Tuesday 14 June 2011


Finished June 12
Bloodtide by Melvin Burgess
This teen novel was recommended on a list recently and since our library had it, I decided to check it out. It is one set at some uncertain dystopian point of time in the city of London (England). Two young teens (14) Siggy and Signy are twin sister and brother, the youngest in the ruling family of Val Volson. King Val is marrying Signy off to Conor, the leader of another fiefdom, hoping the union will bring peace to their area and unite them against the halfmen.
Both of these two fiefdoms are in the old city of London and surrounding them is a land inhabited by halfmen, creatures of mixed human/animal blood. The halfmen are men in varying degrees, some of them able to pass as men in most circumstances. The mixed blood creatures are men mixed with a variety of animals, including dogs, cats, and pigs. The ring of land they inhabit serves as a buffer between the fiefdoms and the controlled city of Ragnor. We learn very little of Ragnor in the book.
The action is set in the two fiefdoms and shows the fight for control between the Volsons, Conor, and the halfmen. There is intrigue, betrayal, magic, and science here.
The plot seems to be guided by the old gods: Odin and Loki among others.
The character that I cared most about was not Siggy (who seemed weak to me) or Signy (who seemed self-centered and manipulative) but Cherry, the shapeshifter who played a pivotal role in the plot.
This is the interesting beginning to a series of books that continues with Bloodsong.

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