Saturday, December 12, 2009

Magic Just Got Murderous

My name is Genny Taylor. I work for It’s a great job, pays the rent, lets me do the thing I’m good at- finding magic and cracking it- and the bonus is it’s run by witches, which stops the vamps from taking a bite out of me.

Not that vampires are the big bad any more, not since they launched a slick PR campaign- oh, and they brought the goblins on board. Now the vamps are sought-after celebrities, and Getting Fanged and taking the Gift are the new height of all things cool. But only if you’re human.

And I’m not.

I’m Sidhe fae.

And I know firsthand just how deadly a vampire can be.

Title: The Sweet Scent of Blood
Author: Suzanne McLeod
Series: Spellcrackers, Book 1
Start & Finished: 9/16/09
Published: September 4, 2008
Publisher: Gollancz
Pages: 363
Genre: Paranormal

Suzanne McLeod described The Sweet Scent of Blood as "a sexy, fast-paced urban fantasy set in London with hot vampires, eccentric goblins, a cool faerie and plenty of magical plot twists." It's the first book in her Spellcracker series as well as her first published work yet it certainly doesn't read like one! Charlaine Harris (author of the Sookie books that were made into the HBO series True Blood) was quoted as saying it was one of her favorite reads.

A native Londoner, it’s no wonder Suzanne McLeod set her first book there though it’s not quite the London of our world. In The Sweet Scent of Blood we meet witches, a brownie, goblins, vampires, a troll (who is a police officer!), and even a satyr among others- including some fae. The main character Genny Taylor is actually sidhe, which is a type of noble fae. I really did like Genny since she’s witty and gives as good as she gets even when it looks like the odds aren’t in her favor. However, my favorite secondary character was Finn (the satyr) so I really hope he shows up in the future stories.

Exploring McLeod’s new world was a lot of fun and I truly enjoyed getting to know all the characters. At it’s heart this was a murder mystery and a really good one at that but it’s so cleverly written that it hardly seems like it. Though the Spellcracker series is hard to get over here in the US, I’m expecting many more great stories from Ms. McLeod.

Over the last few years, the vampires had crawled out of their coffins (not that I’d ever known one to actually sleep in a coffin) and brushed the dirt from their public image. They’d poured new blood into British Tourism and transformed the more presentable among themselves into A-list celebrities.

1. The Sweet Scent of Blood (2008)
2. The Cold Kiss of Death (2009)
3. The Bitter Seed of Magic (2010)

First Paragraph: The vampire looked a beautiful, dangerous cliché. Jet-black hair tied back in a French plait emphasized the pale angles of his face. Shadowed grey eyes stared out with moody promise. Black silk clung to hard abdominals while soft leather stretched down long, lean legs. An ankle-length coat pooled across the stone steps on which he sat so it seemed he existed in his own well of seductive darkness. Behind him, the ferris-wheel silhouette of the London Eye, backlit by exploding fireworks, added a less than subtle suggestion to the scene.

Special Thanks: I won this book from the author Suzanne McLeod (she even autographed it for me!).

McLeod talks about Magical London
Author's Livejournal Blog

Falcata Times E-Zine
Online Workshop for Writers of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror
Love Vampires

Amberkatze's Book Blog

Picture Explanations
Trafalgar Square Lion: Genny has to stop some pixies from trying to animate these!
Scotland Yard: Genny spends a fair bit of time here since her friend works here and since she took Bobby’s case.
Liquorice Torpedoes: Genny’s favorite candy which helps with the magic (sugar rush makes magic easier).


  1. This sounds like such a good read, Jen. I'll have to add it to my wish list. Thank you for the heads up!

  2. Hi Jen, thanks for the review, and great you enjoyed the book. Love the pictures :-)

    Finn does appear in book 2 [and book 3 *g*]

    Suzanne xx

  3. It's so much fun when you find a new series to love!

  4. This sounds like a wonderful read! I hope it will be available here in Canada soon.

  5. Wendy: You're welcome! I have a feeling you'll enjoy it.

    Suzanne McLeod: *Squeal*! Glad you liked the pics! I didn't know what those Liquorice Torpedoes were until I looked them up. Can't wait to read more of this series.

    Bermudaonion: So very true.

    Belle: If promoted right, this really could be the next big "thing".

  6. This does sound good, great review!
    I need to look this series up, I think i'd like it too.

  7. I'll have to tell my brother about this. He loves Harry Potter, Twilight, and the Sookie series, so this should be right up his ally.

  8. Now this sounds like something I'd love.

  9. Congrats on winning what sounds like a great book. Haven't heard of this series so I'll check it out.

  10. Naida: I'm sure you would!

    Alex: Those are all great books. He should try Patricia Briggs and Kim Harrison too.

    Carolsnotebook: Hope you get a chance to try it :)

    Alyssa Kirk: Thank you! She's a really great author and I can't wait to read more by her.

  11. Ack! Another fantastic sounding series to add to the list.

    *shakes head* I have got to stop visiting book blogs and finding great new authors to read.

    *grin* yeah, like that is going to happen! lol



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