Alex is a half-blood, the daughter of a mortal and a Hematoi: the offspring of a demigod. For the past three years, Alex and her mother have been running from an unnamed threat in their past, living among the mortals.
When her mother is killed by a daimon – creatures that feed off aether, which runs through the blood of the Hematoi – Alex is taken back to the Covenant, a place where half-bloods train to fight daimons and protect the Hematoi or "pure-bloods."
With the death of her mother on her conscious and three years of training lost, Alex must train with the handsome but off-limits pure-blood, Aiden, to be able to take her place in the Covenant or else be sentenced to serve the pure-bloods as a slave.
I was drawn to Half-Blood like a daimon to aether.
Alex is one of the best heroines I have come across this year. She is kick-ass and drives the plot with her witty quips and strong personality. I liked that she was never prone to whining or wallowing in depression but still had flaws and vulnerability. She gets her humble pie when she needs it, too.
I was drawn into the hierarchy of the Hematoi world. The Covenant is a place where half-bloods train to fight daimons, set apart from the mortal world. Half-bloods are second-class citizens to pure-bloods. They cannot offend or rebel against a pure-blood without consequences. Pure-bloods also have the ability to use the elements – which gives them the upper hand against half-bloods in a fight – and compulsions, the ability to give a half-blood a command that they can't refuse.
To add to the mix, there is a romantic aspect of the novel but I was glad to see that it didn't control the entire plot like many other young adult novels. Aiden is a pure-blood. He is strong and cares for Alex but he isn't over-protective to the point of tediousness or belittling her. The interaction between him and Alex and the development of their relationship was very well written.
The character dynamics were compelling and there are a lot of interesting people in the world of Half-Blood. Alex comes up against a lot of conflict throughout the story and there is never a lull in tension or intrigue. There were plenty of plot twists and developments that keep me interested.