Title: Blue Bloods
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
My grade: B+
Ah, teen vampire books. They’re the latest craze, and I’m shamelessly glad of it. Because yeah, there’s a lot of crap to wade through, but every once in a while you’ll find something good. I’ve loved vampire stories since I was young enough to believe they were real and to sleep with my neck covered, just in case. It was kind of a stressful time, but I still remember it fondly.
As a teen novel, Blue Bloods has all the usual suspects, with some pretty fabulous names. The beautiful-even-though-she-doesn’t-try loner outcast, Schuyler Van Alen. The trusty best friend, Oliver Hazard-Perry. The hot popular guy with a heart of gold, Jack Force. The hot popular girl who’s a total bitch, Mimi Force. The hot popular girl who’s actually kind of nice and ends up befriending our outcast heroine, Bliss Llewellyn (that is seriously her name). You may have noticed a pattern–they’re all gorgeous. Another thing to note–with one exception, they’re all vampires. I’m not really spoiling this, because it’s pretty obvious from the get-go.
The first part of the book deals with our prep school beauties coming into their vampiredom, and this does suffer from the problem a lot of vampire novels seem to have. We already know we’re dealing with vampires, even when the main characters don’t, so that takes away some of the suspense. Once they’re up to speed, we can get to the real plot, which involves a mysterious enemy to our vampire protagonists. At this point, the pace picks up, and the story really does get interesting.
This series seems to be going for a Gossip Girl But With Vampires thing. Trendy NYC locations, designer brand clothes, teenagers who act like they’re 25. It’s trashy and ridiculous. It’s also awesome.
There are many reasons why I shouldn’t like this book, and yet I still enjoyed it wildly. Yes, it gets pretty trashy, and you’ll always know who’s wearing what. Yes, the characters tend towards the stereotypical and aren’t always completely developed. Yes, there are some plot holes.
But. But. But.
It’s fun! Even the trashiness is fun. I didn’t get annoyed at being told exactly what designer Mimi Force was wearing for the thirtieth time–I just laughed. It’s all so pseudo-scandalous, and the book never really takes itself too seriously, so I didn’t take it very seriously, either. It almost reads as a parody of teen drama, and whether or not that’s intentional, I thought it was pretty hilarious. I can’t tell if it’s good or if it’s so bad, it’s good.
And then there’s the vampire mythology, which I found really interesting. Plot holes and trashiness aside, there’s lots of potential for a really complex and original vampire story. I don’t want to spoil it, but it takes your usual vampires, mixes it in with some historical context and reincarnation, and then adds a good dose of Biblical lore for good measure. Even when I could see plot twists coming from more than a mile away, I was still turning pages like nobody’s business, because the vampire lore was enough to keep my attention.
Definitely a good guilty pleasure book–the book I wanted Twilight to be, except that one pissed me off too much. Read it when your brain needs a vacation.