Melissa reviews The Orchard of Flesh (Arcadia Trust #2) by Christian Baines Published August 16th 2016 by Bold Strokes Books, 282 pages.
Reylan’s last assignment for The Arcadia Trust brought a rebellious human servant under his roof, and a volatile werewolf lover named Jorgas into his bed, leaving the self-reliant Blood Shade–known to the outside world as vampires–in no hurry to risk his immortality for them again.
But when a new terror starts disappearing humans from a bad part of town, Reylan must do everything in his power to keep Sydney’s supernatural factions from the brink of war. Having an ambitious, meddlesome human in the mix is only going to make things worse…especially when that human is Jorgas’s father.
Reylan will need all his determination and cunning to keep the peace under his roof, between the night’s power brokers, and in his lover’s troubled heart.
A free copy of this book was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Why I read this book: When this book was offered for a review, I read the blurb and was like, okay I have to read the first book because this is a series and I’ll be lost otherwise. I read the first book (check out Dana’s review here of The Beast Without) and knew I had to read the sequel to see how these characters have been getting along.
I was happy to get the chance to read both books in this series so far. I enjoyed the first book; it gave me a great deal of background information about the characters and the world I am being introduced to. The sequel continued somewhat where the first book left off, not that the first book ended on a cliff hanger (not at all).
I couldn’t read this book fast enough because I had to know what happened to these characters that intrigued me from the first book. I was not disappointed and this book is so well written, even if parts of the story of really gross (think of a pile of flesh eating flesh – pulsing and living. Eww!!!). You do have to read the first book to really understand the character relations in this book. Trust me, it is worth it.
This is a book you feel like you need to take notes on to keep everything straight. There is a lot going on, lots of new characters, plus the original characters. Whew! The magical/paranormal aspect of this story was truly interesting, and you really do have to pay attention to what is going on or you’re lost. I did have to re-read certain parts because I wasn’t paying close enough attention. But thankfully there are not too many of those scenes. Reylan and Jorgas grow closer in this book (there is a romance between them, but it’s very precarious and I don’t think they fully trust each other yet, despite the L-word). You will learn more about Jorgas’ history and his family (his father is a total asshole, jerkface, dickhead!).
I love shifter/vampire stories and when an author changes the rules of what we know, it’s even better. I can’t wait to read more about these characters; I hope this series has a long life. This one does end on a cliffhanger (if you want to call it that). Reylan is a vampire so clearly the way this book ends isn’t going to be too bad because then there couldn’t be any more books! I wish I could say more but I would give away spoilers and I don’t want to do that. If you enjoy paranormal/shifter/vampire stories, if you like a good mystery with some thriller/horror(ish) aspects, if you like piles of flesh eating flesh, this book is for you! It’s perfect for Halloween night if you want something to give you chills and a ghoulish thrill.
Dual passions for travel and mythology have sent him across the world in search of dark and entertaining stories. His first novel, The Beast Without, was released in 2013, followed by an erotic short story, The Prince and the Practitioner.
His second novel, Puppet Boy was released in late 2015.