INNOCENT BLOOD by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell

William Morrow Publishers
December 10th, 2013

The sequel to THE BLOOD GOSPEL, INNOCENT BLOOD, by James Rollins and Rebecca Cantrell has all the elements of an exciting novel: adventure, intrigue, suspense, and history, with a little of the supernatural. This mystery/thriller reunites the main characters from the previous story: Dr. Erin Granger, the archeologist, Army Sergeant Jordan Stone, and Father Rhun Korza, the Sanguinist Knight of Christ. They must continue their quest this time battling Judas and preventing the Apocalypse.

What enhanced the storyline are the interesting and powerful characters that are neither all good nor all evil. Some of the characters decisions fall into the grey area where they do not always make the correct choice. Erin Granger has become a disillusioned archeologist who also questions her faith due to an incident from her childhood. She is intellectual, analytical, and a woman of knowledge. Jordan Stone is a soldier who is physically strong, appears to take everything at face value, and is very practical. Rhun, is a preacher of faith and belief whose sole sense of being is imbedded in the Church. He is a Sanguinist, a vampire-like figure, who has taken a vow to stop drinking human blood and to sustain himself only on Christ’s blood, wine consecrated by the Holy Sacrament into HIS blood.

The supporting cast also is very well developed. The Blood Countess, Elizabeth Bathory, a five hundred year old vampire, a Strigoi, has just been awakened and tries to adjust to living in the 21st Century. She is strong, independent, and ruthless. Tommy Bolar is a teenage boy, a very sympathetic character who, in saving a dove, turns into an Angel.

INNOCENT BLOOD includes a lot of action, romance, and conflict. As in all Rollins’ books the storyline explores the divide between religion and science. What makes this book a great mystery is that readers will forget some of the characters are vampires, which makes the story credible.