The Blood Guard (The Blood Guard #1)

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The Blood Guard (The Blood Guard #1)
Author(s)
Publisher
Age Range
10+
Release Date
March 04, 2014
ISBN
978-1477847251
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When thirteen-year-old Ronan Truelove’s seemingly ordinary mom snatches him from school, then sets off on a high speed car chase, Ronan is shocked. His quiet, nerdy dad has been kidnapped? And the kidnappers are after him, too? His mom, he quickly learns, is anything but ordinary. In fact, she’s a member of an ancient order of knights, the Blood Guard, a sword-wielding secret society sworn to protect the Pure—thirty-six noble souls whose safety is crucial if the world as we know it is to survive. Now all those after-school activities—gymnastics, judo, survival training—she made him take, make sense. For suddenly Ronan is swept up in a sometimes funny, sometimes scary, but always thrilling adventure—dashing from one danger to the next, using his wits to escape the Bend Sinister, a posse of evil doers with strange powers. Falling in with two unlikely companions, Greta, a scrappy, strong-willed girl he’s never much liked and Jack, a devil-may-care teenage pickpocket, Ronan is left with only his wits and his mom’s last words of advice: Trust no one. That’s a lot for an ordinary kid to deal with. But then again, maybe Ronan’s not ordinary at all.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

Perfect pick for relecutant readers
Overall rating 
 
3.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
3.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Ronan Truelove always knew his mother was a little strange. She did enroll him in extracurricular activities ranging from fencing to karate to dance lessons. He had no idea she was part of the Blood Guard, a secret society dedicated to watching over the 36 Pure, or noble souls, in the world. When his father is kidnapped and dangerous people come after Ronan and his mother, he finds out the truth and begins a journey full of good and evil with a high probability of epic danger.

What I Loved:

The action in The Blood Guard is nonstop. Page after page, Ronan and his friends, Greta and Jack, are running from evil, attempting to locate parents, and frequently confused as to what’s happening. This is a perfect book for reluctant readers because there is little chance they will ever get bored in this lively plot.

The humor makes a lovely addition to the action. There are countless laugh-out-loud moments which provide some occasional much needed comic relief since the story certainly has dark times. The author definitely nails the balance between the darker story arcs and the lighter moments, equating this to a fun and exciting read.

What Left Me Wanting More:

Though the action is wonderful, so much action is happening that character growth is often sacrificed. The reader can easily sense that Ronan on track to discovery more about himself and develop, but he rarely does in this first book. Greta and Jack, both fascinating and engaging secondary characters, also have solid hints of development, but again, little is actualized. However, as with many series, character development sometimes holds off a larger effect until later books as the worlds and conflicts develop.

Final Verdict:

Though I did yearn for more character development, the action, mystery, and adventure make The Blood Guard an excellent pick for readers searching for something new and exciting. I will definitely be continuing the series.
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Super Corn Nuts Crazypants GOOD!
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Evelyn Ronan Truelove (don't call him Evelyn) has a quirky mother who has insisted he learn all sorts of useless skills like fencing and gymnastics,but he's still surprised when she picks him up from school and takes off in their van at breakneck speeding, telling him that his father has been kidnapped and she has to get Ronan to safety. She is also, by the way, a member of something called the Blood Guard, who are trying to protect 36 "pure souls" from an organization called the Bend Sinister that is trying to suck their souls out and cause the world as we know it to end. Alrighty, then! She drops him off at the train station with a backpack and instructions, but strange people start chasing him. When he finally gets away, he's in the company of Dawkins, who is also a member of the Guard, but also Greta, a girl who used to go to his school and whose father is in the FBI. The three take off to Roanoke, but the strange people keep after them. Dawkins gets killed, and Greta and Ronan end up hitching a ride with a boy their age, Sammy, and his pleasant guardians. Who turn out, of course, to be in thrall to the Bend Sinister. More chasing occurs, and the group eventually makes it to Greta's father, who is ALSO a member of the Guard. From there, lots of secrets are revealed, setting up a lot of issues to be confronted in book two of this trilogy.

This book is a perfect example of how important engaging characters and well-paced action are. I was sucked in after the first two pages, because Ronan made me chuckle, and I wanted to know what would happen next. Mr. Roy has clearly been paying attention when he has "edited hundreds of books for major publishers". The intricacies of the Blood Guard are explained in between all of the action scenes, I liked all of the good characters tremendously, to the point where I actually looked at the back of the book to see if Dawkins came back from the dead because I was crushed that he was, well, crushed. Very funny writing, too. My new phrase is "super corn nuts crazypants".
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