Monday, January 7, 2013

Old Blood by Karina Halle

Title: Old Blood
Author: Karina Halle
Publisher: Metal Blonde Books
Release Date: June 23, 2012
Pages: 93 pages
How I Got the Book: Copy from the author for review
Purchase/Pre-order: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Promotional Materials and More: series website
Old Blood (Experiment in Terror, #5.5)A haunting novella from the Experiment in Terror Series...

From her harrowing introduction in Darkhouse, the spectre known as “Creepy Clown Lady” has been a constant fixture in Perry Palomino’s life. But beyond the horrid makeup and piercing stare lies Pippa, a woman just like everyone else.

Well, not quite.

When Perry discovered Pippa’s message to her and Dex on the EVP recordings, she thought she heard the last of the old woman’s message. She was wrong. In the novella Old Blood, Pippa relays the tale of her troubled and tortured past, revealing how an aspiring actress and loving mother fell into madness and how an unfathomable betrayal led to her untimely death.

For Perry, the repercussions of her message are life-shattering.


Same as usual: the author is my friend and this didn't influence my rating or review. You'll see that in a second.

Well... This was unexpected. Pippa's story should have been so interesting because we know so little about her; we only found out the littlest bit of information close to the end of On Demon Wings, the fifth novel in the series. The long-awaited story behind the woman made up like a clown isn't able to make the anticipation worthwhile, but her character is developed well enough to make that a little bit better.

This short novella manages to cover Pippa's entire life, which was probably around sixty or seventy years by my vague math, but only concentrates on the key times of her life. When she started seeing ghosts, how she grew up, an affair that came back to bite her multiple times, what happened once she came to New York and met Dex, and other little tidbits I'll keep quiet. By the time you're done, you understand exactly how she came to be who she is and why she's been haunting Dex and Perry for so long.

One of the larger issues is that Pippa isn't as engaging of a narrator as Perry is. Pippa speaks much more formally--befitting of her age and when she grew up, I suppose, but it's not necessarily fun reading. Even with this heavily abridged version of her life, some parts drag and I got tempted to flip through another book even with just a little bit left to this novella.

I noticed the quality of the editing make a small decline in On Demon Wings, but it's even worse here. Figuring out where to start is difficult because there were so many sections I highlighted for repetitiveness, awkward structure, and even a dropped word or two. I try not to overdo it with commas despite being taught to use them everywhere, but there were a lot of places that really needed commas objectively.

Even though this was a slight disappointment, I'm sticking around and still love Karina to bits. How can I not with how well On Demon Wings went?

3 stars!

What am I reading next?: Wings of the Wicked by Courtney Allison Moulton