Monday, June 10, 2013

Review: Blood and Chocolate

Goodreads Summary: Vivian Gandillon relishes the change, the sweet, fierce ache that carries her from girl to wolf. At sixteen, she is beautiful and strong, and all the young wolves are on her tail. But Vivian still grieves for her dead father; her pack remains leaderless and in disarray, and she feels lost in the suburbs of Maryland. She longs for a normal life. But what is normal for a werewolf?

Then Vivian falls in love with a human, a meat-boy. Aiden is kind and gentle, a welcome relief from the squabbling pack. He’s fascinated by magic, and Vivian longs to reveal herself to him. Surely he would understand her and delight in the wonder of her dual nature, not fear her as an ordinary human would.

Vivian’s divided loyalties are strained further when a brutal murder threatens to expose the pack. Moving between two worlds, she does not seem to belong in either. What is she really—human or beast? Which tastes sweeter—blood or chocolate?
I absolutely loved this book as a teenager; like, I can't even tell you how many times I read and reread it. As an adult (if we can call my version of twenty-four an adult), a few friends and I decided to do a reread of this book over the summer to see if it held up because we all loved it as teenagers.

I think one of the things that draws me to this book the most, both then and now, is the fact that it is a YA book written for young adults but it doesn't read like one. Annette Curtis Klause doesn't make the mistake that many authors do of writing down to the "younger" audience, she doesn't treat her readership like children at all. In fact, I feel just as much the adult reading it now as I did then. Its a mature book dealing with mature issues. Its dark. Its gritty. Some parts are downright horrifying. Its one of those books that as a teenager reading it you feel like you're getting away with something, you've slipped something into your reading list that just maybe wouldn't have been otherwise approved. You feel like an adult. Here, finally, is someone treating you like one. Suffice to say, Annette Curtis Klause doesn't pull punches.

Part of the appeal, I think, also comes from the fact that while there is romance and it is a major part of the book it isn't the main part. Despite the romance and the werewolves Blood and Chocolate always has felt more like a coming of age story to me. Its more concerned with how Vivian feels, what she is going through, who she was and who she wants to become. Blood and Chocolate is concerned with taking on what is normal, how none of us ever feel like we really belong and how to embrace that. And I love it for that. I love that you can be a paranormal lover, pick it up and love it, or you could just be searching for a book about feeling like you don't fit in and it will do you just as well. It doesn't have a niche that its crammed into, not really.



  1. I'm so happy that this one stood the test of time for you, Ash. I love when books are able to do that, honestly. It's so awesome that this author doesn't pull anything or that she writes down, that's probably one of my biggest pet peeves in YA. Teens are smart, thankyouverymuch. ;) And the romance not quite being the forefront is also really appealing.

    Lovely review, Ash! <3

    -Aneeqah @ My Not So Real Life

    1. Same. I feel like so many books don't hold up to the test, I'll love them and then go back to them and the love isn't there. Totally makes me understand why there are so many readers who don't reread. Sometimes it can really kill a book for you.

      Thank you! <3