We last left Mercy Thompson in search of Andre, the vampire who created Littleton, a vampire-sorcerer-demon, and who has plans to create another such deadly monstrosity. Too many people died and suffered for Mercy to allow that to happen. However, killing Andre will certainly result in the other vampires eventually slaughtering her in retaliation.
Today is the final segment of our reread of Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs. To catch up or review, check Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, and Part 7.
For days, Mercy uses her ability to see ghosts to find the houses of vampires. At last, out of sheer luck, she comes upon Andre’s, but she doesn’t rush into murder. First, she prepares herself mentally, making a list of all those that died and suffered because of Littleton and Andre. Then she visits Ben, the wolf Littleton so traumatized that he refuses to turn human and tries constantly to commit suicide by picking fights with other wolves. With these fast in her mind, Mercy goes to Andre’s with her borrowed vampire killing kit. There, she finds two of Andre’s menagerie and frees them. The ghosts of the house show her where Andre sleeps and she kills him with a stake to the heart, cutting off his head, and setting him ablaze with the magical medallion Zee loaned her. When she comes out of the burning house, she finds the two she freed murdered by Wulfe, another vampire who is there with Stefan. Stefan covers for her, allowing the murdered humans to take the fall so Marsilia, the vampire mistress, will not hunt Mercy in vengeance. But Mercy cannot forgive Stefan, for even though his hand did not slay the humans, he is as responsible as Wulfe.
Later, at home that night, the news reports the destruction of Andre’s house as merely the act of transients living there while the owners were out of town. Adam comes and nearly pounds Mercy’s door down with urgency. After berating her a little, he just holds her. For all her earlier courage and crusading actions, she is still frightened. The only upside is that the next morning, the contractors the vampires hired show up to fix her trailer.
Reader Comments: It’s rare to hang in there every step with a heroine bent on murder, yet I was. By the end of this book, I had no illusions about the necessity for Mercy to kill Andre; though, I have no doubt Mercy will suffer serious repercussions as a result.
Writer Comments: One of the things Donald Maass says in his Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook is to identify something a character would never do and then find a way for them to do it. Mercy would never murder in cold blood, yet she does. Briggs not only brings Mercy to the point of cold blooded murder, but she brings us readers along as well. By the end of the book, after all the destruction, death, and suffering we’ve seen result from Andre and after his intent to replicate it, Briggs doesn’t have to try hard to get her readers entirely behind Mercy.
I hope you’ve enjoyed Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs. As usual, there are parts of the book I left out in my summaries, so I strongly encourage you to read it yourself. The whole series is fantastic.
Next Monday, we’ll begin Of Blood and Honey by Stina Leicht, a book that was just nominated for a Hugo. Until then, join me Wednesdays and Fridays for more forays into the speculative and life.