When Tish Everett forces open the ruby locket she finds at an estate sale, she has no idea that a deliciously rakish Bludman has cast a spell just for her. She wakes up in a surreal world, where Criminy Stain, the dashing proprietor of a magical traveling circus, curiously awaits. At Criminy’s electric touch, Tish glimpses a tantalizing future, but she also foresees her ultimate doom. Before she can decide whether to risk her fate with the charming daredevil, the locket disappears, and with it, her only chance to return home. Tish and Criminy battle roaring sea monsters and thundering bludmares, vengeful ghosts and crooked Coppers in a treacherous race to recover the necklace from the evil Blud-hating Magistrate. But if they succeed, will Tish forsake her fanged suitor and return to her normal life, or will she take a chance on an unpredictable but dangerous destiny with the Bludman she’s coming to love?
I had no idea what to expect from that synopsis. I did know this- either Wicked as They Come was going to be a huge flop or bloody brilliant, or should I say bluddy? The world building in this novel was phenomenal. Wholly original the world that Dawson created for her prolific set of characters to live in was amazing. An alternate England where all wild animals are bludded (vampiric) and some of the humans too. Criminy is a bludman and the leader of a caravan that poses as a traveling circus.
When Tish’s home health care patient dies she goes to the estate sale. There she finds a locket and steals it. This isn’t something that TIsh normally does but she chalks it up to coming out of a very controlling relationship and learning to be free and on her own again. Getting back to being Tish. It didn’t have a price tag anyway. Later that night she opens the locket and red fluid sloshes out and burns her skin, inside the locket is a picture of an incredibly handsome man that looked to be taken in Victorian times. When Tish goes to sleep that night she is transported to Criminy’s realm and her life is changed forever.
He’s mysterious, he’s vampire, he’s totally freaking hot. But Tish has responsibilities in the real world, including her patients and her cat. She can’t stay in this alternate universe with an incredibly handsome but dangerous man. When she recognizes someone from her world in Criminy’s carnival Tish becomes confused on who she should love. But love is something she didn’t want to begin with after leaving her last relationship with Jeff.
Wicked as They Come is a breath of fresh air in a market that is over saturated with the same heroine and hero. You seriously want to pick this up. Criminy and Tish solve mysteries while the reader relaxes in the bludman’s alternate universe of Sang.