Sunday, 8 January 2012
Glass Houses by Rachel Caine
Author: Rachel Caine
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Series: The Morganville Vampires #1
Type: Young Adult Paranormal
All Claire Danvers wanted was to go off to college like any other teenager. At sixteen she was always going to have a hard time fitting in and her parents insistence she attends the local Texas Prairie University in the small town of Morganville rather than an Ivy League school doesn't help. But when Claire gets on the wrong side of her dorm's Queen Bee she finds herself battered and bruised...and looking for a new place to live. She ends up at the off-campus Glass House and quickly begins to realise that there's a lot more to some of Morganville's residents than meets the eye.
I'm a big fan of Rachel Caine's Weather Warden novels so I was excited to see how she would handle a young adult series and I must say I wasn't disappointed. The plot is clever and well developed, and the world of Morganville is well thought-out. The idea of a town ran by vampires was one of the things that caught my attention about the book and was impressively well done.
The book is a bit slow to start and it took me a while to really get into it, but once the tension starts to build it gradually builds more and more until the heartstopping climax. By the time I got to the end of the book I couldn't read fast enough, and then there's a massive cliffhanger at the end! It isn't a "bad" cliffhanger and the book can be read by itself but it leads directly into the following book so I'd recommend having it accessible if possible.
I was a little worried I wouldn't be able to sympathise with Claire as at sixteen she is a lot younger than me, but I really like her. She's brainy and over the course of the book develops some serious backbone which is not only impressive for a character of that age but also written in a realistic manner. I also really identified with her need to prove her independence no matter what the risk involved.
I also love the supporting characters. Claire moves into the Glass House with the mysterious Michael, cute Shane and goth Eve. All three are really well developed with their own complex backstories, parts of which are revealed here while other parts are only hinted at. I loved Eve's attitude and how she quickly became best friends with Claire. At the end of the book there is also a sneak peek at Eve's journal and I loved seeing some of the events of the book from a new perspective.
All in all, this was a great read and I can't wait for The Dead Girls' Dance.