Book Review: New Adult: The Vampires of Manhattan by Melissa de la Cruz

Blue Bloods Cover

Hero of this sexy, paranormal action tale is Oliver Hazard-Perry, former human conduit, and Manhattan’s only human-turned-vampire, now the head of the Blue Bloods Coven. When his all-too-human lover is found murdered on the eve of the coven’s annual Four Hundred Ball–a celebration meant to usher in a new era in vampire society, and to mark the re-unification of the Coven after decades of unrest and decay–Oliver is devastated.

Now, not only is he trying to create a new world order for the immortal elite, he’s the prime suspect and is stalked by the newly installed head of the vampire secret police. Because according to the new rules, vampires who take human life can now be executed. Burned.

How can an immortal sentenced to die fight back? He has to find the killer–and the answers lie deep in vampire lore.

Title: Blue Bloods
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
Category: New Adult
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Hyperion
Publication Date: September 9, 2014
Format: Paperback ARC
Length: 225 pages
ISBN-10: 0786838922
ISBN-13: 9780786838929

Series or Standalone: Vampires of Manhattan #1

Literary Awards:
N/A

Themes: Vampires
POV: Multiple 3rd Person
Tense: Past

Reviewer: Marisa

Where I Got It: A friend of Atsiko’s managed to score a brace of YA and NA ARCs donated to a book fair by a distributor. I’ve been actively seeking New Adult titles to read, and a trade published series by a well-known author seemed like a great place to start, although I’ve never read the original YA series.

Review:

I picked this up because of a desire to read New Adult in general, not UF/PR or a Blue Bloods continuation particular. So that might color my review a bit.

The book was okay, and after the first half I didn’t have trouble turning the page, but it wasn’t particularly engaging, and the first half seemed like a lot of set-up for how the lives of the characters have changed from when the original series ended ten story years ago. Personally, I don’t accept that as an excuse. A really good book, especially the first in a new series, should not have to trade on the reputation of any predecessors. And it’s not like the book didn’t have words to burn on such a thing; it was fairly short.

With similar caveats, I didn’t find the characters particularly engaging. Or maybe this time it’s because I don’t find the rampant materialism of the upper classes interesting on a surface level. Either way, they seemed like fairly staandard PR/UF characters with little uniqueness to recommend them over other similar main characters in other series. There seemed to be a lot of sex and a lot of ruminating going on, and as I hadn’t read the original series, I didn’t feel pulled into that aspect either. The plot for the first half of the story was barely there, kind of humdrum, and not engaging.

In the second half, I think I had a better grasp of the characters, there were fewer references to the previous series, and the plot had finally got going somewhat. It wasn’t by any means approaching the top half of my enjoyable books list, but it wasn’t slogging through the dross anymore, either. By the end, I was still not impressed. It was a short book, and I don’t think I lost too much of my time reading it, but I would not personally pick up the next book.

I would recommend it to UF/PR readers and Blue Bloods fans looking for a quick fix, but I wouldn’t recomment it to anyone who hasn’t read the author and who doesn’t read a great deal in those genres.

Conclusion: 65/100 (Decent if you like the genre and read the originals)
Premise: 6/10 (Pretty cliche)
Plot: 7/10 (Was okay if quite confusing at first)
Setting: 8/10 (Well-realized)
Main Character(s): 7/10 (Okay, but not great)
Romance: 6/10 (Maybe if you’ve read the original series, but otherwise not interesting)
World-building: 7/10 (Understandable even to a newbie, but a bit cliche)
Supporting Characters: 6/10 (Decent, but not fantastic)
Writing: 6/10 (Competent, but could have been better)
Themes: 6/10 (There aren’t many clear ones, and I didn’t feel them very strongly)
Resolution: 6/10 (Major cliffhanger)

Buy Or Borrow: I’d say borrow, but it may be because paranormal isn’t my favorite genre. If you like it or liked the original series, this is probably worth the money.

Similar Books:
Not many, since YA hasn’t really taken off yet. But the original YA series, Bluebloods, or even Anne Rice’s Lestat books might be a good follow-up if you haven’t read them already.

Other Reviews:
GoodReads
Publishers Weekly
Karen’s Addictions
My Friends Are Fiction

Buy Links:
Amazon Currently unavailable
Barnes and Noble
IndieBound

E-Books:
iBooks
Kindle UK
Kindle US Currently unavailable
Kobo
Google Play
nook

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