Review of ‘Lifeblood’

Lifeblood continues the journey of Ten Lockwood as she struggles to live up to the title she has been given while also struggling to find a way to broker peace between Troika and Myriad.

Strong Female Presence

Gena Showalter
Harlequin Teen

What’s really great about Gena is the fact that she’s just amazing at presenting the reader with a strong female protagonist to lead the story. She has such a talent at writing strong characters, and this goes beyond just her main characters, even the minor characters, they shine with a compelling narrative allowing them all to be strong in their own different ways. They don’t just mirror each other and have their own faults and quirks.

Ten is the “numbers girl,” she counts to keep her nerve, to keep her perspective clear, and her motivation her own. She’s such an objective character, but she also doesn’t follow the rules, who is even in love with the enemy, a person everyone tells her to doubt. This creates so much great tension between her and her compatriots, while others look at her with understanding, sharing her own hope for peace. But others are so used to fighting they don’t see another way out. And in the midst of all this, Ten is still struggling to find herself, to find all the answers, to be this person everyone around her expects her to be.


She’s growing, evolving so much from who was in Firstlife. She has gone through so much and it shows in the way she changes how she reacts. Her quirks still resonate off the pages, her personality and strength, they just make her incredible and relatable. This isn’t someone you have to imagine, she’s someone real.

Following Ten on her journey to navigate through her second life is so compelling and fun. There’s a lightness to the writing as it balances this idea of light versus darkness and that makes the plot of the story unique in the way it’s told. There is a war going on for the souls of people, a fight for survival in the war between the two worlds in the “afterlife”. The construction of the story makes the concept unique.

Furthermore, the pace of the story begins with a bang. It picks up right at the end of the previous novel and the momentum keeps moving faster and faster. There are no dull moments, and for Gena to keep the momentum up, to keep everything moving with such fluidity without losing the reader. Is impressive. She incorporates poetry into the storytelling and the structure of those poems how they go back and forth is amazing.

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot of heart in Lifeblood and impressive writing. As a sequel, it doesn’t let the reader down, it keeps them captivated, it keeps them motivated to follow Ten on her journey to save herself and those she loves.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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Product Details:

Pub Date: February 28, 2017Page Count: 448ppAge Range: 13 & Over
ISBN: 978-0-3732-1219-4Publisher: Harlequin TeenList Price: $18.99

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