Title: The Book of Blood and Shadow
Author: Robin Wasserman
Genre: YA, Mystery, Suspense
Release Date: January 10, 2012
It was like a nightmare, but there was no waking up. When the night began, Nora had two best friends and an embarrassingly storybook one true love. When it ended, she had nothing but blood on her hands and an echoing scream that stopped only when the tranquilizers pierced her veins and left her in the merciful dark.
But the next morning, it was all still true: Chris was dead. His girlfriend Adriane, Nora's best friend, was catatonic. And Max, Nora's sweet, smart, soft-spoken Prince Charming, was gone. He was also—according to the police, according to her parents, according to everyone—a murderer.
Desperate to prove his innocence, Nora follows the trail of blood, no matter where it leads. It ultimately brings her to the ancient streets of Prague, where she is drawn into a dark web of secret societies and shadowy conspirators, all driven by a mad desire to possess something that might not even exist. For buried in a centuries-old manuscript is the secret to ultimate knowledge and communion with the divine; it is said that he who controls the Lumen Dei controls the world. Unbeknownst to her, Nora now holds the crucial key to unlocking its secrets. Her night of blood is just one piece in a puzzle that spans continents and centuries. Solving it may be the only way she can save her own life. --Goodreads
I haven’t read a great historical, thrilling mystery since The Da Vinci Code. Sure, I’ve read some good ones- some I’d recommend- but absolutely brilliant, fantastic, hold-your-breath and put you on the edge of your seat type story that may have even put Mr. Dan Brown to shame? No. Not until I picked up The Book of Blood and Shadow by Robin Wasserman. This was YA, too, and by the time I finished reading, I was smiling like an idiot… As if I had found a lost treasure among a mysterious city that I had magically been transported to. And I'd like to make a small note before I continue, I was in no way trying to put down The Da Vinci Code. I really enjoyed that book when I had first read it, too. But I liked this one much better if you had to make me choose.
How often does a reader get to sit down a say, “I’ve discovered something magical”? I know I don’t get to do this very much. I’ve had the most wonderful reading year, finding some great reads along the way and proudly saying that I haven’t had too many disappointments. Now I sit here also proclaiming that I’ve found one of the best upcoming 2012 compelling masterpieces that you really do not want to miss given the chance.
I was instantly hooked from the first page and stayed engaged until the last-- not once wanting to stray from the story, and always wanting to know more about the magnificent characters and amazing history that Robin Wasserman created. I was driven by a number of emotions: sorrow, shock, tenderness, happiness, anger… and the twists and turns kept me constant on my toes, begging me to always keeping the pages turning. The mystery was believable. The horror was awful (not meant in a bad way). And the details were immaculate but not so overdone that you were left with your own imagination, too. I felt an attachment through it all. When the end came, I still wanted more.
I must read more of Wasserman’s writing now.
Treasure hunting, history, foreign locations, romance, mystery, suspense…. This has it all.
I don’t give this rating too often, but The Book of Blood and Shadow certainly deserves it: