Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin is the second book in the Serpent & Dove series. I was curious how this series would go forward after the first book. Since a lot happened at the end of that book. I’ll be sharing spoilers of the ending of that book in this review as there’s no way to discuss this book (spoiler-free to the ending) without discussing the previous book.
The stakes are higher. The witches are deadlier. And the romance is red-hot. The eagerly anticipated sequel to the New York Times and Indiebound bestseller Serpent & Dove is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas and is an instant New York Times bestseller!
Lou, Reid, Coco, and Ansel are on the run from coven, kingdom, and church—fugitives with nowhere to hide.
To survive, they need allies. Strong ones. But as Lou becomes increasingly desperate to save those she loves, she turns to a darker side of magic that may cost Reid the one thing he can’t bear to lose. Bound to her always, his vows were clear: where Lou goes, he will go; and where she stays, he will stay.
Until death do they part.
- Published: September 1, 2020
- Page Count: 538 pages
- Genre: YA Fantasy
My Thoughts on Blood & Honey
This book starts one week after the events of Serpent & Dove. Reid, Lou, Coco, Beau, Ansel, and Madame Labelle are on the run from Lou’s mother. After Reid almost kills himself using magic for a second time, he vows never to use it again. Which creates a rift between himself and Lou. Not to mention, she is conflicted with herself over what path to take when it comes to her mother. She’s done running, but her entire life she’s been raised with the thought she would be killed at the age of sixteen. She’s so conflicted over it that her magic is out of control/controlling her and she’s gathering creatures that are attracted to anguish and self-conflict. Three of them, more than normal witches end up attracting.
The group decides to separate to gather allies against Lou’s mother. Lou, Ansel, and Coco go to get help from the Blood Witches (Coco’s coven), while Madam Labelle (Reid’s mother), Reid, and Beau go with a performing group lead by Claud Deveraux to get the help of werewolves. While separated Lou finds out that her mother is killing all the King’s children, and Reid learns there are other male witches within Claud’s group.
Most of the character development occurs for Reid as he struggles to come to terms that he’s a witch. He has spent years hating magic and anyone with it. So, it takes him time to come to terms with it himself. And eventually, embrace it. However, it did create a rift between himself and Lou that the two have to repair. In addition to the fact, she doesn’t trust him. Lou kept secrets from him about what her mother was doing so Reid would stay focused on gathering allies. But as I said, the two fix that rift on the day the Archbishop (Lou’s father) is laid to rest.
I’m not going to talk about the ending of the book. The very ending with the twist to set up the next book was shocking, but other elements of it were not. I was able to predict multiple things that happened. Not to mention, characters called them out. Like they literally stated pages or chapters before what was going to happen. So, in that respect, it wasn’t a surprise. Though the shocking part that got me was also something that was hinted at earlier in the book. Hell, it was flat out said, but like the characters, I ignored those words as the character they came from. Oh, I can’t wait to see what happens in the next and final book in the series.
Overall, I would give Blood & Honey by Shelby Mahurin a 3.75 out of 5-star rating.
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