A book that draws you in, deep in emotion, and buried family secrets on all sides. It is the story of Silla, her brother Reese, and their step-grandma, Judy, who came to live with them a few months ago after their father shot their mother and then killed himself. Silla found the bodies and stayed with them for over an hour until her brother came home and found her. She has been acting out somewhat, chopped of her hair, and generally withdrawn into her own private thoughts. Her brother put his college plans on hold, and took a job farming to help out. One day Silla receives an odd package in the mail, with a note signed only by The Deacon, and he says her father would have wanted her to have it. When she opens it up, it is an old book, filled with spells, all in her father’s handwriting. She has never believed that he voluntarily killed their mother,and now there might be a way to find out what really happened, buried in the pages of the book. She enlists her brother, reluctantly, but once he see what she can do, he readily joins in, as he too has the magic, the blood magic. The magic is in their blood, a necessary ingredient to the spells, without it as a binding agent, the spells won’t hold or even take.
Silla meets her handsome neighbor, who just moved into the farmhouse across the cemetery between their houses, with his step-mother, a novelist whom he calls Lilith, and his Dad, a lawyer. He is new to town, having come from Chicago to a small town in rural Kansas. He feels out of place, but when he stumbles upon her trying out her first spell, reanimating a dead leaf, he is intrigued. His mother, although he keeps this secret to himself for a while, used to try spells and stuff, and talked about the Blood, until she grew to hate it, and the only way to forget were drugs and alcohol. Then she left him, and he went to move in with his Dad, who recently married this “Lilith.” So begins a quest to find out how the blood magic works, what the each can do, the truth of her parent’s murder, and their families’ intertwined past, as well as what happened to Nick’s mother, and all the while tryign to get away from a powerful witch, that they don’t know who it is. Lots of twists, turns, and action kept me coming back for more And they don’t know who to trust at all any more. A nice romance between Nick and Tessa – you could really feel their intense connection and it seemed real enough to me. A good book, and I hope there are more.