Book Review: "Thicker than Blood" by C.J. Darlington

Christy Williams finally has her life on track. Shes putting her past behind her and working hard to build a career as an antiquarian book buyer. But things begin to unravel when a stolen Hemingway first edition is found in her possession, framing her for a crime she didn't commit. With no one to turn to, she yearns for her estranged younger sister, May, whom she abandoned after their parents untimely deaths. Soon, Christy's fleeing from her shattered dreams, her ex-boyfriend, and God. Could Mays Triple Cross Ranch be the safe haven shes searching for? Will the sisters realize that each possesses what the other desperately needs before its too late?

I have been waiting for this book since I found out that C. J. Darlington had won the First Novel Contest from Tyndale publishers. I was definitely not disappointed when I finally finished it. Normally debut authors can be hit or miss with their work, but I felt like I had been reading C. J.'s books for years. I really got sucked into the story and could relate to both the main characters. What I liked best was that Christy's behavior is never apologized for. She doesn't get all tidied up and drops all her bad habits by the end of the book. Even if she has a change of heart, it's not going to magically erase all the years that have hardened her. It was very realistic and by not changing that, it didn't take me out of the story as other books have done with their forced happy endings.

The information about book collecting, antiquing and reselling were tremendously interesting. I loved learning all these bits and pieces about the industry and it was really fascinating to read. Most people don't have a clue about the old books they have in their house and think they are a waste of space when really they have a goldmine in their basement. Also the tips about knowing what is valuable and what isn't were really helpful as well. I would have never in my life known what to look for when it comes to old books but after reading this one, I now have some hints of what to keep an eye out for!

I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a fast paced read and had a well driven tight plot. I actually liked that there was a lack of romance in the story as both main characters didn't really need that side plot line to distract from the main story. The story kept me engrossed from the beginning and I could not stop turning the pages. This was a wonderful debut novel from C.J. and I know that I will be looking forward to her sophomore release. If you looking for a book from a debut author and you aren't sure of who to pick, choose this one. You won't be disappointed.

Thicker than Blood by C.J. Darlington is published by Tyndale (2009)

This review copy was provided by the publisher


  1. Thank you so much for your review! I also heard about C. J. Darlington's debut book and I was really curious to know if it was good or not. I hate buying books when I just don't know if I'll like them or not (though the majority of the time I really like them). I'll definitely have to check this one out.

  2. I just finished reading it myself and agree that it's a pretty good book.

  3. I'd love to win a copy to read and review. It sounds great, and I love the cover and trailer.

  4. Deborah... this is high praise indeed coming from someone like yourself who's such an avid reader. Thanks so much for reading and reviewing Thicker than Blood!


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