What the critics say
What readers say
Will lies in a deserted lane. All he knows is that he's had an accident and that his life is slipping away. Against all the odds he survives - but with an almost total loss of memory. He does not even know himself.
And that is not all. At night he is tormented by visions, in the daytime by hostile strangers. Why does he have so many enemies? And who is the strange child who seems to have a story to tell him? Something has happened in this town, something terrifying. Will can sense it but he can't work out what it was.
Perhaps the old Will knew. But that was before the accident. The new Will must search for the answers again - and this is a dangerous task. For the town has a secret and there are those who will do everything in their power to preserve it.
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"Like many of my previous novels, Bloodchild
focuses on mystical and psychological issues. The character of Will grew quickly. He had a powerful voice in my head right from the start. He is a kind of prophet, a boy misunderstood by others and very much on the fringes of social acceptance, and in the beginning I wasn't sure I liked him very much. As the story developed, however, I came to see that for all his awkwardness, he is a deeply brave individual, beset on all sides as he struggles to regain his memory and discover the hideous secret that infects the small town of Havensmouth.
is not just Will's story. It is a complex book that works on many levels. On one level it is a boy's quest to right a wrong. On another it's a story about memory and self, truth and illusion, and the way society acts towards those it does not understand. There is bigotry, hatred and violence in Havensmouth and Will has to deal with all three. But there is courage, too, and compassion, and love – parental love, romantic love, the love of friends, even of those from another dimension.
And there is hope. Bloodchild
is a story about the search for hope in a place where it has been lost. Will may seem an unlikely person to kindle this in such a community, but in the figure of a small boy – the Bloodchild
of the title – he finds both the talisman and the catalyst he needs to make hope a possibility. It is this small boy who turns Will into a hero, and it is in fighting for the boy that Will finds that in a wider sense he has also been fighting for those who have been wronged, for the community as a whole, and ultimately for himself."
'Fusing the supernatural with the terrifyingly real is what Tim Bowler does best and Bloodchild
is a perfect example of the genre he has made his own.' Telegraph
'Contemporary and action-packed, Bowler has produced another psychological thriller that twists until the last page.' Daily Mail
'The visionary, the numinous, the unexplained – that is the soul of this book, and that is what distinguishes the best of Bowler's work' The Guardian
'This thrilling fantasy and crime hybrid is a gripping read from start to finish. The action sequences are expertly paced and the vivid imagery creates a nightmarish quality with almost cinematic realism.' Books for Keeps
'Reminded me of Stephen King at his best. It's convincing, atmospheric and creepy.' Charlie Higson, The Mail on Sunday
'I LOVED Bloodchild
…Gripping, challenging, beautifully written, original . . an exceptional read.' Askews Library Services
'Tim Bowler needs no introduction; here is another taut thriller in the brilliant style familiar to his readers.' School Librarian Journal
'This thriller is hard to resist.' Carousel
'Rarely in my life have I been so intimately able to share in the experiences of a character...Truly a compulsive read from a master storyteller.' Gavin Musselwhite, Waterstone's
'Incredibly atmospheric of time and place with characters that draw you in, Bowler is the true master of the teenage psychological thriller.' Lovereading
'A tense, fast-paced, atmospheric thriller where neither protagonist nor reader can be sure in whom to trust. Bowler at his absolute best.' Bookfest
'Absorbing fantasy thriller... I love Tim Bowler. His writing is direct and forceful and ratchets up tension and emotional response with utter fearlessness...I read it barely breathing.' The BookBag
holds readers in its vice-like grip from the very first page....an unmissable, chilling, thrilling page-turner.' South China Morning Post
'I have had Bloodchild
for 3 days now and I haven't been able to put it down. It gripped me from page 1. The thing I love the most about Bloodchild
is that it has the quality to capture your imagination and you can really imagine yourself to be in the story. The other thing is that the characters sound so real and you can visualise them. Have you ever read your books and just become lost in the story so much that it completely changes your mind about things? Because that's what Bloodchild
has done to me. I love the book.' Ricky
'I asked my mum to get me Bloodchild
was breath-taking and I can't help punching my pillow whenever something exciting comes up.' Sarah
'Thank you so much for Bloodchild
. It was the best book that I have ever read.' Joe
'I've just finished Bloodchild
and I found it amazing!!' Hamish
'I got your book Bloodchild
for Christmas and I'd read it by Boxing Day, so I read it again. It's fantastic.' Kate
Bloodchild is now available as an audio book published by Chivers Audiobooks. The audio book, which includes 8 CDs, is complete and unabridged. It is excellently read by Mark Meadows.
Listen to Mark Meadows reading an extract from Bloodchild.
Bloodchild can be ordered in different formats by clicking on the links below: