This was on my January TBR list, so that is the reason why I had to stop into Dymocks and pick this book up. Normally the second book in a series is not as good as the first, but Blood For Blood blew Wolf By Wolf out of the water!

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Title: Blood For Blood
Author:Ryan Graudin
Date published: October 6th 2016
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 496
My Rating55663-five-stars

There would be blood. Blood for blood. Blood to pay. An entire world of it.

For the resistance in the Third Reich, the war may be over, but the fight has just begun. Death camp survivor Yael, who has the power to skinshift, is on the run: the world has just seen her shoot and kill Hitler. But the truth of what happened is far more complicated, and its consequences are deadly. Yael and her unlikely comrades dive into enemy territory to try to turn the tide against Hitler’s army, and there is no alternative but to see their mission through to the end, whatever the cost.

But in the midst of the chaos, Yael’s past and future collide when she comes face to face with a ghost from her past, and a spark with a fellow rider begins to grow into something more. Dark secrets reveal dark truths and one question hangs over them all—how far can you go for the ones you love?

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Normally the second book in a series is no where near as good as the first, however this is definitely not true about Blood For Blood. While I loved Wolf By Wolf, it did feel slow at times and I wanted more insight and information into the world in which the book is set-a world where Germany was the victor of World War II. The reason that Blood for Blood was so strong was that everything was set up and introduced in Wolf by Wolf, and we could get straight into the action from the very first page.

Blood For Blood starts off where the first book ends-we see the start of the fallout from Yael’s actions, how it effects not only her, but the two other characters that feature heavily in this book. While the first book predominantly focused on Yael and her background, we learn more about previous race victor Luka and Adele’s brother Felix as they take on more important roles. Chapters switch between these three point of views, and in each section of the book we flashback to moments from each of their pasts that all had some common theme. What I really enjoyed about the focus on three difference characters was exploring their different experiences under the reign of Hitler and the National Socialist party, and how their opinions and ideals change throughout the book.

While I do enjoy Yael’s character, the real star of this book for me was Luka. Presented as a self absorbed patriot in the first book, we get a glimpse of his upbringing and his real thoughts about Hitler and Germania. He is the hero of the book, the comic relief, the support for Yael and his fate is heartbreaking but fitting for the story. His close friendship and growing romance with Yael generated some of my favourite moments of the book. Felix is a different matter-I sympathised and supported him in the first book, but this changed due to his decisions early in the book. Though the betrayal could be justified and his loyalty to his family something to be respected, Felix’s actions and decisions were questionable to me.

Plot and story wise, we got the in depth political and war scenes I was wanting to be in the first book. There were so many ups and downs throughout the book, leaving me anxious but also intrigued at what would happen next. The inkling of betrayal early on set up moments of tension where characters were oblivious of the deception or times where you knew something would go wrong and felt helpless when it did. The war/fight scenes were do descriptive and vividly written and the conclusion of the book thoughtful and fitting. The heartbreaking death at the end was completely out of the blue, felt genuine and positively (albeit sad) shaped the end of the story.

 

Blood for Blood is an impactful and bittersweet book that explored an alternative universe set post World War II. A young adult action book with a fantasy/science fiction undertones, the characters and setting combined to create a book that stayed with me long after I put it down.

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