ARC Review: Bleeding Earth-Kaitlin Ward


cooltext1889161239 copyYA Highway blogger Kaitlin Ward’s debut YA novel, Bleeding Earth.

Lea was in a cemetery when the earth started bleeding. Within twenty-four hours, the blood made international news. All over the world, blood appeared out of the ground, even through concrete, even in water. Then the earth started growing hair and bones.

Lea wants to ignore the blood. She wants to spend time with her new girlfriend, Aracely, in public, if only Aracely wasn’t so afraid of her father. Lea wants to be a regular teen again, but the blood has made her a prisoner in her own home. Fear for her social life turns into fear for her sanity, and Lea must save herself and Aracely whatever way she can.

cooltext1889171582 copy3/5 Stars

***I received this eARC as a gift in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley & Egmont USA

Bleeding Earth is a sinister, gory, and compelling mystery. The oozing blood, escalating violence and shortages make for a suspenseful read. 


  • The premise is fantastically creepy and grotesque. The gore and hair is nauseating and suspect. Terror and uncertainty push the plot forward as the blood gets more and more human and takes on a life of its own. Descriptions are graphic and violent. The texture and creepy-crawly nature of the blood will make you double-check your surroundings. 
  • Psychologically, Bleeding Earth is twisted and haunting. The way the blood calls as if its an entity, the effects it has on the people and the hallucinations all cause the reader to question if what’s happening is real or an illusion. The changes in Lea’s mother are horrific. You can feel every ounce of mistrust and fear growing as Lea’s mother becomes more controlling. No one can be trusted and danger is around every corner. 
  • Humanity under a disastrous and science fiction-esque situation is perfectly depicted. The loss of care or fellow humans, the mindless need to protect and the greed all couple with a desperate thirst for survival. Every man is for himself and the violence becomes a necessity. One scene is particularly disturbing. 


  • While I appreciated the diversity and LGBT characters, the focus was torn between the romance and the blood. The story became more of a complicated and clandestine love story than a dystopia at several points leaving the plot feeling lost and unstable. 
  • Allusions to religious texts and the possibility that this bleeding earth was a sort of plague or lesson from God were tossed in almost randomly and while it got me thinking, would have been more powerful and persuasive if they had been a focal point.
  • The ending. It feels final and yet, there’s no resolution. What was the point? Where will they go from there? 

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cooltext1754437870 copy


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