By Julie Kagawa
PUB: APRIL 24th 2012 by Harlequin TEEN
REVIEW COPY: eARC (Netgalley)
In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity.
Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten.
Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them. The vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die or become one of the monsters.
Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad.
Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike.
But it isn't easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.
I’m happy to say that The Immortal Rules was as good as I’d hoped it would be. I freely admit that I am a HUGE fan of Julie Kagawa so I was predisposed to like this book.
We first meet the heroine, Alison Semenko (Allie) as a human girl trying to scrape out a living in the Vampire city of New Covington. We get the basics of the world Allie lives in pretty quickly and as the story progresses more information comes to light, giving the reader and Allie herself, a broader picture of what the world looks like. We start to see just how hopeless and dangerous a world it is for both humans and, surprisingly, vampires as well.
Allison is attacked by rabids (wild vampires that seemed almost like zombie vampires – so the freakiest things EVER!) When given the choice to die or become a vampire, not wanting to die, Allison chooses to become a vampire.
She quickly discovers that while being a vampire makes her every bit the monster she feared, being a vampire is also nothing like she expected it to be.
Allison is forced to flee New Covington alone and discovers that the world is much different then she could have imagined. She joins up with a group of humans, travelling in a caravan in search of a mythical city, known as Eden, where there are no vampires and humans can live in peace.
Allison’s journey with the religious group gives her a great deal to think about and as the group faces various trials along their journey, Allison is forced to do a lot of soul searching about who she was as a human and who she is now that she is a vampire. Her journey towards accepting that she is no longer human was fantastic to read. Julie Kagawa has a gift for chronicling the growth of her characters into something more. Allison is no exception. The Allie at the end of the book is very different from the Allie at the start of the book and it makes for a compelling story and while it’s sometimes awkward and sometimes painful, no matter how fantastical the setting, the emotions are always so real.
Allison moves through different stages of progression from human to vampire, reflected in the titles of the 5 parts of the book. Each part of the book reflected a new dynamic to Allison’s personality. With the way the book ended there are so many possibilities for what will happen next in Allison’s journey.
While the book is centered on Allison and we focus most on her, the secondary characters were fascinating, Kanin, Allie’s creator was a mysterious and powerful presence in the early part of the book who remains a key figure in the story and has huge impact even when he’s not a direct part of the plot.
I really liked the caravan of humans too. There was just the right number of characters that you could remember individuals and their personalities but there was enough of a crowd that is was possible for Allie to fade to the background.
One of the main characters we meet in the caravan is Zeke. He and Allie form a connectio almost immediately. Zeke is more than a simple love interest. Allie's life (undeath?) is too complicated for something like that. Zeke was such an interesting counter-character to Allie. There is something really charming about having the kind hearted boy fall in love with the dangerous girl for a change. Who can resist such a great role reversal?
The Immortal Rules was a great read that will keep you up late wanting to find out what happens next.
**I'm posting this Thursday as I'm about to head out of town for a few days & I didn't have time to spell or fact check properly so if you find any mistakes - sorry!**