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Bloodlines

Bloodlines - Andrea Speed The second installment in this paranormal series definitely pulls no punches when it comes to emotional impact and pain. In this world, shifters are either born with a certain cat virus or infected with it; each with their own complicated consequences. Our MC Roan is the rare born shifter who is actually not encumbered with the oft sickly side effects of the virus - he is slowly evolving into a stronger human/cat mix, able to shift at will and maximize his powers for any and all situations. His husband, Paris, is unfortunately infected (not born) with the deadly tiger virus; his remaining life span depressingly dwindling as his body wastes away.

Though there is a main mystery going on, for me, the story was all about Roan and Paris. Their love, their banter, showed how much they knew each other inside and out, how well they fit together and complimented each other in both their work and private lives. So of course, with Paris' mortality hanging in the balance, it definitely brought to the forefront how precious those moments were and how shattering it will be without them.

This is the revised edition of this story and I did see a difference from the first book. This was not as dense with details but just as rich. The author deftly touches on tough subjects - homophobia, bigotry, unrequited love, and of course devastating loss. I appreciated that despite a solemn and serious tone, there were great moments of humor and snark and funny bite in almost every page, making it bearable to reach the story's inevitable and unfair conclusion. This will resonate for a long while and was so worth the painful read.

Thanks to Otila, Rosa, Sophia and Desinka for the much needed BR support!