Blood and Salt
by Kim Liggett
Format: Paperback ARC
Source: Liberty Bay Books
Expected Date of Publication: September 22, 2015
“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.
This book took my breath away. There wasn’t a single thing about it that I didn’t like. Not one thing. That doesn’t happen very often.
It was sweepingly romantic and the definition of enchanting. It was the wildly unrealistic but dream like, heart pounding, firework, instant love. Despite me saying instant love, this wasn’t the obnoxious insta-love we all know and hate. There were kinks to work through, and feelings weren’t admitted for quite sometime despite the magnetic attraction between Ash and Dane. Somehow it wasn’t insta-love-y, at least to me. I’m not quite sure how Liggett managed but I am glad she did.
The entire storyline is like nothing I’ve ever read. It is hauntingly beautiful and absolutely bone chilling. It was creepy done right. I am often disappointed by books that promise creepy, thrilling, or horror because they never seem to pack quite the scary punch, I hope they will. This is an exception. While it wasn’t scary, it was thrilling and had me on edge. This book will give you goosebumps inside and out.
The characters were amazing. They each had such vibrant and unique personalities that all worked with each other and offset each other perfectly, bringing out each individual’s unique characteristics. They all had a good balance of good and bad, flaws and strengths. It was amazing how they all worked together and you couldn’t help but love all of them.
I was shocked at how funny it ended up being! Ash and her brother had this dry sense of humor that greatly contrasted the intensity and seriousness of their situation. They made jokes and said some really funny things that while seemingly out of place made me laugh out loud and somehow worked with everything else.
The plot was quite intricate and was always a step ahead of me, surprising me at every turn. I predicted some parts of it, but never the major reveals. Also, the pacing of it was perfect.
Last Words: This may very well be my favorite book I’ve read this year. It was an amazing blend of freaky Occult and fairytale romance. It was rich with emotion and written beautifully. Blood and Salt is a spellbinding story that will make you laugh, make you cry, and make you tremble with fear all at once. I give it an enthusiastic five out of five stars.