Had I been myself as a teenager (and I was) this book would have been a huge hit. The Blood Between Us is a thriller filled with distrust, explosions, and family secrets. Until you get to the end. And this was when my adult-self kicked in and the teenager who forgave a lot to just enjoy the story, came into play. The buildup was strong, but slow. All evidence points to an obvious ending (but honestly would be a satisfying one). That is, until the very last few chapters and a “surprise” (bet you didn’t see THAT coming, by why should you have?) conclusion. This made the effort to get there disappointing. The last few pages are also rushed. Then there is the fact nothing was completely “fleshed out” for me.
The actual details of the characters are interesting. Adrien is an adopted brother, same age as the biological daughter, of a family who are scientists. He and his sister never got along. Grace resents him, lets him know he is a “stray” and seems to do everything she can to make life difficult for him. Their family, godfather and others just tell them “to get along.” When their parents are killed in an explosion, that is when things start taking an interesting turn.
Most characters were never truly likeable, and several characters were downright flat. With that said, as a 13-to-15-year-old I would have eaten up this mystery novel. I will forgive any “bumps” and just enjoy it as what it is: a book the author was exploring a dynamic of sibling, sexuality (the “is he/isn’t he gay/asexual” line) and a possible murder.
This book was written by Z Brewer when they were still known by their second name.