Monday, April 15, 2013

Brenda Novak -- Blood In, Blood Out

Brenda Novak -- Blood In, Blood Out

Rated: ♥ ♥   {2.00}
Action: 1.0 / Emotion: 0.0 / Romance: 0.0 / Sensuous: 0.0 / Suspense: 1.0  //  Laughter: 0 / Tears: 0

Setting:     Washington, D.C.
Era:           Present Day
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The only reason checked out Love Is Murder from the library was to read Rex McCready's "story."   Disappointment is too mild a word to describe the let down after spending time hunting down this book just to read Brenda Novak's very short story, Blood In, Blood Out.

First off, this story was published in June 2012, eight months after Novak finished The Bulletproof Trilogy.   Novak spent at least half of the seventeen pages which hold this story detailing events that were more explicitly portrayed in the first two books of the trilogy.   It seems one would need to read them to get a grasp on what was truly happening here.

Second, the chronological timeline of this story places it smack dab between book one (Inside) and book two (In Seconds) of the trilogy.   Anyone having read the trilogy already knows about the tempestuous on-again, off-again, relationship between Rex McCready and Laurel Hodges.   And because Laurel's story (In Seconds) was written before this puff-piece, this portrayal of traumatic events was missing from her book -- somehow making the story line feel a bit fractured.

This kind of minuscule story just does not work for me!   Having met and grown emotionally attached to Rex and Laurel while reading Inside and In Seconds, one would think it would be easy to become emotionally involved with them again as read this little "out-take" in the picture of their lives.   But, alas, Novak did not have time to make the reader "feel" the sadness, the fear, or the desperation Laurel and Rex were projecting in this story.

The only good thing about this entire "piece" was that Novak explained how Horse, leader of The Crew (prison gang that Virgil and Rex once belonged to), found them even though they were in the Witness Protection Program.   However, that is not enough to recommend Blood In, Blood Out to readers who enjoyed The Bulletproof Trilogy.

Perhaps, if one had read this short story before reading In Seconds, it would be easier to appreciate this brief view into the loving relationship Rex and Laurel shared.   But Novak had already revealed that Rex and Laurel do not end up a couple, so this short, short story seems to detract rather than add to the overall picture Novak had painted regarding the events that happened to Virgil, Rex and Laurel.
--Vonda M. Reid (Monday, April 15, 2013 : 5:03 p.m.)     [304]

Books In The Series: "The Bulletproof Trilogy"
# Date Title Hero Heroine
01.07-2011InsideVirgil Skinner; wrongfully incarceratedPeyton Adams; Chief Deputy Warden
1/806-2012Blood In, Blood Out [1]Rex "Pretty Boy" McCready; ex-conLaurel Hodges, Virgil's sister
02.09-2011In SecondsMyles King; Pineview SheriffLaurel Hodges: aka Vivian Stewart; Virgil's sister
03.11-2011In CloseIsaac Morgan; wildlife photogrpaherClaire O'Toole; Pineview hairdresser
[1]   This very short story is found in the anthology Love Is Murder {edited by Sandra Brown}.

Characters Found In "Blood In, Blood Out"
Character Description
Rex McCready[Hero] in Witness Protection Program (WitSec) for 2 years (381) alias: Perry (382) loveless childhood led him into gang life and 8-year prison term (382) "Pretty Boy" (384)
Laurel Hodges[Heroine] Virgil's sister; Rex's lover and girlfriend; in Witness Protection Program (WitSec) for 2 years (381) trust issues; ex-husband hit her (382)
. . .. . .
Bettybartender; cute blond; Southern accent (383)
Jake [Hodges]Laurel's 7-y-o son (383)
Mia [Hodges]Laurel's 5-y-o daughter (383)
Horsein Los Angeles; owned illegal club; leader of The Crew; personal vendetta against Rex, Virgil (384)
InkThe Crew member who came after Laurel in Colorado; killed U.S. Marshal (388) devilish tattoos covering his face (389)
Moseman Horse sent to Washington, D.C. to find Rex, Virgil (384) heavily muscled man (385) shaved head; tattoos covering his forearms (386) 6'; 200 pounds; solidly built; dark eyes (391)
Brady [Skinner]Virgil and Peyton's new baby (394)
Peyton [Skinner]Virgil's wife; in Witness Protection Program (WitSec) for 2 years (381)
Virgil SkinnerRex's best friend, former cell mate, current business partner; in Witness Protection Program (WitSec) for 2 years (381) joined violent prison gang in prison; exonerated for the murder of his stepfather (382) "Skin" (384) received $700,000 for wrongful imprisonment (283)

Locations, Organizations Found In "Blood In, Blood Out"
Location / Organization Description
Bodyguards R UsRex and Virgil's business (381)
Hanley's Grocerystore where Laurel went grocery shopping (391)
Little Rock, Arkansaswhere Rex, Laurel Virgil, Peyton ran to (397)
Los Angeleswhere Horse lived (384)
The Crewgang Rex and Virgil joined; violent prison gang (382)
Washington, D.C.where WitSec placed Rex, Laurel, Virgil and Peyton (382)

"Blood In, Blood Out" Quotations
383 If they weren't having hot, sweaty, full-throttle sex, they were arguing with equal ferocity.   There was no middle ground where Laurel was concerned, . . .

Links ..........

♥   Disclaimer:   I Borrowed This Book From The Library
♥   Very Subjective Rating

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