Author: Julie Kagawa
Published: April 24th 2012 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Publisher via Netgalley
Description: In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity. Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten. Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die or become one of the monsters. Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad. Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike. But it isn’t easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.
I Give This...
I've been trying to stay away from vampires. I kind of felt like it was over played, and I was willing to walk away. But, when I heard that they were going to be the subject of Julie Kagawa's newest novel, I jumped right back on board. You see, Kagawa has a knack for telling a story in a different manner. She breathes new life into it.
I was intrigued by this world the she's created. A virus basically wiped out the human population. The vampires were immune to this virus and came out of the dark. In exchange for protection from the rabid creatures in the wild, human agree to live in vampire cities. I found the hierarchy of the vampires and their cities to be fascinating. It turns out its a very intricate system. Only certain vampires have the power to rule. And due to the virus, only certain vampires can actually turn a vampire human (and not into a rapid).
Allison is barely living it seems in this. She takes great risks just to survive. She refuses to become a blood slave just to provide herself with a few extra comforts. But, I think this might have been her downfall. She trusts way to easily. She trusts that the band of people won't turn on each other. She trusts that there are few things worse than being a vampire. And she trusts that when the unthinkable happens that she can be different. Maybe it's because of all this that she really impressed me as a vampire.
In this story, vampires are hard to tell from human. But, their thirst for blood can consume them. We see Allie really struggle with it at times. But, she always proves she's better than that. She tolerates a lot of mental abuse for her creator, but I think she realizes that there is no better person to teach her how to survive. And maybe through this she can be a different kind of vampire.
What's difficult about this story is that there are no very different sections to it. First is Allie in the vampire city (including after she is turned). And there's the whole story when she roaming the wilderness. There she gets caught up with a rogue band of humans. They're looking for a sort of Eden...the answer to all their prayers. But, something (or someone) is looking for them. It's interesting because in the end you realize how connected this story really is. The leader of this group and Allie's creator have way more in common than you could ever realize.
An interestingly woven story. I will definitely be seeking out the next one.