Sunday, April 21, 2013

Review: Wicked as They Come by Delilah S. Dawson

Wicked as They Come by Delilah S. Dawson
Series: Blud, Book 1
Publisher: Pocket Books
Genre: Steampunk/Paranormal Romance Wicked As They Come Cover
ISBN: 9781451657883
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N
Delilah S. Dawson Reading Order

When Tish Everett opens a locket she finds at an estate sale, she has no idea that it’s enchanted… At least, she doesn’t until she wakes up in a strange world. Sang is unlike anything Tish has ever imagined; a strange steampunk-like world where vampiric Bludmen and human Pinkies coexist in an oftentimes tense state. At the center of Tish’s journey is the man who brought her to Sang: roguish Bludman Criminy Stain. Criminy is a magician and the leader of a most unusual travelling circus. But the wonders of Criminy’s caravan are nothing compared to the attraction Tish feels toward the Bludman who would make her his.

Yet before Tish can even fully find her footing in this strange new world, her locket is stolen, taking with it the chance for her to return home. The search to recover the locket leads Tish and Criminy on an adventure more dangerous than either could have imagined. Soon it’s not just Tish’s future in jeopardy, but those of the Bludmen. Tish will have to risk everything if she wants to take a chance on a future with the Bludman who has captured her heart.

Wicked as They Come is the first book in Delilah S. Dawson’s wildly original Blud series. I cannot even begin to describe all that happens in Wicked as They Come, nor would I want to, for the fun of reading is in Tish’s journey. I will say that Sang is a unique, fascinating place that I would love to explore. That’s saying something when you consider all the dangers there are — Blud-hating magistrates, Coppers, monsters, ghosts, and bludrats (think ROUSes on steroids) to name a few. Ms. Dawson’s worldbuilding is top-notch in Wicked as They Come, and I cannot wait to see more of Sang.

At the heart of Wicked as They Come are Tish and Criminy, two characters I absolutely loved. Tish is a hardworking, caring woman who yearns to be free. She finds that freedom with Criminy, a man who definitely has a spot on my favorite heroes list. Criminy is charmingly different from the other heroes I’ve read about of late. He’s crafty, bold, roguish, a showman to the core, and surprisingly sweet. He and Tish are a dynamic pair and I hope to see more of them in the Blud series, for I liked them too much to leave them behind.

A couple of fascinating secondary characters would have had me eager to read more Blud books even if I hadn’t adored Tish and Criminy. Of the supporting characters, I’m most eager to read more about Casper, the man who almost manages to win Tish away from Criminy. Though I generally hate love triangles, the minor love triangle in Wicked as They Come was so well done that I didn’t mind at all. It’s easy to see why Tish is drawn to Casper, and it’s not just because of his looks. Though Casper didn’t win the girl this time, I’m looking forward to his book, Wicked as She Wants.

Wicked as They Come was captivating from start to finish and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys steampunk or paranormal romance. Ms. Dawson is a fresh new voice in the romance genre and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!