Consecrated Ground by Virginia Black is a suspenseful paranormal romance that will leave you breathless.
Joan Matthews, like her father before her, is a witch. For generations, their family of binder witches has protected the town of Calvert, Oregon from vampires by strengthening the land with spellcraft. Joan’s desire to become a war witch, one who fights the monsters hand-to-hand, led her to defying her father and leaving town. When Joan’s father dies, she returns to her hometown only to find it’s being consistently attacked by a vampire lord. The answers Joan seeks lie with the only woman Joan has ever loved; the woman who chose her nemesis over her.
Leigh Phan once believed that love was all she needed. When Joan left her, she was lost and restless which led her on an uncertain and dangerous path. Now, Leigh harbors a dark secret, one that could ruin all that she holds dear and her only hope of survival is the war witch who left her behind.
Now it’s up to Joan to help fight for the town she left behind and Leigh is facing a destiny she never imagined possible. Can the two find a way through all of the struggle and strife to save their town and for once and for all be together?
Pros And My Favourite Parts
First, I’m in love with the cover as it perfectly captures the essence and vibe of the novel.
War witch, Joan Matthews must return to her hometown of Calvert after her father, Trevon’s untimely death. She hasn’t stepped foot back there since she left eight years prior and all she wants to do is get in and out and get on with her life. But the thriving town she left is no longer, the coven is hanging on by a thread, and her former lover Leigh Phann is withdrawn and secretive. Despite wanting to leave, Joan resigns herself to helping the watch protect the town from human thralls, bloodlings, and vampires.
Joan is a total badass who has spent the last eight years being trained by some of the best fighters in the country. But she suffers from a lot of guilt. Guilt from how she left things with both her father and Leigh. The guilt is like an albatross hanging around her shoulders but she doesn’t have time to dwell on it because the town and Leigh need her.
Leigh Phan lost her way when Joan left eight years ago. She made some destructive and questionable choices and feels guilty for the way things went with Joan but also for the way her choice affected her beloved grandmother. Leigh is strong, stronger than she gives herself credit for and her quiet passion, kindness, and generosity are at the forefront. Yes, she made questionable choices but they felt right at the time and the trauma she’s endured has made her the woman she is today. When she’s once again in Joan Matthew’s orbit, the love and passion between them are still there yet she knows she can’t tell Joan the truth.
It’s clear that Joan and Leigh never stopped loving one another but with threats coming from so many unknowns along with Leigh’s secrets it’s hard to know whether they’ll be able to make it work.
Virginia Black uses such powerful sensory language that I could smell vampires’ rotting flesh, see the action as each battle rages, hear the screams, and feel the consistent headaches Joan suffers. She’s created a fast-paced novel that grips the reader from page one and doesn’t let go until the final word. I honestly could not put the book down because I needed to know what was going to happen.
Cons And Heads Up
None for me
Consecrated Ground is a fast-paced paranormal romance with tons of action, suspense, and a second chance love between two strong and powerful women. It’s a must-read for anyone who enjoys reading about vampires and witches.
Excerpt from Consecrated Ground by Virginia Black
“So you live here now?” Joan asked, her voice lower and snide with anger.
Leigh tucked her hands in her back pockets. She wasn’t trembling. She wasn’t.
“Your father let me stay here when I got back to town.” It might have been Trevon’s pity more than his generosity, but the result had been the same.
Joan’s eyebrows lifted, though the anger was still apparent. “What’s wrong with your place?”
Another thing Leigh didn’t want to talk about. “It’s not . . . mine anymore.”
Joan scoffed. “So you moved in with my father? I thought you two didn’t get along.”
With a shrug, Leigh tried to convey the oddness of the situation. “We made our peace.”
It was an understatement, but what had passed between her and Trevon was private and loaded with information not easily explained. There were enough reasons for Joan to hate her. Leigh didn’t want to add any more, and some secrets kept her alive.
“So you could stand one of the Matthews family. Amazing.” Joan made a sound like a laugh, but it felt like a punch to the gut. “And what did Miss Perfect do that was so bad your grandmother threw you out?”
Joan’s words could still cut Leigh until they drew blood. Some things hadn’t changed.
“Ba noi died before winter solstice three years ago.” Leigh swallowed the old pain. “Some folks from out of town bought the place.”
Regret and sadness washed over Joan’s face as it fell. For as much time as Leigh had spent at the Matthews house when they were teens, Joan had spent the same with the Phans. Years of shared meals and family holidays, all broken when Joan had left.
Perhaps their common grief would help them put some of their other history aside for a little while.
“I know this isn’t easy for you,” Leigh said.
Joan took a step closer, and Leigh was overcome by the scent of her. Joan stood a full head taller than Leigh, and the visceral memory of every time Joan had staked a claim washed over Leigh’s body in a hot wave. She swallowed as her diaphragm dropped.
In an instant, Joan’s grief was gone and the anger returned. “You don’t know a thing about me anymore.”
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Bits and Bobs
ISBN number: 978-1612942551
Publisher: Bywater Books
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