Cover Image: The Weight of Blood

The Weight of Blood

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Member Reviews

Wow, this book was phenomenal. I could not put this book down. This author knows how to keep you hooked from the beginning. I really enjoyed that there were different formats of storytelling. I was so mad for Maddie and the racism this town showed. I loved the way her and Kenny connected and really hope they escaped together. One thing I love about this author is that the ending is never fully closed and it allows you to make the story what you want out of it. This is a must read!
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After reading White Smoke, I had to have The Weight of Blood. As a Carrie re-imagining (of sorts), I found this book to be just as engaging and well-written. Jackson has a way of drawing readers in, causing them to forget all else until the story is told, and that's one of the best kinds of reading experiences. Highly recommended for high school and public libraries
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Not my favorite of Tiffany's work, but still a super entertaining horror novel that I couldn't put down! It's essentially a retelling of Carrie starring a white-passing biracial Black teen. I really liked how Tiffany used the framework of a classic horror novel to explore race, identity, colorism, and privilege. This was a total page turner and I think horror fans will really enjoy it, though I would call it  a slow-burn horror. 

My only criticism is that it followed Carrie very closely, which made it feel very predictable if you've read or watched Carrie. Tiffany is such a skilled writer and I feel like she could have done more to subvert Carrie or make it her own. The book was still an enjoyable read, but I left it wanting a bit more.

I'll definitely be recommending this to readers who've enjoyed Tiffany's previous books, as well as fans of supernatural horror like The Taking of Jake Livingston.
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This book was amazing. Definitely buying multiple copies for my library and also buying the eBook and audiobook as well. It was fast paced, engaging, and the right mix of mystery and supernatural combined. Students love all of Tiffany Jackson's work and this one will be no different.
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This book was fantastic! I really enjoyed it and it kept me guessing throughout, which is difficult for most books to do. I felt like I connected with the characters and really enjoyed the plot!
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I'm always skeptical of a retelling, but this one was pretty darn good.  The Weight of Blood is a good retelling for a new generation.
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Like all of Tiffany D. Jackson's new releases, I flew through The Weight of Blood. I knew I'd be hooked when it was billed as a retelling of Stephen King's horror Carrie. I think the story went a lot deeper though, with heavier topics and complex relationships, plus the dynamic of being biracial but passing as white in a small, southern town. The story advances with multiple narrators and podcast episodes tossed in - I loved the story presented as is (not to mention the COVER) but didn't think the podcasts ADDED anything to the story. She is such a talented writer, and I'd read her grocery list if someone let me LOL

Thanks to #NetGalley for the opportunity to preview #TheWeightofBlood - I absolutely loved it!
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Tiffany D. Jackson rarely does wrong by her complicated and powerful female protagonists.  There's a fair amount of unexpected supernatural twists in this one, but it was an absolutely compelling story.  Best for the Young Adult who can handle gore/horror, because this gets dark quickly.  Very enjoyable!
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I am never disappointed by Tiffany D. Jackson.  She always delivers and fantastic book that leaves you with plenty to think about.  In the latest, she takes a look at the classic Stephen King story of Carrie and turns it on its head making you question who the real monster(s) are.  Of course, horror fans will love this re-imaging of Carrie but there is a much deeper examination of racism and privilege that adds important depth.    

I listened to the audiobook and was rewarded with the podcast element.  In the book, it seemed as if it was just a way to provide information that couldn't have been given through the narrative but listening to the audiobook you were treated to a full cast with sound effects, music, and more.  

It is highly recommended, I have already put this in the hands of 5 of my teen patrons as well as placed it on my list of 2022 favorites.
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With The Weight of Blood, Tiffany D. Jackson accomplishes a modern-day retelling of Stephen King's Carrie with the relevant themes of racism and prejudice. Maddy is a girl who has been forced by her abusive father to hide the fact that she is biracial. Bullied her whole life by peers in her small town, her circumstances get worse when they discover that she is actually half black. In an effort to prove they are not racist, the prom committee makes a decision to hold the first-ever integrated prom, and Maddy lands a date with a popular football player.

At first, this book felt too close to the original, and I found myself struggling to become engaged with it. It seemed too predictable, too far-fetched. But then I got into the nuances of Maddy's character and couldn't wait to see how it played out. There were still some aspects that were a little too unbelievable for me, but I did appreciate Jackson's effort to modernize a horror classic with her own spin. True to her style, once the story got going, the pace remained quick and the disturbing factor high.

Though this was not one of my favorite books by Jackson, we did purchase it for our high school library, and I know students - both fans of Jackson and fans of horror - will love it. 

Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for providing me an e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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Let's get the obvious out of the way first - this is clearly inspired by Carrie. The book even acknowledges the parallels. It just goes far beyond the idea of a cowed girl pushed past her breaking point. It asks us to consider if there is any understandable excuse for an act of violence. It asks us to consider all forms of racism and the ways that they destroy. It asks us to consider how expectations are different based on gender, all forms of privilege and oppression. The things we fear and the freedom that comes with giving them a platform. And ultimately, what true justice looks like. This is not a comfortable read. There is stark violence and truly gruesome imagery. And the level of introspection it asks of us can make a person uneasy. But it's absolutely worth it.
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Every single character was well-written. Most of them are “just” high school kids but they each illustrate several facets of deep issues. At first, I honestly thought most of this felt really exaggerated but didn’t feel that way for long. Great ending!
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I saw the review of this and thought, "Wow.  How very dare you take a Stephen King novel and change it?  That magnificent man is a genius and you think to improve upon his works?  The audacity."  I WAS SO WRONG.  I'M SO SORRY TIFFANY D. JACKSON.  YOU ARE A GENIUS.

Something to note here: I don't read YA very often.  I honestly hate the whole "we need to save the world but I'm longing for you but let's stay abstinent and let it distract us," like could you please just get it on and save the world, I have things to do.  Also, I LOVE the book Carrie by Stephen King.  I love the style it's written in - eyewitness accounts, newspaper articles, etc.  How could a YA book compare?

But this book is...dare I say it...potentially BETTER than Carrie??  I know, it's blasphemy, but here me out.  First of all, this doesn't read like a young adult book.  The themes are very real, very intense, very true to life.  For me, as a white adult woman who has lived in the midwest all her life, I didn't think I would relate to this book at all as I am not a black teenager living in the south, but the author made the characters so transparent that you understand exactly what their motivations are and where they are coming from.  It's written in just such an amazing way that it's like you're in the book, watching from the outside, and that's not an easy thing to do.  I was amazed at the way the book was fleshed out, from the very beginning when the problems start, to the "resolution" at the end.  Without giving too much away, this book follows a similar vein to Carrie - there's an outcast (Maddy/Carrie) who has a weird parent, an inciting incident occurs (in Maddy's case, a rainstorm reveals her real hair texture and the fact that she is biracial/Carrie gets her period in the girls' showers and thinks she is dying because she doesn't know about periods) and the girl is embarrassed and humiliated, and another student who was involved feels horrible and convinces her popular boyfriend to attend prom with the outcast girl, who WANTS ONE FREAKING NIGHT TO LIVE HER DAMN DREAMS.  But then something happens because a mean girl is involved and the outcast snaps.  

But what this book does, that Carrie did not, is bring the racial issues and tension into the book.  Maddy and Carrie were both sympathetic characters, but whereas Carrie has simply been raised in a religious home and therefore is awkward and not very attractive and therefore an easy target, Maddy is forced to hide herself and make herself a target because she can't reveal who she is or draw attention to herself without people finding out that she's biracial, a secret her father has sworn her to keep.  We learn that racism is alive and well in the south, which I feel like I knew but didn't because how could I, really??  You can't, but this book made me realize how horrible these microaggressions must be to live through.  The high school quarterback is black, so he's ok for the white kids to hang out with - I mean, he's practically white himself, right?  He lives in a good neighborhood and only hangs out with white kids and he's the quarterback, he's going to a good college to play football, his dad holds a powerful position, and he's dating a popular white girl, and his friends absolutely refuse to let him be black, which he hasn't given a lot of thought to, as we just tend to go along with the way things are, but when certain events come about, he realizes how unfair this is, and how racism isn't always the KKK burning a cross on your lawn - it's these constant reminders to hide who you are, to not rock the boat, to not appear "too woke," and to just go along to get along and again, I cannot imagine how exhausting that must be.  The school still has a segregated prom, for crying out loud.  They think that creating an integrated prom will fix some issues, but the white people of the town love to say that things are just fine the way they are, they've always worked just fine, and why do we have to change things now?  Why fix what isn't broken?  Which is very easy to say when one prom is at a country club and one is in a barn.  I hate to sound trite, but it did open my eyes to a situation that I have never been in, and to circumstances I never imagined because I don't think you can really know how pervasive racism is until you experience it yourself.  I was just horrified the entire time, reading about how torn these students are, and how trying to make things equal is just "causing a fuss."

That was a lot longer than I meant it to be but this book is just so incredibly powerful.  Compared to it, Carrie is still a good book but incredibly simplistic.  This book took Carrie and somehow built upon it and made it deeper and so much more meaningful. The ending is the same but different, and I loved the way The Weight of Blood really described the chaos - I felt chaotic reading it, which is how it was meant to be, whereas with Carrie, it was "this happened, then this happened, then this." I just cannot recommend it enough.
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Overall, I really liked this book. It was interesting, fresh, and overall so good. I can’t wait to purchase it for the library!
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3.5 stars.  Thank you Netgalley for the arc. I think this might be my least favorite Tiffany D. Jackson so far.  It was very much a Carrie retelling but without the Carrie flair.  I missed the interview format and mixed media from the original Carrie.  I did enjoy how this went a bit further than the original Carrie did.  It is very difficult to separate this and the work that inspired it.
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There may be some haters for this one, I can see why, but those that would criticize fail to understand how ridiculous it is to diminish a retelling just because it exists in a modern setting with an updated premise of racism.  I don't see those same folks yelling about all the Jane Austen rips offs out there, so give it a rest and enjoy the fact that this story is full of contradiction, full of conflicted characters, no one is 100% this or that, except for Jules who should have 100% died by the way. Everyone is battling their upbringing, the way its always been vs. the way it could be, going along to get along or making a stand.

Our MC Maddy is exceptional but when we learn her real legacy we see that it wasn't the black half that made her magical/powerful/telekinetic, yet its the black half that holds space for her future. What a concept.  There are so many ways to pick this book apart and dissect the social commentary, the application to current situations across the country, the division even in modern society, and all of it packed into one complete story.  No offense to Stephen King of course - Carrie is still one my favorite reads of all time, and I remember reading it in high school how that bullying hit me hard, but this has contemporary appeal and I can think of dozens of worthwhile conversations to be had surrounding it.

Don't sleep on this one - its worth the read and the conversation.
Thanks to NetGalley for the e-copy, I have already added this to my library!
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3.75, rounded down. This took me a LONG time to get through. I had a hard time buying into many aspects of the exposition, so I slogged through the beginning and middle. The format interested me & I was fascinated by Maddy and her family dynamics. I was thrown off my the witchcraft aspects of it. I also didn’t love the ending- I wanted closure. I am hesitant to rate it lower because it has such high reviews, but I just struggled with this one.
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Tiffany D. Jackson does it again! Another great read. This book is a great take on the classic Carrie by Stephen King. She retells the story to perfection while also attacking current race and bullying issues. Great Job and I always look forward to the next book!
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This is a spectacular work of horror. Other than the power/magic of it all, its got moments of terror that hit you like a Jordan Peele movie. Tiffany D. Jackson is the only author I trust to write this sort of narrative. She handled the nuance of every topic broached in the book with detail and care - covert racism, colorism, texturism, race assimilation, interracial relationships, white saviors, misogynoir, black face, white guilt, allyship, intraracial division- the list goes on. I will read anything this woman writes after this, because she has given me a story based around topics that I can't normally stomach from other authors.
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Imagine a world where segregation is alive and well.  Wait... I don't have to imagine it?  There are still places with segregated proms?  I was absolutely astounded when I read Jackson's notes and realized that there are absolutely still places where this occurs.  I know it makes me naive to believe that this is unfathomable. 

That said, Jackson delivers yet another amazing story, this time with a bit of the fantastical/supernatural threaded into the story.  Maddy Washington is not your average teen- not because of her biracial background (though that has played a huge part in how she exists each day) but because of the secrets she didn't even know she was holding.
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