Book Review: Bad Blood by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
AHHH! I can't believe Bad Blood is the last book in The Naturals series! It feels weird to think that I've been reading this series for the last four years and now its over. If you haven't read any of the books in this series then the best way I could sum it up is a teenage version of the TV show Criminal Minds. If you're into crime shows at all then you'll probably really dig this series!
Anyway, here are my thoughts!
1) We finally get backstory on Michael and Lia.
I've been waiting so long for this! Since the first book when we first met Michael I've been dying to know where he came from. We knew that he had an abusive father, but knew little else about his life before The Naturals! To get to see his home, meet his childhood best friend, and see a knew level of his relationship with Lia, there was so much about him that became so much clearer! And Lia, hot damn is her story interesting to me. I've always been mildly curious as to cult dynamics. Some of my favorite episodes of all the crime shows I watch are ones that involve cults. The whole cultic take on this series threw me for a loop at first and I kept wanting to dig deeper and deeper into it and we definitely do in this last book. Also just to get to see Lia share some truths (and hard ones, at that) was an incredible leap in her character arc for me and I was so glad for it!
2) Cassie and Dean.
I'm not ashamed to say that I've always been Team Dean. I guess the broody, silent type tends to appeal to me the most in books. I feel like their relationship has really come to fruition and is the most solid it has ever been. We didn't get a whole lot of them in this book, BUT I think the pieces that we did get were very illuminating as to how far they've come as a pair, but also as individuals.
3) How intricate the story got.
I 100% didn't expect to see TA Geoff again, let alone who he picked as his victims. I didn't see coming how we'd be investigating not one, but two cults. I didn't realize how dimensional Cassie's mom would be. Not because Barnes isn't capable of it as an author, but because we saw Lorelei through Cassie's memories for so long that I never realized that she might have been psychologically altered by the time we met her. I could go on and on and on about all of the incredible twists I didn't see coming, but I digress!
4) The ending.
In some ways, there is a bit of that happily ever after vibe, but it is still very bitter sweet. Cassie, Laurel, and Sterling are going to have a real struggle ahead of them in trying to figure out their dynamic. Also, Cassie and Sterling having to come to terms with everything they've lost in the process, but hopefully they'll land on what they've gained too. That being said though, I'm so glad that they end up back near Cassie's family. I'm a sucker for circular storylines so getting to see Cassie end up right back where she started, but also in a completely different place than she was in the beginning of the books was so satisfying.
Suffice to say, this is one of my all time favorite series and I really, really loved this last installment. My only qualm is that I wish this book was longer or that we got some kind of epilogue of them further down the line, especially with this being the last book we'll get with these characters. Then again, I tend to say that with any series that I love. I will unabashedly want to read more and more and more books in a world that I enjoy. So if Jennifer Lynn Barnes ever decides to return to this series, even if its with a new batch of Naturals, then I am so down to read it!
Some favorite quotes:
- "In five seconds I'm going to tell you that I love you. And if you're still in the room when I say it, you're going to know."
- "Home isn't a place. It's not having a bed to come home to, or a year, or a Christmas tree at the holidays. Home is the people who love you."
Where to find Bad Blood:
Where to find Jennifer Lynn Barnes: