Monday, July 23, 2012

Book Review: Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz

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Title: Blue Bloods
Author: Melissa De La Cruz
Publisher: Hyperion
Series: Blue Bloods, Book 1
Paperback: 336 pages
Summary: (Taken from Goodreads)
When the Mayflower set sail in 1620, it carried on board the men and women who would shape America: Miles Standish; John Alden; Constance Hopkins. But some among the Pilgrims were not pure of heart; they were not escaping religious persecution. Indeed, they were not even human. They were vampires.The vampires assimilated quickly into the New World. Rising to levels of enormous power, wealth, and influence, they were the celebrated blue bloods of American society.

The Blue Bloods vowed that their immortal status would remain a closely guarded secret. And they kept that secret for centuries. But now, in New York City, the secret is seeping out. Schuyler Van Alen is a sophomore at a prestigious private school. She prefers baggy, vintage clothes instead of the Prada and pearls worn by her classmates, and she lives with her reclusive grandmother in a dilapated mansion. Schuyler is a loner...and happy that way. Suddenly, when she turns fifteen, there is a visible mosaic of blue veins on her arm. She starts to crave raw food and she is having flashbacks to ancient times. Then a popular girl from her school is found dead... drained of all her blood. Schuyler doesn't know what to think, but she wants to find out the secrets the Blue Bloods are keeping. But is she herself in danger?

Overall Rating: 4/5

I'm always up for a vampire novel, and I think Blue Bloods holds its own in the genre. This was a re-read for me, but it was still great. The idea is extremely creative and original, which is something I always look for. I like the idea of vampire reincarnation, and the connection to Plymouth and the last colony of Roanoke. For American history geeks like me, that's a huge plus. And instead of being filled with romance and angst right away (I know this comes in later books, though), this first book has a well-laid plot with intriguing mysteries.

There are some problems with this book. It does a lot of "telling" instead of showing; I wasn't ever wondering about the characters' thoughts and motivations, because it was all spelled out for me. I was also annoyed by all the designer/brand references. After the first dozen, I understood that they were rich and didn't need anything more. However, these are minor issues, I think. The story is good enough to counteract these problems, and I know the writing definitely improves later in the series.

I love the relationship between Schuyler and Oliver. They're kind of the perfect friends, and I like seeing them in more innocent times before all the big events have changed them. In fact, I enjoyed seeing all of the characters. They are all so different from where we are currently in the series, which just shows how great Melissa de la Cruz is at putting her characters in tough situations and making them grow.

Even though I've read all the books and am just waiting for the last one to be released (*excited squeal*) I still felt that rush of needing to know what happens next. Great characters, beautifully crafted story, and a lot of excitement. You can't go wrong with this book.