Author: Delilah S. Dawson
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Steampunk
Series: Blud #1
Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 27th 2012 by Pocket
ISBN: 1451657889 (ISBN13: 9781451657883)
Where did I get this book?: Book provided by publisher for review. (Blog tour)
Summary (via Goodreads):
When Tish Everett forces open the ruby locket she finds at an estate sale, she has no idea that a deliciously rakish Bludman has cast a spell just for her. She wakes up in a surreal world, where Criminy Stain, the dashing proprietor of a magical traveling circus, curiously awaits. At Criminy’s electric touch, Tish glimpses a tantalizing future, but she also foresees her ultimate doom. Before she can decide whether to risk her fate with the charming daredevil, the locket disappears, and with it, her only chance to return home. Tish and Criminy battle roaring sea monsters and thundering bludmares, vengeful ghosts and crooked Coppers in a treacherous race to recover the necklace from the evil Blud-hating Magistrate. But if they succeed, will Tish forsake her fanged suitor and return to her normal life, or will she take a chance on an unpredictable but dangerous destiny with the Bludman she’s coming to love?
Review: Wicked as They Come is the first book in the Blud series by Delilah S. Dawson. The story follows Tish Everett, a nurse who recently got out of a caged and controlling relationship. One day while browsing at one of her former patient’s estate sale, she stumbles upon an enchanted locket that transports her to the world of Sang, an alternate England. It is there in Sang that she meets Criminy Stain, a magician, leader of the caravan of cohorts and a bludman (a person that drinks blood, “vampire”). By wearing the locket, every time Tish closes her eyes to sleep in Sang; she wakes back up in her world, and vice versa. Times flies every time Tish is in Sang but she doesn’t lose any time in her own world. As Tish begins to develop feelings for Criminy and the world of Sang she is left with a decision on whether to stay or go. Things get more complicated when the locket is stolen by the magistrate (The leader who makes the rules, bludman hater).Tish and Criminy races across Sang, not letting bludbunnies, ghosts, or anything get in their way till they get back the locket back.
When I first heard about Wicked as They Come, I knew I had to read it! Enchanted locket, a mysterious bludman, and an alternate steampunk Victorian London? Sign me up! The world building was very interesting and well developed, I can totally picture Sang and the little clockwork monkey that guards the caravan. There are two types of people that inhabit Sang, Pinkies (humans) and Bludmans (vampires). The book overall was executed well in terms of world-building and writing but I had a problem with connecting with Tish and Criminy. It was love at first sight for Criminy Stain but not for Tish. She of course didn’t relay the same feelings right away because of the recent break-up. Even as we got close to the middle/ending of the story where things seem to get better with Tish and Criminy…I still didn’t feel anything for the characters.There wasn’t any spark or chemistry between the two characters that I’ve seen in other book couples.
I wanted to love this book, but in the end it was just a good/okay read. It needed a more believable romantic connection between the heroine and hero and a little more steampunk. I’m sure paranormal romance readers will still enjoy this book more than I did. As I mentioned before this is a start to a new series and at the end of Wicked as They Come we get a small preview of the next book, Wicked as she Wants. The second book will be centered on a different couple (same world, different main characters) and the male protagonist is a character that we first met in Wicked as They Come, Casper Sterling.