Saturday, 26 February 2011

Review: My Love Lies Bleeding - Alyxandra Harvey

Published: December 22nd 2009, Bloomsbury
Pages: 248 pages, paperback
Series?: Yes, this is the first installment
Acquired: Kindly sent for review by Bloomsbury

Summary (from Goodreads): The Drakes are rather different to your usual neighbours. They are vampires and some of the members of the family date back to the twelfth century. One of the children, Solange, is the only born female vampire known and, as such, she poses a direct threat to the vampire queen.

Her best friend Lucy is human, and when Solange is kidnapped Lucy and Solange's brother, Nicholas, set out to save her. Lucy soon discovers that she would like to be more than just friends with Nicholas. But how does one go about dating a vampire? Meanwhile, Solange finds an unlikely ally in Kieran, a vampire slayer on the hunt for his father's killer.

My review: Now I’m not usually a fan of modern vampire novels. Yes, yes I’m one of those who didn’t enjoy Twilight and the whole host of watered down sparkly male lead vampires who seem to be cropping up all over the YA scene are seriously turning me away from wanting to read vampire novels. However, luckily there are a few diamonds out there and I have to say My Love Lies Bleeding is definitely one of them.

I started this book with trepidation and really wasn’t convinced I was going to enjoy it but from page one I was hooked. The dialogue is snappy and laugh out loud funny and the characters are brilliant. It’s not often I can finish a novel and be able to name pretty much the entire cast of characters like I could with this one.

Solange is absolutely adorable and I loved her love/hate relationship with Kieran, which I did actually find to be quite a realistic depiction of a teenage friendship/relationship (well, ignore the fact one of them is a vampire). They didn’t meet on page one and fall instantly head over heels for each other; it was a more gradual process for them to become friends (and more? Well, you’ll see) and that’s something I really appreciated.

There is a dual narrative in My Love Lies Bleeding so we have alternating chapters from Lucy and Solange’s points of view. Even though the girls are best friends and the same age, it was never confusing about who was narrating the chapter so that proves how great the characterisation was, in regards to both of the girls.

Harvey’s writing is excellent and she’s fantastic at building tension – towards the end of the book there was so much suspense I literally couldn’t stop turning the pages and in my opinion that’s always the sign of a good book. While I do usually prefer standalone novels I’m so glad this is a series as I can’t wait to find out more about Solange, Lucy and the rest of the Drake family.

First line: ‘Normally, I wouldn’t have been caught dead at a field party.’

Read if you liked…: Buffy!

Plot: 4/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Cover: 4/5
Total: 16/20 (B+)

Other links:

Author’s website
Goodreads page link
Book Depository link

Alternative covers:

1 comment:

  1. I haven't read Harvey yet, but I will. I've had my eye on her books for a while.


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