goodreads Group.