Black, H. (2013). The coldest girl in coldtown. New York, NY: Little, Brown and Company
Tana lives in a world where vampires have been quarantined to avoid the creation of more vampires. However, after a party, she wakes up to a house full of dead bodies. Tana finds that she was somehow spared in a vicious vampire attack along with her ex boyfriend, Aiden, who was bitten (and is now infected), and a vampire named Gavriel. To become a vampire, one would drink human blood and complete the cycle. The only way to be "cured" of this infection is to not drink blood for eighty-eight days. While Tana makes her escapes, a vampire manages to scratch her leg with his fang dooming her with the infection. She knows that going to a place where people don't return is her only choice to save Aiden and herself. She is accompanied by two vampire-obsessed friends, who later betray her. And one becomes a vampire. And when she learns that her sister has gone to Coldtown to save her, Tana realizes that she has to sacrifice her own well being to keep her sister out of danger. Tana's bravery in the midst of monsters, violent killings, and a romantic interlude with Gavriel leads her to the ultimate encounter with Lucien after she realizes she can never return to life as she knew it.
The gory and bloody nature of the vampire is clearly evident in this story. Monster literature fans will gravitate to this piece because it embraces the true animalistic nature of vampires. Holly Black brings vampire literature to it's former glory, in my opinion. Although I enjoyed the Twilight trilogy, I craved the reality of how violent vampires are - like in Anne Rice's Interview With A Vampire or Bram Stoker's Dracula. Black gives Tana heroic attributes that enable readers to take to her plight and ultimate self-sacrificing behavior when it comes to saving her sister. Similarly, I enjoyed reading Black's descriptions of how she kills vampires, and on how the taste of blood invigorates her.
Holly Black recently collaborated with Cassandra Clare and wrote the Magisterium graphic novel series.
Holly Black has also written the Spiderwick Chronicles.
Requirement: Holly Black selection
Book covers found on Amazon.com