Thursday, June 21, 2012

Review - Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn, #1) by J. A. London

Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn, #1)Title: Darkness Before Dawn
Author: J.A. London
Series: 1st
Pages: 342
Published: May 29th 2012 by HarperCollins Publishers 
ISBN: 9780062020659
Source: Sent by publisher for honest review 


Description:  Only sunlight can save us. We built the wall to keep them out, to keep us safe. But it also makes us prisoners, trapped in what's left of our ravaged city, fearing nightfall.  After the death of my parents, it's up to me--as the newest delegate for humanity--to bargain with our vampire overlord. I thought I was ready. I thought I knew everything there was to know about the monsters. Then again, nothing could have prepared me for Lord Valentine . . . or his son. Maybe not all vampires are killers. Maybe it's safe to let one in.  Only one thing is certain: Even the wall is not enough. A war is coming and we cannot hide forever.

 I Give This ...

I have to be honest and say this wasn't really on my to-read list.  But, it showed up on my doorstep unsolicited and I wanted to give it my best shot.  I think I would have liked it more had I not read another book with a similar storyline first.

I enjoy the idea of a future society ruled by vampires.  In a world were every ancient society has some legend of vampires, whose to say that in the future the human race can't depend on them?  In return for protection  from rogue vampires, humans donate a quota to the existing ruling vampires.   It was intriguing that the ruling Vampire, Lord Valentine, insisted on a human delegate.  From what I saw, the delegate really does nothing.  I think Lord Valentine enjoys watching the delegate squirm under his demands and not be able to do a damn thing about it.

I liked Dawn.  She been raised around Vampire politics.  She knows what's at stake.   But, she also has a fresh outlook and the characteristics that only belong to teenagers.  She makes a few rash decisions and I think she wants to believe that there is something good in everyone.  She really wants to show those around her what's at stake if they mistakenly believe that the human race doesn't need the vampires.  But, she also wants to show the vampires that they also can't survive without the humans.  It's definitely a delicate line to walk.  Especially when no one understands why she was picked for the job when it obviously should have gone to someone else.

I liked Dawn's interactions with other characters.  As reckless as her best friend can be, she also brings a lighter side to Dawn.  Something she desperately needs in light of everything.  I loved her building relationship with Victor.  He's an interesting character and their involvement goes against everything each of them know.  Neither one of them can afford a weakness, especially when it's the other person.  

Despite all the things I did like about this book, it seemed slow and incredibly drawn out.  And the thing that bothered me the most was at the beginning it's hinted that there is something questionable about Dawn's heritage.  That there's something special about her.  I be damned if I know what it is.  Is it that she was specifically chosen as the delegate by Lord Valentine?  Is it that she might bring about a new vampire rule?  If there was an answer in the wasn't clear to me what it was.

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