BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Bea Reviews Blood World by Chris Mooney

Publisher: Berkley
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: August 18th, 2020
Buying Links: Amazon* | Bookshop.org | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Google Books | Kobo |
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Blurb from goodreads:

A drug that makes the blood of carriers a fountain of youth, a psychopath who doesn't care how many bodies he leaves in his wake, and an LAPD detective hopelessly compromised by a dark secret. Together, they're an explosive mix that's going to shatter the city of Los Angeles into a million corpuscles.

The most valuable commodity on earth is the blood of "carriers." These young people hold within them a virtual fountain of youth. Those with the right genes produce blood that, when treated with a new wonder drug, cures disease, increases power, and makes the recipient a virtual superman.

It also makes the carriers targets. Blood farms filled with kidnapped children spring up around the country, and Los Angeles is at the center of this blood-dealing world. The police are overwhelmed.

Ellie Batista became an LAPD officer specifically to fight this evil as a member of the Blood Squad, but she has been consistently denied a transfer to the prestigious unit--until the day she and her partner are ambushed during a routine stop. The resulting events plunge her into an undercover world more dangerous than she could have ever imagined.

A madman has found a way to increase the potency of the blood to levels previously unimagined. As he cuts a bloody swath through the already deadly world of blood cartels, Ellie is the only hope to stop him before the body count rises.


My Thoughts:

"Blood World" was chilling, brutal, gory, and both fantastic in the original meaning and painfully believable. Light on science, heavy on action, violence, and treachery, Mooney painted a world that looked and felt like ours but was an undefined number of years in the future. The only technological change and cultural changes depicted were those related to the blood world; everything else could have been lifted from a contemporary novel.

In this world, a protein in human blood has been identified that can be the fountain of youth, or at least boost your health. Carriers of this protein are identified and often kidnapped so their blood can be be illegally sold. It's the hot new drug. Oh, and the blood is even more potent when the carrier is young. Children are kidnapped for their blood. The wealthy drive the demand but even the less well-off would like an infusion of the special blood; if they can afford it at all, they can only get the cheap stuff which doesn't have the same results.

There are several organizations or individuals who are the main players in the sale of the potent blood and there's a new player trying to make his mark on the scene. The lead character is a female police officer, Ellie Batista, who's willing to do absolutely anything to bring down the illegal blood suppliers and the blood farms. Ellie is cold, pragmatic, determined, and loyal. She gets a chance to go undercover to insert herself into one of the criminal organizations and she buries herself in her work.

"Blood World" skimps on science and doesn't try too hard to engage our emotions. Although, I did find myself at times rooting for one of the bad guys. Then he would say or do something to remind me that he was actually a very nasty person. Still, I mostly liked him better than our heroine Ellie. She had a nice little tragic backstory and I wanted her to accomplish both her personal mission and her official mission, but I never connected with her or cared about her. I wanted her success because of the awfullness of the blood world and the horror that carriers lived with daily. And that's where Mooney shone. The world building, despite the lack of scientific grounding, was strong. The blood trade could as easily have been our modern day drug trade. We get an up close look at building and keeping a criminal enterprise going and the violence that keeps one afloat or catches the attention of the law. The details around the process of selling the special blood, finding carriers, finding clients, etc drew me in.

"Blood World" was enthralling, a story with colorful personalities, a future problem that resonates with current problems, and a breakneck pace. The ending was...over the top, and the final scene both expected and unexpected. The story was a wild ride; I mean, I never thought I'd be rooting for a murderer, who was also a drug dealer and a kidnapper, and yet I did. His allies were nearly as compelling and both his allies and his enemies were greedy, amoral, and fascinating. "Blood World" is a crime novel with a slight science fiction twist that will keep you up reading to see what happens, who comes out on top, who lives, who dies, and whether the good guys are really the good guys. 

2 comments:

  1. Sounds fascinating. Not my normal type of read, but looks good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A little out of my normal with its level of on page violence but otherwise, just my speed.

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