Tuesday, 8 October 2019

Book Review: June’s Blood (Haunted Halls: Rosebud Academy Book 1) by Juliet Vane

June’s Blood (Haunted Halls: Rosebud Academy Book 1) by Juliet Vane follows pianist Lissa Anderson as she arrives at elite summer school, Rosebud Academy. She’s trying to get her life back together, battling the grief of losing her best friend to cancer and the alcohol that nearly ruined her own future. In addition to brutal lessons, Lissa has to find time to finish earning her diploma, fall in love, and solve the mystery putting her classmates against each other.

Vane shows strong, if unimaginative, technical ability. The story is focused and the plot is solid. A lack of figurative language is the only thing holding June’s Blood back. It could have been the difference between good and great.

June’s Blood is a cut and dried young adult novel. It’s very “This happened, then this happened, then this happened.” Although the action is easy to follow, it leaves the reader wanting more. It’s all action, no motive.

I’m big on the introspection. I want to know what the MC is thinking, what drives them, how they feel - ESPECIALLY if it’s in (groan) first person. June’s Blood let me down in that respect. I couldn’t connect with Lissa the way I should have been able to.

Although lacking in introspection, June’s Blood presents backstory in a clever, satisfying way. It’s given as the story goes on, when you need it, rather than in an information dump at the start. That being said, there were times when flashbacks would have given emotion to a slightly dry novel.

June’s Blood is an enjoyable mystery with a hint of romance. It’s currently available for free on Amazon and I suggest you take advantage. There are another two in the series and I’m already well into the second book. Give this one a try.

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