Book Review: Blood and Salt by Kim Liggett

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We here at A Midsummer Night’s Read really enjoy a good book that will keep you on your toes and maybe even give you chills, so of course we jumped at the chance to join in on Penguin Teen’s WICKED READS campaign.  This means that this week, I will be featuring the creepy books that I have enjoyed to help count down to Halloween this Saturday!

Welcome to WICKED READS!

 

Does any one else remember these books?  I remember ordering them from the Scholastic book fair back in Elementary school, and I also remember throwing the books in my closet after reading one of their particularly scary entries.  What was your favorite scary book as a kid?

 

23845997“When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”

These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.

Ash is plagued by memories of her ancestor, Katia, which harken back to the town’s history of unrequited love and murder, alchemy and immortality. Charming traditions soon give way to a string of gruesome deaths, and Ash feels drawn to Dane, a forbidden boy with secrets of his own.

As the community prepares for a ceremony five hundred years in the making, Ash must fight not only to save her mother, but herself—and discover the truth about Quivira before it’s too late. Before she’s all in—blood and salt.

As soon as I read the synopsis for this novel, which was a long time ago before it was released or even before it had a cover, I knew that I had to get my hands on a copy of this book as soon as I could.  Luckily, I was able to reach out to the author and expressed my extreme interest in her novel, and somehow found myself in contact with the publisher. Less than two weeks later, I had a beautiful copy of this book in my hands.

First off, maybe I should give you a few buzz phrases that can describe this book: Creepy, Cult, Ghosts, Bloody. I devoured this book in a matter of hours.  Sure, there are a few things that could have been done better, as there are in any book, but on the whole I found this book to be a really entertaining.

I really enjoyed the magical realism in this novel, and I like the fact that there really isn’t any true type of explanation for it.  It makes the ideas much more intriguing.  I do, however, wish there had been much more of a reason for the audience to really understand the pull of the corn and the entire aspect of the ceremonies going on within this little cult.  Although the characters are quick to dismiss that this is a normal cult, and both Ash and her brother Rhys are drawn in fairly easily with little to no argument.

The only thing that I found super creepy was this bloody woman that kept appearing to the main character in many precarious situations.  I wasn’t too scared by the corn, or how the corn seemed to dictate what exactly was happening within the little city, but I understand what Liggett was trying to do here.  Evidently a lot of people made some connections between this novel and “Children of the Corn,” but I’ve never seen that so I don’t really see the parallels that other reviewers have pointed out.

I’m never really a fan of insta-love or anything like that, but I did actually enjoy the romance aspect of this novel and found Dane to be a super jerk by the end of the novel.  I’m not going to give away why!

Overall this is a good read for creepiness right here at Halloween!

4 Bards!

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Blog Tour: Blood and Salt by Kim Liggett

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Welcome to A Midsummer Night’s Read’s stop on the Blood and Salt Blog tour, hosted by Penguin Teen!

Check out the book synopsis below, listen to the book playlist, and enter to win a hardcover copy of the book.  My Review of Blood and Salt will be up tomorrow!

 

bloodandsalt“When you fall in love, you will carve out your heart and throw it into the deepest ocean. You will be all in—blood and salt.”

These are the last words Ash Larkin hears before her mother returns to the spiritual commune she escaped long ago. But when Ash follows her to Quivira, Kansas, something sinister and ancient waits among the rustling cornstalks of this village lost to time.

Ash is plagued by memories of her ancestor, Katia, which harken back to the town’s history of unrequited love and murder, alchemy and immortality. Charming traditions soon give way to a string of gruesome deaths, and Ash feels drawn to Dane, a forbidden boy with secrets of his own.

As the community prepares for a ceremony five hundred years in the making, Ash must fight not only to save her mother, but herself—and discover the truth about Quivira before it’s too late. Before she’s all in—blood and salt.

Release Date: September 22, 2015

Blood and Salt is full of creepy goodness, but there’s also a scorching hot romance.

This is the official Ash and Dane playlist directly from the author herself! (Click on the song title to listen!)

1) Neighborhood #1— Arcade Fire

I love this song– I think it captures that all-consuming feeling of first love.

2) I Never— Rilo Kiley

“I’ve got nothing to give, except everything. The good and the bad.” The ache in this song is so real.

3) Flow — Sade

This is a seriously sexy song. I can just imagine this playing during the lake scene.

4) Use Me— Holly Golightly

I think this shows Ash’s attitude to her brother’s warnings.

5) The Crystal Ship— The Hot Rats

Dark, gritty with a slight hallucinogenic quality. I can imagine this playing during that incredibly hot kiss on page 236.

6) I Want It That Way— Backstreet Boys

If this seems like an oddball choice– you’re right. Read the book and you’ll understand everything. ; )

7) Bloodstream— Stateless 

This song feels like a dream– a perfect combination of anguish and bliss.

8) It Won’t Be Long— Jason Collett

“When you close your eyes, kiss my mouth, I know I’m closer now than anyone has ever been.” Nuff said.

9) Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want— Clayhill

I always think of Dane when I hear this. It reminds me of his focus on Ash– he’s trying to do the right thing, but he’s clouded by desire.

10) Closer— Kings of Leon

“She took my heart, I think she took my soul.” This song is dark, dangerous and sexy.

11) I Want You— Elvis Costello

I wrote an incredibly hot scene to this song that didn’t make it into the final book. But this song belongs on this playlist.

12) Night In My Veins— Pretenders

“It feels good, even if it’s just the night in my veins.” I think there’s a part of Ash that knows this is dangerous, but she doesn’t care. It feels too good.

13) Can’t Seem To Make You Mine— The Seeds

This is such a fun song! Very Ash and Dane.

14) Fall At Your Feet— Boy & Bear

This is a beautiful song, but there’s a certain sadness that reminds me of Ash and Dane.

15) Shade And Honey— Sparklehorse

This song is so romantic and dark and strange. Just like Blood and Salt.

GIVEAWAY

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Be sure to check out some of the other stops on the Blood and Salt tour, and come back tomorrow to see my review!

Good Books & Wine –  9/14
Addicted Readers – 9/15
Jessabella Reads –  9/16
A Midsummer Night’s Read – 9/17
It Starts At Midnight –  9/18

The Book Bratz –  9/21
No BS Book Reviews – 9/22
Once Upon a Twilight – 9/23
Please Feed the Bookworm – 9/24
The Irish Banana –  9/25

Winterhaven Books – 9/28
My Friends are Fiction – 9/29
Fiction Fare –  9/30
A Dream Within a Dream –  10/1
Two Chicks on Books –10/2

Top Ten Tuesday: March 31

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted for us book blogger types by the Broke and the Bookish. They provide a topic, and all of us participants post our answers on our blogs and we hop around checking out one another’s answers! This week’s topic is:

Top Ten Books You Recently Added to your To-Be-Read List

 

1. The Winner’s Curse & The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski
I woefully admit that I am just now adding these novels to my TBR list.  Why now? Well, to be honest I never really looked into the synopsis and now I am regretting not trying to get my hands on these books earlier!

2. The Boy Most Likely To by Huntley Fitzpatrick
I never read the first book, My Life Next Door, but I suppose I’ll add that to my TBR now too!  This is a companion novel, so I don’t think I’d necessarily have to read the first one, but after reading both of the synopses I really think I’ve been missing out.

3. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
This is an obvious add to my list because I absolutely adored Fangirl and I can’t wait to read more of the fanfiction that was interspersed throughout that novel.

4. The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury
THAT COVER. I know, I totally added it originally because the cover is absolutely gorgeous but the narrative sounds pretty amazing too. This is definitely going to be one of the books I pick up first.

5. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman
New science fiction!

6. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
Super excited about this adaptation, and it has actually been on my radar for a while but for some reason I never actually put it on my TBR shelf on Goodreads!  I think this book is going to be even better because it will help with the increase in diversity among YA titles.

7. Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan
Adored Ryan’s zombie series, The Forest of Hands and Teeth, so of course I want to get my hands on this new series!

8. Blood and Salt by Kim Liggett
There is a commune/cult involved in this story. That’s all you need to know.

9. The Devil You Know by Trish Doller
Roadtrip triller? Count me in.

10. Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby
I’m definitely trying to read more Contemporary fiction, especially since there has been a big shift towards realistic fiction in the past year.  I really like the idea of this novel, it sounds a bit complex, especially with the aspect of a donor heart being involved.

What other books should I add to my TBR list?!

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