In this standalone sequel to The Blood Gospel, archaeologist Erin Granger and Sergeant Jordan Stone work overtime to avert a vampire Armageddon. Blending elements of adventure, apocalyptic prophecy, history, and supernatural horror, Innocent Blood grabs your attention and won't let go. As one early reviewer noted, "There's a touch of genius, witting or no, in pairing a Dan Brown-ian hidden-codex mystery with a vampire tale." Now in mass-market paperback and NOOK Book.
Innocent Blood (Order of the Sanguines Series #2)by James Rollins, Rebecca Cantrell, Christian Baskous
A vicious attack at a ranch in California thrusts archaeologist Erin Granger back into the fold of the Sanguines. Following the prophetic words found in the Blood Gospel, Erin must join forces with Army Sergeant Jordan Stone and Father Rhun Korza to discover and protect a boy believed to be an angel given flesh. But an enigmatic enemy of immense power and… See more details below
A vicious attack at a ranch in California thrusts archaeologist Erin Granger back into the fold of the Sanguines. Following the prophetic words found in the Blood Gospel, Erin must join forces with Army Sergeant Jordan Stone and Father Rhun Korza to discover and protect a boy believed to be an angel given flesh. But an enigmatic enemy of immense power and terrifying ambition seeks the same child—not to save the world, but to hasten its destruction. For any hope of victory, Erin must discover the truth behind Christ's early years and understand His first true miracle, an event wrapped in sin and destruction, an act that yet remains unfulfilled and holds the only hope for the world. The search for the truth will take Erin and the others across centuries and around the world, to the very gates of Hell itself, where their destiny—and the fate of mankind—awaits.
Read an Excerpt
By Rebecca Cantrell, James Rollins
HarperCollins PublishersCopyright © 2013 Rebecca Cantrell
All rights reserved.
December 18, 9:58 A.M. PST
Palo Alto, California
An edge of panic kept her tense.
As Dr. Erin Granger entered the lecture hall on the Stanford
campus, she glanced across its breadth to make sure she was alone.
She even crouched and searched under the empty seats, making cer-
tain no one was hiding there. She kept one hand on the Glock 19 in
her ankle holster.
It was a beautiful winter morning, the sun hanging in a crisp,
cloud- studded blue sky. With bright light streaming through the tall
windows, she had little to fear from the dark creatures that haunted
Still, after all that had befallen her, she knew that her fellow man
was just as capable of evil.
Straightening again, she reached the lectern in front of the class-
room and let out a quiet sigh of relief. She knew her fears were illog-
ical, but that didn't stop her from checking that the hall was safe
before her students trooped in. As annoying as college kids could
be, she would fight to the death to keep each one of them from harm.
She wouldn't fail a student again.
Erin's fingers tightened on the scuffed leather satchel in her hand.
She had to force her fingers to open and place her bag next to the lec-
tern. With her gaze still roaming the room, she unbuckled the satchel
and pulled out her notes for the lecture. Usually she memorized her
16 | James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell
presentations, but she had taken over this class for a professor on
maternity leave. It was an interesting topic, and it kept her from
dwelling on the events that had upended her life, starting with the
loss of her two graduate students in Israel a couple of months before.
Heinrich and Amy.
The German student had died from injuries sustained following
an earthquake. Amy's death had come later, murdered because Erin
had unwittingly sent forbidden information to her student, knowl-
edge that had gotten the young woman killed.
She rubbed her palms, as if trying to wipe away that blood, that
responsibility. The room seemed suddenly colder. It couldn't have
been more than fifty degrees outside and not much warmer in the
classroom. Still, the shivers that swept through her as she prepared
her papers had nothing to do with the room's poor heating system.
Returned again to Stanford, she should have felt good to be
home, wrapped in the familiar, in the daily routines of a semester
winding toward Christmas break.
But she didn't.
Because nothing was the same.
As she straightened and prepared this morning's lecture notes,
her students arrived in ones and twos, a few climbing down the stairs
to the seats in front, but most hanging back and folding down the
seats in the uppermost rows.
Erin glanced to her left and discovered a young man with five
silver hoops along one eyebrow approaching her. The student wore
a determined expression on his face as he stepped in front of her.
He carried a camera with a long lens over one shoulder.
“Yes?” She didn't bother to mask the irritation in her voice.
He placed a folded slip of paper atop the wooden lectern and slid
it toward her.
Behind him, the other students in the room looked on, noncha-
lant, but they were unconvincing actors. She could tell they watched
her, wondering what she would do. She didn't need to open that slip
of paper to know that it contained the young man's phone number.
“I'm from the Stanford Daily.” He played with a hoop in his
eyebrow. “I was hoping for one quick interview for the school
INNOCENT BLOOD | 17
She pushed the slip of paper back toward him. “No, thank you.”
She had refused all interview requests since returning from
Rome. She wouldn't break her silence now, especially as everything
she was allowed to say was a lie.
To hide the truth of the tragic events that had left her two stu-
dents dead, a story had been put out that she had been trapped three
days in the Israeli desert, entombed amid the rubble following an
earthquake at Masada. According to that false account, she was dis-
covered alive, along with an army sergeant named Jordan Stone and
her sole surviving graduate student, Nate Highsmith.
She understood the necessity of a cover story to explain the time
she had spent working for the Vatican, a subterfuge that was further
supported by an elite few in the government who also knew the truth.
The public wasn't ready for stories of monsters in the night, of the
dark underpinnings that supported the world at large.
Still, necessity or not, she had no intention of elaborating on
The student with the line of eyebrow rings persisted. “I'd let
you review the story before I post it. If you don't like every single
bit, we can work with it until you do.”
“I respect your persistence and diligence, but it does not
change my answer.” She gestured to the half- full auditorium. “Please,
take your seat.”
He hesitated and seemed about to speak again.
She pulled herself up to her full height and fixed him with her
sternest glare. She stood only five foot eight, and with her blond hair
tied back in a casual ponytail, she didn't strike as the most intimidat-
Still, it was all about the attitude.
Whatever he saw in her eyes drove him back to the gathering
students, where he sank quickly into his seat, keeping his face down.
With the matter settled, she tapped her sheaf of notes into a neat
pile and drew the class to order. “Thank you all for coming to the
final session of History 104: Stripping the Divine from Biblical His-
tory. Today we will discuss common misconceptions about a reli-
gious holiday that is almost upon us, namely Christmas.”
Excerpted from Innocent Blood by Rebecca Cantrell, James Rollins. Copyright © 2013 Rebecca Cantrell. Excerpted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.
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.
Meet the Author
James Rollins is the New York Times bestselling author of international thrillers, translated into more than forty languages. His Sigma series has been lauded as one of the "top crowd pleasers" (New York Times) and one of the "hottest summer reads" (People magazine). In each novel, acclaimed for its originality, Rollins unveils unseen worlds, scientific breakthroughs, and historical secrets—and he does it all at breakneck speed and with stunning insight.
- Sacramento, California
- Date of Birth:
- August 20, 1961
- Place of Birth:
- Chicago, Illinois
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Innocent Blood by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell has to be the most engrossing, thrilling, fast paced book I have read this year. It is action packed and so, so interesting. The book is the second part in a series titled The Order of the Sanguines, but offers enough background info, detailing on the events of Book #1 (The Blood Gospel), to work as a standalone. It is like a paranormal version of a Dan Brown novel, with vampires, angels and prophecies. People judge vampire fiction far too quickly these days. This book is neither young adult, nor paranormal romance nor anything that would make you roll your eyes and go all skeptic. In a word, Innocent Blood by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell is awesome, so don't dismiss it as just-another-vampire-related-book. What I liked: The standouts were: the uniquely sinister take on vampires; the characters picked out of history and mythology, I specially liked the Blood Countess, Elizabeth Bathory; the character development despite the swift pace; the adventure spanning over the world and the ages; the attention to detail. The story was horrific, thrilling, tragic and (here's a rarity in this genre) quite insightful. And the touch of science fiction, with those ingenious mechanical insects capable of fatally poisoning vampires: wow. The book has left me in complete awe. That it is part of a series and there's more to come is the icing on the cake. What I didn't like: Nothing. The book was as close to perfect as can be! I give it a four star rating, because, not having read the first book, it took me a while to get into context. Some terms were unfamiliar; like the strigoi - the vampires, the Sanguines - the reformed (sort of) vampires priests or the blasphemare - these animals turned into nightmarishly strong monsters after being infected by the blood of the strigoi. I also had to read up on a lot of the Christian elements and the Biblical references, though they were pretty basic and the extra reading was just for me. I don't know if the themes could be construed as offensive by religious readers, but they were very intriguing and as far as I'm concerned, amazingly unique... What I'm trying to say is, READ IT.
INNOCENT BLOOD takes off where BLOOD ORDER ended in the Order of the Sanguine series. These authors have created a world of good and evil mixing science, history, religion and myth. The Sanguines are a vampire-like order who have repented from drinking victims blood, by drinking the sanctified blood of Christ. They fight against evil forces led by the unrepentant vampire creatures and immortal beings trying to end the world. In BLOOD ORDER, the mythical book written by Christ that can supposedly stay the end of the world, has been found. Now the "First Angel" must be found . Prophesies say the a Woman of Knowledge, a Knight of Christ and a Warrior of Man must continue this quest together. These characters came together in the first book and survived assaults and tribulations to find the Book, but it has only blank pages until they can get the "First Angel". Including real historical characters and Catholic Biblical writings and myth, adds real interest and intrigue to the fast passed story of evil and repentance. Even though I'm not much into vampires and such normally, the fanciful characters mixing with real humans allows for a level of suspense and intrigue that adds immensely to quality of the book. Though it is not really necessary to read the first book in this series, I highly recommend reading BLOOD ORDER before reading INNOCENT BLOOD. That way, you not only get the back story, but you can really get involved in the mystery and adventure of this whole series, which is telling of the fighting of man and myth to end the world for good or evil!
James and Rebecca have done it again. A match made in Heaven or Hell, depending on which side your on. Weaving science, myth, lore and religion into one.Fast pace, edge of your seat reading. The Order of the Sanguines series just keeps getting better.
What an awesome 2nd novel to a new series. Normally, I find the mystery & intrigue, life of the novel as I say, highly lack luster in comparison to the first in the series. Yet, I found this tome surpassing the first in mystery & blowing it out of the park in intrigue. So much so, it left me clamoring at the end for the next. My only disappointment? It isn't out yet....
I don' t normally post reviews, and that's probably going to be pretty obvious. This is a great novel, and the only thing that was bad about it was that it ended. I enjoyed this even more than the first book in the series, and I'm looking forward to the next novel!
Riviting What a great follow up
If you are a fan of James Rollins, you know that his books are exciting, fast paced & full of intrigue. As I have never read any of Rebecca Cantrell's books, I was not sure how their collaboration effort would turn out. I have read several collaborations of other authors that were very disappointing, However, because of my familiarity of James Rollins’ books, (I immensely enjoy reading his books, I am clearly a die-hard “Sigma Force” fan & of his other books) I decided to take a chance on it. Wow, I am sure glad that I did! Yes, it is quite a departure from James Rollins' style of writing, but that is where the collaboration comes into play. First, it is a fiction & it entertains, with its blend of fantasy, science, history, theology and a lot of mystery & suspense. While it is not a reality base storyline, it is a mix of the paranormal with the everyday and as such, the characters are mixture of immortals (vampires, angels, and such) humans & corrupted animals with a storyline that moves rather swiftly. I am not into the romancing “harlequin books style” and can see where James Rollin & Rebecca Cantrell differ, my take on it, it was a little too heavy handed between the characters for me, and after a while, it did become tiresome! How can all of this passion & pent-up desire develop when all you are thinking about is how to survive to fight another day? (I mean, who is really thinking of “tear off your clothes & let’s get it on” during a live or die situation.) While some readers expressed offense by some of the religious imagery & others did not like this type of fiction, I do not agree with their comments. The book is a work of fiction and meant to entertain, and it should be judged by that value system. In my opinion, a personal bias of particular subject content singularly does not make an objective critic of the book’s entertainment value. I enjoyed this book so much that I read it all into the wee hours of one day. I do believe that this book & the collaboration between the two authors hit high on the entertainment scale much as “The Blood Gospel” was a great start for a new series. I thoroughly enjoyed reading “The Blood Gospel” so much, that afterwards, I read their two short novels “City of Scream “& “Blood Brothers” and could not wait for this book to come out. I am now looking forward for their next book in “The Order of the Sanguines Series”. I have only one question, when will the next book come out?
221 pages. I didnt realize this was the 2nd in a series. I may go back and read the first, although this book does stand alone rather well. Definitely want to read book three!
One of the best books I have read. I highly recommend it
This is the second in the Order of the Sanguine series, although the author does a great job of weaving the plot of the first book in with this one. It can stand alone, however I suggest that you read the first book to thoroughly enjoy the second. The first book introduces us to the Knight of Christ, Father Rhun Korza, as well as the Warrior of Man, Sergent Jordan Stone, and the Woman of Learning, which may or may not be Dr. Erin Granger. Innocent Blood furthers the plot along with the Quest of finding the first angel. The infamous Rasputin and Judas Iscariot make appearances and life more difficult for the trio. Fast paced and action packed from beginning to end. It won’t disappoint. Vampires, angels, monsters and immortals together with famous people from history, battling to save humanity at all costs. James Rollins has a flair for weaving ancient history into the present and bringing it together with scientific flair. The Blood Gospel, which is a gospel written by Christs own hand, speaks of the trio of Prophecy, needed to save the world: The trio must bring the Gospel of Christ to the First Angel to get a blessing for the forces of Good to prevail against a looming war between dark and light The trio fought, loved and now will fight their emotions, their mortality, enemies known and unknown, and their own faith in God to be able to finish this Quest. The Blood Gospel contains only blank pages until they can get the first angel to bless it, and it will be able to reveal to them more of Christs words. I loved the Blood Countess, Elizabeth Bathory; Her relationship with Father Rhun, and the further character development of both underlying love stories. The Countess is a 500 year old strigoi, (which are vampires), who is very self-centered, dramatic and one never knows what she’ll do next. The Order of Sanguines are reformed strigoi, who survive by drinking the sanctified blood of Christ. There are also blasphemare’s, (which are animals turned into monsters after being infected by strigoi’s blood) The strigoi and Sanguines have been fighting this holy battle for thousands of years. I found it most interesting was Judas Iscariot, hasn’t died, and was cursed with immortality, by Christ himself. He has been living all these years until events fall into place and he can open up the Gates of Hell, and bring about Christ’s return to earth, and also Armageddon. Our trio and Judas Iscariot are looking for the boy named Thomas who is believed to be an angel on earth. Thomas was the only survivor on Masada in Book 1, who was completely healed of cancer, and has all the qualities of the first angel. Judas has him kidnapped and believes that if he sacrifices him, spilling his innocent blood, it will allow him to complete the task of opening the gates of hell. What I truly loved about the story was learning about Christ’s early years, and his first true miracle. I found Judas’s hobby of making butterfly’s bionic, to be able to kill an immortal in one sting pretty fascinating. There are other surprises tucked away inside this book, but I’ll let the readers discover them for themselves. It won’t disappoint. I give it 5 magical stars!
James Rollins gives another outstanding ride in this interesting tale.
#2 in the series. I love this series. Its extremely good! Cant wait to greedily lap up the next!
I loved this novel. It is packed with excitement, battles, sad and sometimes sweet relationships between the characters. It was particularly interesting that the vampires struggled with their immortality, hating it at times. The book carries you back through their lives both with love and regrets. The Sanquinists are constantly tempted driven uncontrollably by a thirst for blood but instead have vowed to follow an order of Christ and drank wine in its place. The savage vampires called, strigoi, were evil and violent and forever on the hunt to kill. The relationships between the characters of a commradery, devotion, hate and love, evil and good, betrayal keeps you reading page after page. I especially liked bring Judas the Betrayer of Christ from the Bible into this story. Powerful novel.
Alright. G'night, Jonathan.
I actually need to get some sleep. I have a long day tomorrow. Goodnight Jade.