Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown - Review

Title: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
Author: Holly Black
Source: Kindle E-Book ($4.99 when I bought it)

Goodreads Summary:

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:

Imagine going to a party, and waking up the next morning in a bathtub with no recollection of how you got there. When you stumble out to the rest of the house, you discover everyone else at the party was killed during the night. A window was left open during the party, letting in the killer. Who just happens to be vampires. That is just what happens to Tana one morning, changing her whole life.

Through a series of events, Tana, her ex-boyfriend Aidan, Winter and Midnight (two young adults they meet at a rest area), and a vampire named Gavriel flee to their local Coldtown. Not all cities have them, but they do have one close by. There are five major Coldtowns across the country - they are a section of town that was walled off to keep vampires and infected people sequestered, to prevent a further spread of vampirism. Coldtowns are like a glamorous wild party/reality show, with live feeds, live cams, ad streaming video, which those outside the Coldtowns can watch what is happening behind the walls. But Coldtowns are also extremely dangerous, which can't be forgotten.

Tana is the perfect heroine - she was awesome! She is flawed, makes bad choices sometimes just because she wants to, but is brave, loyal, courageous and tough. She is not weak, and does not always wait to be rescued. Gavriel is a perfect Byronic hero and love interest, and Tana does not get her head turned by a handsome face - she does not romanticize the idea of vampires, instead knows them to be the monsters that they are. Although Tana and Gavriel do get a little steamy...

The vampires in this story are not mamby pamby vampires who glitter and forgo drinking blood. They are dangerous, with red eyes, who do drink the blood of people, and will even kill them. Reading this book though, I was more freaked out by the scary wannabes, those people who saw the vampires as eternally young, who never die, no more birthdays. They have no limits to as how far they will go to get what they want, which is eternal life. Isn't this always true though - that zealots can be the craziest people in the room?

I loved this book! I read it all in one sitting, I just didn't want to stop reading it. Black created a world that was different from other vampire books, with an awesome heroine. It was complex, I just grazed the surface of this story. I feel like we didn't quite get enough closure at the end of this book, and I am really hoping that this signifies another book in the series to come!

I loved this book! And it also qualifies as a book in the R.I.P. VIII Reading Challenge!


  1. I have seen this around and passed by it since I don't read much YA, but I do read YA dystopian. Wow, this sounds very intense and basically creepy. I think it would make an awesome movie, don't you think? The author sounds like she is making some commentary on our society, hidden behind the actual plot, but I would have to read the book and ponder awhile to figure out her message (I do believe there is one here). Thanks for a great review.

    1. I am kind of on a YA kick! Lol. Maybe it is because there is such a wide array of horror/dystopian/paranormal novels in YA right now? I am not sure what it is, but I have about 3 YA books at home waiting to be read, in those genres.

      I agree, there is definitely a social commentary in there - I have a couple of ideas on them. I was impressed by this book, more so than I thought I would be. :)

  2. Great review, I loved this book as well. It's interesting how vampires were blended in with social media: the bloggers drawn there, the fact that the Coldtowns were reality TV shows, etc.

    1. I know, I thought that was a pretty interesting touch! Vampires are usually portrayed so old school - these are vampires for a new generation. :)

  3. Great review. I have this waiting to be read and have read a number of positive reviews now so must bump up the list!
    Lynn :D


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