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.
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.
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.