Monday, May 18, 2009

Book Review: Red by Jordan Summers

I see so many reviews for paranormal romances around the blogosphere that I thought I’d try expanding my reading horizons and see what all the fuss is about. I chose RED (Dead World, Book 1) by Jordan Summers because I liked the tagline (What if Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf turned out to be the same person?) and because it is set in a dystopian future where the ozone is gone, the Earth is scorched, and most of the population lives in highly monitored republics.

Summers dedicates the book to her readers saying, “I wrote RED with the belief that there were other readers in the world like me who enjoy a grittier love story.” Guess that should have clued me in that I was about to have my eyeballs scalded by explicit werewolf sex – in the first chapter, no less.

But I persevered. And I found myself quite liking this story of Gina ‘Red’ Santiago, a field officer with an elite tactical team, who stumbles upon a gruesome crime in Nuria, a border town which is also a hangout for “Others” (super soldiers created during the last world war who turn into paranormal creatures when agitated). As she investigates the crime, she gets romantically involved with the town’s alpha male, Sherriff Morgan Kane. I personally would’ve liked less of the romance and more of the fascinating world-building, but this IS paranormal romance after all!

Strangely enough, Summers plots the story so that the answers to the big questions – who the killer is, Gina’s true nature, will Mike and Raphael’s reunite –are extremely and frustratingly obvious. But her characterizations are surprisingly deep for genre fiction, and I rooted for Gina throughout.

Book 2, SCARLETT, comes out next month. And I just might be a little bit excited to pick it up.

Find out more at www.jordansummers.com

18 comments:

Meghan said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it! I struggled with my intro to paranormal romance, but I do quite like most of it now, although it perplexes me when bookstores shelve the paranormal romance and urban fantasy together. They're really not the same thing. This one sounds pretty good despite the sex!

Jessica Kennedy said...

This is one I've wanting to read! :)

Dar said...

I enjoy paranormal romance. This sounds pretty good. I'm glad you ended up enjoying it.

Kate said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it. The tag line is really cool :)

Sadako said...

Very nice! i also like the tag line.

mjmbecky said...

I laughed out loud when you said you had you "eyeballs scorched" by the opening sex scene. :) Such a funny way of describing the shock! I've read a few that had me wondering what else drove the characters other than their libido, so your response here had me in stitches. Thanks!

mjmbecky said...

Sorry, the exact line was "eyeballs scalded." Nearly the same idea, but SO funny!

Belle said...

Graphic werewolf sex! I don't read much paranormal romance - I think I'm with you on the worldbuilding vs. romance/sex thing though.

Staci said...

"eyeballs scalded by explicit werewolf sex" had me laughing out loud!!! It does sound like it might have some promise though! I'm going to wait until you read book #2 to see if I'm ready to risk my eyesight!!!

Amy said...

Good for you for trying something new! I don't think I've read much paranormal romance...though I'm not opposed to it if it's good. ;)

Elizabeth said...

Man, I feel like I love paranormal romance, but I just don't know if I can get behind the werewolf sex. Although that tagline would've sucked me in, too.

Liviania said...

I have this one sitting in my TBR! I may move it up now.

infiniteshelf said...

I lke urban fantasy and paranormal romance, but had never heard of "Red". It looks interesting enough, I'll look for it! Thanks! :)

Book Spot said...

Thanks for reviewing this one...I've been sort of, kind of planning to read this one for a while but never quite sure about it. I think I'll add it to my TBR list now. And some paranormal romances focus a lot more on the romance thanothers do--it's nice to know how much this one does before I get into it :)

Zibilee said...

This looks interesting. I might end up feeling a bit like you do about the romance aspect, but I think I will add this one to my wish list. Thanks!

Laina said...

I've actually read this. I borrowed it from my mom who got it from the library. (Life is weird.)

Joanne said...

Glad you enjoyed this, I actually won a copy of this months ago and for some reason - think I may have lent it to my mom maybe - I haven't read it yet :)

Mishel said...

Haha I love how you said you just might be a little excited for book two, so cute =)

I have this on my TBR list and I'm really looking forward to reading it.