Blood Healing (The Healers of Meligna Book 2), by KJ Colt
The Healers of Meligna – Book 2:
After reading the first installment in this series, Concealed Power, I looked forward to getting to part two. For the most part this sequel did not let me down, it was entertaining and intriguing. Blood Healing by K.J. Colt is the second in her Healers of Meligna series. This rather unique series follows a young teen girl as she discovers the true nature of the gift she was born with and the restrictions placed on her and others like her by those who seek to control their lives. The main protagonist, Adenine, not only learns to cope with the trauma she experienced in her past but also her need to protect her family, friends & her home, learning who and how to trust others, as well as her first romantic relationship. She’s forced to face her trauma in light of the nature of ‘healing’ and come face to face with the hatred others have for all Healers.
This book has even more action, conspiracy, and deceit than the first installment. We also witness the ‘filling out’ of Adenine’s character, a very important aspect to this and well, any story. I do struggle a bit with the fact that Adenine is only 14 years old; I think I would appreciate the story even more if she were at least a couple years older. Not that I think young people can’t achieve mighty things, rather her age coupled with her naivety – not only because of her age but also because her parents tried to keep her blind (literally and figuratively) to the world for part of her childhood given her healer status – makes much of what she gets away with seem implausible. I feel as though I lose touch with her age, and thus the whole of Adenine’s character due to these facts. That said Colt herself doesn’t forget that Adenine is only 14 and succeeds in reminding us from time to time through her actions, emotions, and the views of others. That said I can’t overlook her relationship(s) with significantly older boys, especially given that sometimes her ‘main squeeze’ if you will seems more her age than less, at times. All in all it’s not so distracting that it ruins the story.
The new characters we meet in this book are interesting and dynamic. I think their additions actually help us to get to know Adenine a lot more. Now that she’s no longer trapped in her parents’ home she’s experiencing the world, people, and all their cruelties. These are the things that teach us just how clever she is, how persistent, and at times impulsive. So much happens to her in what seems a relatively short period of time that she’s forced to mature beyond her years. It’s this maturation that, as I mentioned above, sometimes feels like a stretch. In some of these instances – for example when she’s sent for her first ‘healing’ lesson – the scene feels opportunistic, like Adenine gets away with more for the sake of the story and not because she should or even can. This is where often Colt successfully shows Adenine’s immaturity through her impulsive comments and/or actions.
With that said I really really like Colt’s understanding of psychology, including the psychology of trauma, and use of it in her characters through the story. While for some the constant reminder of trauma may be too much I think many will appreciate its realness. A person who has experienced a trauma constantly relives it, whether they want to or not. The attention she brings to psychological issues brings this story of fantasy into real time for me. I applaud this tactic in story-telling, after all what is our character without our issues? Only half the story. And this is one way in which Adenine becomes real for me.
I can also appreciate that Colt does not bog the story down with loads of description but gives just enough to provide a sense of place. Some people who might want to connect more with the locale may find some weaknesses in the settings and place, although I think the story and characters are strong enough to hold onto any audience.
So beyond some ‘hard-to-believe-she-got-outta-that’ scenarios the plot and character twists are exciting, engaging and certainly held my attention. There’s not a lot of down time in this story – which I like – it’s always moving and progressing. There’s twists when you expect they might appear and when you don’t. The more you read the better it gets until you just have to know what happens. I’m impressed with Colt’s writing and anxious to get into the grit of the third book: Blood Sacrifice, and that’s why as soon as I finished book two I picked up the Kindle edition of Book Three and began reading.
I recommend this book to fantasy readers and anyone interested in coming of age tales with heroic, courageous women, and if you enjoy reading tales about people becoming bigger than their trauma and more than they ever thought they could be. It’s an empowering adventure. Of course start with the first one. You will be entertained. 😉 To know more about KJ Colt and her work visit her website. Click on the thumbnail of the cover at the top of the page if you’d like to pick up a copy. Oh and don’t hesitate to mention how you found out about her and her books. 😀