Description (from Goodreads):
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.
Unlike a lot of other people, I’m nowhere close to being done with reading vampire books. I just want them to be good. Happily, Julie Kagawa’s latest venture, The Immortal Rules, got me going right from the start, and kept me enthused all the way through. Nothing in the story is groundbreaking or especially new, but Kagawa’s writing pops with enough energy that I did not care at all.
In the beginning, much of the story had overtones of Anne Rice’s Interview with the Vampire. Some of the dialog was even reminiscent, such as when Allie is first turned. However, where Louis constantly bemoans his lot, Allie simply accepts what is and moves on. It was refreshing to have a character that didn’t waste our time whining about being a vampire (Why do so many vampires do that! Dude, I’d LOVE to be a friggin’ vampire). Instead, Allie is a powerful woman, unafraid to face conflict or her destiny. Allie reminded me a bit of Buffy, which is probably what Kagawa was going for. There’s a sassy quality about Allie that offsets her power and makes her more relate-able.
The plot consists of different “chunks” of story, changing up Allie’s journey and keeping things moving along. The setting takes place in a dystopian future where humans are in service to vampire overlords, and a disease has caused many humans to die out or turn into “rabids,” monstrous mindless beasts that will tear apart anything living. Again, not really anything new, but I enjoyed reading Kagawa’s world-building nonetheless.
I think fans of Kagawa will eat this book up, and those who didn’t go for her Iron Fey series may become fans based on this book alone. I’m excited to keep reading about Allie’s journey in future books, and will never be over reading about vampires if people like Kagawa keep writing books like this.
One last note: Allie is definitely Japanese. So why the Anglo girl in the cover art/book trailer? Come on Harlequin, enough with the whitewashing.