Kim Falconer: The Blood in the Beginning

The Blood in the Beginning (Ava Sykes, #1) - Kim Falconer

In the start of a new series Kim Falconer shows that finding out where you came from may be the very thing that saves your life:

Ava has always known that she was different, but she has always attributed it to her autoimmune disease that is in her blood. She has studied hard as an undergraduate student with the hopes of working for the CDC to better understand her disease. In order to make ends meet she works as a bouncer at night time at a dive bar, where she no longer has to prove that she can handle herself, she's had a tough life up until now and has had to do some questionable things in order to survive. When Ava is attacked by a possible serial killer on the way home from shift one night she is able to fight back but ends up in the hospital  where she meets the mysterious Dr. Miguel Rossi who only seems to speak in riddles to her. He claims to know more about her origins than she does. Ava needs to figure out quick where she came from as she is attracting all the wrong attention and her life hangs in the balance

I really liked this book and I think it is a great start to a new series (also bonus points for that book cover). It was a refreshing change for me from other urban fantasies that I have read lately as Falconer chose to focus on a different "creature". You will not find vampires or werewolves or zombies in this book which is very refreshing these days. This book is also quite a bit darker than I thought it would be. The level of violence against Ava when she is attacked as well as some other scenes in the book. I think that Falconer was able to have a balance between Ava trying to live her normal life, figure out who she is as well as trying to figure out her stalker/murderer is. 

The world building is well done and I personally envisioned it in a blue/grey scale with a noir feel to it. I think this has to do with the reference to the Big one in which parts of California broke off and slipped into the Pacific Ocean as well as the idea of the pollution that has caused so many changes to the world. There is often reference to the need to buy organic food or non-GMO due to the pollution and contamination of the planet. It was also interesting the contrast between what on land appears to look like and that of the Ocean.

I really liked Ava as a character she was confident in herself and her abilities but not cocky at the same time. Her belief in what she can do is further supported by her friends in her life, in particular Rourke who uses Ava as bait to try to catch the copy cat killer. Ava is also very intelligent and I'm glad that Falconer was able to show that you can be book as well as street smart. Often in this genre the female protagonists are rarely portrayed this way. I think that Falconer did a good job in portraying Ava's confusion in what she is and where she came from. My one complaint about Ava is her over need to state how hansom/sexy/good looking the men who are in her life or come in to her life during this book. However, I will applaud Falconer that while there is some sexual tension in this book on more than one front, I'm happy that Ava does not feel the need to have sex with every guy that she meets.

This is the first book that I have read by Falconer and it will not be the last. I look forward to seeing what is going to come next in this series, it really is a great start to a new world.

Enjoy!!!!

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