Series: Blud #1
Published by Pocket Books on March 27th 2012
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Steampunk
B&N | Goodreads
First in a steampunk-tinged paranormal romance series in which a woman is transported to a world filled with vampires and magic.
When nurse Tish Everett forced open the pesky but lovely locket she found at an estate sale, she had no idea she was answering the call of Criminy Stain, from the far off land of Sang. He’d cast a spell for her, but when she’s transported right to him, she’s not so sure she’s ready to be under the spell of another man. (It didn’t go so well last time with controlling, abusive, domineering Jeff.) If only Criminy wasn’t so deliciously rakish….
Half the inhabitants of Sang are Pinkies—human—and the other half are Bludmen, who in Tish’s world would be called vampires. But they don’t mess with any of the bat/coffin/no sunlight nonsense. They’re rather like you and me, just more fabulous, long living, and mostly indestructible. (They're also very good kissers.) But when the evil Mayor of Manchester (formerly Bludchester) redoubles his efforts to rid Sang of the Bludmen once and for all, stealing Tish’s locket in hopes of traveling back to her world himself for reinforcements, Criminy and Tish must battle ghosts, sea monsters, wayward submarines, a secret cabal, and thundering Bludmares to get the locket back and allow Tish to return home…but has she found love with Criminy? Could she stay in Sang forever?
Much like Tish I found myself thinking of Sang and Criminy during the day at work and wanting to get home at night so I can see him again. Dawson does an excellent job of creating a wonderfully bizarre world that brings to mind Alice in Wonderland and the Wizard of Oz with her own unique elements.
Just think if Alice instead of falling down a hole she fell asleep with a magical locket around her neck and woke up in a world where vampires are real but not as we know them. The vampire, or bludman in question is Criminy, the master of a traveling circus.
Wicked as They Come may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Some might think it’s a little to weird but I found it refreshingly different and was hooked from the beginning. The heroine is totally relatable and the hero is darkly delicious. The way Dawson wrote the world, Sang is easily a third man character of the book. Sang is much like our world but in a bizarro fantastical way. With its cities named similar to the real world and then their the blud animals, like the bludbunnies, bludrats and bludmares.
Also liked the fact that Wicked as They Come ended with a happily ever after, for now. There’s still some story left in Tish and Criminy’s relationship and after speaking with Dawson in an interview she hopes to revisit them in the future to give us that ending they deserve.
“I would burn down the world for you,” he whispered fiercely. “Your world or my own. I would rip down the entire city with my bare hands without a second thought. I don’t need to taste anything else, I don’t need a comparison.”
I recommend Wicked as They Come to anyone in the mood for something a little different from the norm in the PNR world and it’s a great introduction for me into the steampunk genre.
To sum up Wicked as They Come: wonderfully weird romance.