I thought I was totally over vampire books, but then Holly Black had to come along and write the awesome The Coldest Girl in Coldtown. The existence of vampires is not a secret; they are talked about on social networks and livestreams of their fabulous parties are THE THING to watch at night. People feel safe because most vampires have been trapped in quarrantine zones called Coldtowns. But there are still rogue vampires out there lurking in the night, and when a human is bitten by one they go “Cold”, starting to crave the taste of human blood that will then turn them into a vampire.
The story starts when seventeen-year-old Tana, who has been out partying with friends all night and passed out in a bathtub, wakes up to find that everyone at the party has been brutally murdered by a pack of vampires. The scene is gruesome, and Tana is quick to discover that only one other person is still alive: her ex-boyfriend Aidan, who has been bitten by one of the vampires. Tana rescues him and decides that the only way to save him is to head for the nearest Coldtown, hoping that the humans there can keep Aidan from turning and that the bounty she’ll earn for the weakened vampire she caught will earn her a way out.
In a time when vampire books are nearly inescapable, I though The Coldest Girl in Coldtown was unique and exciting. I love Tana and the fact that despite her near-paralyzing fear she’s the one rescuing the boy instead of being some kind of damsel in distress. Of course a little romance gets thrown into the mix, but it doesn’t take over the story at all and it plays out in a way that feels realistic. If you’re looking for a different take on vampires and don’t mind some gore (that first chapter, yikes), I highly recommend picking this one up.