(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Series: The First Covenant Novel
Published by Spencer Hill Press on October 18, 2011
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, General, Love & Romance, Romance, Young Adult
HALF-BLOOD is the unputdownable first book in the acclaimed Covenant series from #1 New York Times bestselling Jennifer L. Armentrout. The Hematoi descend from the unions of gods and mortals, and the children of two Hematoi - pure-bloods - have godlike powers. Children of Hematoi and mortals - well, not so much. Half-bloods only have two options: become trained Sentinels who hunt and kill daimons or become servants in the homes of the pures.Seventeen-year-old Alexandria would rather risk her life fighting than waste it scrubbing toilets, but she may end up slumming it anyway. There are several rules that students at the Covenant must follow. Alex has problems with them all, but especially rule #1:Relationships between pures and halfs are forbidden.Unfortunately, she's crushing hard on the totally hot pure-blood Aiden. But falling for Aiden isn't her biggest problem - staying alive long enough to graduate the Covenant and become a Sentinel is. If she fails in her duty, she faces a future worse than death or slavery: being turned into a daimon, and being hunted by Aiden. And that would kind of suck.
I’ve heard so much about this book. I fell in love with Jennifer L. Armentrout’s characters when I read Obsidian and have swooned over Daemon Black like any sensible fangirl—even though those words probably don’t fit in the same sentence. When I went to ApollyCon, after hearing about this series, getting The Power in my VIR bag, and knowing the JLA was in the next room, I caved and bought the series. A large part of me is glad that I did, solely because I’ve seen Drew Leighty, the model for Seth, in person, and that’s amazing in it’s own right. I also have an obsession with Greek mythology, so going into this book my expectations were incredibly high.
I liked the book, I did. Only, there was this part of me that couldn’t separate how much it reminded me of Vampire Academy as I read it. I read VA in middle school, so it’s been long enough for me to still remember the basics of the book but not enough to read the last book (which I haven’t read yet) without going back and reading or listening to the series. I still appreciated and enjoyed the book separately from the similarities to VA and loved the Greek aspect. I’m a sucker for anything Grecian—it’s like fine chocolates—and will definitely be diving into the rest of the series.
The main character, Alexandria Andros, was feisty and resilient. Her easy banter and sarcastic comments made her likeable. In a some scenes, she kept me guessing; in others, her strong, stubborn behavior was just what I expected from her. I’m interested to see how the rest of her story unfolds, who will be part of it until the last book, and what other mysteries are ahead for her. When it came to those that had always had her back, no one wanted to get in her way. She had a strong relationship with her best friend, Caleb, and I’m excited to see more of him as the story continues. She was built up a lot in this book, learning about her and discover the kind of narrator I would have for the series. As the series progresses, one of the things I’m most interested, though, in is learning more about the minor and secondary characters.
Looking for a brooding, stoic male lead that makes you swoon? Look no further than Aiden St. Delphi. The caste-like system of the novel caught my attention. Alex was a half-blood, the product of a pureblood’s affair with a human. Half-bloods and purebloods don’t mix. Purebloods have more options than the halfs and can choose varying paths in life, none of them something to snarl your nose up at. Aiden was a pure and chose the path of a Sentinel, meaning that the prospects of a family weren’t in the cards because of his responsibilities. For Alex, she either graduates from the Covenant or becomes a slave to a pure. The training to get her back into shape kept my attention with Aiden as her tutor, and the tension between the two was palpable. Kissing, even flirting, between pures and halfs is frowned upon, so they were playing with fire with the inevitability of getting burned.
JLA writes relatable characters in situations that are not relatable—like fighting daimons. Her writing keeps my attention and flows wonderfully. Alex proved to be wonderful narrator, Aiden a dreamy crush, Seth an enigma that I can’t wait to figure out, and the other characters were sweet inclusions. Who doesn’t love a story set at a private school? And Grecian myths with a twist? Of course you can count me in to continue the rest of the series!
When you go to a book event that is sponsored primarily by one author, you can’t help but get this sense of wanting to read as many books as you can, by that author once it’s all said and done. I’ve read a few of Jennifer Armentrout’s new adult novels, however never of her original fantasy titles. So I was a tad bit lost when it came to the whole concept of “Apollycon,” other than one of the most popular book events of the year, with so many authors present. Now I know what all the rave was about and I’m so glad that Moriah and I decided to sign up to volunteer. It was an unforgettable experience.
It took me awhile to get fully invested into Half-Blood. I knew I would finish it, however, I just seem to put it down several times during the first half of the book. Nonetheless, once events started going down very quickly, there was no putting it down. When teenager Alex returns to the Covenant, it is not without major revelations in her life. Just when she thinks she is going to live a life of servitude, her path quickly changes, and her fate belongs in the hands of Aiden, a Pure who is ready to train her to be the Sentinel she hopes to be. Their ultimate goal, to kill any Daimon that comes into their sight.
Unfortunately, (or not) Alex begins to do what is forbidden. Fall for Alex, a Pure, her trainer. To complicate things even more, a new distraction is introduced, Seth an Apollyon, with powers of his own. Seth’s attraction to Alex is obvious, however so is Aiden’s. So what I can say. It’s a series that I’m totally into now and ready to keep going.
Lastly, I’m not sure how Jennifer Armentrout writes her novels so quickly. She’s awesome! I don’t think I’ll ever catch up, but I’m sure going to try. She brings such a variety of storylines, in so many different genres that you are bound to find a novel that you’ll enjoy!