Born in Blood

( 29 )


In a stunning new series, Alexandra Ivy lures readers into the dark, seductive world of the Sentinels--humans outcast by their hidden abilities, treading the line between life and death, good and evil, pleasure and pain. . .

In The Heart Of Darkness

Sergeant Duncan O'Conner has seen it all before. Beautiful erotic dancer, murdered at home, no suspect, no motive. But there's one clue: she's missing her heart. It's enough to make the hard-bitten ...

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Born in Blood

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In a stunning new series, Alexandra Ivy lures readers into the dark, seductive world of the Sentinels--humans outcast by their hidden abilities, treading the line between life and death, good and evil, pleasure and pain. . .

In The Heart Of Darkness

Sergeant Duncan O'Conner has seen it all before. Beautiful erotic dancer, murdered at home, no suspect, no motive. But there's one clue: she's missing her heart. It's enough to make the hard-bitten Kansas City cop enlist the help of a necro--one of the dead-channelling freaks who live in the domed city of nearby Valhalla. It's a long shot, but desperate crimes call for desparate measures.

Lies The Kiss Of Death

Unlike the other "high-bloods" in Valhalla, Callie Brown considers her abilities a gift, not a curse. But when she reads the dancer's final thoughts, she senses a powerful presence blocking her vision. This is no ordinary homicide. This is the work of a legendary necromancer who controls souls. A ravenous force that will put Callie's skills to the test, O'Conner's career at risk, and both their hearts on the line. . .literally.

Praise for Alexandra Ivy

"Beyond the Darkness kept me riveted! The Guardians of Eternity series is highly addictive." --Larissa Ione

"Ivy always packs her books with buckets of action, emotion and sexy sizzle. Another winner!" --Romantic Times on Devoured by Darkness

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Bestseller Ivy (the Guardians of Eternity series) launches her new Sentinels series with a romance between sensitive diviner Callie Bowen and brash Kansas City, Kans., cop Duncan O’Conner. Callie usually resides in the protected dome called Valhalla, whose superpowered inhabitants are guarded by Sentinel warriors when visiting the magic-wary outside world. Callie and Duncan often work on murder cases together, his mundane skills enhanced by her abilities to psychically tap into victims’ last moments. After Callie glimpses an unknown necromancer, both the police and Valhalla launch further investigations. Callie and Duncan are both hesitant about emotional commitments—Callie due to inexperience, and Duncan due to his recent divorce—but that doesn’t diminish their sexual connection. The story arc is a bit thin for the length, but Ivy’s fans will be invested in the development of romances introduced between supporting characters as well as further building of this conflicted universe. Agent: Evan Marshall, Evan Marshall Agency. (Jan.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781420125146
  • Publisher: Kensington
  • Publication date: 12/31/2013
  • Series: Sentinels Series
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 332,156
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.70 (h) x 1.90 (d)

Read an Excerpt


By Alexandra Ivy


Copyright © 2013 Debbie Raleigh
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4201-2514-6


Kansas City, Kansas

Sergeant Duncan O'Conner was late to the party.

Nursing a hangover from hell, he took two painkillers with a gallon of hot coffee and steered his POS cop car through the light Sunday traffic and entered the gated community in the Southwest suburbs.

The call had hit his cell phone at three in the afternoon. An hour before, he'd hauled his sorry ass out of bed. It'd taken another half hour under the shower to peel his throbbing eyes open and get rid of the stench of cheap whiskey and even cheaper cigars.

His first thought had been to call in and tell them to find someone else. Wasn't it supposed to be his damned weekend off rotation? Let Caleb deal with the latest stiff.

Then the thought that the entire station would suspect he'd spent the night of his ex-wife's latest wedding getting shit-faced drunk sent him stumbling to his car. Yeah, like his bloodshot eyes and old man shuffle weren't going to give the game away, he acknowledged wryly. But while he could take the razzing, he couldn't take the thought of them feeling sorry for him.

Never that.

He might be a pathetic loser, but he was a pathetic loser who was damned good at his job.

Entering the cul-de-sac, Duncan parked his car and headed into the brick house. He ignored the speculative glances from the neighbors who had gathered in a little clutch across the street. He was accustomed to females checking out his spare, well-honed body shown to advantage in a pair of faded jeans and black tee. Even with his short, pale blond hair damp from the shower and his stubborn jaw shadowed with a golden stubble, he had the look of a man who knew what to do with a woman. Match that with a pair of hazel eyes that sparkled with wicked charm and they were like putty in his hands.

The men tended to be more interested in the gun holstered at his side and the hard expression on his lean face that warned he only needed an excuse to kick someone's ass.

His own attention was focused on the house as he stepped into the small but elegant foyer. Not the sort of house a young woman could afford without some help. From daddy. Or more likely, from sugar daddy.

Not that he was being sexist. He couldn't afford a damned toolshed in this frou-frou neighborhood. Even if his old da chipped in every penny he made driving a cab.

He continued to size up the bold black and white furnishings as a uniformed officer handed him a file with the pertinent details of the case. A beat later another officer arrived to lead him to the back of the house and a sunny kitchen with a perfect view of the pool.

He grimaced as the late spring sunlight sent a stab of agony through his throbbing brain, then lowered his gaze to the female who was lying naked in the middle of the tiled floor.

He wasn't surprised that she was beautiful. Stunningly beautiful with long hair that glistened with chestnut highlights, pretty features, and a slender body that was tight with the muscles of an athlete.

What did surprise him was the lack of any sort of violence. She looked like she'd simply lain down in the middle of the floor and quietly passed away.

In his experience, lovely young women who were killed on Sunday morning were beaten to death by a jealous boyfriend or raped and killed by a passing psycho.

Not ... what?

His brows jerked together as he took a swift inventory of the kitchen, noting everything was in pristine place, not so much as a coffee mug left in the sink. It could be the female never used the kitchen, preferring to eat out, or at her lover's place. It could be she was OCD and her kitchen was always spotless.

But his gut was telling him that she hadn't lived here long enough to stop caring if the place was a mess.

"Hola, O'Conner. Looking a little rough around the edges," the silver-haired coroner drawled, unfolding a white sheet to drape it over the body. "Heard that Susan found herself a decent man to make an honest woman of her."

Yeah, so decent he was banging her in Duncan's own bed.

Flipping off his companion, Duncan opened the file and glanced through the meager info that had been gathered on the female.

"Who found the body?" "A silent alarm was tripped."

"Cause of death?"

"She's missing her heart."

Duncan froze, his gaze searching the victim's unmarred skin and the obvious lack of blood.

"How the hell could she be missing her heart?"

"I don't know," Frank Sanchez admitted, the bite in his raspy voice expressing his opinion of "I don't know." "But I ran the portable MRI over her three times to be sure."

The older man could be a pain in the ass to work with, but he knew his shit. Nothing got past his eagle gaze. If he said the female was missing her heart, then she was missing her heart.

Crap. Duncan hated mysteries.

"No DNA?"

"It's clean." Another growl as Frank gathered the tools of his trade to pack them in a black leather bag. "Too clean."

"So a freak?"

"That would be my guess."

Confused, Duncan read through the file.

Leah Meadows.


Single, originally from Little Rock.

Current occupation, dancer at the Rabbit Hutch.

That would explain her location, he cynically concluded. Her salary as a dancer wouldn't cover the rent, but the clients who frequented the high-end strip club would easily be able to afford this place to keep a current mistress.

It didn't, however, explain why she was lying naked in her kitchen without her heart.

Lifting his head, he met Frank's troubled gaze. "You made the call?"

The older man grimaced, not needing any further explanation.

When there was a murder that didn't have an eyewitness or a legitimate suspect, it was protocol to call in one of the mutants. And when it might involve another mutant, they were called ASAP.

"Yep. She should be—"

On cue one of the uniforms stepped into the kitchen. "The necro is here."

"Perfect timing," Duncan muttered. "Show her in." For whatever reason, necros were almost always females.

The young man nodded, disappearing back down the hallway while Frank snapped shut his black bag.

"That's my cue for a quick exit."

Duncan grinned. "Scared?"

"Damned straight," the older man said without apology. "Freaks give me the heebie-jeebies. I don't know how you can be in the same room with one."

A bitter smile touched Duncan's lips. Like draws to like ...

No. He grimly crushed the mocking words in the back of his aching head. He wasn't like those mutants from Valhalla.

Lots of people could see the souls of others, couldn't they?

He swallowed his grim urge to laugh, tilting his head toward the sheet on the floor. "You can be in the same room with a corpse, but not a necro?"

Frank shrugged. "I respect the dead. No one should be screwing around with their heads."

"Even if it takes a murderer off the streets?"

"I like getting my criminals the old-fashioned way. Necros should be abolished along with the rest of the—"

"I prefer the term 'diviner' if you don't mind," a soft, compelling voice whispered through the room, turning both men toward the door like a magnet.

Even prepared, Duncan felt the air being jerked from his lungs at the sight of Callie Brown.

It wasn't just that she was a stunning beauty with her short, spiky hair that was so dark red it shimmered like fire in the sunlight. Her pale features were perfectly carved with a sensual invitation for a mouth and a proud nose.

And her body ... hell, it was slender with just enough curves to make a man think of black silk sheets and long weekends. Today it was displayed to perfection in a pair of black spandex pants and a white stretchy top.

But for Duncan it was the white aura that flickered around her diminutive body that made his blood burn.

So pure. So completely and utterly innocent.

And like any bastard, he ached to be the one who debauched that wholesomeness even as he savored the rare beauty of her soul.

"Shit," Frank muttered, heading for the door leading to the back patio. "Adios, amigo."

His entire body vibrating with an awareness that went way beyond sexual attraction, Duncan barely noticed the hasty departure of the coroner. Not that he wouldn't have Callie flat on her back and her legs wrapped around his waist with the least hint of encouragement.

It was a sensation that should have scared the hell out of him. Instead a wicked smile curved his lips.

"Hello, Callie."

She turned her head, regarding him through the reflective sunglasses that hid her eyes, her expression unreadable.

On the half dozen occasions Duncan had worked with Callie, he'd never seen her be anything but serene. Which, of course, only encouraged him to try and provoke a response from her. Anything to know there was a flesh and blood woman beneath that image of calm.

Why it was so important to find that woman was another one of those things he put on the list of "don't fucking care."

"Sergeant O'Conner," she said, moving with an unearthly grace to stand beside the sheet.

"Duncan," he insisted, shifting to stand across the body, his gaze never leaving Callie's pale face.

"Has the body been processed?"

"As much as can be done in the field. You're free to do your thing."

"Time of death?"

"At least an hour ago."

"Then I should have time." She knelt down, reaching for the edge of the sheet. "The spark—"

"Yeah, no need explain." He held up a restraining hand. He might not share the prejudices of most of society against the freaks, but that didn't mean he wanted an insider's guide to necromancy. Christ. The mere thought made his stomach clench. "Just see what you can do."

"Fine." Cool, indifferent. Then her body tensed. "So young," she murmured softly.

"Twenty-six." He crouched down, studying her silken skin unmarred by wrinkles. "Older than you?"

"A woman never shares that information."

"You share nothing."

"Do you blame me?"

His lips twisted at the smooth thrust. Most people went out of their way to avoid freaks, but there were others who thought the only good freak was a dead freak. There were even a handful of cults where people trained to kill them. Mostly simpleminded idiots who needed someone to tell them what to think and angry outcasts who had nowhere else to go, but that didn't make them any less dangerous.

"No, not really."

"What was her name?"

His jaw tightened. Okay, he was vain. He'd spent most of his life knowing women found him irresistible. The fact he wasn't certain if Callie had even noticed he was a male annoyed the hell out of him.

Then with a silent curse he shoved aside his ego and concentrated on the only thing important at the moment. Finding the son of a bitch who'd killed this woman.

"Leah Meadows."

"Is that her real name?"

He shrugged. "That's all I got for now."

She paused before giving a slow nod. "It should do."

"Why do you need her name?" He asked the question that he'd wondered about more than once.

By law they couldn't give details of the death in the fear that the necro might be swayed into naming a murderer even if the victim couldn't reveal the truth.

But a necro always asked for a name.

"It helps me to connect with her mind."

He shuddered. "Christ."

"You asked," she reminded him in a low voice.

"Do you need any other details?"

"I need to touch her."

"There." He pointed toward the forearm where Frank would have prepped the victim. "It's been sanitized."

She at last lifted her head. "Would you make sure—"

"That no one enters?" he finished for her.


He abruptly frowned. "Where's your Sentinel?"

A necro never left the compound without a guardian Sentinel. Not only were they capable of opening portals to travel from place to place (a mysterious talent that was never discussed among the mundane mortals), but they were also trained warriors who were covered in intricate tattoos. From what little Duncan had been able to learn, the ceremonial markings protected the warriors from magic as well as any attempt at mind control.

And, oh yeah, they were capable of killing with their bare hands.

There were also rumors that there were other Sentinels—hunters who weren't marked and could travel among the humans unnoticed. But info on them was kept top secret.

"I asked him to wait outside."

He lifted a brow. "Why?"

"Because you take such pleasure in tormenting him and he's too well trained to fight back."

"Are you saying I'm not well trained?"

She ignored the open invitation to point out that he was barely civilized and instead returned her attention to the victim.

"The door, please."

He slowly straightened, swallowing his groan as his head gave another protesting throb. Whiskey was the devil's brew, just as his ma had always claimed.

"No one's coming in," he muttered, "but I'll keep guard at the door if it makes you feel better."

"Thank you, Sergeant."

"Duncan." His headache forgotten, he flashed a smile of pure challenge. "One day you'll say it. Hell, one day you might even scream it."

No response. With a low growl, Duncan made his way to the door, leaning on the doorjamb to make sure no one could enter, while keeping his attention on the woman kneeling beside the corpse.

She ignored his unwavering attention, lifting a hand to remove her sunglasses and setting them aside. At the same time the slanting sunlight spilled over her, catching in the sapphire blue of her eyes.

Duncan's heart forgot how to beat.

He'd seen them before. At a distance. At the time he'd thought they looked like expensive gems, perfectly faceted and shimmering with an inner light. Up close they were even more magnificent.


The beauty of those eyes was hypnotizing.

Priceless jewels that revealed this was no ordinary woman.

Duncan would be pleased to know that it was only her years of training that allowed Callie to ignore his raw sexual magnetism.

He was the sort of primitive male that should have infuriated her, not tantalized her deepest fantasies.

Of course, the Mave would tell her that fantasies were meant to be filled with unsuitable desires. Why not lust after a bad boy cop? It wasn't as if she was going to do anything about it. She didn't know if his flirtations were a way to taunt her or if he was one of those groupies who got off on sleeping with "freaks," but either way, it had nothing to do with her as a person.

Still, it was only with an effort that she managed to crush the tiny tingles of excitement fluttering in the pit of her stomach and the dampness of her palms.

Now wasn't the time or place.

Tonight in her dreams ... well, that was a different story.

Clearing her thoughts, she laid her hands on the victim's arm and closed her eyes.

It took a second to slip from her own mind and into the female stretched on the floor. There was always a strange sense of ... floating. As if her consciousness was hovering between one body and the next. Then, focusing on the feel of the female's arm beneath her fingers, she murmured her name.


The soft word was enough.

With a hair-raising jolt, she was sucked from her body and into Leah's mind.

She could easily sense the female soul, just as she could sense she was fading.


Despite the ridiculous myths, a necromancer couldn't control or raise the dead. Her only ability was to tap into the mind of the murdered victim to see the last few minutes of their life.

And only within a very short time frame.

Once the ... spark, for lack of a better word ... was extinguished and the soul moved on, the memories were lost.

A meaningless talent for the most part. But on rare occasion it could mean the opportunity for justice.

With a well-honed skill, Callie touched on the female's memory center. Just being born a diviner didn't automatically mean that a person would be capable of reading memories. There were many necromancers who were never able to do more than enter the body and hopefully catch a stray thought.

Callie, however, was one of the most talented.

Which was why she was always sent when there was a suspicion the death might have been caused by a high-blood, as the freaks preferred to call themselves.

Finding the spot she was searching for, she delicately slipped into the fading memories and allowed them to flow through her.

Suddenly she was no longer kneeling on the hard floor. Instead she was in the attached garage, stepping out of her sleek black Jag. She sensed a pleasant weariness in her limbs, as if she'd just finished a vigorous workout at the gym, a suspicion confirmed when she glanced down to see she was wearing a pair of stretchy pants and a matching sports bra.


Excerpted from BORN In BLOOD by Alexandra Ivy. Copyright © 2013 Debbie Raleigh. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 29 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 29 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    This is my first read by Ivy (I know, I am full of shame). But I

    This is my first read by Ivy (I know, I am full of shame). But I definitely see why she is a New York Times bestseller. Man, what a read and a great way to start off the new year, I must add. It was impossible for me not to love this world and its many intriguing characters. Callie was a great heroine. She has definitely had a tough life of sorts. She was literally thrown in the trash when she was born. But she was luckily found by those who are like her. She loves her family in Valhalla. Despite some still being freaked out by her necromancy abilities, she stands on her own two feet and with her head held high. I really loved that. By the way, I do love the cover, it is gorgeous (Paul Marron anyone? Hell yeah!) But that is not Callie. What happened to the short and spiky hair? I wanted a cute, redheaded pixie. Born in Blood is the first book in Alexandra Ivy's exciting new paranormal romance series and was a great start to the series. I loved it! This book is full of action, danger, and steamy romance. Alexandra Ivy created an exciting and seductive new world with Sentinels, who are humans with special abilities. I loved the main characters, Duncan the sexy detective and Callie, a gifted Sentinel. There were a lot of secondary characters that captured my attention as well. Now I'm hooked and this series will be on my must buy list. I can not wait to see what else she has in store for us in this series. I recommend this series for paranormal romance lovers.  

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    3.5 Stars  ~Reviewed by FRANCESCA & posted at Under the Cove

    3.5 Stars 
    ~Reviewed by FRANCESCA & posted at Under the Covers Book Blog

    BORN IN BLOOD started out very promising to me.  I’m not really sure why, the vibe of the story had an X-Men feel to me (even though it’s actually necromancers right now).  But people with powers or supernaturals are considered freaks in the world that Ms. Ivy constructed, and they live for the most part in a compound away from humans.  And they don’t mix aside from the occasional time they work together.

    Duncan is a cop who is not having the best day.  He is called to a scene where there’s a body of a woman missing a heart, with no obvious signs of how that happened.  Regular necromancer liaison Callie Brown is called in to make a connection to the soul and re-live her last few moments to find out how she died.  Except she can’t.  The killer is a high-blood.  And they are dealing with someone much more powerful than her.

    The first 30-40% of this book had my full attention.  I enjoyed the sexual tension between Duncan and Callie and how much Duncan was just trying to outrageously flirt and assume they would end up in bed together. The story has the classic paranormal romance feel that I’ve been missing in some of my reads lately.  Nothing too complicated or elaborate.  Just a good story with characters that caught my attention.

    But then the story suddenly fizzled out for me a bit.  Although I found he second half interesting and I wanted to know what the end result would be, I lost interest in the main couple.  This could be because we got some fade to black moments I thought we shouldn’t have.  Or just because their love developed a bit quickly for me being that they didn’t have that much of a back story.

    BORN IN BLOOD marks the start of an entertaining paranormal series I’ll definitely want to read more.  Even though this particular story had some ups and downs, I think the author has something good going on with this series and I’m curious to see where she goes from here.  Especially with the Sentinels!

    *ARC provided by publisher

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2014

    I enjoyed this book, never read her before. I am also looking fo

    I enjoyed this book, never read her before. I am also looking for the next one but I would like to know what the name will be & when it will come out.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 4, 2015

    more from this reviewer

    I think I might like this series more than I like this author¿s

    I think I might like this series more than I like this author’s vampire series. Blaspheme, I know! The world has some great elements in it and I have hopes that the next book is going to be even better. The setting of this story, or world, reminds me of several of my favorite movies and TV franchises. Fans of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, The Avengers, and X-Men should definitely give this book a try. I’m classifying it as a paranormal, but it is really a supernatural story full of characters with superpowers, essentially. There were just two points that kept me from giving it five stars and I’ll get to them later.

    So what did work for me. I enjoy a good fight of good vs. evil and this world had it on several fronts. Not only did we have the typical psycho-egomaniac hell-bent on taking over the world, we also have this element of a group of society being different and therefore discriminated against. It makes you connect with these would-be heroes and root for them to overcome the prejudices of society. It helps us see the wrong in our own world and teaches us readers what it feels like to be on the other side…or gives those who are also suppressed someone to identify with, a role-model. I also adored this campus like home of Valhalla, what a cool place to explore and hang out for a few hours. That part of the story really reminded me of the X-Men movies. The pacing of the story was good, a nice mix of action, romance, and world building for a first book. We learned a lot, but Ivy didn’t bog the story down by spoon-feeding it all to us in on big chunk in the beginning.

    The romance between Callie and Duncan was believable, to me at least. I liked the chemistry between them and that they seemed to have a history, having worked together over different crimes over the years. There was kinda a love triangle, but not really, when we take Fane into account, his being Callie’s guardian Sentinel. That part of the story is left hanging at the end, but I can see that Fane’s story is up next, so I expect that to be resolved there. I wish we could have had an epilogue at the end with one more scene (that I won’t share for spoiler reasons), but the ending was pretty sweet.

    What held the story back from a five-star rating. The ending kind of fell apart for me. I found myself having trouble paying attention and just wanted it to end in the last 50 pages. Not that it was bad, just I was ready for it to be over. Perhaps some element was missing to keep me enthralled. Also the whole zombie aspect of the story, yeah I know it was the main plot, but I’m just not a fan of zombie movies or stories. If the world didn’t have the potential for more than just necromancers and zombies I would be done, but I think Ivy is going to be exploring other powers in future books. Fortunately for me the romance and world building over-powered the zombies for much of the book and I was able to still enjoy the story. The very end really ratcheted up the zombies, so maybe that is why I struggled with those last pages.

    I’m looking forward to what happens next. I really liked Fane and can’t wait to start his story. Good thing I scored an ARC of the next book, so my wait isn’t going to be long. If you are looking for something a little different, but enjoy the paranormal genre, I suggest giving this book or series a try.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2015



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  • Posted December 23, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    A New HIT Series!

    Alexandra Ivy brings out her brilliantly dark side again with this series opener, Born in blood. Mythology, Valhalla, mystery, murder and people empowered with unique and supernatural gifts, and oh my, don’t forget the romantic tension, it’s all here in a fast-paced and very detailed tale that sets the standard for the rest of the series. Callie has been called in to consult on a case that the rather arrogant Duncan is working on. Why would this uber-masculine male request help? Callie has a gift, she speaks to the dead and Duncan has a dead woman and a killer on the loose. Never mind that Duncan has the hots for Callie, who returns the heat, but is a little more cautious about any relationship, because of her power. The questions to be answered are: who is the murder, why did he/she do it, and how many pages will it take for Callie to finally all for Duncan’s “charm?”

    Get ready to watch a world come to life without you really knowing! Alexandra Ivy manages to sneak and grow her world right before your very eyes as you follow the twists and turns of this tale. The characters? You are going to discover that sometimes the ones you like the least may just grow on you, like moss on a tree! Great story, touchable characters and tension, love the tension.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2014

    Class act once angain

    Wonderful story can't wait for more books for this series!!!

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  • Posted July 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    A fascinating new urban fantasy realm to explore! Alexandra Ivy

    A fascinating new urban fantasy realm to explore!

    Alexandra Ivy’s Born in Blood is a book that grabbed me from the first page. The gritty urban fantasy landscape that Ive created - where the paranormal realm coexists alongside the mundane mortal world - is fascinating. 

    Mixing police procedural and a psychic CSI-type vibe, the characters are compelling. What at first seems to be a slightly baffling crime, soon becomes much more, as Police Sergeant Duncan O’Conner consults with Callie Brown, who can channel the dead, discovering a murderer who seemingly knows no limits. 

    There are plot twists and turns that I never anticipated - and kept me flipping the pages like mad. I was fascinated by Callie and found Duncan to be one of those heroes you just have to crush on. So, if you’re looking for a fascinating new urban fantasy realm to explore, pick up Alexandra Ivy’s Born in Blood.

    Four-and-a-half stars

    (I received an eARC from the publisher through NetGalley for use in this review.)

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  • Posted June 3, 2014

    3.5 Stars Born in Blood is a very good read but has typical ¿fi

    3.5 Stars

    Born in Blood is a very good read but has typical “first book in a new series” syndrome; a whole bunch of vivid and descriptive world building that took away from the characters.

    In this new universe, paranormal creatures and gifted people fall under the title “high blood” or freak, the derogatory term used for them.  While their existence is known, they are still veiled in secrecy.  They live in a city called Valhalla that is protected by a magic dome.  

    Callie has been living in Valhalla for as long as she can remember.  Her gift was recognized by her parents and she was dumped into a dumpster.  Luckily she found kindness and love in her new home and is now a grown woman who is in high demand by the local police force for her rare gift of necromancy.  But she has a little problem.  She needs to keep her mind on her job and off the sexy detective that has been occupying way too much of her time.  She needs to concentrate or be woman enough to take what she wants and desires.

    Today is Duncan’s lucky day.  It seems his favorite fantasy is interested in him too.  Now he needs to play it cool to catch her and keep her.  The problem is, she has a huge tattooed killer of a bodyguard and they have a high blood killer on the loose.  Oh and I forgot to mention…zombies.  He doesn’t have the time to woo Callie, but he isn’t about to let her slip from his grasp.

    Ms. Ivy does a very thorough job building her world, but it drew me away from where I wanted to be, with Duncan and Callie.  I enjoyed the story as a whole, but I wasn’t blown away.  Now that the building is done, I hope that the future installments will take what I expect to be a great series, to the next level.  Ms. Ivy has always found a way to pull me in and I expect her to continue to do that. 

    On a very very positive note, the fact she is titling the series after the sexy hot and very deadly sentinels, well that alone will keep me coming back for more.  I think Ms. Ivy has developed the next hottie of the paranormal world.  Sentinels are deliciously alpha with mind blowing sex appeal.  Need I say more?

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 30, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Okay read.

    I am a great fan of Ms. Ivy's but, this book was just okay. I enjoyed the storyline and the world of magical beings that she created. The main characters are a police officer who doesn't like magic and a female witch/necromancer who he meets during a murder investigation. I love paranormal romance stories and this started great, but then I started skipping pages. This was a first for me with a A. Ivy book. I was not invested in the relationship between the two leads. I will buy the next book in the series to see where it goes from here because even a okay book by Ms. Ivy is better than some of the other paranormal books on the market. I would give it a 3.5 star rating.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2014

    Truly disappointing

    I struggled to find any believable attraction between Duncan and Callie. As much as I wanted to love this book because I am such a big fan of A. Ivy's work...... I just gave up about 100 pages in. I won't completely give up on future releases, but this book had a bit too much "cheese" in the charachter development. Real bummer!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 16, 2014

    Couldn't put it down!

    Loved it! Can't wait for the next in this series.

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  • Posted March 28, 2014

    Please, Ma'am, may I have another? *Book source ~ A review copy

    Please, Ma'am, may I have another?

    *Book source ~ A review copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.

    Sergeant Duncan O’Connor is a Kansa City cop investigating the death of an exotic dancer who is missing her heart. The unusual circumstances of her death mean that a Necromancer is called from Valhalla to help with the investigation. Though Callie Brown prefers to be called a Diviner. If she can get to a body before the spark is gone then she can see the person’s final moments. It’s in those moments that Callie may be able to pinpoint a murderer. However, this case is much different. The dancer’s spark disappears before Callie can get a look at her murderer, but an unusual man remains. A dangerous man. And he shouldn’t be there. Duncan and Callie, along with her Sentinel (bodyguard) Fane, go to Valhalla to talk with the Mave. There’s something very wrong brewing on the horizon and they’re pretty sure the dancer’s death is only the beginning. 

    After reading the short story Out of Control (The Sentinels, #0.5) in the anthology Predatory I’ve wanted to read more about the Sentinels and Valhalla. This story does not disappoint! While I found Duncan to be a bit overbearing, horn doggish and a tad conceited for my tastes, he’s actually a pretty good guy deep down. Callie is a wonderful heroine, strong and yet vulnerable, but best of all, no pushover when it comes to Duncan. Excellent! There are other great characters who make an appearance, but Fane…oh, my, Fane. He is one hot dude and I can’t wait for his story! *fans self*

    The world in this book is so interesting! Even the villain and his back story were interesting. There is a lot of information and world-building going on yet it doesn’t bog the story down one bit. I’m hooked. I love this slightly different take on the paranormal and I’m really looking forward to continuing with this series.

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  • Posted February 17, 2014

    Duncan has a corpse missing her heart and has to call in the hel

    Duncan has a corpse missing her heart and has to call in the help of Callie. She is what the normal people like to call a freak but Duncan doesn't see her that way. Callie uses her abilities to look into the dead girl's memories to see her last memory. She has done it before and never thought this would be any different. She doesn't see her memory but a necromancer who Callie knows she will have to stop. Duncan and Callie have to work together to find and stop the evil necromancer. They both like each other and as they work together they see it may be more than just liking each other. They will have to open up not just their hearts but will have to dig deep down into their own powers to stop this evil.

    Callie is used to being called a freak by normal people. She doesn't let it bother her as she is proud of her gift. She helps people and enjoys her life. She isn't one to stand by the side either. She is willing to get her hands dirty and even while she may be afraid she fights through it. She also isn't afraid to let Duncan know what she wants even if it;s to let him know she isn't onto commitments. Duncan is a great character. He seems to have several qualities that make him stand out. Unlike others he doesn't call the people who live in Valhalla freaks. He respects them and works with them. He is out of his own element a few times and even with his job is on the line he still does what he thinks is right. He is very sexy and while he can be pushy sometimes and not being perfect makes him that much greater. He also has a few secrets of his own he isn't sure he wants to come out. Both work well together and try their best to protect each other.

    I really enjoyed this book as it built the world up as you read. You learn more about this new place you find yourself in and you learn about the new characters. The main characters Duncan and Callie themselves are great and when you add in the other characters you see just how wonderful this series will be. I am already looking forward to reading the side characters stories. This book has lots of action and you keep wondering what next. It definitely kept my attention the whole book. You also have love as Duncan and Callie see that they care deeply for each other even if Callie isn't sure where she wants it to go a few times. I did get a few laughs as I read as well as Duncan likes to make a some remarks to who he calls Lurch. This is a great start to a series and if you like paranormal romance I am sure you will like it as well.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2014

    Loved this book! Can't wait for more in this series!

    Loved this book! Can't wait for more in this series!

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  • Posted January 31, 2014

    Must Read!!

    This book is awesome. There is action from the first page. And the revelations towards the end were unexpected but totally great. Alexandra Ivy is a great writer another great book.

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  • Posted January 28, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Born in Blood (The Sentinels #1)by Alexandra Ivy Kansas City

    Born in Blood (The Sentinels #1)by Alexandra Ivy

    Kansas City Sergeant Duncan O’Conner’s murder investigation solicits the help of necromancer, Callie Brown, to help solve the paranormal case.  What Callie discovers is the work of a powerful necromancer who should not exist.  Working together they need to stop the murderer and try not to become the next casualty.

    The world they live in has a lot of trust issues between the supernatural community, better known as high-bloods or freaks and humans.  They need to overcome prejudices in order to work with each other.  

    I enjoyed that the characters discovered things about themselves throughout the novel that enable them to grow as individuals and accept details about themselves.  

    Alexandra Ivy is off to a great start with this new series.  She does a good job at making the story seem believable.  Born in Blood has fast pace action that will keep you guessing.  

    ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014


    Loved this book. I've read all of Alexandra's books and I think this is my new favorite. Can not wait for the next book in this series.

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  • Posted January 14, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I am shamefaced to admit that other than an occasional short in

    I am shamefaced to admit that other than an occasional short in an anthology I’ve not read any of Alexandra Ivy’s work.  I must now go catch up.  
    In this first book of a new series we are in a world split by High Bloods (aka Freaks) and Norms.  The High Bloods are people with gifts, witches, psychics, seers, diviners, hunters, sentinels and the like.  They’ve been herded into reservations to keep them separate from the norms until of course their gifts come in handy.  When Kansas City cop Duncan O’Conner comes across a dead body that hasn’t a mark on it but the heart is gone he suspects foul play by magic.  He calls for the cute little Diviner to come and see if she can read what happened in the victim’s last moments.  What she finds surprises and frightens them both

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  • Posted January 9, 2014

    Loved this new series. The chemistry was their and I am looking

    Loved this new series. The chemistry was their and I am looking forward to reading more about the wonderful characters introduced to us.

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