Review – All the Blood We Share by Camilla Bruce

Posted November 22, 2022 by Carole in Reviews / 10 Comments

I received this book for free from the Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review – All the Blood We Share by Camilla BruceAll the Blood We Share by Camilla Bruce
Narrator: Teri Clark Linden, Cindy Piller, Michael Crouch
Published by Berkley Publishing Group, Penguin Random House Audio on November 22, 2022
Genres: Fiction / Thrillers / Historical
Length: 11 hours 10 minutes
Format: ARC, Audiobook
Source: Publisher
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four-stars

A sinister novel based on the real Bloody Benders, a family of serial killers in the old West bound by butchery and obscured by the shadows of American history.

The winds shift nervously on the Kansas plain whispering of travelers lost and buried, whispering of witches. Something dark and twisted has taken root at the Bender Inn.

At first the townspeople of Cherryvale welcome the rising medium Kate Bender and her family. Kate's messages from the Beyond give their tedious dreams hope and her mother's potions cure their little ills—for a price. No one knows about their other business, the shortcut to a better life. And why shouldn’t their family prosper? They’re careful. It’s only from those who are marked, those who travel alone and can easily disappear, that the Benders demand their pound of flesh.

But even a gifted seer like Kate can make a misstep. Now as the secrets festering beneath the soil of the family orchard threaten to bring them all to ruin, the Benders must sharpen their craft—or vanish themselves.

This was fantastic! I picked this book up based on the cover alone and I don’t think that I ever read the book’s description before diving in. I was immediately enthralled by this story of the Bender family. To say this murderous family was dysfunctional would be an understatement. I hate to admit that I didn’t realize that this book was based on actual events until I read the author’s note at the end of the book. I was floored but it makes sense that criminals would have had a much easier time staying hidden during this time period. I am so glad that I decided to give this book a try.

This story is told from 3 points of view. Kate is a younger adult who helps the family by earning money as a medium. Her mother, Elvira, is not your typical loving mother and often comes across as bitter about the things her family has put her through. Kate and Elvira live with Elvira’s husband, William, and son, John. Hanson is a young man in town who ends up spending time with the family. It was clear from the start that this was not a normal loving family. They move to Kansas in order to hide from the crimes of their past only to commit more in their new life. This family of four had no problems murdering anyone that they thought they might benefit from.

This book was full of surprises. These characters could do anything at any moment so the story kept me on my toes. I loved that there were so many twists and turns. The historical setting was incredibly well done and it really illustrated the dangers of living during this time period. It was amazing how these characters were able to fool so many of the neighbors and got away with everything for so long. This story is probably not for the faint of heart since it is often bloody and violent.

I thought that the trio of narrators did an amazing job with the story. Teri Clark Linden, Cindy Piller, and Michael Crouch were all able to bring the story to life through their narration. I feel like they each captured the personalities of the characters they represented perfectly. I listened to this audiobook for hours at a time and found it almost impossible to set aside. I do believe that their narration added to my enjoyment of this story.

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this book to others. I found this to be a very entertaining and bloody story about a group of characters that kept me guessing. I hope to read more of this author’s work very soon.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Berkley Publishing Group and the audiobook from Penguin Random House Audio.

About Camilla Bruce

Camilla Bruce is a Norwegian writer of speculative and historical fiction. She has a master’s degree in comparative literature and has co-run a small press that published dark fairy tales. Camilla currently lives in Trondheim with her son and cat.

10 responses to “Review – All the Blood We Share by Camilla Bruce

  1. I haven’t heard of this book but I love books that have an unpredictable feel. This sounds like one I’d enjoy even though it’s a bit different from my usual reading.