What chance does one witch have against five vampires? Alone, not much. But Rayvin’s allies are gathering…
The battle between good and evil supernatural forces heats up in the long, cold November nights of the former mining town. But how will Rayvin’s motley crew of spellcasters and shapeshifters cope when they discover the threat they face is even greater than they imagined?
Bloody. Crappin’. Hell. Tori L. Ridgewood pulls no punches with round two of The Talbot Trilogy and, in fact, she comes out swinging with some serious action, some serious character development and, one really exciting read. In all, Blood and Fire is a totally character-driven read that is complimented by an ever-evolving plot that is both intricate and interesting. Since you know how much I love characters, I’m going to hit you with a heavy dose of character analysis. Here we go . . . .
Andrea: still among the evil undead but there may be some hope for her. After some really ugly moments, Andrea seems to be one of the few vampires who is actually interested in fighting her new evil nature. Is there hope for her??
Charlotte: Whew!! After realizing her worst fear – the return of de Sade – Charlotte gets all kinds of angry and realizes that she and Rayvin have the ability to bring down the Big Bad. Charlotte really comes into her own in this installment and it is good to see her overcoming her fear and taking control.
Grant: not dead, not a vampire, still totally hot, newly wolfie and, totally embarrassed by having run away from Rayvin. Grant is on a mission and once he learns how to control his new shape shifting abilities he turns his anger and self-loathing toward revenge. de Sade is going down and Rayvin will be rescued.
Jason: still among the evil undead, still missing an eye and, more evil than ever before. Jason is a nasty, nasty vampire with all kinds of plans for total domination. To take over the world he has to build an army that is loyal to none other than Jason and take out de Sade. Jason is just crazy enough to think he can pull this off and he brings Hell with him in his attempt to take over the world. By far, one of the most loathsome characters dreamt up by Ridgewood 🙂
Marcy: welcome to the fight you lovely, lovely woody creature. Marcy is an incredible fighter with the ability to cover her body with bark and branches; she can literally root herself to a position and use her branches to stake vampires at will. She has a smart mouth, a beautiful and totally capable partner and, a serious obsession with bringing down de Sade.
Rayvin: one totally pissed off, magic is on the fritz, knocked up witch!! If you thought Rayvin was mad at the end of book one, wait until you see her now. Essentially, de Sade rapes her on a regular basis, she can’t fight back thanks to a nasty little device de Sade implanted in her neck and, she has lost the one man she ever truly loved, Grant. But, there is no give in or give up in Rayvin and at every turn she does her best to combat de Sade and his evil minions.
de Sade: still the Big Bad and still bat-sh*t crazy with delusions of grandeur thrown in for funsies. de Sade is convinced he can sire a master race of hybrid vampire/witches and through them, he will rule the world. For the first time in his more than 300 years of “life” de Sade is making progress toward his ultimate goal. Though Charlotte is his ideal mate de Sade has settled for Rayvin. He is convincingly crazy, determined to the point of blindness and, indiscriminately cruel.
Siobhan: a GARGOYLE!!!!! Tori L. Ridgewood, you gave me a GARGOYLE!!!! Siobhan is badass, she is totally dedicated to Marcy and, she is wicked awesome in a fight. In her human form she is slight, sexy and totally consumed with her appearance. When she transforms she is tons of fun and she can fly. Though Siobhan seems a bit flighty (HA!) she is just as dedicated as Marcy to taking down de Sade.
Solomon: a snarky recluse who also happens to be an extremely accomplished wolf. Solomon is responsible for training Grant and though he is quite hesitant to leave his home he is also committed to helping Grant and his daughter. Not gonna give that secret away 🙂
As you might have guessed this ragtag group of humans, witches and supernatural eventually come together to put a serious whoop ass on de Sade and his gang of evil undead. The plan is beyond crazy and by the time everyone comes together they are facing more than just de Sade. Jason is on the rise and his army is bound and determined to please him and when the smoke finally clears not everyone is still standing and the allegiances that have been formed had my head spinning.
The Bottom Line: I am so damn pleased with this read! Blood and Fire shows no signs of slowing down and Tori L. Ridgewood has come to play!! This book starts off fast and doesn’t let up until the very end. New and exciting characters are introduced, the older characters are believably evolving and, the plot is thickening with each turn of the virtual page. Loyalties are tested and strengthened, love is challenged and, the strength (both emotional and physical) of all is put to the ultimate test. Ridgewood is a polished writer who puts out well-written, finely edited books that have a tendency to just drag you right on in and not let you go until the very end. I promise you, you won’t care about being sucked in and will probably be pissy about the end of the read 🙂 I am putting it out there right now, The Talbot Trilogy is shaping up to be one of my all-time favorites and something I feel comfortable labelling as a highly recommended read.
After her first heartbreak, Tori found solace in two things: reading romance novels and listening to an after-dark radio program called Lovers and Other Strangers. Throughout the summer and fall of 1990, the new kid in town found reading fiction and writing her own short stories gave her a much needed creative outlet. Determined to become a published author, Tori amassed stacks of notebooks and boxes of filed-away stories, most only half-finished before another idea would overtake her and demand to be written down. Then, while on parental leave with her second baby, one story formed and refused to be packed away. Between teaching full-time, parenting, and life in general, it would take almost seven years before the first novel in her first trilogy would be completed. In the process, Tori finally found her stride as a writer.
At present, on her off-time, Tori not only enjoys reading, but also listening to an eclectic mix of music as she walks the family dog (Skittles), attempts to turn her thumb green, or makes needlework gifts for her friends and family members. She loves to travel, collect and make miniature furniture, and a good cup of tea during a thunderstorm or a blizzard. Under it all, she is always intrigued by history, the supernatural, vampire and shapeshifter mythology, romance, and other dangers.
**Photo and author info from Goodreads**