I did not want this book to end. There are plenty of wonderful books out there and I love reading them all but there are only a handful each year that I can honestly say I hated having to put down. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is now in that top list of books I have read so far this year that just blew me away. Not only did I despise having to put it down, but I made every possible excuse to get back to it, I let the housework slide, and allowed my children to play more than their one hour of allotted video games. I would have liked this story to go on forever, but alas... every good thing must come to an end.
Synopsis from Amazon:
Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown's gates, you can never leave. One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black
This book was pure gruesome fun. It was bloody, it was dark, it was violent and I loved every minute of it. I've read a lot of vampire novels but there are only a few that really stand out to me. Interview with a Vampire, Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter, The Outside. These stories are unique and make the world of the vampire seem like it could be real. The Coldest Girl in Coldtown gives us a look at what modern vampirism could look like in our world and it isn't pretty. The Coldtowns are where vampires and the infected humans live, showing their world to the outside by way of reality television. The young and stupid flock to these towns with the hopes of eternal life but once you enter, there is only the slimmest of chances you will ever escape.
Tana is a kick-ass heroine in this book, taking a huge risk by entering the coldtown. She is selfless, consistently putting the needs of others above her own and determined to stay alive. She carries a lot of baggage but manages to hold herself together through events that no young person should ever have to witness, let alone participate. My favorite character in the book however, is Gavriel. Yes, he is a vampire but he is a vampire with a bad-ass attitude. He is half crazed and a fierce killer. Not the boy you bring home to your mother but this only made him more attractive. He reminds me of Lestat in Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles. Tana saves Gavriel in the beginning of the story and she accepts him for who he is, even though he could lose control and kill her at any moment. At times, I wondered if Tana was bordering insanity herself.
If you are expecting a love story like Bella and Edward, forget it. This was so much better. The scenes with Tana and Gavriel were too few and they usually included a lot of blood spattered clothing, but they were perfect in their own warped way. The sacrifices they made for one another, the way the spoke or looked at each other... I couldn't get enough of them. They were the perfect pair of tortured souls. Each of the minor characters brings their own unique personality to the story as well. Aiden, the charming yet incredibly annoying ex-boyfriend was especially amusing and added some humor and sarcasm to the dialogue.
Coldtown was fast-paced and had tons of action and gore. Themes of love, loss, and doing the right thing were ever present and did I mention the huge amounts of blood? I don't believe in spoilers so I won't go into detail but I thought the ending was exactly what it should be except for the fact that I wanted the book to continue. I still have so many questions so I immediately went to the internet to see if a second book would be published only to find that nothing is in the works as of yet. I will definitely be checking out some of Holly Black's other books and will definitely reread Coldtown again in the near future. It gets five stars from me!