Welcome to Morganville.
Just don't stay out after dark...
Chapters: 17 (Plus a short story at the end.)
Publisher: Allison & Busby
Book Links: Goodreads
God, I forgot how much I love this series.
The Morganville Vampires series is one I started way back in the middle of 2010. It was before I created my little blog, and before I got as invested into Goodreads as I am today; but I was no less of a reader. So when I uncovered Glass Houses at the back of one of my dusty shelves, I had no doubt in my mind that I wanted to start the series again, and this time, complete it.
And, boy, am I glad I did.
Glass Houses is an excellent opener, with a superb story, awesome cast and fantastic flow. It's the vampire YA series you need to pick up.
Synopsis (Not a copy from the book, but I always keep my interpretations close.)
Claire Danvers is incredibly smart.
So much so that at sixteen, she's raced straight into college.
Six weeks in Morganville, however, and her smarts could prove to be her end.
The town's run by vampires, and little ol' Claire has managed to stir the pot.
Now she's in the middle of something she's not even sure she can believe...
Plot - 5/5 Stars
Glass Houses travels at a steady pace; events are well-spaced and structured. The best word I can think of for it, is addictive. I still can't believe how fun and immersive the novel is. Especially the second time round. I got a nice dose of nostalgia, and had forgotten most of the plot points that a lot of the book seemed new.
The intricate structure of Morganville is fascinating to explore, and Ms Caine does a stellar job of peeling back the layers, bit by bit. If you think you're just in for another typical vampire ride, think again. You can definitely tell that Glass Houses is just the beginning of something bigger and bolder.
I also love old-school vampires, and the author has dutifully delivered. Morganville's vampires remain close to the more traditional aspects of vampire mythology. They're menacing in ways they should be. True creatures of the night!
Plus, that cliffhanger ending! I adore a good cliffhanger!
Overall, the first entry in this thrilling vampire series manages to be wholly satisfying, whilst still managing to entice you into the next book.
Pace - 5/5 Stars
The flow and smoothness of Glass Houses is perfect. It's so easy to dive into and read.
Everything just works.
Characters - 5/5 Stars
Ms Caine does a great job with her cast. I'll go into it a little for the main four, but don't think for a second that the rest of the people that populate the book are slouches, because they're not. The way each character's history is unravelled keeps the reader on the tip of their toes.
Claire, our main character and predominant driver of the novel, is endearing. At least, for me she is. I've seen that a few readers weren't too sold on her, mainly due to her emotional start, but, it struck a cord with me. Claire's sixteen, in a strange town with no friends or support, and the popular clique at her college want her dead. And yep, I mean that literally (they throw her down a set of stairs just for fun). But inside Claire there's a fire. She's smart, brave and, frankly, highly capable for a sixteen-year-old. She's a fighter, and thinking about it, in a situation like hers, I'd be done for...
Next up we have Eve, and holy crap, are you gonna love her. Where Claire is endearing, Eve is instantly likable. You can't help but just fall in love with her. She's a Goth, but she's funny; sarcastic in an almost serious way. When Claire's at her lowest, and still a stranger, Eve is warm, caring and ready to help.
We meet Shane not too long after Eve, and I don't know how the author makes her cast so familiar so fast, but you can tell straight away he's cheeky. One short glimpse and you know he's the bad boy, with a big, golden heart. Shane's an honest kind of bad, the caring kind.
And finally, we have Michael. The oldest, only slightly by age, but massive amounts ahead in terms of maturity. He's the adult: Serious, cynical and even. He can sometimes come off as unkind, but he's far from it, Michael puts the safety of others first, over himself.
The friendship and connection the story creates between the four residents of the Glass House is a major plus of the novel. Ms Caine has written them exceptionally well, and from their descriptions to their dialogues, there's an uncanny perfection.
Writing - 5/5 Stars
The writing is instrumental in what I previously said about the book's flow. It's magic. There's a nice dash of sarcasm woven throughout, which makes for some hilarious comedy, and some deceivingly dark tension.
At points though, I thought the book would have been better served by a first-person narrative, but the third-person writing is absolutely fine.
Overall - 5/5 Stars
With that cliffhanger?
Count me in for the next instalment!
Next Instalment: The Dead Girls' Dance
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