Blood Mark (#1) by JP McLean #BookReview @jpmcleanauthor


Cover: Blood Mark (Series, #1) by JP McLean

The author sent me an ARC of this book (epub format) in exchange for an honest review.

My rating:  ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)

(by Goodreads)

What if your lifelong curse is the only thing keeping you alive? Abandoned at birth, life has always been a battle for Jane Walker. She and her best friend, Sadie, spent years fighting to survive Vancouver’s cutthroat underbelly. That would have been tough enough without Jane’s mysterious afflictions: an intricate pattern of blood-red birthmarks that snake around her body and vivid, heart-wrenching nightmares that feel so real she wakes up screaming.

After she meets the first man who isn’t repulsed by her birthmarks, Jane thinks she might finally have a chance at happiness. Her belief seems confirmed as the birthmarks she’s spent her life so ashamed of magically begin to disappear. Yet, the quicker her scarlet marks vanish, the more lucid and disturbing Jane’s nightmares become—until it’s impossible to discern her dreams from reality, and Jane comes to a horrifying realization:

The nightmares that have plagued her since childhood are actually visions of real people being stalked by a deadly killer. And all this time, her birthmarks have been the only things protecting her from becoming his next victim.

Blood Mark is the first in a brand-new paranormal thriller series by JP McLean, author of The Gift Legacy series and whose writing has been described as “. . . deftly crafted, impressively original, and inherently compelling from first page to last.”

Genre(s): > Ghost Suspense
> Women’s Fantasy Fiction
> Contemporary Fantasy Fiction
Series: [], #1
Length: 328 pages
Release date: 2021-10-19


The next morning, Jane had difficulty shaking the dream. It felt like a hangover.

“You okay? Sadie asked, taking her coffee to the sofa. She plopped down beside Jane, who’d wrapped her arms around her knees. “Bad dream?”

“Yeah,” Jane said. “Ethan.”

My Opinion

This book introduces you to Jane Walker who is on a rescue mission, saving her drunk roommate from her ‘keen’ companion.

With “Blood Mark”, JP McLean has once again created a thrilling combination of mystery, paranormal, myth, and a touch of romance. Despite this intro which is admittedly similar to my Gift Legacy reviews, it is as different as Jane and Emelynn (Gift Legacy) are. It is a very compelling read centred on Jane, Sadie, and Rick, drawing you very close to Jane. JP McLean paints a clear picture of the main characters’ mindsets while the story evolves. In this first thrilling story of a new series, I felt immediately very close to Jane – like an invisible friend and ally; trying to find out the truth about her marks and her dreams. Jane is complex, the other characters are also skillfully elaborated and of sufficient depth, believable with their flaws and virtues. The story is a very nicely woven combination of several genres, has a wonderful flow; it was easy to get hooked. I had a great time reading “Blood Mark”. Reading the first book in this series was simply fantastic.

This is a book for you if you like excellent story-telling, mysteries with a touch of myth and romance, and believable characters, and some violent events.

The remarkable first book in JP McLean’s new series!

Highly recommended! A book to read again.

In brief:

Cover ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (four stars)
Writing ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Plot ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Characters ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐  (five stars)
Mood Suspenseful
Pace Steady
POV Third person – past tense
Language :mrgreen:  (decent enough, some mild swearing)
Violence 😳 – 😡  (some medium fight scenes)
Sexual content 😳  (several sensual activities)

About the author

I’m very fortunate to live in a writer’s paradise on one of the small northern Gulf Islands off the eastern shore of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The rugged beaches and towering fir and arbutus trees that surround me often end up in my stories. When I’m not pouring my imagination into my computer, I’m futzing in gardens, making a mess of the kitchen or hiking local trails. I write stories that entice you to believe the impossible and escape the everyday for a while. Enjoy the read!

Connect with the author:

Please take a look at my statement on reading in My train of thoughts on …reading.  Now I am asking you.  🙂

My questions for you bibliophiles:
What about you?  What did you think about Blood Mark”?  Or – if you did not yet read “Blood Mark” – are you now interested in reading it yourself?

I am looking forward to reading your comments.  🙂

Book review – Lover Betrayed (The Gift Legacy Companion, #1)

Book review – Secret Sky (The Gift Legacy, #1)

Book review – Hidden Enemy (The Gift Legacy, #2)

Book review – Burning Lies (The Gift Legacy, #3)

Book review – Lethal Waters (The Gift Legacy, #4)

Book review – Deadly Deception (The Gift Legacy, #5)

Book review – Wings of Prey (The Gift Legacy, #6)

>>> The links above show the new titles of “The Gift Legacy” series. <<<

10 Statements – J. P. McLean



Rebranded: Secret Sky (formerly titled “Awakening”; The Gift Legacy, #1) by JP McLean @jpmcleanauthor

Author JP McLean



Before I start, I’d like to thank Karen for having me here today and for her support over the years. She’s a fine example of authors supporting authors.




The Anatomy of a Rebrand

Often times, the writing we’re closest to is the most difficult to see. It’s why writers need beta readers, editors and proof-readers.

When The Gift Legacy books originally came out, the titles and covers were reflective of the content. Many readers agreed and provided the positive reinforcement I looked for.

But right from the start, beneath all the cover-love, there were rumblings that I studiously ignored. I filed the nay-saying in the “not everyone would like my books” drawer. But as the books found a wider audience, the rumbling grew louder.

About eighteen months ago, I finally stopped and listened. And what I heard was Awakening, Revelation, Redemption and Penance sounded more like they belonged in the religion/spiritual writing genre than in the fantasy/thriller genre. The critics were right and the beautiful covers compounded the perception. In hindsight, it seems quite obvious.

A title and its book cover have a job to do and mine weren’t doing the heaving lifting they needed to do to attract the fantasy and thriller readers.

I’d just finished writing the fifth book in The Gift Legacy series and needed to make a decision to continue along the path I’d chosen, or make a change.

I went with change and made the difficult decision to rebrand the books with new titles and new covers. It meant holding off on publishing that fifth book while I wrote the sixth and final book in the series. It meant I could lose all of the wonderful reviews that I collected on Amazon. Reviews are an author’s lifeblood, so I didn’t make the rebranding decision lightly.

Thankfully, I’ve had the support of family and fellow authors. My good friend and author, Elinor Florence, was instrumental in helping me brainstorm new titles, and then my online blog family and social media connections helped tease out the best of them. And back in July, the design team at JD&J Designs began the process of designing new covers.

The first book in the series has is launching November 13, and I couldn’t be prouder of the final result. I hope you’ll agree. Awakening is now Secret Sky.

An intrepid young woman. An incredible gift. A terrible price to pay.

As a child, Emelynn Taylor accepted a stranger’s gift that changed her life forever. This gift wasn’t wrapped in pretty paper and tied with a bow, nor could it ever be returned. Now, it’s taken over her life. Striking without warning, it strips Emelynn of gravity and sends her airborne, unchecked.

Haunted by terrifying flights she can’t control, Emelynn returns to the seaside cottage of her childhood, where she vows to take command of her dangerous gift. Here, she discovers an underground society whose members share her hidden ability, and a man who sends her heart soaring.

But is this secret society using the gift for good, or for evil? Unravelling the truth will plunge Emelynn into a fight for her freedom—and her life.

The first book in The Gift Legacy series, Secret Sky is a thriller that skirts the edges of reality in a world within our own. Buckle up and escape the ordinary: take flight with Emelynn Taylor.

Link to downloadable pdf preview

Author photo:  JP McLean


JP McLean

Website:  https:/






Buy links


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10 Statements – JP McLean

Dear Jo-Anne, thanks for your kind words; it is always a pleasure and an honour to have you on my blog.

Dear friends and readers, I hope you enjoyed Jo-Anne’s guest post as much as I did. Peace, coffee, and a cheesecake. ☘