Writer's View - Dirty Blood by Heather Hildenbrand

From Goodreads: I killed a girl last night. I did it with my bare hands and an old piece of pipe I found lying next to the dumpster. But that’s not the part that got me. The part that scared me, the part I can’t seem to wrap my head around and still has me reeling, was that when she charged me, her body shifted – and then she was a wolf. All snapping teeth and extended claws. But by the time I stood over her lifeless body, she was a girl again. That’s about the time I went into shock… And that was the moment he showed up.

Now, all I can do is accept the truths that are staring me in the face. One, Werewolves do exist. And Two, I was born to kill them.

The Writer's View

OMG, I totally loved this book! It's not too often I get so into a book that I have a hard time sleeping, but this was definitely the case with this story. If I had to sum it up in one sentence, it would be this: Buffy with werewolves. This book is free, guys. If you don't already have a copy, go grab it! It's a fast-paced, action-packed urban fantasy adventure with a nice dose of fun romance.

Besides the Buffy-esque feel, I totally loved the main character, Tara. She's confident and not afraid to go after what she wants. When someone pisses her off, they hear about it. She sticks up for herself and overall is a self-advocate. I admire these traits in a teen heroine, and I think she's a good role model for teen readers. I love it when her over-protective love interest tries to shove her to the sideline and squares off with him. Just because she's got the hots for him doesn't mean she's going to roll over and be meek.

Tell me about it

There was a great worldbuilding technique in this book that was very simple, yet effective. We get most of the info on this paranormal world through question/answer dialogue between Tara and various other Werewolves and Hunters. While in some books this might come off as info-dumpy and forced, it worked very well in this book. It felt seamless and natural. I think the reason this technique played so well in this novel is because Tara knows nothing about the paranormal Werewolf world. As she enters this new world, it's only natural for her to ask questions. This technique definitely would not work in a novel where the main characters already know the ins and outs of the world -- it would just come off as contrived. I'm going to file away in my brain if I ever decide to write a  paranormal book.