In Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel, a new young adult novel, everything works for me but the young adult part.
This is a question that nags at me whenever I read the premise of most young adult novels featuring powerful, charismatic, often-times centuries-old supernatural beings...showing up in high school, doing all the high school activities like going to Bio class and prom, and falling in love with high schoolers. The last part has the air of pedophilia to me, even if the said centuries-old supernatural being looks like a teenager; however, what I really don't get is why any being with so much experience and an array of gifted powers would ever think high school necessary or desirable in the first place. Wouldn't choosing to submit yourself to the mundane, as well as the company of mean, insecure, and immature children seem illogical?
Which is why half of Infinite Days, with scenes from the past life of Lenah Beaudonte, an almost 600-year-old vampire newly human, was enthralling, and the other half, where the an almost 600-year-old new human, goes to high school and falls in love with a 16-year-old...not so much.
It seemed to me that Maizel had written two books, one about the decadent and ruthless queen of a vampire coven and another about the odd new girl fitting into an exclusive boarding school - then put them together.
I know this is about vampires, so automatically, I have to suspend my disbelief; however, paranormal genres still have to have logic. I can believe that an almost 600-year-old vampire, weary of her tortured existence, would have an overwhelming desire to be human again. I can believe that somehow, her lover and maker, an even older vampire, would so love her that he was willing to sacrifice himself in a ritual that would return her to a 16-year-old human.
I can even suspend my disbelief as far as Lenah, a former killer of countless humans, would be safest in a boarding school, while learning to become human and to hide from her coven, who will stop at nothing to find her.
But where my suspension ends is the premise that Lenah would immediately (the day after she becomes human) be smitten by Justin, a teen, who despite his golden good looks, doesn't sound that interesting. Furthermore, I find it hard to believe that after all she had seen and done, Lenah would find it satisfying to spend her days doing homework, being Justin's girlfriend, and watching him play lacrosse. Not only does this existence not do justice to the supreme sacrifice her lover made for her, but it also drags the plot and perpetuates that odious idea that this is what any 16-year-old should long for (used-to-be-600-year-old vampire or not) - to be the popular jock's girlfriend.
Also, Lenah overlooks a much more interesting teenage boy who is better suited to her and is loads more intriguing. The scenes with Justin just seem empty and dull.
But like Lenah, Infinite Days is not without its redeeming qualities. The scenes where Lenah was the dangerous vampire queen were vividly drawn and held my interest. I liked how Maizel created her own vampire mythology as far as vampires becoming human and vice versa. (Incidentally, I found a math problem. Supposedly only 500-year-old vampires can perform the ritual to make another vampire human. Lenah tells another vampire she cannot perform this ritual because she's not 500 years old, yet she became a vampire in 1418.)
Some of the scenes in which the newly risen Lenah, who had last been awake in 1910, discovering the modern day world are well done, such as when she hears music from a stereo for the first time. But Lenah assimilates too fast to humanity and the modern day. The anachronism, which should be jarring, is too easily glossed over by Maizel.
"...I was transfixed by Justin's happiness. I refocused on his wrist and my blood smeared across his skin. There, underneath the smear, was his vein, a bright blue vein.
"`You would have been perfect,' I said...`I would have stalked you, watched you breathe with such specificity I could have timed the seconds between each inhalation. Even now, I do these things...That vein on the right side of your wrist on your right hand snakes out and then runs deep down your arm. It takes you two and a half seconds between each breath. Precisely. I know all these things and thousands more. I would have killed you with pleasure. I would have killed you and then taken you with me.'"
I have to say, however, the vampire scenes kept me turning the pages and the ending surprised me very much. If only everything that led up to it was as good.
After reading the The Twilight Saga Collection series a couple of years ago, I have not really read much YA vampire stories, except for the Morganville Vampire series, preferring to read more grown-up vampire stories such as the St. Germain series by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, and re-tellings of Dracula (Penguin Classics). But when I came across this title on Vine, I was drawn by the unique premise and decided to give it a try. For the most part, I felt the author did a credible job in telling the story of Lenah Beaudonte, an immortal vampire queen turned mortal.
Lenah was a young teenager in England back in the 15th century when she crossed paths with vampire Rhode Lewin who promptly turns her into a vampire. The pair's relationship has its ups and downs but they are sort of soul mates. Fast forward to the present day, i.e. 2010 - Lenah awakens to find herself a mortal once more, after having slumbered (hibernated is the term used in the book) for almost a hundred years. Through flashbacks, readers are informed that Lenah had tired of ruling as vampire queen of a strong and ruthless coven of vampires for several hundred years and yearned to experience mortal life again. Rhode in a self-sacrificing act in conflict with most vampires' dispositions makes Lenah's dreams a reality.
Lenah must now live as a mortal in a boarding school in New England, and be careful not to draw too much attention to herself lest her ex-coven hunt her down (having no clue as to the true purpose of her going into hibernation). This is especially relevant given that one of the members of her coven, Vicken, was also her lover, and looking forward to her re-awakening. She adjusts quickly, though there is a great deal of awkwardness - one major distraction being her developing feelings for Justin Enos, a boy at her school. Lenah also has to contend with the jealousy and rivalry from other girls at the school, especially as her striking good looks and remnants of her vampire aura draw boys to her.
I liked the unique take on the traditional vampire tale - where a powerful vampire queen with a strong coven at her beck and call actually deigns, no, yearns to experience the joys and pains of being mortal. Lenah Beaudonte is an interesting and complex character though she seems to adapt almost too easily to the life of a mortal, and seems to catch up with modern life without too much trouble. Perhaps being a formerly strong vampire makes this adjustment easier, but I still felt this transformation could have been portrayed more convincingly.
I did however like the way the author conveys Lenah's perspective of her new mortal acquaintances through her vampire-tinted lens though she is no longer immortal. For example, in a confrontation with her AP English instructor, a crabby guy named Professor Lynn, Lenah thinks, "I wouldn't dare sully my insides with what you are." This indicates that the mortal Lenah is still struggling with her ex-vampire self (a soulless and evil character).
The author also deftly captures the back story of Lenah's past life through flashbacks that are richly detailed, covering not only her relationship with Rhode but also the rest of her coven which makes this an engaging and rewarding read. At times though (being a fan of historical fiction myself), I felt myself more drawn in by these back stories than the present one in Lenah's mortal life. These back stories are highly atmospheric, with a strong Gothic feel, romantic, and insightful in enabling readers to understand Lenah's character, motivations, and passions when she was a vampire, all of which make compelling reading.
The story is beautifully-written, tautly-woven in terms of plot, and I read it in one sitting. The denouement is shocking, unexpected, and thoroughly exciting. I would recommend Infinite Days to fans of YA paranormal thrillers/romance and look forward to more from this author.
on August 3, 2010
Quick & Dirty: A highly original and truly extraordinary read.
Opening Sentence: Those were the last words I could remember.
Lenah Beaudonte, a 592 year old vampire queen, awakens disoriented and shocked to find that, after more than five centuries, she's human again. She has wanted to be human again for so long, desperate to escape her brutal vampire existence. Lenah needed this, not only to save herself, but all of the innocent people who could cross her path. With help from her vampire sire and former lover, Rhode, Lenah's dream has been realized. Rhode discovered an ancient ritual to assist him in their endeavor. Unfortunately, Lenah had no way of knowing how her transition would affect the one who performs it. Forced to cope with her new reality, Lenah struggles to fit in. Rhode has enrolled her at the very secluded and exclusive Wickham Boarding School. He wants Lenah to have the life and experiences that he robbed her of when he decided to take her for himself. Rhode also gives her a crash course on technology and societal evolution. The modern world is a marvel to Lenah because she's been hibernating for the past century. Once her crypt is opened and her vampire coven discovers her missing, the hunt begins. Lenah knows that she's living on borrowed time because her deadly vampire coven is compelled to search for her, linked to her by dark magic. They want their queen back and now that she's human things are about to get ugly.
It's so hard for me to convey how much I loved this book. Infinite Days is unlike any other book that I've read in the vampire genre. I am pleased to say that Infinite Days more than exceeded my expectations. Ms. Maizel is a powerful and provocative new voice in the vampire genre. Infinite Days is a much more authentic portrayal of immortals, much closer to the grittiness of True Blood than the sparkles of Twilight. Lenah is one of my all-time favorite fictional characters. Despite all of the horrible and evil things she did as a vampire, I have so much sympathy and compassion for her. The harsh reality is that Lenah is a victim as well as a villain. Born in the 1400's, Lenah is a product of her time and environment, making it completely understandable why she scourged Europe for so long. She was concerned with her survival and feeding the pain that plagued her everyday of her life. The boredom of immorality and hopelessness also played a role in her nefarious behavior. Lenah had nothing but time on her side, which she used to plot creative ways to kill and seduce her victims. With such a bleak future and faced with the prospect of never achieving satisfaction, release from the dull ache, Lenah is driven to dark places. She also has the sexiest men in her life. Just when I think I have to have Rhode all to myself, some other sexy guy enters the picture and Vicken is his name. Vicken, a member of the coven and Lenah's lover, is absolutely delicious. He's a deadly killer, yet he's also a gentleman. Well, in a sort of vampire gentlemanly way. Vicken also has an amazing connection with Lenah. He has sacrificed so much for her, and has a hard time understanding why she would forsake him.
Just when I'd switched sides and I started rooting for Vicken, along comes Justin who casts a shadow over Lenah's former immortal lovers. Justin is strong, loyal, devoted, and will do anything to save Lenah from the coven. I became so attached to his character. The vivid scenes and the gripping emotions behind this love story really broke my heart. The romance is sincere and heartfelt and you won't be able to get enough. The conflicts that the characters face are brutal and realistic. Ms. Maizel did an amazing job bringing these characters to life. Stellar plot development and a stunning conclusion bring this story and these characters full circle.
Overall, Infinite Days is a captivating story and I highly recommend reading this book. Ms. Maizel has an amazing gift for storytelling, characterization, and this story won't be easily forgotten. Ms. Maizel has crafted such a beautiful and compelling story. The characters are intense, flawed, multi-dimensional, and their journey is fraught with tragedy and danger. Infinite Days will undoubtedly become a must-read series for lovers of the vampire genre. I can hardly wait for the sequel.
Rhode looked me up and down and I realized he could see through my sleeping gown. He ran a fingertip from my throat down through the middle of my breasts and ended at my belly button. I shuddered. Out of nowhere, he hooked a hand around my waist and brought me against him. It all happened so languidly as through it were choreographed. The slap of our wet bodies when Rhode brought me close, and the feel of his palm on my forehead as he wiped a string of hair out of my eyes. He groaned when he met my eyes. And in that instant, Rhode sunk his teeth into my neck so fast that I didn't notice the sound of my skin breaking.
FTC Advisory: St. Martin's Press provided me with an ARC of Infinite Days. No goody bags, sponsorships, "material connections," or bribes were exchanged for my review. In addition, I don't receive affiliate fees for anything purchased via links from my site.
on August 27, 2010
...this is not a horror book because Lenah is no longer a vampire. But in her flashbacks to her former un-life, she is eeevil. Still, Lenah and her coven of sexy vampire men, still have a few tricks up their sleeves, such as the one that allows Lenah to be human again. I love that Maizel added to vampire lore and myth without completely ignoring traditional vampire tales. This allowed her to focus on what made Lenah and her coven different from traditional vampires without making that the focus of the story. Unfortunately, even though it wasn't the focus of the story, the vampire parts were my favorite parts.
Lenah as a human was not my favorite person. I wouldn't say Lenah as a vampire was my favorite either, but at least she was interesting. I get that having just watched the love of her un-life sacrifice himself for her, Lenah wouldn't be the peppiest person on the quad. I also get that having been unconscious for 100 years, Lenah finds a lot of things weird, offensive, alien, etc. I'm fine with all of that. And so is Tony, the cute Japanese-American scholarship student who befriends her. Even though odd things are always coming out of her mouth and she never seems to know what's going on even though she's obviously a smarty-pants, Tony takes Lenah under his wing, shows her around campus, teaches her how to drive, and inducts her into the woes of bathing suit shopping. He's the best best friend a girl could ask for, especially a girl in Lenah's situation.
When Tony falls in love with Lenah, she knows about it but doesn't acknowledge it. Instead, broody Lenah who wears all black, works in the library, and whose biting wit is almost as evil as her former, well, bite, falls in love with The Jock. He's the star of everything he touches, all the guys want to be him, all the girls want to do him, and he's dating the hottest girl in school. In his defense, Justin does not fall into the 80s movie stereotype of a jock; he is, for the most part, a really nice guy. When Lenah and Justin finally get together, it's like everything clicks into place for Lenah. She's no longer a stranger in a strange land. No transition, no learning stuff, she just all of a sudden belongs in a New England boarding school in 2010. It's like magic (barf). But Justin's nowhere near as in tune to Lenah as Tony is, and she ditches Tony for him. She doesn't just choose Justin over Tony romantically. Lenah pulls an "If you can't immediately and 100% support my true lurv that I just discovered yesterday, even though we both know that you're secretly in love with me and this might be hard for you, then we can't be friends."
Tony, my favorite character in the whole book, the only one besides (dead) Rhode that I really liked, just fell out of the book. And I sort of lost my interest.
But the vampire lore was pretty cool, as were the flashbacks to Lenah's un-life (and don't worry, Maizel is not nearly as dorky as I am and does not refer to it that way). Rhode and Tony are both drool-worthy side characters and make the book worth reading, at least for me. And the ending is really intense. I have no idea how it is a set-up for the start of a series, though. It seemed pretty definitive to me, but in a world where vampires can return to human form, I guess nothing is really all that permanent.
Book source: Review copy from the publisher through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program
on September 22, 2010
I've been looking forward to Infinite Days ever since I saw the stunning cover a few months ago. But when I read several negative reviews, I started to have doubts. I picked up Infinite Days anyway, and I'm glad I did. It was an enjoyable read. However, I agree with many of the criticisms I read in the negative reviews. Parts of this book drove me crazy. If it wasn't for Rebecca Maizel's writing ability and multi-faceted story, I would have written off Infinite Days entirely.
Lenah is nearly 600 years old. As a vampire, she killed thousands without regret. Killing was the only relief from her pain. She sought power, riches, and glory. She was a vampire queen. I love the rich world that Maizel created. I love that she didn't skimp on the horror. In fact, I'd love to read a book solely about Lenah's past. Lenah yearns to be human again, and her creator/lover sacrificed himself in the performance of an ancient ritual to transform Lenah into a human. Lenah awakes from a deep sleep as a 16 year old girl enrolled in a New England boarding school. She not only has to adjust to a modern human world, but also to the high school cliquishness.
I thought the high school world was poorly done (unfortunately, this comprised much of the book). It was full of stereotypes. The popular girls. The best friend who's in love with the girl. The handsome bad boy who captures the girl's heart. The popular girls, who call themselves "Three Piece," particularly annoyed me. I'm so sick of the evil queen bee characters. In reality, most "popular" kids are much more complex, even if they are mean. Tony, Lenah's best friend, was a great character - kind, artistic, snarky. Lenah should have picked him. I do like that she worked to keep his friendship even when she pursued Justin. That doesn't happen all that often. Justin was an okay character. He was a "bad boy," but not really. He was adventurous, athletic, and secretly a sweetheart. I like that Lenah had opportunities to get to know him as a person rather than just as an object to lust over, but I didn't really understand the attraction.
Lenah's vampire world and human world, not surprisingly, eventually collide. The plot arcs were more complex than I expected. I can't say that the climax had me glued to the book in nervous anticipation, but I thought it was very interesting. The end of Infinite Days includes an excerpt from the follow-up to the book. This was fabulous. I think I liked it better than any part of Infinite Days. I'll definitely keep reading Maizel's books, flawed though they may be.
Rating: 3.5 / 5
on January 22, 2011
Disclaimer: Most of the reviews I have read of this book are a 4 or 5. Please go read other reviews to decide if you will like it. YA is not my usual genre and may have been why I did not like the book as much as others.
What I LOVED: The premise is fantastic! A 500 year old vampire turns into a human. She must deal with being a 16 year old(her turn age) and a vampire coven that wants her back. There are some very well written characters in the book and the pacing is pretty good. I really appreciated the ending of the book. I felt that it was a good, if not risky, ending to the story.
What I LIKED: I liked Lenah's flashbacks. They really showed that she was not the cuddly sort of vampire and neither was her coven. They also showed her rather complicated and encompassing relationships with the other vampires. Including her relationship with Rhone, which to me was the most intriguing. What would make someone love you enough to die for you? I liked Lenah and Tony's friendship in the beginning of the book. It was nice to see her be able to adjust with someone that was just fun and nice to be around.
What I thought was So-So: I never warmed up to Justin and Lenah. It just felt forced to me the whole time. Plus, I didn't like that the author kind of turned Tony into a love struck puppy dog. The character turn Lenah did about midway through the book just felt out of character because it had only been 2 months after she turned. At that point it became a very standard YA novel to me, nothing really spectacular. It was the vampire parts that kept the pages turning for me. I do think the end redeemed the book in my eyes but on a whole it was just OK to me.
Why I gave it a 3: I think the book itself will appeal to a huge audience. It has all the factors: love issues, coming of age issues, and intrigue. For me, personally, the present day story only sort of appealed to me. The book had a good beginning and a strong end but the middle at points lagged a bit.
Who I would recommend it too: I would recommend it to YA PNR readers. It does have a strong YA element.
on September 8, 2014
After being an evil vampire queen for over 500 years, Lenah desires to be human again. She and her vampire love perform a dangerous ritual that will turn her human again, but unbeknownst to her, will kill him. She wakes up as a teenage girl at Wickham Boarding School, where she has the chance to live life again as a human, make friends, and even fall in love again. Things are going great, but the vampire coven she ruled over is angrily searching for her… and they want their queen back. They’ll stop at nothing to find her and get her back, even if it means bloodshed of those she now loves…
I wasn’t too sure about this book going into it because of the vampires and all of that… it’s not really my thing… but holy cannoli… I was blown away by this magnificent, magical, and engaging book! And yes, I really did just say holy cannoli. I was sucked into this story immediately and felt for Lenah immensely, even though she was a complete terror while she was a vampire.
A cool aspect of this book was the back and forth. Flashbacks of Lenah’s past were interwoven quite often within the main storyline of her being at Wickham as a mortal being again. We see how she became a vampire 500 years ago, and see many scenes and flashbacks of her time as a vampire, and all the terror she caused. It was almost as if two stories were going on side by side which was really neat. It combines the whole vampire myth/ paranormal aspect with boarding school, teenage drama – something for everyone!
This book really was gripping. It kept me turning the pages at a fast pace. I wanted to know about Lenah’s newfound romance at Wickham, and what he would think if he knew she was a vampire… I needed to see what would happen when the coven arrived… I had a desperate desire to find out if Lenah could make it as a human. I was so involved in this story.
Even if you’re not into the vampire thing, like me, I’d recommend giving this new series a try anyways. It’s not the typical vampire read so don’t let that scare you off! It’s unique as all get out, and I adored it. I anxiously await the next installment!
on January 29, 2013
Just when I thought I was getting tired with vampire novels, I stumble upon Infinite Days and basically rediscover why I enjoy vampire books all over again! Infinite Days showed me a whole new world full of magic, danger, and devoted romance that I found refreshing and riveting.
Infinite Days starts off strong with a lead in that totally grabbed my attention. Rebecca Maizel did a wonderful job of enrapturing me from the beginning and kept me within the clutches of the novel as I got to know more of Lenah's story. Maizel created a different kind of vampire, one that was still within the realms of what we know of vampires today, but added in the element of dark magic and the pain and torment of being a vampire. This world she created allowed for vampires to walk among human life as the most powerful beings for centuries. She made these vampires evil, irrational, and without care for human life, but she made them so I was able to feel some semblance of sympathy for the constant pain they felt. I loved how connected vampires were to magic; using it to gain more power. It was very interesting aspect to read about.
Lenah spends most of her time in this novel adjusting to her new human life, moving on from her vampire life, and trying to be safe from the danger she left behind. I absolutely loved reading all about Lenah's adjustment from being a powerful vampire queen to becoming a normal 16 year old. She had a lot to reconcile with; a lot to learn about the new modern world she lived in. Throughout Lena's time as a human, she makes comparisons of her vampire self and reading these flashbacks were my favorite parts. I loved that Maizel allowed me to get to know the vampire Lenah and the human Lenah throughout the whole book because I got to see her character come full circle and watch it develop further on. As a vampire, Lenah was vicious, ruthless and heartless. She was frightening, cunning and dripping with power. As she got used to being human, she retained her confidence, elegance, and bravery, but she also became compassionate, loving, and caring. She was fascinated with the people and things of the modern world and in turn, this made me fascinated by her. Even through all her past faults, Lenah was capable of change. She thought of others before herself. She learned to love and be loved back and to protect those that meant dear to her. Lenah's growth throughout the book had me awestruck and left me admiring her to no end.
The romance in this book was quite prominent, but not the center of attention. To be honest, I didn't feel like Justin and Lenah had much of a strong connection or enough chemistry to really be invested in their relationship. However, I did like the way their relationship developed and I eventually warmed up to them. I could see why Lenah loved Justin's happiness, his care-free adventurous and, live-life-to-the-fullest personality. It was different from anything she had ever known. His energy was contagious, and swept Lenah up. Justin didn't judge her, but accepted her and showed her to live again. If you were to ask me, I really loved Lenah's friendship with Tony. He was adorable and loved Lenah to bits. I could feel how much he truly cared for Lenah. I thought their friendship was a lot stronger and had much more potential to be something more.
Maizel's writing in Infinite Days was absolutely magnificent. It was perfect for Lenah's voice and within the time period she lived then and it blended well for the modern world too. Maizel allowed Lenah's voice to really consume the book and just make it, so her. I believed that this was Lenah telling her story as if it truly happened. The novel flowed nicely and had me turning page after page. I loved how Maizel was able to tie in magic elements to vampirism. It gave this book a unique twist and an intricate plot line that I adored so much. Her ability to make me love certain characters quickly was breath-taking and the way she had me at the edge of my seat from the looming danger was ultimately exciting.
Overall, Infinite Days was an original, dark, and involved novel with a different take on vampires that I fell so hard for. I couldn't get enough of Lenah!
on July 31, 2012
This is one of those books that I bought after I kept seeing in on blogs. I will admit that while this cover is nice, it kind of looks like a child so that kind of threw me off. There is another cover up on Amazon, so I don't know if this is an old cover or what. Either way, I really enjoyed the book!
I love a good vampire story, but Maizel's take on it was very different. First of all, Lenah is now suddenly human after being a vampire for nearly 600 years. Secondly, the whole idea of her vampire coven was something unique. As with most vampire stories, some of the "vampire rules" apply, but there are all new ones that are also unique to this particular series. I always think it's refreshing to read a new spin on the vampire world.
The only thing that really bothered me about this story was how quickly Lenah seems to adjust to waking up in a world that is 100 years more advanced than it was when she went into hibernation before the change. It seems more likely to me that it would take her weeks, if not longer, to learn all the things that she would need to know, etc... before she is just fine being on her own.
I don't even need to say how much I loved Justin because that's a given! I also really liked some of the secondary characters, particularly Lenah's best friend. He is definitely the one who helped her with some of her adjustment process, even if he didn't realize that's what he was doing.
I am actually glad that I just recently discovered this book since I don't have as long to wait for the next one. I guess it's been quite some time for those of you who read this when it was first released! I think that the twist at the end of the book is going to make for an excellent next book. It will be interesting to see how things progress from this point.
This book was well written, I like how she blended the present with scenes from the past to give us a look into Lenah's life and her coven. It was nice to get all these little details about Rhode, the other men and all the nuances of her vampire world.
I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a good paranormal romance, especially if you like vampires. It's a new spin on that world with a dash of fun, preppy, boarding school rich kids!
I received this ARC from the publisher at one of the conferences I attended this year. It is a book I have been hearing a lot of buzz about so I was excited to read it myself and see what everyone was talking about. Let me just say, whatever I was thinking this book was going to be about, I was wrong. It took me completely by surprise and I was immersed in this world from page one. Lenah is not just a good girl playing the part of a vampire, she was an evil queen who had no soul and no remorse for any of her actions. She was heartless! Throughout the book you are taking in to some of her memories and they are horrific. I am not sure I was ready for that once I read this book, I thought it was going to be a little lighter than it was, however, I was happy to be wrong. I think it is a nice change to read a darker book and not always know what to expect. Lenah has a very dark past and this novel is her trying to come to terms with that and move forward.
One of the things I especially loved about this book was watching Lenah get acclimated to our world. She has been out of society for a hundred years and the world has come a long way since she has been "hibernating". I actually am not going to make a separate section for "language love" this time because this next paragraph is it and I want to talk about it here in the review. This is when Lenah hears music on a CD for the first time:
The aria was Handel's "Se pieta" and it moved throughout the room, wafting over the foam walls and carpeted floor. finally it settled on me. The feeling of the drawn-out strings, the vibration of the cellos, flowed through my body like blood. Violins-many of them-how many, I could not decipher. I could almost feel the bow moving across the stings. My lips parted, and my breath escaped in a slow exhale. The cellos came next-the low melancholy stings made goose bumps roll over my arms. I reached forward and touched the tiny holes of the place where the mus came out. I could feel the machine vibrating from the sound. How on earth was this possible?
I love how she is so in touch with the music and so fascinated by how technology has changed how we listen to it. When you read her describe her life experiences it is almost like you are experiencing them for the first time too. It also reminds me that we sometimes take a lot of things for granted. Little things that vampires in this world cannot experience, the warmth of the sun on your skin, the soft touch from someone you care about, these are things a vampire cannot feel and when I saw these things through Lenah's eyes, it made me look at them in a new light. I was really not expecting that when I picked up this book.
Justin is also an interesting piece to this puzzle. At school he runs in the popular crowd, he is a jock and he has girls swooning all over him. He also does not seem to immediately take to Lenah. She sees in him the previous life she had with her coven, reign over the people with cruelty and that is not a path she wants to walk again. I have to say though, he really grew on me as the book progressed and I think he might actually be exactly what Lenah needed. As the book began to reach its climax I began to feel so sorry for Justin, because I did not see this ending well for him. Actually, I am not really sure how the book ended at all. I can always pull out my own theories and ideas, but Rebecca has left with you with a bit of cliffhanger there and I am not sure what to make of it. I know that on Goodreads, I have seen that there will be a second book so I am holding onto hope that we will get some of the questions answered there.
Overall the story is addictive, watching Lenah grow and learn in this new life is captivating. The mysteries of her past, her ex's serving as a constant reminder of what she has done and a coven demanding their queen's return are the thoughts that haunt Lenah and keep her clinging to every moment she has as a human.