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Saturday, August 7, 2010

YA Reviews: Midnight Alley + Feast of Fools

WARNING: These reviews, even the summaries, WILL having spoilers for later books in the series. There ain't a whole lot I can do about that so either skip them or read at your own spoiling risk if you haven't read them. I'm doing my best to avoid spoiling. I take no responsibility if you read past this having not read the books. It's not my fault. I don't know any other way to say HERE BE SPOILERS, guys. :P

Still making this up as I go along! How'm I doing so far?

Midnight Alley by Rachel Caine - The Morganville Vampires Book Three

Published: 2007 by NAL Jam which is a division of Penguin. Genre: YA Fantasy / Thriller / Paranormal / Urban Fantasy
Page Count: 245 in my paperback copy.
Part of a series:
Little bit there.
Amazon link.

Summary (from goodreads, chosen because it's the least spoilery just in case someone's reading past my warning): Claire Danvers's college town may be run by vampires but a truce between the living and the dead made things relatively safe. For a while. Now people are turning up dead, a psycho is stalking her, and an ancient bloodsucker has proposed private mentoring. To what end, Claire will find out. And it's giving night school a whole new meaning.

Review: This is the most tense of the series so far. At the beginning, it seems more independent from the other two books, almost like the first two are halves of one story and this one is a sequel. This was also a reread for me.

In this one, Claire's still incredibly smart. She does homework
all the time, which people complain doesn't happen very often in contemporary fiction, right? Actually, in this one, Claire is too smart for her own good and it gets her in trouble.

Shane's still my favourite, but at the start of this one, he's acting like an idiot because he's (emotionally) hurt. Boys are like that, the wackos.
Favourite Shane quote (also a Eve quote):

pg. 16.

"Please. You like everybody. You even like me. You like Shane, and let's face it, Shane's kind of an idiot, at least right now." Eve's eyes narrowed as she thought about that. "And about Shane, I swear, if he doesn't snap out of it, I'm going to punch him in the face. Well, punch him in the face and then run like hell."
There's another quote I really like but it's a little more PG-13 than I'm comfortable posting. Here's one, though.

pg 163 (I think)

Claire played that out in her head and nearly laughed. Eve's best possible punch wouldn't do more than surprise Shane, she figured, but she could just picture the wounded look of confusion on his face. What the hell did I do?

In Midnight Alley, we're introduced to a new character: Myrnin. Myrnin freaks me out, but I kind of find him... intriguing... at the same time as he's utterly terrifying. I think it's that bad boy issue I have.

Cons, complaints, bad stuff, etc.:
This one has a really bad cliffhanger, too. I mean, it's done really, really well, but I really recommend having the fourth book at hand when you read this one.

PG-13 stuff: Tons of it. Cursing, mature content, violence, all that good stuff!

Cover comments:
This cover is darker, with more contrast and deeper colours in real life. The picture on the computer isn't quite as nice as it is in real life. But I still like it. I think it's Claire on the cover (I like guessing who the person is supposed to be).

I definitely love this one. It's darker, more tense, and just as good as the other two. I didn't take enough notes to really make this a good review, but I really did love it. Four and half roses (because Rachel Caine is a goddess).

Other notes:

- We have a new library system and I want the other Weather Warden books that we didn't have before.
- My Jones soda cap said "Your silence is important" which is very fitting with this book.

Feast of Fools by Rachel Caine - The Morganville Vampires Book Four

2008 by Signet according to goodreads
YA Fantasy / Thriller / Paranormal / Urban Fantasy
Page Count: 242 in copy.
Part of a series: Nope, not at all.
Amazon link.

Summary (from the back of the book because I don't like the goodreads one much): In the college town of Morganville, vampires and humans have learned to live in relative peace. Still, students like Claire Danvers know that after dark, studying can take a backseat to staying alive.

But the tenuous good-neighbor policy is really turned on its head with the arrival of Mr. Bishop.
Bad to the bone, the ancient old-school vampie cares nothing about harmony. Staying at the top of the food chain is enough. What he wants from the town's living and dead is unthinkably sinister. It's only at a formal ball attended by vampires and their human dates that Claire realizes Bishop's plan - and the elaborately evil trap he's set for the warm-blooded souls of Morganville...

Remember what I said about Midnight Alley being the most tense of the series so far? Well, this one blows it out of the water. This one wasn't a reread for me, so maybe especially because of that, and not knowing what would happen, I was really feeling the tension.

Shane's still my favourite, Mr. Slacker-Casual himself. In this one, though, there are scary new characters, *couchBishopcough* and we get to know Claire's parents a little bit more, and of course, Myrnin. I really do love him, even though he's absolutely bonkers, and he really is scary.

Here's a change for you guys, here's my favourite Myrnin quote:

pg. 136

He smiled at her, and it was the smile that had won her over in the first place - sweet, gentle, inviting her to share in some delightful secret.
I have a note here that just says "NOT GOOD NOT GOOD NOT GOOD NOT GOOD" so I assume I was very on edge. And another that's just "scary scary scary." Actually, I have two of those... I tend to get very engrossed in these books and forget to make notes.

And a note that just says "Whoa"... I love how in this one Claire feels stronger, more sure of herself. Less timid like she started out. For example:
pg. 160

I could collapse, she realized. And he'd catch me.

But she stayed on her own two feet, pulled back, and looked him in the eyes.

"I'm fine," she said. She kissed him. "Everything's fine."
Cons, complaints, bad stuff, etc.: It's not really a bad thing, but this one has a really sharp cliffhanger, too. Like a make-me-twitchy-oh-my-gosh-need-book-five cliffhanger.

PG-13 stuff: Yup, yup. Like the last one, cursing, mature content, violence, all that good stuff!

Cover comments:
I love books that have boys on the cover. It seems like there aren't nearly as many of them in YA as books with girls on them. Plus I just like staring at boys in any case. :P

So here's a funny story. I was staring at the picture on the back of the cover and I say out loud, "That's pretty." Then I flipped the book back over and said, "So he's though." This isn't quite what I'd picture Shane or even Michael looking like, though.

I absolutely love this one and I maintain that Rachel Caine is a goddess. You guys definitely need to read these books if you haven't. Four and a half roses.

Other notes:

- Where the frig do you buy rice-powder makeup?
- Must re-read Weather Warden books.
- Oh, and there's a page at the beginning of the book to catch us up on what's happened in the books before this one. I quite liked that.

Okay, and that's it! I'm going to see how long I can get the other reviews to be, but if they're really short, I might combine all four into one post... depending on how long it'd be. We'll see!!

Peace and cookies,

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE these books! They're so much fun! :) I finished Carpe Corpus a few weeks ago, but I need to catch up on the rest of the series!


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