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The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

23 Nov

The-Coldest-Girl-in-ColdtownTitle: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
Author: Holly Black
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Genre: Horror
Page count: 432

Tana woke lying in a bathtub.

Tana is a human girl living in a world just like our own, except for the fact that it is infested with vampires forced to live in ghettos called Coldtowns. One morning she wakes up disoriented in a bathtub, and when she emerges from her hangover coccoon she finds that everyone else in the party has had their throats ripped out and blood drained by vampires. Everyone, that is, except for her ex-boyfriend (Aidan), tied to a bed and infected (bitten but not drained), and a half-crazed vampire (Gavriel) chained on the floor next to him. In a moment of impetuous decisiveness (a character trait that continues throughout the book), Tana decides to rescue both before the culprits of the killing spree, nesting in the basement til nightfall, wake up and finish the job. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is the story of Tana, Aidan, and Gavriel’s adrenaline-charged flight to the dangerous safe haven of the nearest Coldtown, a race against the clock as Aidan descends into vampirism and Tana waits to see if she, also, has been infected. And what a ride it is.

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Diabolical by Cynthia Leitich Smith

31 Aug

Until the night I was taken, demonically infected, the guardian angel Zachary watched over me. Now, I watch over him.

One of my (admittedly, many) pet-peeves is when authors write a “trilogy,” see the piles of money they’re accumulating, and then decide to publish a fourth/fifth/sixth/eleventy-billionth book. What started out as a contained story spirals out of control into series-ville, where the original snappy idea gets hashed and rehashed until faithful fans start grumbling that the seventy-eighth book just isn’t as good as the first twenty-two. So, given my general grumpiness when it comes to the inevitable add-on, you’d think that I would have just ignored Cynthia Leitich Smith‘s newest release, Diabolical. Well, I didn’t, because this series is my personal paranormal romance guilty pleasure; it’s full of allusions to some of my very favorite things (most notably Dracula and very occasionally Buffy the Vampire Slayer) it’s funny, and not too obnoxiously sappy. So, I sold my soul to the series devil and took Diabolical home with me.

A supernatural alarm is raised when Miranda, former Eternal (vampire) royalty now sitting bored in the Penultimate (a sort of heavenly limbo), sees that her best friend from her mortal life, Lucy, is starting at Scholomance, an elite New England finishing school that almost certainly has demonic connections. When slipped guardian angel, Zachary (who is also Miranda’s long distance boyfriend, btw. More on that later), catches wind of the sitch he and Kieren (werewolf) decide to do the ol’ fake enrollment con while Quince (vampire, Kieren’s girlf) cools her heals in a B&B. Of course, the whole jam goes to hell (haha! Literally.) when Zach and Kieran realize they are (dum dum dum!) trapped in Scholomance, where not only their mortal lives are in danger, but also their immortal souls.

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Everneath by Brodi Ashton

18 Mar

I know, I know. There are approximately 2.5 million billion trillion teen paranormal romances out there, so why should anyone give a damn about another one, namely Brodi Ashton’s debut novel, Everneath? Well, because it’s good and different and because I say so.

Six months ago Nikki Beckett, driven by all-consuming grief of mysterious origin, disappeared with Cole, a charismatic indie rock star. Six months ago in Earth years, that is; for Nikki it was more like one hundred years cocooned with Cole, who is an “Everliving,” a being who feasts on human emotions and energy in exchange for immortality. When the century-long energy Feed ends with Nikki still alive and notably unhaggard, Cole offers to let her rule the underworld, or Everneath, with him, but instead she chooses to return to the surface even though she has little to no memory of her human life. Despite spending the past hundred years being fed upon via energetic osmosis, Nikki is driven by the need to seek redemption, to make things right between herself and her loved ones after her disappearance. The catch? She only has six months on the surface before the Everneath claims her again, this time forever.

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