Thursday, January 10, 2013

Anthony Francis: Blood Rock

This is the second book in Anthony Francis' Dakota Frost series. If you are interested in this book or series you do need to read the first book Frost Moon, before this one as it the main introduction to Dakota's powers, relationship as well as the main development of Dakota's world.

Dakota Frost the best magical tattoo artist in the south is back and trying to get her life back to normal. Well as normal as her life can be when attempting to adopt Cinnamon a werecat, as well as trying to keep a relationship going with Phillip when he is in town and making sure that she still has cliental to pay the bills. When Dakota is called to the scene of a police situation, she has no idea what to expect, but the police seem to think that she will be the expert, but how wrong they were. Someone has developed a way to create magical graffiti, similar to the magic that Dakota does with her tattooing but someone has infused paint with the ability to move and with being able to move it gives the graffiti the ability to attack with deadly consequences. This graffiti is spreading throughout Atlanta and attacking everything, people, wares and vampires. Dakota is an expert in tattooing and not graffiti, but as she keeps showing up to try to help those caught by the graffiti and figure out the graffiti works, the police believe Dakota is the problem. Now on the run from the graffiti artist as well as police Dakota needs to figure out quick how the graffiti magic works, or she is going to loose everyone she loves.

This book had me involved right from the first pages and it made me wonder why I took so long to pick up this book to read as I really enjoyed basically everything from the first novel, and I am glad that Francis has not disappointed in the second. Francis has an uncanny ability to create a unique world that is both interesting and easy to follow, something different within the paranormal genre as well as a great, well rounded and believable main character (well as believable as a character can be in this genre). Additionally, Francis is not afraid to take risks. In this book you will really question who is going to come out alive in the end as there are some major deaths that I do not think that others would have had the guts to do because they were people who were/are important to Dakota. I think that by taking risks 

I love Dakota as a character, she is a great mix of hard and soft especially when it come to her daughter Cinnamon and her friends, but she has that takes no prisoner attitude when it comes to people who want to harm her or those that she cares about. You really get to see the harder/darker side of Dakota, especially near the end of the book, she does things I did not think that she was capable of in this book. Francis does a great job in allowing Dakota to change and develop as a character based upon what is occurring around her, which means there are times where Dakota steps way out of her character's element. Dakota's power of tattoo magic and skin-dancing is amazing. I personally think that Dakota's powers are extremely cool; I mean you can have an arsenal of "weapons" or "helpers" at you beck in call but you have to be able to go through some pain first in order to achieve them. Plus the stigmatization that someone would have to go through, I know Dakota does does not care, but it is still there. I think that dealing with this makes Dakota a very strong person and character.

There is a lot, and I mean a lot that occurs within this book. It really gets to the point where the reader will ask is there really anything else that could happen to Dakota? There is really everything that a reader can think of that occurs to Dakota in this book. It appears like Francis was trying to put too much into the book and maybe got a little overwhelmed with all the ideas that he had. I think the only thing that remains constant is her job as a magical tattooist, but even that is threatened slightly. With everything occurring I questioned whether this was going to be Dakota's last novel based upon everything that Francis was throwing at her (but do not worry fans there is a third book coming out this year hopefully).

Math has never been my strong suit; therefore, physics is pretty much over my head as well. There were points in the book where the math and physics theories that was being used to explain the magical graffiti that I found confusing and rereading over these part. There is no question that Francis is a very smart man. Using physics and math in order to explain how graffiti magic could work is very clever, however, I just found the explanation a little overwhelming. I found myself doing the smile and nod to the book and trying to pretend I understood what was going on. I think that Francis could have dialed this down a little bit and possible used more laymen terms within the explanation to help those of us that are mathematically or physics inclined.

This was a great follow up to the first novel, although I was not that crazy about all the math and physics terminology that Francis used, this did not detract very much from my overall enjoyment of the novel. I think those who enjoyed the first will also like the second as well. I am looking forward to the release of the third book Liquid Fire.

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  1. I adored both books, as Dakota is just such a great character with so many facets to enjoy!

  2. I enjoyed Blood Rock, but like you said, there were times when I was overwhelmed with all that was happening. Many times, I just wanted to take a break. It kept my attention, that was for sure. Sometimes it was exhausting, but here's the kicker, I want to read more!