Summary: In the midst of the freezing Arctic winter, seventeen-year-old Lumikki Andersson walks into her school’s dark room and finds a stash of wet, crimson-colored money. Thousands of Euros left to dry—splattered with someone’s blood.
Lumikki lives alone in a studio apartment far from her parents and the past she left behind. She transferred into a prestigious art school, and she’s singularly focused on studying and graduating. Lumikki ignores the cliques, the gossip, and the parties held by the school’s most popular and beautiful boys and girls.
But finding the blood-stained money changes everything. Suddenly, Lumikki is swept into a whirlpool of events as she finds herself helping to trace the origins of the money. Events turn even more deadly when evidence points to dirty cops and a notorious drug kingpin best known for the brutality with which he runs his business.
As Lumikki loses control of her carefully constructed world, she discovers that she’s been blind to the forces swirling around her—and she’s running out of time to set them right. When she sees the stark red of blood on snow, it may be too late to save her friends or herself.
Source: I received a free Kindle copy as part of Amazon Prime’s Kindle First program.
As Red As Blood was a YA story with a few elements from the Snow White tale most of us are familiar with and a modern day mystery that teenager Lumikki had to unravel. The book was translated to English from it’s original Finnish language.
The book was kind of like a YA version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo as Lumikki turned out to be quite skilled in being someone other than herself when the situation presented itself and used that skill to unravel a mystery and then later help the participants unravel the much larger mystery surrounding them. She was kind of the silent, kick ass type of character who essentially saved the day and ended up finding more about herself in the process.
While I enjoyed the book, I felt a little disappointed and I think there are a few reasons why. For some reason, I can always tell I’m reading a translated book and it’s very rare than I enjoy one because the language sometimes seems off or the author seems like they are telling instead of showing. I’m never quite sure if it’s mediocre writing or the fact that it’s difficult to translate another language and keep the same flow, beauty, and ideal descriptions. The other thing was that I felt like the story was too much of an unbelievable crime mystery. Lumikki began as an intriguing character, but the reasons for her to have acquired her amazing skills didn’t pan out for me. I felt like it was exaggerated that her life was so horrible with no one to care enough that she ended up learning crazy ninja tricks while also maintaining this emo/depressing point of view. I just didn’t buy her whole story, even though I wanted to.
Despite my issues with some of the book, I enjoyed it overall and it was a fun and action packed crime/mob mystery that kept me guessing. I don’t know that I’d continue the series, but it was definitely worth a read, especially if you’re a big fan of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo types of books. I think the Snow White references and the title led me to expect something based more in fantasy or have some ties to something otherworldly and the actual plot wasn’t like that at all.