The Coldest Girl in Coldtown

by Holly Black

After a party at which everyone else is killed by vampires, Tana escapes with her... read more

After a party at which everyone else is killed by vampires, Tana escapes with her ex-boyfriend Aidan and the vampire Gavriel, who is, for some reason, at odds with their attackers. Tana is bitten during the narrow getaway, and Aidan is already Cold from his recent bite, beginning his transformation from human to vampire. Worried that she will go Cold too, and not wanting to endanger her family by going home, Tana heads with the other two to the nearest Coldtown, a city quarantined to keep vampires and those at risk of turning away from the rest of the population. There are also groupies, drawn by the glamour and excitement of life in Coldtown as played out on the city's live feed. The reality of life in Coldtown is much grimmer than seen on TV, however; it's a treacherous pit of exploitation and excess. Upon crossing Coldtown's borders, Tana and Aidan are thrown in with some of those groupies, while Gavriel seeks to enact revenge against a powerful peer. Then Tana discovers her younger sister has entered the city and is determined to find her and get her out. Tana is a wonderful protagonist, both strong and scared, wanting to do the right thing but not always know what that might be. Devastated at the prospect of becoming a vampire herself, she also can't deny her deep attraction to Gavriel in a novel in which bloodlust and sensuality coexist with a stark portrayal of the abuse of power and the universal appeal of the dark side. (Age 14 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2014

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