Blood Forever
by Mari Mancusi, fantasy (2012)
Berkley, $9.99, ISBN 978-0-425-25303-8


Blood Forever is the final book in the author's Blood Coven Vampire series. I hate to do this, but the review of this book will contain spoilers for previous books as well as this one. The author did something here that made it impossible for me to describe my feelings for this book without revealing that particular aspect of the story. So, if you have not read this book or those previous books, and have intention to do so sometime in the future, contain your curiosity and hit the back button now.

Okay, with that out of the way, let's move on. If you have read the previous book, Soul Bound, things became really bad for our McDonald sisters Sunny and Rayne, so Rayne made a deal with Hades to be sent back in time, back when everything first started. What this means is that Ms Mancusi has pretty much hit the reset button, making the last seven books pretty much irrelevant! It's a shame, about I thought the subplot about the group of rogue Slayers was pretty interesting.

At any rate, the sisters decide that, now that they have a second chance, they will lead normal lives. Their exciting lives in the past led to the deaths of their vampire boyfriends Magnus and Jareth, after all. That resolve lasts for only a day, heh. Well, if they can't let go of their feelings for their boyfriends (who, at that time, haven't develop those feelings back for the sisters). they will just set things right this time around. The death of Lucifent at the hands of Bertha the Vampire Slayer (see Boys That Bite set the whole chain of events in the last seven books that culminated in the death and destruction of all that is good and amazing, so if they can prevent Lucifent's death, they can still get their boyfriends to fall in love with them and all will be fine. And since they know what will happen in the future, it is simple to pull this off. Right?

Well, these ladies will soon learn that there will be consequences to fooling around with time...

Rayne and Sunny share narrative duties here, and this leads to some editorial boo-boos when Sunny, posing as Rayne, sometimes get addressed as "Sunny" by Magnus when he's supposed to believe that she's Rayne. Confusing, I know, maybe that's why Ms Mancusi got muddled up too. But shouldn't someone have checked these things out before the book is published?

All that aside, I actually like this story. I had a blast with Boys That Bite, and it's in a way fun to revisit the story in this particular variation. Spider, whom I've always liked, gets a big role here, and she's so adorable with her genre-savvy brand of humor. Can I say "Glenda and Spider forever"? Come on, Ms Mancusi, make that happen. Sunny doesn't act too whiny here, and Rayne is as always kick-ass wonderful, and I don't remember Magnus being this likable in Boys That Bite. Jareth, who had always been emo in the most stereotypical manner, gets some good lines here too. The guys here are such a hoot to read, I can't help but to go along with everything despite my reservations about the reset button plot development.

I mean, yes, I like this book and I even enjoyed reading that disgustingly sweet happy ending where everything turns out just so amazing that everyone moves permanently to Mary Sue Land and live happily ever after, but still, a part of me will always be thinking, "Wait, so the author had me strung along for seven books, only to give me this as the grand finale?" Despite how much I had fun here, I feel that the author had done a major cop-out in this one. Still, I take comfort in knowing that, somewhere out there, dear sweet Jayden will eventually find someone who will love him back and he will be finally happy.

At the end of the day, I'm conflicted about Blood Forever. But still, even if the finale is an anticlimatic one, it's an enjoyable kind of anticlimax. In a strange way, the series end on a high note where I am concerned, even if every particle in my body does not approve of the method used by the author to deliver the finale. Oh what the heck, when it comes to the final score, I'm just going to go with how this book delivers the fun. But you've read the review, so I hope you know that my rating of this book comes with plenty of reservations.

Rating: 83


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