Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Review & Giveaway: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black


The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date: September 5th 2013
My rating:  4 stars


Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave.

One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black.



My Thoughts:
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown was a deliciously creepy and dark story, one that made my heart race and thrill.

Tanna lives in a world that seems not too far off from our own; a time when vampires are no longer myth but present and a threat.  These vampires have been contained in our modern world into cities, Coldtowns, guarded but connected by live feeds, blog posts and news stories.  Sensationalized and romanticized, but Tanna knows the darker side of the story.  She has a sad, frightening tale of infection gone horribly wrong in her family's past.

When we meet up with Tanna, she’s like any normal seventeen year old spending her summer at parties and having fun.  This all comes to an end when she wakes up to a horrific scene, after she spent the night knocked out from drinking too much.  Now she’s on the run with her ex-boyfriend, Aiden, and a boyishly handsome vampire, Gavriel, trying to make it to one of the Coldtowns before Aiden fully changes. 

This was a dark, mesmerizing story, littered with gore and horror. Holly Black does not hold back painting beautiful and yet terrifying tale. I loved every uneasy minute. 

Tanna was an easy character to latch onto and root for as she wakes up, and everything is basically full throttle ahead from there on out.  She’s determined to do what’s right and yet stay human.  Her bizarre and powerful connection to Gavriel surprises and thrills her at the same time.  She knows he’s capable of monstrous acts, has probably committed them, but at the same time she sees what he is underneath.

"Tana's heartbeat seemed to have moved into her whole body and thrilled it with a single speeding pulse. Everything was a little blurred at the edges and she wanted---she wanted him to feel like she did, like he'd done something forbidden…"*

The romance in this story was perfect, and not overwhelming, yet enough to speed your heart rate up in whenever Gavriel and Tanna are together.  The thing about a romance that’s not in your face is that you spend time analyzing every move and glance, and every word spoke, until what you suspect and hoped for is confirmed!

This story has some twists and revelations, and danger at every turn.  I think it was a perfect balance of plot and characterization!  I was reminded a little of Sunshine by Robin McKinley (one of my favorite vampire stories) while reading this and I think it was because the way it portrayed vampires, a little strange and alien, fascinating and terrible at the same time.  Somehow the relationship between Tanna and Gavriel felt similar, too.  Can’t put my finger on exactly why, but I loved it! 

Fans of horror will love this creepy, unsettling and romantic story!!

*Quote taken from an uncorrected proof and may change in the final copy. 
 




Giveaway

I had the pleasure of meeting Holly Black at the Chicago ALA where she signed my ARC copy of The Coldest Girl in Coldtown.  To show our appreciation for all of you lovely readers, I’m going to share my copy with one lucky person!  The giveaway is INTERNATIONAL.  Just fill out the rafflecopter below.

 
A gorgeous Holly Black with stunning blue hair!





a Rafflecopter giveaway

86 comments:

  1. The Girl in the Mirror by Cecilia Ahern. It's an anthology of two short stories but just don't let the cover fool you - I was pleasantly creeped out. :)

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  2. I can't wait to read this one especially now after your review! This sounds like a creepy read with great characters (Tana has a similar name to mine) :) I'm so glad you enjoyed it Rachel :) Great review.

    For my fave: Anna Dressed in Blood! :)

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  3. Anna Dressed in Blood! Loved it.

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  4. Little Red Riding hood? Hey it's a classic. This book caught my eye months ago, nice review.

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  5. The Mara Dyer series, it's super creepy and confusing!

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  6. I'm pleasantly surprised you enjoyed this one, only because I haven't seen too many positive reviews of it floating around. I love Holly Black, though, and even thogh vampires aren't my thing, I think I'll have to give this a try for sure. Great review, Rachel!

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  7. Breaking Glass by Lisa Amowitz or Transcend by Christine Fonseca

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  8. I wasn't sold on this one until I saw the trailer. The trailer is so cool - have you seen it? I'll definitely be checking this one out now!

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  9. I haven't read Anna Dressed in Blood which is supposedly very creepy, but my favorite creepy read is Mara Dyer series. (Especially book #2 which made me scared of the dark for at least a week :D LOL) I'm so glad you liked this. The positive feedback for this is mindblowing. Everyone seems to love it. I'm so intirgued by this novel and it seems like a very original story. I'm happy that the romance made your heart beat faster and that the MC was so easy to connect with. That's the footing of a great story. I'm so glad you got to meet Holly. You look pretty darn fine yourself, sweetie ;-) And Holly is awesome!

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  10. Oh em gee, thank you so much for this giveaway! I really want to read this but I couldn't request it. My creepiest read. Hmm. In recent times, Dead Jealous by Sharon Jones and Insomnia by Jenn Johansson. :D

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  11. Oooh, this sounds good! I haven't read any of Holly's books, and I did get this at BEA, only I gave it away!! Oops ;)

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  12. I honestly haven't read anything creepy... partly because I easily get scared so to avoid nightmares I steer clear of anything that creeps me out and gives me the beejebies. But I heard great reviews about Holly Black books so this would be her first book that I'll read and eventhough it's creepy, I definitely would want my first creepy read to be this one.
    Thanks for this! :)

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  13. GAH, I need this book in my life. It looks great and it's good to hear you really enjoyed this! :D

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  15. Like the title and the story seems interesting. Going to add it to my list to read.
    Favourite creepy read? Haven't read many those lately... Anna dressed in blood is on my reading list and I've read Mara Dyer... favourite though? Ever read mangas? Ghost hunt for example?

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  16. Mara Dyer is about as creepy as I've gotten :)

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  17. I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed this, Rachel! I can't wait for it to come out so I can experience its awesomeness as well.
    The romance sounds so swoon-worthy and I know I'm going to like it!

    "The thing about a romance that’s not in your face is that you spend time analyzing every move and glance, and every word spoke, until what you suspect and hoped for is confirmed!"

    I completely agree with you on that! I love it when a romance its subtle because then when the couple finally gets together (or share their first kiss), the impact is so much better. :)

    Even the plot sounds interesting. It doesn't look like it's the same repetitive vampire book.

    Lovely review, Rachel! :)

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  18. I haven't read Anna Dressed in Blood which is supposedly very creepy, but my favorite creepy read is Mara Dyer series.

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  19. I really liked the romance in this one. Sometimes, if a romance is all-consuming, it takes away from the story (unless it actually is a romance novel and that's the point of the story). This was beautifully written and the romance added to the story rather than overwhelming it. Loved!

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  20. I have this one for review, and I'm so glad to see that it keeps getting solid reviews. Plus, the romance sounds just right...like Mary says, I need a romance that doesn't force the rest of the story to take the backburner, you know? Lovely review, Rachel!

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  21. Okay, I wasn't sure this book would be one for me but you've absolutely convinced me it is! Thanks so much for the great review! And giveaway!

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    Replies
    1. Favorite creepy book... that's a tough one! I love Gretchen McNeil's books. I also like The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, which was pretty creepy too!

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  22. I am so anxious to read this one! Though this will be the first book I read by Holly Black!
    My favorite creepy read up till now is 'Unraveling Isobel' by Eileen Cook and "Anna Dressed in Blood" by Kendare Blake.

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  23. "The thing about a romance that’s not in your face is that you spend time analyzing every move and glance, and every word spoke, until what you suspect and hoped for is confirmed!"

    YES!!!! That's exactly how I feel with the more subtle romances too Rachel - I just read and reread every scene between the couple and try and find any clue that they're headed in the direction I want them to go:) I'm a little nervous about your mention of gore as I am a giant wuss and don't deal well with that kind of thing, but I want to read this one too much to let that stop me:) SO EXCITED!

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  24. The Odd Thomas series by Dean Koontz. Thanks for sharing and congrats to Holly on the release!

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  25. I really loved 172 Hours On The Moon. It was creepy and chilling and sometimes more then a little scary.

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  26. Hmmm... I recently read The Madman's Daughter by Megan Shepherd and thought it was fantastic.

    Brynna

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  27. Oh it's interesting to see you compare it to Robin McKinley's book! I'm actually reading this next, and you have me a lot more enthusiastic about it now (I hadn't heard the best things initially). So glad you enjoyed it, Rachel. Fantastic review! :)

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  28. I'd have to say that so far, my favorite creepy read was Anna Dressed in Blood, but I'm still on the look out for a book to terrify me! Thanks for the great giveaway :-)

    Vyki @ On The Shelf

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  29. Firstly Holly's hair is AWESOME, and secondly thanks for the review and giveaway! I love creepy gothic stories so this sounds like something I'd love!

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  30. I have yet to read something by Holly Black, but I know I should. She has such fascinating premises for her novels. I'm glad this was an enjoyable and unique read! Love the title. :)

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  31. I'm very looking forward to reading this book with the twist of paranormal and humans. It largely reminds me of the Morganville series, with once '...you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave'. It already sends chills through me. Haha! Great review, Rachel! :)

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  32. This book sounds so book :) Would love to read this and read Holly Black (shame on me, I know :P) ^_^

    I haven't read that many creepy books... I've only read The Woman in Black which was creepy enough :)

    Thank you for the giveaway and amazing review :D

    XX Ner

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  33. My favorite creepy book? That may be the hardest question anyone has ever asked me. Haha. The last creepy book I read was Doll Bones by Holly Black.

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  34. I Hunt Killers & The Game were both pretty creepy!

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  35. Love the sound of dark and mysterious!

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  36. I couldn't decide whether to get this one or not and now I want to! I love creepy and even though I am burned out on vamps, I can totally do one with the scary kind. This sounds like a thriller! You look pretty darn gorgeous yourself there with Holly Black, Rachel!

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  37. Dreams and Shadows by C. Robert Cargill..as i read this book i can actually picture what was going on!!!

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  38. This book was so hyped up during BEA, I'm so glad you liked it! It seems like Black really gets in the nitty-gritty about vampires, dark and scary ones at that! I can't wait to see how she develops Coldtown. I'm so glad to see that the romance was perfect! Beautiful review, Rachel, and awesome picture with Holly!

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  39. Splintered is definitely my favorite creepy read. I LOVE this book!

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  40. I didn't know that this book was so creepy! Now I wanna read it ASAP! I'm excited! I really liked The Historian! It's an adult vamp novel and it was hella creepy!

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  41. It's been a while since I read the books, but Simon Holt's THE DEVOURING trilogy is super duper creepy. Thanks for the giveaway--I really, really want to read this book!

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  42. This is Not A Test by Courtney Summers.

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  43. This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers.love me some zombies!

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  44. Favorite creepy books are Bad Girls Don't Die by Katie Alender and Anna Dressed In Blood by Kendare Blake, absolutely love creepy books! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  45. My favorite creepy read is the Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin, though I think the sequel was a bit creepier. :D Thanks for the great giveaway!

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  46. Ooh, I didn't realize it was in the horror zone, but I like it even more now. Usually I'm not a fan of creepy or gory books, but I love vampires and I've heard great things about Holly Black, so I'm definitely going to read this one. I'm so glad you loved it, Rachel! Great review!

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  47. I'm reading Stephen King's Joyland right now and it's pretty creepy! The creepiest ever is IT. I hate clowns!

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  48. "The Coldest Girl in Coldtown was a deliciously creepy and dark story, one that made my heart race and thrill." Umm...yes! I can't wait to read this! It definitely sounds interesting. Although, I don't pick up books with gore or horror elements, I just might make an exception for this! Glad you enjoyed this Rachel! Awesome review! :D

    ~ Maida
    Literary Love Affair 

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  50. Anything by Stephen King. Also reading In the Shadow of Blackbirds now and it is pretty creepy! Thanks!

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  51. This sounds soooo amazing. I love creepy reads, and the fact that this one is by Holy Black just makes it so much more appealing :) Perfect romances are hard to find as well.

    What's my favorite creepy read? I'd have to say Anna Dressed In Blood & Girl of Nightmares by Kendare Blake. I could go back to those two books whenever I want for a good read.

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  52. I didn't think I was up for yet another vampire story, but when Holly Black writes it its a whole different thing. I have the e-arc and I've been trying so hard to resist it, but I guess I should stop now. I am SO in the mood for something deliciously creepy.
    Lovely review, Rachel!

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  53. Oooh, I seriously wanna read this now! LOVE Holly Black- and her awesome hair! :) My favorite creepy read was Bad Girls Don't Die- talk about creepy!

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  54. UNHOLLOWED GROUND by heather graham
    thx u :)

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  55. I've read Black's Tithe series, and really enjoyed it. This sounds like another fabulous story. Thanks for the great review, Rachel!

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  56. I love the Unbecoming of Mara Dyer.

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  57. I haven't read anything by Black but this sounds like a good place for me to start. Although I don't know how well I could handle creepy stories :P

    Thanks for sharing.

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  58. Okay, your comparison to McKinley's Sunshine has definitely intrigued me! I definitely consider that to be of a higher-caliber vampire story, so I'm interested as to how The Coldest Girl in Coldtown can compare to it. I had a really good experience reading my one Holly Black novel so far (Tithe) and need to read more of her works soon. Lovely review, Rachel!

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  59. I have this one for review and I am beyond excited. This will be my first Black novel and I have super high hopes for it. Love how you describe the mixture of gore and humour!

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  60. My favorite creepy read of all time is Scary Stories box set By Alvin Schwartz

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  61. The Diviners by Libba Bray! They even have the Naughty John song up at their website and it adds to the creep factor! >___<

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  62. "The thing about a romance that’s not in your face is that you spend time analyzing every move and glance, and every word spoke, until what you suspect and hoped for is confirmed!" <-- THIS. I love this kind of romance because usually I feel so connected. Depending on how authors play their romance, I can either feel so wrapped up in it and craving more or I go "yeah yeah." So happy you liked it :)

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  63. 666: The Number of the Beast. Some stories gave me the serious creeps!

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  64. I LOVED Anna Dressed in Blood! Thanks for the AWESOME Giveaway! :-) Good Luck to everyone!

    Comment name and Rafflecopter name is different.

    Rafflecopter name is: Vannah Batista

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  65. Anna dressed in blood by kendare blake :D

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  66. I'm currently reading Battle Royale, and I like it a lot. It's extremely creepy, and gory!

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  67. A creepy read I liked would be The Devouring series by Simon Holt. I would suggest not reading it before bedtime:)

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  68. Lots of horror makes me very nervous! BUT I love books that do this: "Holly Black does not hold back painting beautiful and yet terrifying tale." I also absolutely love a subtle romance within a story, especially when there's moral ambiguity attached to it. I've read a lot of mixed things about this book, but I'm really hoping that I love it, and it means a lot that you enjoyed this one!

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  69. Anna Dressed in Blood.
    Thanks a lot for the giveaway.

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  70. Angelfall by Susan Eee. So creepy but SO good! <3

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  71. Love the paragraph about subtle romance! Couldn't have said it better! Love it!

    Pretty Dark Nothing by Heather L. Reid I found to be quite creepy. It wasn't the best book by any means but there was tension throughout the whole book that always kept me wary and on edge.

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  72. I don't know if it can be called creepy read, but I'm sure I was scared when I read The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. It was really amazing though :)

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  73. Would have to be Anna Dressed In Blood.. uhh.. lol

    Thanks for the giveaway.. ;)

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  74. The Mara Dyer series. Totally creepy and bizarre. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  75. Totally interested with all of the creepy comments, sounds great:))

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  76. Without a doubt, it has to be Ten by Gretchen McNeil! Nothing can beat it :0)
    Thank you for this amazingly awesome giveaway!

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