Blood Relation (Arcane Casebook #6) ★★★★☆

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Title: Blood Relation
Series: Arcane Casebook #6
Author: Dan Willis
Rating: 4 of 5 Stars
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 306
Words: 102.5K


Alex Lockerby, now working on commission for one of the Great Sorcerers, tries to keep his head in the detective game by doing small jobs here and there. He has also hired a small time rune wright who he is teaching to use the finding rune to find lost objects, thus ensuring a steady trickle of business.

A string of gruesome murders start occurring and Alex is called in, as all of the scenes are covered in what appear to be runes. If they are runes, they are a type that Alex has never seen before, nor has Iggy.

German spies attempt to poison Sorsha and Alex and when that fails, to shoot Alex point blank. Sorsha is guarding a political big wig who is in town on secret business.

Turns out that the blood runes and murders are being committed by a man who was gifted much like Alex but then turned on his mentors and lost the ability to use standard runes. As such, he turned to blood magic to stay young and to build his power. Alex defeats him, but no body is found.

Alex also figures out what the secret project is and has to warn Sorsha to prevent the Germans from stealing a flying bomb and destroying half the city.

In the end, Alex has a talk with Moriarty and realizes that the magic Rune book has another whole level that Iggy never found. This opens Alex up to another level of Rune Wright’ery and shows him just how small the knowledge he has is.

My Thoughts:

Once again, I enjoyed myself immensely while reading this. This time around, the two biggest things I enjoyed was the pace wasn’t as frenetic as before (Alex isn’t investigating 7 cases all at once) and the Power Creep slowed down.

Having a Rune Wright be one of the main villains this time around was also refreshing. He shows Alex that magic or even runes, aren’t a monolithic entity, but a fractured puzzle that can be put together in almost infinite number of ways. This has the side effect of allowing Alex to be on a bit more of an equal footing with the likes of Sorsha, his sorceress on again off again girlfriend.

I think my only real issue is how Willis creates characters only to not use them as much as they could be. Danny Pak is the perfect example. He started out as bosom buddies with Alex but he barely gets a mention now. I’m afraid Alex is entering into the “Only I can do anything” zone. I guess I’d like to see more of the side characters fleshed out beyond a name and a function.

Other than that, this review really suffers from “I Like This” syndrome. This was another great book in the series and I enjoyed it. I just can’t muster up much to talk about it. I’m sure you can relate. Willis has been writing this series pretty hard and I am impressed that he’s keeping the quality to what it is. I am looking forward to the next book and we’ll see what the world brings into Alex Lockerby’s life next.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

25 thoughts on “Blood Relation (Arcane Casebook #6) ★★★★☆

    1. Makes me glad I’m happily married and don’t have to deal with the “what if” of the relationship game.

      Those barstards! I knew the song was missing because every flipping review on Amazon goes on and on about it being missing in the bluray/dvd copies. I love that they “found” it. Just another way for Disney to frack over their fans by making them buy another “version” of a movie they already own, perhaps in multiple formats already. Besides Star Wars, Disney is just ruining every IP they own in one way or another. Forget political assassinations, I think I’ll put my money on corporate assassinations…

      Liked by 1 person

            1. Yeah, the Muppets I grew up with wouldn’t pass muster with the Disney of today, that is for sure. I’m sure somebody would scream about Gonzo being sexist and the Swedish Chef being rascist and the two old grumps being Ageist, etc, etc.

              I would like watch a pigs in space montage now! sigh…

              Liked by 1 person

    1. After the change in covers on the God Fragments series (that was wicked disappointing), I was afraid this might change too. Thankfully, Willis seems committed to using the same artist. I am and my virtual bookshelves are very thankful 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I have a feeling this is going to turn into one of those “forever until the author gets bored or runs out of ideas” kind of series. So far, I’m ok with that. Ask me after another 4 or 5 books though and maybe my tune will be different? 😀

      Honestly, I’d hold off reading these until next year just to see if where it is actually going. I don’t think he can keep this pace up though.

      Liked by 1 person

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