Series: Serpent & Dove

BOOK REVIEW: Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2) by Shelby Mahurin

BOOK REVIEW: Blood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2) by Shelby MahurinBlood & Honey (Serpent & Dove #2)
by Shelby Mahurin
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads


After narrowly escaping death at the hands of the Dames Blanches, Lou, Reid, Coco, and Ansel are on the run from coven, kingdom, and church—fugitives with nowhere to hide.

To elude the scores of witches and throngs of chasseurs at their heels, Lou and Reid need allies. Strong ones. But protection comes at a price, and the group is forced to embark on separate quests to build their forces. As Lou and Reid try to close the widening rift between them, the dastardly Morgane baits them in a lethal game of cat and mouse that threatens to destroy something worth more than any coven.

The hotly anticipated sequel to the New York Times and IndieBound bestseller Serpent & Dove—packed with even steamier romance and darker magic—is perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas.


Please do not go into this book assuming you’re going to see Lou and Reid still in a honeymoon phase because that is going to set you up for disappointment.

No, this book isn’t as light, warm, and flirtatious as a good chunk of the first book. Not in the slightest. It’s dark, vicious, and angsty. But that doesn’t mean that we don’t get the exact story we need about our favorite characters from this world.

Blood & Honey picks up just days after their escape from the Chateau and from Lou’s crazy ass mother. As you can imagine, the stakes are already quite high and tensions are already on the rise as they desperately try to come up with a plan for how best to beat Morgane. Reid is on the brink of a major meltdown, both from having killed the Archbishop to save Lou AND from having done so with magic. When Lou is slipped a letter that she KNOWS was written by a mother, a taunt if you will, they decide on a course of action. Split up (as you can imagine this is not what Reid wants) with Lou, Coco, and Ansel heading to see Coco’s aunt at the Blood Witches camp and with the others trying for any alliances with werewolves, mermaids, and hopefully even the king. They are helped by a new group of characters in an acting troupe let by a man called Claud Deveraux. Right away I just knew he was going to be an interesting and special character and I was right. Basically chaos and death ensue from there and everyone races to hopefully stop Morgane.

Enter my thoughts:

Dudeeeeeee. Okay, so I had not read Serpent & Dove since I had gotten it as an eARC some time ago. I thankfully decided to re-read it before this and I am so glad I did because I honestly think I loved it so much more than the first time around for some reason. That being said I have EVERYTHING fresh in my memory. The characters and how they behaved, the love between Lou and Reid, the anger and disbelief at Morgane’s bat-shit craziness. All of it.

I had been talking with one of my blogmates, Cassie, about this one and she had been a little nervous because of some not so great reviews that had already gone up. Now I know that I’m just one person and that my opinion only goes so far but I can’t fathom why people didn’t like this book. I guess if you’re solely in it for that exact brand of romance between Lou and Reid that we got in book one it makes sense but… could someone even expect that?! Number one, this series got moved to three books from two so you know this is going to be more of a transition novel with a lot of character movement and coming into oneself (especially, especially, ESPECIALLY for Reid). Number two, after all of the traumatic things that happened at the end, there’s no way things were going to be wrapped up nicely for those two to have a simple happily ever after just yet. Finally, number three, I thought that even though Lou and Reid were at odds for part of this book, they were still being THEM, you know? Lou was delving a little deeper into her magic after not using it for so long and since the stakes were higher she was having to sacrifice ~more~ to use the spells she needed which starting bringing her down a dark path. Reid, a man who was SOLELY “by the book” until falling in love with Lou, wasn’t just going to accept magic overnight. Especially after finding out he himself had it. Obviously he was still going to really have some inner turmoil with magic, both his own and Lou’s as well.

Either way, I am the type of girl who will never say no to more books being added to a series as long as the writing stays great (it did), the story still makes sense and flows perfectly (it did) and nothing seems added just for the sake of adding one more book (it didn’t). There were quite a few characters, places, and even species added to this book and I thought ALL of it made sense, was awesome, and didn’t feel contrived. I really hope a majority of people truly do love this book because it really took me for a ride.

Okay, so I’ll leave my ramblings at that. Just….as a parting gift from me to you….make sure you grab a box of tissues before reading the end, you’re going to need it.🙃🙃🙃

Thank you SO MUCH Edelweiss and HarperTeen for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinions! ♥

BOOK REVIEW: SERPENT & DOVE (Serpent & Dove #1) by Shelby Mahurin

BOOK REVIEW: SERPENT & DOVE (Serpent & Dove #1) by Shelby MahurinSerpent & Dove (Serpent & Dove #1)
by Shelby Mahurin
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads


Bound as one to love, honor, or burn.

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou's, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.

The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou's most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.

And love makes fools of us all.


This book has a plot that I never knew I needed. I mean marriages of convenience do interest me but this kind?!?!? Sworn enemies getting married to each other even though one half doesn’t actually know the other half is a sworn enemy!?!?! Drool-worthy, let me tell you.

Initial thoughts about this book:
-Loved the magic system. I LOVE when magic has balance and can’t be flung about all willy-nilly and this particular system has balance in a way that I’ve never seen done before. The witch literally has to give something up (could be her sight, could be a broken finger, could be a memory) in exchange for the magic coming to life. It seemed to me that the thing the person gives up is about equal to the magic being done, too, which makes even more sense.

-OMG LOU. AND COCO. For anyone who has read this yet, does Lou not remind you of the early assassin version of Celaena Sardothian?!?!?! She dresses up and pretends to be other people to trick literally anyone and steal from them, she’s got a FILTHY mouth which is hilarious especially when she’s trying to embarrass Reid, and she’s just an all around bad ass. I loved her so, so much. I also loved her friendship with Coco, and Coco in general. Great example of female friendship in YA and she was also an all around bad ass, duh.

-REID. Do I really even need to explain myself here? He’s a grump. And so innocent. Kinda like Jamie from Outlander. He may know how to kiss and how to rile Lou up but does that mean he knows anything else about women? Nope. Lol. It was fun watching Lou teach him. And of course he’s really such a sweetheart underneath the gruff exterior (surprise, surprise). Their slow and gradual romance was uhhhh *chef kiss* perfect.

The story here was riveting from the very beginning. It’s the witches pitted again the Chasseurs, a holy order or men sword to rid the earth of witches and protect the people. What surprised me was how truly vicious the witches could be. Yes, some of them like Lou and Coco were hiding in plain sight and wouldn’t hurt a human if they didn’t have to but there were several scenes where the witches attacked and just started killing innocent people. I think at this point I’ve just read too many books where magic and witches are a lot less violet and gruesome as all that. It definitely made things seem more desperate between the two though and of course made things more interesting when Lou was trying to get Reid to understand that just because some witches are horrible creatures, that it doesn’t mean they all are. It’s that delicious gray area of life that makes morals so complicated. 

Anwayyyy after that freakin kind-of-sort-of cliffhanger I am DYING to get my hands on the next book! So glad I picked this one up.

Huge thanks to NetGalley and HarperTeen for allowing me to read this eARC early in exchange for an honest review!

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