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review 2017-08-06 19:12
This is one of my NEW all-time favorite series…
Bad Blood (The Naturals #4) ((The Naturals #4)) - Jennifer Lynn Barnes

 

 

Book Title:  Bad Blood

Author:  Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Series:  The Naturals #4

Genre:  Older YA, Mystery, Thriller

Setting:  Gaither, Oklahoma

Source:  eBook (Library)

 

 

 

Add to Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ratings Breakdown

 

Plot:  5+/5

Main Characters:  5/5

Secondary Characters:  5/5

The Feels:  5/5

Addictiveness:  5/5

Theme or Tone:  5/5

Flow (Writing Style):  5/5

Backdrop (World Building):  5/5

Originality:  5/5

Book Cover:  5/5

Ending:  5+/5 Cliffhanger: Nope, but I wouldn't mind going back to this world with this set of characters.

Total:  5+/5 Stars ~A+~

 

 

My Thoughts

 

This Series has rocked, with each book upping the stakes and becoming more entwined with the next and the previous.  Seriously, just fantastic.  I highly recommend it.  After book 1, I really only liked Cassie and Dean, but as the series progresses I've come to love all these characters, yeah…even Michael has grown on me, some.  Sloan is my new favorite now, just for her comic relief, she's so serious with her on cue randomness.  Lia, it turns out is much more complex than I originally thought.  You really learn a lot about Lia in this final book, and her story is rather mind-blowing.

 

Will I read more from this Author Yes, yes and Hell yes!

 

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text 2017-08-03 23:59
July Recap
Rebound: A Boomerang Novel - Noelle August
The Breakup Support Group - Cheyanne Young
A Court of Thorns and Roses - Sarah J. Maas
Follow Me Down: A Novel - Sherri L. Smith
Stalking Jack the Ripper - Kerri Maniscalco
Ferocious (Vicarious) - Paula Stokes
The First Time She Drowned - Kerry Kletter
Bad Blood (The Naturals #4) ((The Naturals #4)) - Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Follow Me Back - A.V. Geiger

I finished a much loved series this month...The Naturals.  with the final book in the 4 book series, Bad Blood...loved it, btw.  I also really enjoyed the conclusion to Vicarious Duo, with Ferocious, which I received an ARC of.

 

I also finished up a few reading challenges, 3 of them this month, actually.  A few of the books I've read this month were read just for this purpose.  Like the Breakup Support Group, Stalking Jack The Ripper and The First Time She Drowned.  I'm actively trying to start less of these so I can finish some of the super long ones.

 

 

The BOOKS 

 

(Audiobook) Rebound by Noelle August

Finish Date:  07/02

4 STARS

 

(Kindle eBook) The Breakup Support Group by Cheyanne Young

Finish Date:  07/07

2.8 STARS

 

(Audiobook) A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas

Finish Date:  07/11

4.3 STARS

 

(e-ARC) Follow Me Down by Sherri Smith

Finish Date:  07/13

4.3 STARS

 

(Audiobook) Stalking Jack The Ripper by Kerri Manisculco

Finish Date:  07/20

3.8 STARS

 

(e-ARC) Ferocious by Paula Stokes

Finish Date:  07/24

5 STARS

 

(Audiobook) The First Time She Drowned by Kerry Kletter

Finish Date:  07/26

4.3 STARS

 

(eBook) Bad Blood by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Finish Date:  07/30

5+ STARS

 

(Audiobook) Follow Me Back by AV Geiger

Finish Date:  07/31

3.7 STARS

 

 

9 Books Total 3,181 Pages (including Audio's)

5 Audiobooks, 2 eBooks, and 2 Netgalley e-ARC's

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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review 2017-07-18 01:20
The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
The Naturals - Jennifer Lynn Barnes

(Whoops, the character I kept calling "Derek" is actually named Dean. I think I fixed all the instances.)

 

The Naturals is YA Criminal Minds with some of the usual “secret school for special teens” mixed in. I read an ARC copy I picked up at a conference several years ago (yes, I'm terrible about reading ARCs, which is why I rarely request them).

When Cassie was 12, she entered her mother’s dressing room only to discover a bloody crime scene, but no body. Her mother's body and murderer (because how could she still be alive after losing that much blood?) were never found. Cassie is now 17 and living with her father’s family. She doesn’t feel like she fits in, but she also doesn’t want to be the focus of her family’s often overbearing love and concern.

Ever since she was little, Cassie has had a knack for noticing little details about people and figuring things out about them using those details. She used to use her ability to help her mother, who worked as a psychic. Since her mother’s death, she hasn’t used her skills for much beyond privately guessing things about customers at the diner where she works, so she’s both intrigued and suspicious when a handsome boy gives her an FBI agent’s business card.

The agent presents her with an offer she can’t resist: she can become part of his “Naturals” program, a team of teens with natural skills that take most adults years of training to learn. Because the program members are all minors, they only get to deal with cold cases, but Cassie still jumps at the chance to do something good and useful with her abilities. However, she and the other program members can’t resist getting more and more involved in a difficult, and possibly personal, active case.

Although this book made for smooth and easy reading, I felt like I’d already seen/read a lot of it before. The school-like setting and characters reminded me of books like L.J. Smith’s Dark Visions series and Kelley Armstrong’s The Summoning. As for the serial killer/criminal profiling aspects, I’ve already mentioned Criminal Minds, and one particular revelation probably won’t come as a surprise to fans of Barry Lyga’s Jasper Dent books. Dean’s self-loathing and efforts to push Cassie away reminded me strongly of Stephenie Meyer’s Edward Cullen.

It wasn’t bad; it just didn’t feel terribly original. It didn’t really help that a lot of this book was geared towards setting the stage: introducing the characters, the lingo, and a little of the criminal profiling thought process. The really interesting stuff, the active case, didn’t come up until fairly late in the story.

Still, the Naturals and their abilities interested me. Lia was a natural liar and lie detector. Sloane was a walking collection of statistics who couldn’t help looking for patterns. Michael could read people’s emotions via tiny details in their body language and facial expressions. Dean, like Cassie, was a natural profiler. Sadly, because of the book’s first-person POV, only Dean and Cassie’s abilities received much detailed attention, and Lia and Sloane nearly faded into the background once the love triangle between Cassie, Dean, and Michael was introduced. This was especially awkward considering that Michael had an on-again, off-again relationship with Lia.

I’ll probably read the next book in the series at some point, but I sincerely hope that the love triangle either disappears or fades into the background a lot. It felt like the boys were snapping over Cassie like dogs over a bone. I got the impression that she was leaning more towards Dean, so the kissing scene with Michael near the end really bugged me - it was stupid and seemed entirely intended to add just enough fuel to the love triangle to make the collection of characters in the final showdown more possible. Here's hoping that future books also give Lia and Sloane more of a chance to shine. Sloane seemed sweet, in an awkward sort of way, and I really wanted Lia to be more than the snarky girl potentially standing between Cassie and Michael.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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text 2017-07-17 16:46
Reading progress update: I've read 308 out of 308 pages.
The Naturals - Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Finished! Which means I can roll again. One problem: my computer is acting up and this time around it might not be a false alarm. I'll try to write a Booklikesopoly post today, but if I have to do it on my phone or tablet it'll be bare bones.

 

This book was ok. Cassie did some stupid things at the end, but I forgave her because she didn't exactly have a lot of options, considering the info (or lack thereof) that she had at the time. I'm interested enough to continue the series, but I sincerely hope that the next book has less of the tense love triangle.

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text 2017-07-11 12:40
Reading progress update: I've read 90 out of 308 pages.
The Naturals - Jennifer Lynn Barnes

I'm not sure how I feel about this one yet, but it's proving to be a quick read. The comparisons I've seen to Criminal Minds are appropriate, and there's the usual "school for special teens" aspect. All these teens are so guarded they might as well be wearing jackets studded with broken glass. "Watch me sparkle, but no touching."

 

I'm sure there's a love interest, because there almost always is, but I'm not 100% sure who it is. I would have figured it was Michael, the guy who can read emotions and who smirks too much (I really hate it when authors use the word "smirk" with characters who are clearly supposed to be intriguing and sexy), but Cassie just noted that Dean, the profiler, is good-looking.

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