Butcher and Blackbird by Brynne Weaver

Step into the twisted world of “Butcher and Blackbird,” where friendship morphs into something darker amidst the backdrop of serial killing. Rowan and Sloane, our unconventional protagonists, navigate a bond forged in blood, reminiscent of TV favorites like Dexter and Hannibal. The story unfolds through snapshots over several years, giving us glimpses into their deadly partnership.

Rowan, the sunshine chef, and Sloane, the grumpy yet lethal counterpart, offer an intriguing dynamic. Their on-page banter is engaging, but the narrative falls short in delving deeper into their characters. Despite their murderous tendencies, they lack the expected brokenness, making it hard to fully invest in their roles as killers.

Sloane, functional in her day job, seems detached from the psychological aspects of killing, while Rowan appears disconnected from his dark side. The story heavily emphasizes the gruesome details of their actions, which may unsettle some readers. However, the lack of emotional depth in the characters raises questions about the story’s coherence.

The romantic aspect feels forced, lacking authenticity. While the chemistry between Rowan and Sloane shines in banter, it falls flat in intimate scenes. Surprisingly, their connection seems stronger during violence than passion.

The audiobook, narrated by Joe Arden and Lucy Rivers, has its merits but also drawbacks. Lucy Rivers delivers a commendable performance, but Joe Arden’s Irish accent feels unconvincing, detracting from the experience.

“Butcher and Blackbird” stands out for its unique premise and unconventional take on the dark romcom genre. While it grabs attention with its blend of romance and crime, the shallow character development and uneven focus on gore versus emotional depth leave room for improvement. Overall, it’s an intriguing yet flawed addition to the genre.

Book Stats:
Rating 2.5/5
Series: The Ruinous Love Trilogy
Tropes: anti-hero, close-proximity, danger-stalker-kidnapping, dark, grumpy-sunshine, meet-cute,  rom-com, slow burn
POP: 78%

Check out our Quick Podcast Review of the title