Thursday, 5 September 2013

Review of THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED by Cheryse Durrrant

Author: Cheryse Durrant
Expected Publication Date: September 7th 2013
Source: e-copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review

To save her kingdom, she must betray her blood...
Thrust into the technology-driven Earthlands via magical mists, Shahkara is forced to rely on Max McCalden to help find the ancient Elnara death lantern, her homeworld’s last chance of survival against the heart-devouring Taloners.
Max has his own problems, but nothing prepares him for this fugitive warrior’s razor-sharp talons.
Shahkara longs for love, but as deadly enemies attack at every turn, will her heart-lust for Max destroy them both? Or will she find the strength to free both worlds from a threat more horrific than the demons that share her blood?

"The Blood She Betrayed is unique. Shahkara is one of the most engaging female role models I’ve seen in a long time and the plot is full of ingenious twists, turns and surprises." - LJ Smith, author of The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle

*I Hereby Award This Book 5 Wings!*

I must confess: this book left me at a loss for words. Normally once I start a review, the sentences flow, but this book left me speechless.

THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED has to be one of my all-time favourite books. I was lucky enough to receive a copy from Cheryse in advance of its release date and I have never read anything even remotely similar. It stands out as unique, a one-of-a-kind book that I could not put down. My normal repertoire consists of vampires, werewolves, pixies, fairies, angels, usually YA fantasy/ supernatural/paranormal/romance, with the odd other genre thrown in, and while this book falls into that mix, it stands out from any other fantasy I have read.

Shahkara is a Taloner who travels from Gorias to Earth, intent on finding the Elnara, an artefact she has never seen before. She does not know what the Elnara looks like, but she has a dragon key compass she believes will lead the way. Once she finds the Elnara, she must use it to save her people from the Taloners destroying her homeworld. Shahkara arrives on Earth via the Twilight Mists and finds herself in Brisbane, Australia.

Max McCalden is the son of a wealthy tycoon with access to an abundance of wealth, but he is empty and unsatisfied. He suspects his friends only want him for his money, his father wants to own his soul, and no one would care if he was dead or alive.
Thus, he finds himself on the balcony of his friend's two-storey home, staring into his glass of rum. He knows he has drunk too much for one night, yet he downs another glass anyway. He feels the liquid burn down his throat into the pit of his stomach but, compared to the numbness of his existence, the burn is a satisfying feeling, but he does not realize it means his near-death as he slips and falls over the balcony.

The thing Max doesn't count on is Shahkara appearing out of nowhere and catching him.

Her cuirass and greaves giving her the illusion of a Gothic Angel. Shahkara looks no older than seventeen, yet she must have had some strength to have caught Max and saved him from plunging to his untimely death. Shahkara and Max forge an unlikely friendship. A Taloner from Gorias and a human from Earth, though Max has no idea this is the case.
Shahkara leads him to believe she is human as this is exactly how she appears, despite her unusual choice of clothes. Since Max has consumed a fair amount of alcohol, he doesn't see her cuirass as that strange and believes she is dressed for a costume party.

Little does Max know, Shahkara is working hard to fight a near overpowering urge to rip Max apart and feed on his heart, like any other Taloner, whose instincts are for hunger and survival. Shahkara, however, does not wish to be just any Taloner. Though the smell of his heart is rich, sweet and enticing, Shahkara knows she must not feed on him. Not since Jada has she had such a physical reaction to another's heart. She must do all she can to keep these feelings suppressed and do what she came to Earth to do: find the Elnara.

THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED tells of Shahkara's journey to find the Elnara, and how Max tries to convince her he can help, if only she is honest with him about who she is and why she is in Brisbane. As it turns out, she doesn't have as long to find the Elnara as she first thought, and she eventually decides she must enlist his help, if only to ensure she finds it in time to save her people.

Cheryse Durrant has a beautiful way with words, so much so that I found I was reading this book every spare minute of the day. Whether I read a page here and there between doing other things, or sitting down, reading one chapter after another, devouring every word on the pages before me.
The characters captured my heart, and I felt an ever-growing sympathy for both Max and Shahkara. They have both been through such trials and tribulations in their lives. Though they lived worlds apart, they clearly both have things in common that keep them together on their epic journey.

In all honesty, I believe THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED has the makings of a bestseller and Cheryse Durrant certainly has the makings of a bestselling author. If everything she writes is as powerful and compelling as this, she is set to take the literary world by storm.

I usually choose my favourite authors based on having read and loved a few of their books. But in this case, Cheryse fast-tracked her way to my favourite authors list. I can only hope the next 2 books in this series are as good as this one, if not better. I sometimes find myself feeling the second and third books in a trilogy are no match for the first, but in the case of THE BLOOD SHE BETRAYED, I believe they will go from strength to strength.

I really hope that you will check out the awesomeness that is TBSB for yourself. Trust me, you won't be sorry you did.

To buy 
The Blood She Betrayed:

The Blood She Betrayed eBook is available from Clan Destine Press (, Amazon, iTunes and Kobo.
The paperback can be pre-ordered via Clan Destine Press ( ) or Booktopia (, but will be available in all good bookstores from October.

To contact Cheryse:
Twitter  @CheryseDurrant

Hearts & Talons giveaway celebrates launch of Heart Hunters series
To celebrate the launch of her debut novel The Blood She Betrayed, Cheryse Durrant and her publisher, Clan Destine Press, are offering four giveaways as part of the Hearts & Talons tour running until November.
Prizes include a $AU50 Amazon gift voucher, a $AU50 Clan Destine Press (CDP) book pack, a $AU130 heart-shaped crystal pendant, signed paperbacks, swag, and the chance to have a character named after you in Durrant’s second Heart Hunters book, The Ghost She Killed.
To be part of the draw, readers must email proof of purchase (a receipt, screen grab or their order confirmation number) to cheryse (at) quietdawn (dot) org.
People who buy the book can gain extra entries in the Hearts & Talons giveaway by writing a review of The Blood She Betrayed and emailing the online link to Durrant, and/or emailing the Hearts & Talons promotion to 20 friends (cc’d to Durrant).

What you can win: Hearts & Talons giveaway
September – $AU50 Clan Destine Press book pack + signed paperback
October pre-paperback launch – Get a character named after you in Cheryse Durrant’s next novel, The Ghost She Killed + a signed paperback.
October – $AU50 Amazon gift voucher + signed paperback
November – $AU130  9ct gold crystal pendant + signed paperback
NB: Entrants are automatically entered into every month of the promotion.

Thank you for coming by for my review today. I hope to see you all here again soon!

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