Parents' Guide to

Bloodmarked: The Legendborn Cycle, Book 2

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Another pulse-pounding thriller in high-stakes fantasy saga.

Book Tracy Deonn Fantasy 2022
Bloodmarked by Tracy Deonn's book cover

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An action-packed second installment explores more world-building, generational trauma, harnessing power, and romantic tension. Like most "chosen one" protagonists, Bree's power is beyond remarkable, particularly because it accesses both the blood magic of her Arthurian ancestry and the root magic of her matrilineal African line. Despite her seemingly limitless (but unpredictable and uncontrolled) powers, Bree is utterly human and flawed. Although she's thoughtful and kind, she can be impulsive and will remind readers she's still a teenager coming of age *and* coming to terms with an extremely complicated situation. Deonn never shies away from addressing the painful past of enslavement and centuries of White supremacy and discrimination -- and how that history of racism impacts Bree's status as Scion.

Forget the campus drama of the first book, because the drama and trauma in the sequel is heightened exponentially. Romantic shippers hearts will either surge or sink as Bree and Sel -- who possesses demon blood -- fight, tease, and deal with growing feelings for each other. Nick's presence while felt palpably in the figurative sense, is literally missing, further making the love-triangle plot quite messy and in some ways overly obvious (it's tough to root for a love interest who isn't even around). Those familiar with intense love triangles in YA books should prepare themselves for a possibly devastating resolution, but first Bree -- like Harry, Katniss, Frodo, Alina, Tris and every other hero before her -- has to harness her powers and learn whom to trust.

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