Mundie Moms

Friday, June 1, 2012

Book Review: Darkness Before Dawn by J.A. London

Published by: Harper Teen 
Released on: May 29th, 2012
Source: ARC from publisher at TLA
4.5 stars: I Really Enjoyed It!

This electrifying new trilogy blends the best of paranormal and dystopian storytelling in a world where the war is over. And the vampires won.

Humans huddle in their walled cities, supplying blood in exchange for safety. But not even that is guaranteed. Dawn has lost her entire family and now reluctantly serves as the delegate to Lord Valentine, the most powerful vampire for miles. It isn’t until she meets Victor, Valentine’s son, that she realizes not all vampires are monsters....

Darkness Before Dawn is a fresh new story with captivating characters, unexpected plot twists, a fascinating setting, and a compelling voice. Written under the name J. A. London by a talented mother-son team, the trilogy is perfect for fans of True Blood and the House of Night and Morganville Vampires series- quoted from Goodreads

I've gotten to a point lately where I'm starting to feel a bit turned off from vampire books, because there's a lot of them out there, and I feel like many of them have started to blend together, because of their similarities. There was something intriguing about this book's synopsis along with it's captivating cover (which I LOVE) that made me want to pick it up and read it. I was surprised when I sat down to read Darkness Before Dawn how addicting of a read it was! This debut turned out be one of those fast paced, enjoyable reads that completely hooked me and had me reading it in one sitting. I'm thoroughly impressed that this book is written by a mother/son team and I have to give them huge props for creating a unique vampire dystopian that stands out from the vast majority of vampire books I've recently read.  

I loved this dark, blood lust, dystopian world that Darkness Before Dawn has in it. The story picks up after the 30 year war between humans and vampires has ended. Though this story is set in Denver, this world felt like an entirely different place. The elements of both dystopia and paranormal are played up perfectly in this book, and really fueled the feel of the book. Add in the little bits of action, the romance and plots twists that were fabulously drawn out and you'll find one well written book. Normally it's the characters that hook me, but in this case it was the well written plot line. There's so much to this story that I really enjoyed, and I don't want to give too much of it away, because it's one of those stories you need to sit down and read for yourself. 

Character wise I really enjoyed the characters as well. Given that this story is after a war with vampires, I liked getting to see how humans and vampires now interacted, well if you can call it that. Being chosen to fulfill her parents's shoes as Denver's delegate to the ruling Vampire, Lord Valentine, main character Dawn Montgomery is one of those characters I loved right off the bat. This girl doesn't have anything to lose, and it shows with her kick butt attitude and bravery. I felt like Dawn wasn't just a believable character, but someone who's various emotions and actions made sense to me through out the book. She's a smart girl too. I loved that she got and understood the politics of her position, which went along way with her in trying to mend the vampire/human relationships/ruling of her city. 

The romance in this story is great, as are the love interests, though Victor is my favorite. I wouldn't necessarily call this a love triangle, but Dawn does have that hot boy friend that everyone in high school swoons over, not to mention they've been best friends since they were little. Than there's the hot vampire Victor who saves Dawn's life and, the two end up crossing paths more than a few times in this book. Poor Dawn... what to do and who to choose.... the hot boy friend who's training to hunt vampire or the hot, powerful vampire who turns her world upside down. Without giving too much away, I will say I liked how the two different relationships where written and how things evolved between them through out the story. 

If you're looking for a fun, fast paced, refreshing paranormal read I highly recommend picking this book up. There's plenty of twists, a bit of romance, and a well written paranormal lore that I totally enjoyed. With all that happens in this story, and how this books ends I can't wait to pick up the next book in this trilogy.

Recent Book News

I've realized it's been awhile since I've posted a Recent YA Book News post, so today I'm posting about some of the recent exciting news. If I've missed anything (which I know I have, please feel free to include links in the comments). 

Laini Taylor's sequel to Daughter of Smoke and Bone (one of my favorites from last year), Days of Blood & Starlight has a cover! EW revealed the cover first, and posted that Days of Blood & Starlight would be hitting shelves on Nov. 6th, 2012. AND the paper back edition of Daughter of Smoke and Bone will include a sneak peak into this sequel. 

Debut author Shannon Messenger revealed the cover of her upcoming YA release, Let The Sky Fall, this week on her blog. Check out her cover's awesomeness here. You can read a little bit about the book here:

Vane Weston should have died in the category five tornado that killed his parents. Instead, he woke up in a pile of rubble with no memories of his past—except one: a beautiful, dark-haired girl standing in the winds. She's swept through his dreams ever since, and he clings to the hope that she's real.  
Audra is real, but she isn't human. She's a sylph, an air elemental who can walk on the wind, translate its alluring songs, even twist it into a weapon. She's also a guardian—Vane’s guardian—and has sworn an oath to protect him at all costs.  
When a hasty mistake reveals their location to the enemy who murdered both of their families, Audra has just days to help Vane unlock his memories. And as the storm winds gather, they start to realize the greatest danger might not be the warriors coming to destroy them, but the forbidden romance growing between them.  
Sounds like a must read doesn't it!?! I can't wait to pick this one up!

- Add it to your Goodreads shelves HERE
- "Like" it on Facebook HERE
- Enter Shannon's giveaway HERE

Kiki Hamilton posted the first chapter of her upcoming sequel to The Faerie Ring, The Torn Wing. You can read it here