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 best-selling and acclaimed author Holly Black.
©2013 Holly Black (P)2013 Hachette Book Group
Making the world better one review at a time.
The title of Holly Black’s “The Coldest Girl in Coldtown” is a bit of a misnomer, because throughout this book main character Tana is on fire!
The book opens with Tana waking up the morning after a party to discover that vampires have slaughtered everyone in the house. The only survivors are Tana, her bitten (and infected) ex-boyfriend Aiden and a handsome, mysterious vampire named Gavriel. Unsure if vampires are still in the house, Tana makes a snap decision – she is going to rescue Aiden and Gavriel. She stops at nothing to ensure the three of them get out of the house unharmed.
In a world where most teenagers are fascinated by vampires and will go to great lengths to be turned, Tana holds a different viewpoint. She does not romanticize vampires. Rather, she recognizes how dangerous they are. She remembers all too well how badly her mother suffered after being bitten.
Now Tana finds herself traveling with Aiden, who is infected, and Gavriel, who is a vampire. By law, anyone who has been infected or exposed to a vampire must turn themselves into the authorities or report to the nearest Coldtown immediately. So to Coldtown they go.
Coldtown is a strange and fascinating world where vampires and humans co-exist. Tana soon finds herself drawn into this world. Her dangerous attraction to Gavriel grows stronger even as she becomes entangled with a powerful vampire who has the power to destroy everything she holds dear.
Narrator Christine Lakin does a wonderful job with the narration. Her voice is smooth and youthful, with a touch of humor that suits Tana perfectly.
This may be a young adult novel, but the graphic and adult content makes it suitable for vampire fans of all ages. If you love a good vampire story teeming with biting and blood, you will love “The Coldest Girl in Coldtown.”
Finally, a return to dangerous vampires! While Holly Black's vampires are definitely still sexy, they're also downright scary. They murder and lie without a second thought. Their lives are both glamorous and blood-soaked. Coldtown reminded me of Anne Rice's vampires, decadent, sensuous creatures that were just as likely to slit your throat as kiss it.
The characters, both human and vampire, were flawed but mostly understandable. Even the most vile, ruthless vampire had reasons that made some sort of twisted sense and while the main character was a little bit of an idiot, her fierce loyalty to her family and friends made it easy to overlook her less intelligent decisions.
In a world of series books, I was also glad to see that this was a stand alone title. The ending is ambivalent enough to leave the reader wondering about the characters and the world is definitely rich enough to revisit but the story is still very clearly wrapped up.
I would highly recommend this one to fans of Anne Rice and Amelia Atwater-Rhodes or anyone looking for a little more monster in their vampires.
Just another working stiff who loves getting lost in a good book.
Honestly, by all the gushing reviews, I thought for sure this would be a book to really "sink my teeth into"! Please don't misunderstand, it is very well written, and the narrator is fantastic. Maybe it's just me? Maybe my glamour with vampires has worn off? I highly doubt that.
The book just seems to be another story in the long line of stories where a teenage girl falls in love with a gorgeous vampire, trouble ensues... yadda... yadda... yadda.
I would recommend this book to someone who is just finding their way to vampires, but to us old vampire vets.... it's just another tedious love story.
This book is tied for my favorite audibook I have listened to.
I loved that this book is a complete story and wrapped up perfectly.
When I finished this book I immediately went and looked at what else Christine Lakin has narrated. She made this book so amazing.
In a genre filled with vampire stories, 'COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN' really stands out as something different. While there are still several of the same tropes (female main character drawn to dangerous and old vampire boy), the vampires in this book are actually terrifying in many ways -- these are not good, "reformed" vampires the likes of which populate many of the modern takes on this mythology. The COLDTOWN world also feels well developed and lived in and real in a way that other novels (*ahem* TWILIGHT) do not. The back story to how all this takes place feels lived in and real, and all the characters feel multidimensional and extraordinarily complex. I was sad for it to be over - though I love where the story ends. It's perfect for this emotional roller coaster ride of a book.
I would also like to note that Christine Lakin is an excellent narrator. I'm extremely picky when it comes to narrators, but she's on my 'must listen to' list now. Her voice is clear and pleasant, and was perfect for this story: just enough inflection and variation between characters to be interesting, but not too much that it overtakes the story. I really hope she does more work!
Definitely worth the listen - and read.
Yes, for sure. Holly Black writes such a convincing world that I thought, 'this is really how it would be if vamps became real...' This story has just enough of everything, suspense, romance and a good bit of blood.
Narrator is great!!!
Don't pass this book by. I thought I was SOOOOO over vamp stories. OVERDONE! But not this one! Oh its perfect!!
Short, Simple, No Spoilers
This book begins strong with Tawna waking up post party in a barn finding out all her friends have been eviscerated by vampires. Her backstory sheds light on her current beliefs about vamps and the beginning of her journey is interesting, with promise. Unfortunately what follows is a banal walk through the usual teen book layout. Pity, this author probably could have done better.
Reader first, Author second.
This is by far the best audiobook I've ever heard! Great story and the way she read Gavriel really just made the story for me.
The whole story was great, well throughout and planned. I liked 'the twist' as I knew something was going on but couldn't quite put my finger on it.
Duh, their first kiss. Duh.
There were about three or four times I just marveled at the way she worded things. Truly beautiful.
Best Vampire Book
Tana- she kicks ass, but is realistic and easy to relate to. Gavriel- he's a bit messed up in the head, but he's hard not to love.
The end scene was a great ending to a great book, I only wished the book went on for 400 more pages.
If you're a fan of Robin McKinley's "Sunshine" or Julie Kagawa's Blood of Eden Series, you will love this book! Also, this narrator was fantastic, I hope she narrates more audiobooks in the future!
I love this story. It was more realistic than most contemporary novels, and originally portrayed a tale that has fascinated the emotionally haunted for years. I enjoyed the idea of vampirism as a disease able to be contained. I also found many parallels between Coldtown and the reality television of today. Beautiful prose accompanied by dynamic characters with richly thought out backstories and brilliant plotting. I finally feel vindicated for the sparkling glampires of my own pretentious preteen years.
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