Melissa de la Cruz
Source: ARC from the publisher
Publication Date: UK March 2010
My rating: 2/5
Book Summary (from Amazon)
They're young, fabulous and fanged...And they rule Manhattan from the trendy uptown clubs to the downtown boutiques. Fifteen-year-old Schuyler Van Alen has never quite fit in at her exclusive prep school. She's more of a vintage than a Versace girl but all that's about to change...Because Schuyler has just found out she's a Blue Blood. The Blue Bloods are the city's glamorous and secret vampire elite. They're young, beautiful and powerful. But now they're being murdered. And Schuyler must find out who or what is behind it before she's next.
I was so excited about this one. I wanted to read it for ages, and when I got the ARC in my mail, I admit, I did a lot of happy screaming. The excitement lasted for the first fifty pages, and then... I stopped being so enthusiastic about it. It says Twilight meets Gossip Girl, so I can't say I hadn't been warned.
But let`s take it from the start, shall we?
The story started out just great, with diary excerpts written by a Plymouth settler, reporting of the missing colony Roanoke. I loved the way history was woven into a teen-vampire story. I was preparing an exam on Puritans and first colonial settlements and it came just right. But very soon, it became obvious that there wasn't much to be learned from these diary entries, only that the colony was swept from the face of Earth by some creatures called Croatan (wondering where this word came from...) Too bad, because if this were fleshed out, it would have made a way better story. The prevailing setting, contemporary upper-Manhattan felt not so wrong as much as unecessary. They are vampires. They are supposed to be hiding, not showing off on huge bilboards. Some vampires.
The torture came in form of endless descriptions of clothes, cars, parties, make-up and other stuff meant to convince us how rich and snobbish the characters were. Not once did the author miss to mention how much something costs ( $600 jeans, $800 baby stroller). At the same time, their feeding, reproducing, model of hierarchy and order was just rushed through, leaving me confused. There is a constant switch between past and present lives and at moments, I couldn't be sure I got it all right.
The characters...well, Schuyler, from the very first page, leaves the image of a rebel in a surounding of rich, spoiled, uber-gorgeous brats. At moments, her rebel shines through in her personality-she is not afraid of asking questions or demanding the truth and in these moments, I loved her. Yet, she didn't convince me that her rebel is for the right cause, because there was not much she did to really oppose anyone or anything. Next thing you know, she is the face on the bilboard wearing the it jeans. I forgot how much they cost, sorry.
I read a review where a blogger found the thesis that vampires were in fact fallen angels ridiculous. It did sound odd, but then I accidentally stumbled upon an article on the internet about it. It could have made sense. It leaves so much space for mistery, horror or even romance. But to say that angel Gabriel is now a female vampire in coma because she refused to drink blood...
There is not even a romance to keep my interest. Just the hints of something that might happen (or did it actually happen in the past?)
I am so sorry that this book fell low of reaching my expectations. It even has a quote from Muse on the first page! The bite marks on the cover look beautifully creepy and the pearl necklace...sigh.
At least I got the promise that the other three books are much better. In the second book, Masquerade, Schuyler is in Venice. Sounds good...