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Blood Will Tell (Point Last Seen) by April…

Blood Will Tell (Point Last Seen)

by April Henry

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This is the fourth book of Henry's I have read, and I must say, it was a little disappointing. I know it's a work of fiction but I really don't think a 16 year old could figure out a DNA mix-up before the professionals could. It also seemed like the author really wanted to portray the police in a negative light, and also the military, based on something Nick's father, a former soldier said. Here is the quote. "See, what kind of rational human being is going to sign up to go out and kill other human beings?" Really?? Labeling the people irrational who sacrifice their own lives to protect ours? Now, that's irrational. ( )
  amyghilton | Jul 27, 2016 |
When police are called to investigate the discovery of a body found on a vacant lot, their first suspect leads them to SAR volunteer, Nick Walker. Nick owns a knife similar to the one the victim was stabbed with, enjoys playing violent video games, and doodles violent scenes in his notebooks.
Nick has only ever wanted to be a hero. Now he must find a way to clear his name and discover the identity of the true killer before it's too late.
I enjoyed this book as much as the first. I was very happy to see Ruby, Alexis, and Nick were still the main characters. The writing itself was easy to follow without being too easy the therefore distracting.
At first I was a little made at the book because I thought the true killer had been revealed too early but then the author through in some unexpected twists that made me question if I was right. Still the killer is revealed a little earlier than I would have liked but it worked out okay.
My biggest complaint about this book is that it is not a satisfying ending to the series. I conversed with the author via twitter quite recently, and she told me that she is unsure as to whether or not she will be writing any more to this series. I hope that she does because the ending of this book is not a satisfying ending, leaving too many questions about the character and their path.
All in all, this was a good book, well worth the read and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys who-dun-it mystery stories. ( )
  Stephergiggles | Feb 14, 2016 |
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: I went into this expecting a great mystery that would keep me on my toes, and instead I got a story that I figured out within a couple chapters. The characters were dull, the mystery was non-existent, and I found the whole thing to be a pretty boring read.

Opening Sentence: Freshly spilled blood is wet, shiny, and startingly crimson.

The Review:

Nick, Ruby, and Alexia are all members of the SAR squad in Portland, Oregon. The three are all seniors in high school and they all have their reasons for wanting to be a part of the SAR. Nick is doing it because eventually he wants to follow in his father’s footsteps and join the army. The SAR will give him great training in many skills that he will be able to use in the future. Alexia originally joined because she needed something good to put on scholarship applications, but after rescuing a few people she truly has found joy in helping others. Ruby joined because she wants to eventually become a detective and also because she is awkward and thought it would be a good way to make friends. The three of them have been through a lot together and now they have a good friendship.

They are put on a routine assignment to help gather evidence for a murder that happened just a few blocks away from Nick’s home. As the evidence starts to come in all of it is pointing to Nick as the killer. They found his DNA at the scene, he has an obsession with knives and the victim was stabbed, and he likes to play violent video games like most boys his age. It’s not looking good for Nick and he will have to rely on his friends to try and clear his name. But time is running out and the real killer is getting ready to strike again!

The three main characters in this series are Nick, Ruby, and Alexia. For the most part this story focused mainly on Nick. He was such an awkward person and being inside his head was pretty dull most of the time. He is a very average teenage boy and there wasn’t really anything about him that stuck out as something that would make him interesting. Don’t get me wrong, I like normal characters, but if there isn’t something about them that draws me in I find myself not caring about their story. He tends to complain a lot about his situation in life and that really grated on my nerves. If you aren’t happy with your life, do something about, but Nick just seemed to let things be instead of trying to change his situation. For me personally he was not a character that I connected with at all and honestly I don’t really care to read anymore about him in future books.

Alexia is a sweet girl and she is one of the only reasons I wish I would have read the first book, because I think I might have cared more about her if I had. Her home situation isn’t perfect, but at least she is trying to make her life better by doing things that will possibly land her a scholarship in the future. For the most part you aren’t in her head very much, but what I did see of her I liked fine.

Ruby was by far my favorite character in the entire story. She is a very blunt, ridiculously smart girl that is very awkward socially. I loved that she would just blurt out whatever was on her mind and the way she logically figured things out was very intriguing. The only down side to her personality was that she came across as somewhat cold and a little too calculated, which made it hard to fully connect with her. Even though I really enjoyed her character it wasn’t enough that I would actually want to continue reading this series.

Blood Will Tell was a very interesting read for me and unfortunately not one I really enjoyed. First off this is supposed to be a mystery, but the author tells you who the killer is very quickly, so I didn’t feel like there was anything to figure out, which in some ways made the entire book pointless. I guess the characters have to try to figure out how to clear Nick’s name and really that is pretty much the main focus of the story. So if you are looking for an intense mystery that will keep you guessing, this is not the book for you. The next thing I struggled with was the cast of characters. The book is told from multiple POV’s which was fine; it just made it hard to connect with anyone since you only got a small snippet of their story. I will admit that I have not read the first book in the series, so maybe I would have liked the characters better if I already had a relationship established with them, but I’m not sure it would have made much of a difference. I will say that this sequel stood just fine on its own, there was never a time that I felt lost or confused in any way as to what was going on in the story. I think the biggest disappointment for me was that overall this book was just boring and even though I finished it very quickly, I felt like nothing really happened. Personally, I can’t say I would recommend this book to anyone, but if you are a fan of Henry’s writing give it a try. Hopefully you have a better experience with it then I did.

Notable Scene:

What had he done? What had he done? In the small bathroom, he threw up and kept throwing up unti; all that came out were strings of yellow bile.

He was a monster.

No. What had happened was a mistake. A mistake he would never make again.

That’s what he told himself. Over and over.

FTC Advisory: Henry Holt and Co./Macmillan provided me with a copy of Blood Will Tell. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | May 12, 2015 |
Nick, Alexis, and Ruby - the kids from The Body in the Woods - are back and this time the case they are called in on is right in their backyard. Actually, it is six block's from Nick's house.

After coming home from an urban search for a lost 7-year-old, Nick is surprised to wake up to the sound of sirens and to receive a SAR call to search for evidence. A guy biking to work has found a young woman named Lucy who was stabbed and left to die. She dies on the way to the hospital and the SAR team is called in to search for evidence.

The night before, the 7-year-old was hit by a car because she ran when she heard the team calling for her. Nick, Alexis, and Ruby were right there. When Nick sees her compound fracture, the sight of her blood makes him vomit. He is embarrassed because it doesn't fit the macho image that he would like to have. He has joined SAR to get the experience he hopes will help him when he joins the Armed Forces as soon as he is old enough. He wants to be like his father who won a medal before he died in Afghanistan when Nick was four. His mother is very much opposed to Nick's ambition.

A DNA test on the stabbing victim shows markers that indicate that Nick is the killer. All of a sudden, the homicide detective that he has worked with before is suspicious of him. Only Alexis and Ruby are convinced that Nick had nothing to do with it. Nick thinks it might be his older brother Kyle because Kyle wasn't home when Nick got back after finding the child. In the course of the investigation, Nick learns that his father is alive and is in prison for murder. Nick is getting hit with all sorts of life-changing stuff between being accused of murder and finding out that his father wasn't dead.

Luckily, Ruby is the kind of person she is. She is sure Nick didn't kill anyone and is determined to figure out how his DNA got on the murder victim.

This story is told from a variety of viewpoints including that of the actual murderer. I liked the way the clues were revealed. I liked all the information about DNA and how it is used to find criminals. I also liked how the friendship between the three kids is growing as they get to know each other better.

This was an excellent mystery for middle graders and young adults. ( )
  kmartin802 | May 9, 2015 |
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Freshly spilled blood is wet, shiny, and startlingly crimson. Newly exposed bone is pearly, glowing white.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0805098534, Hardcover)

When a woman’s body is found in a Portland park, suspicion falls on an awkward kid who lives only a hundred feet away, a teen who collects knives, loves first-person shooter video games, and obsessively doodles violent scenes in his school notebooks. Nick Walker goes from being a member of Portland’s Search and Rescue team to the prime suspect in a murder, his very interest in SAR seen as proof of his fascination with violence. How is this even possible? And can Alexis and Ruby find a way to help clear Nick's name before it's too late?

April Henry weaves another page-turning, high stakes mystery in Blood Will Tell, Book 2 of the Point Last Seen series.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:45 -0400)

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