Book #:1st in the Pandora English series
Pandora English is no ordinary small town orphan. When she’s invited to live with her mysterious Great-Aunt Celia in New York City, she seizes the opportunity to escape her stifling hometown, break from her tragic past and make it as a writer.
Things, however, are not what she is expecting. For starters, her great-aunts gothic mansion is in a mist-wreathed Manhattan suburb that doesn’t appear on maps. And then there’s Celia herself- a former designer to the stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age- who is elegant, unnaturally young and always wearing a veil.
Pandora lands a job at a fashion magazine and her first assignment is covering the A-list launch of the latest miracle cream, BloodofYouth. But something is not right about the product, nor Athanasia, the drop-dead beautiful face of the brand. It seems there may be a secret ingredient in BloodofYouth, a secret worth killing for.
This was a cheap second-hand book I picked up basically because the cover looked cool. Glad I did too. Tara Moss is a seriously fantastic writer. Pandora is a character that is neither special or unspecial- she’s just a girl, trying to make it in a world that has dealt her some bad turns, who is a little bit naive to things, and who I really liked. And Celia is a bit of an interesting character- I spent most of the book convinced she was a vampire herself, as the reader is supposed to I guess, even after Celia tells Pandora that she really isn’t one. I’m still partially convinced she secretly is somehow.
It had the right amount of action, intrigue, mystery, and hot guys to keep me entertained, and I really look forward to collecting the rest of the series and seeing how Pandora grows as a character. She has potential to become one of those types of characters that stay with you long after you’ve finished a book or series. I may have to add the books to my Christmas list…
Blood countess rating: 9/10. I really did enjoy it. Not enough to give it a solid 10- it didn’t have me furiously turning the pages or staying up til after midnight to finish it, but it was still very very good.
Would I re-read it?Yeah. Now that I know how everything turns out, I wouldn’t mind going back through and seeing how the story reads now that I understand the characters a bit better.
Who would I recommend it to?Well, that’s a bit of a tough one. The target audience must be young-adult, but it can easily be read by those older- it’s not one of those YA teenage books that is dumbed down language-wise to appeal to a short-attention span and lower vocabulary (I’m generalising here, I know that not all teenagers are like that). So really, it’s something that appeals to both teenagers and older readers. Though it’s not really a guy’s kind of book- it’s a real chick read, so perhaps hold off on giving this as a present this Christmas to your male rellies.
Author’s website: http://www.pandoraenglish.com/the-blood-countess.php
The inspiration behind the big evil character: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_B%C3%A1thory (yes, this is a real person- there really was a “blood countess” which inspired a character from the story) <– this is a fascinating read, even if you are not going to read the book itself.