A review by gothsyrup
The Blood Angel: A Contemporary Gothic Romance by Tia Fanning

dark funny fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? N/A
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No


Wow. Genuinely, this sucked.

The butler was the best character and the author describes him as looking like an anime character. Next to nothing was described in the book as to setting, which was often contradictory. Is it a gothic castle? Is it a "modern home"? Is it a church? All of these are brought up as to the primary setting, yet none of it is explained! There's nothing really gothic or romantic about this book-- look, write all the erotica you want, but please, for the love of god, at least have a grasp of basic kink and BDSM terminology. The sex scenes are unsexy, laughable at best, and all of the characters are unlikable. The "Master" is your average sexyman with zero characterization. The narrator's characterization either sucks or just isn't there at all. Example: she's an artist who is 'depressed' and hates her art and herself, yet all of her art is erotic self portraits that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. You could go on a long-winded explanation about how this contradictory self-objectification is a symptom of her low self worth, but the author doesn't put in the legwork, so it's just Bad. 

Everyone sucks, there's no plot, and the porn isn't good. The writing, especially the author's handling of the first-person perspective, is some of the worst I've ever read. It could be a good example of what NOT to do as a writer, but even then, I wouldn't suggest reading the whole thing. I'm not even going to start with how the author handles mental illness or dark themes. The trigger warnings were... Certainly there, which were probably helpful to some, so .5 stars for that. There's only one scene that I would consider actually dark, which lacked impact at all because it was shock value for the sake of shock value, written badly like everything else.

The typos in this book (scones instead of sconces, for example) are the best part about it, along with the stupidly colorful way the narrator describes her butthole. Read this out loud with a friend or at a party and let the hilarity and rage ensue. That's the only way I can recommend this book in good faith.