Friday, 25 June 2010

Glass Houses: The Morganville Vampires Bk1 - Rachel Caine

Claire Danvers is 16 and incredibly clever. So clever that she got early acceptance into college, including MIT. Having lead quite a sheltered life, Claire's parents don't think that it's a good idea for her to be so far from home only being 16 so they sent her to Morganville, which isn't that far away.

Claire isn't happy about it but doesn't really have much of a choice. Not only is Claire at a college she didn't want to go to but she's also being bullied by Monica and her popular friends. Bullying would be putting it lightly actually. Monica and her friends really don't like Claire and end up pushing her down some stairs, warning her that she is in deep trouble later that night. Not wanting to find out of Monica is going to stand by her words, Claire heads off to seek off campus accommodation, even though it isn't really allowed.

Glass House is looking for a fourth housemate. Claire heads over to the house, not really knowing what to expect but when she gets there, she finds an old, mansion looking building which is pretty creepy. The only girl living there, Eve, finds her outside and invites her to come look around but lets her know that it is Michael that makes the decisions. Eve and Shane (one of the other housemates) have no problems with letting her stay but Michael doesn't think it's a good idea. He doesn't want anyone underage living there, knowing that it could cause trouble over anything else but after hearing about Claire's problems at the dorms, he can't help but say yes.

Claire thought she had it as bad as it could get at the dorms but then her new housemates tell her what is really going on around town. Morganville is a vampire town and they're everywhere. Her friends have some secrets of their own though and are going to have to pull together if they intend to stay alive in a town where anything could happen.

What I thought!
I was lucky enough to find books #1-8 in this series in The Works the other week in their 3 for £5 offer. When I first heard about these books, I wasn't that bothered about reading them in all honesty but when I saw how cheap they were, I couldn't resist. Each book was at least £5 on Amazon so I was saving myself a hell of a lot of money.

So many times I have read about supernatural beings that were actually the good guys. Not this time. There are no Edward Cullens in Morganville that's for sure. These vampires, although following the rules of the town, are pretty badass and have everyone, humans included, running around after them. The vampires try to use everything that they have to get what they want which means charm and creepy smiles. Sometimes this does make some of them seem like good guys but I wouldn't be too quick to believe them. After all, it just isn't in their nature to be nice is it?

Claire was easy to like. The book started off explaining the situation with her and Monica and I couldn't help but feel extremely sorry for her. Everyone else at the college is older than her and a lot more experienced in life so Claire had a lot to contend with to begin with. Also, no one likes a show off do they? It was quite strange to me that Claire loved studying so much though and was determined to continue going to her classes, no matter what was going on around her. I guess that is all she has ever known though with her parents seeming quite controlling over her schooling. Claire does start off quite the weak character but her new found friends seem to bring something more out of her which isn't fully expanded on in this book. I can see that through the other books in this series, Claire's character is going to go through a lot of changes.

The other people living at Glass House made this book for me. Shane is your typical tough guy. Gorgeous and strong but fun at the same time. The way that Rachel Caine writes these teenagers is so unbelievably true. The guys especially. Shane and Michael are quite obviously very into girls, playing on their X Box, shooting zombies and drinking when they get the chance. Never have I read such believable teenagers in a book of this genre. Shane doesn't really show any signs of emotion to begin with but as the story develops, something more comes out in him and we get to see what he's really like. Michael is quite the opposite to begin with. It's clear that he cares when Claire comes to the house because he doesn't want her there, to protect her but being the big softy that he is, he says yes anyway. Michael also has secrets that come out quite quickly.

Eve really made me laugh. In a town run by vampires, she goes around dressing like a goth, pretty much rubbing it in their faces, which isn't something that she really cares about. Eve is the tough girl with nerves of steel when it comes to the vampires and it was great to see her stand up to Michael and Shane when she didn't agree with what they were saying or doing. I was also really glad to see Claire gain a real friend in Eve, despite the fact that they were so different.

While these four main characters were amazing, they didn't all get much development. As I've said before though, there are 8 books in this series so far, with more to come so no doubt we will get to see many different things happen and change within them all.

I know I said that the characters made this book but the story was also fantastic. There's mystery, secrets, action, excitement and a little romance. The size of this book is quite average compared to others in the genre but it packed in so much more, without being overdone. I could never guess what was going to happen next and I could never see things coming, especially what happens with Michael. Due to the amount of action, I think that this would be suitable for both guys and girls, unlike others which seem to be more focuses on the romance side of things.

I really enjoyed reading Eve's diary at the end of the book. Quite a few books in this genre have taken to telling a story from two different people's points of view but this was done in an entirely different way. Instead of changing the way the story was written, the diary adds a little something extra to what was already a great book. With so much going on, I couldn't help but wonder what everyone else was thinking or feeling so at least this way, I got a small amount of what I wanted.

Rachel Caine writes a fantastic YA novel but doesn't write it so that it doesn't appeal to anyone else. I'm 24 and loved it. The ending was left at a pretty big cliff-hanger but luckily, I had the next book ready and waiting for me, which I picked up immediately. This is by far, the best big series in YA novels that I have ever read. Unfortunately, the books do have to be read in order or you will have no idea what is going on at all. I cant believe I waited to read these books because now I cant put them down. I've read books #1-6 in three days and hopefully will have finished the next two soon.

More Morganville reviews coming soon...If I can pull myself away from the other books!


Bonnie said...

Hi Lyndsey, too bad Claire didn't end up in Forks! Have you seen Eclipse yet?

Have a great weekend, Bonnie

Lyndsey OHalloran said...

Noo not yet. It isn't out in the UK till 9th July!

Smash Attack Ash said...

Loving this series!

The Readings of a Busy Mom said...

wow you got a great deal, The morganville vampires is an all time fave series of mine.

The Blog

Vicki said...

I wasn't that tempted either, until now! Great review.

Michelle Fluttering Butterflies said...

Ahh. How lucky that you've got the whole series already! I read the first book in the series last week and didn't have the next :( If I have to wait any longer for someone to agree to a book swap on ReadItSwapIt with me, I think I might just have to go buy them full price! Great series, I was very surprised!

And what a great, thorough review!

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