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The Coldest Girl in Coldtown Hardcover – September 3, 2013

4.3 out of 5 stars 444 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up–A dystopian thriller with a chilling twist. Tana, 17, passes out at a party and wakes up in a house filled with corpses. Her friends lie in crusted pools of blood as she searches through piles of belongings for her keys and boots. Her first thought is that someone must have left a window open. In Tana's world, vampire attacks happen. At the tender age of six, she witnessed her mother's transformation from a loving parent to a creature so desperate for blood it would lure and attack its own daughter. It is because of things like this that Coldtowns, quarantined cities where the infected go to live and die, exist. Along with Tana, the only other survivors of the party are Gavriel, a handsome and mysterious vampire, and Aidan, her newly infected ex. She decides to take them directly to Coldtown, but if crossing the barricades means staying there indefinitely, Tana's not sure she's ready to leave life as she knows it behind. Twilight fans will enjoy the drama, but its fan base need not be limited to those who read paranormal romance. Teens with a yen for dark, futuristic novels, and maybe even a few Anne Rice readers, will find this a refreshing take on vampire lit. As always, Black's writing is quick paced and thought-provoking. A must-have for any teen collection.–Jennifer Furuyama, Pendleton Public Library, ORα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* What happens in Coldtown stays in Coldtown, because once anyone enters this Vegas-like prison for vampires and their infected human pets, there’s little chance of leaving it. After a fairly ordinary high-school party, Tana awakens to discover that she is surrounded by the corpses of her friends and classmates, who have all been drained of blood. While trying to leave, she finds her ex-boyfriend, Aidan, tied up but still alive, his eyes intense with the infection that will fully “turn” him if he receives the human blood he craves. Tana is saved from Aidan’s bite by a mysterious, red-eyed boy, Gavriel, who also materializes in the party’s gruesome aftermath. With hungry vampires scraping at the door, she escapes with both guys in tow to find a way to save them all: by somehow making it in—and out—of Coldtown. In this novel, inspired by her short story of the same name, Black returns with another dark, fast-paced thriller starring a sharp-witted, brave girl who does all the right things when faced with monsters. With rapid-fire dialogue, lavish details, and a wildly imagined world, this will enthrall Black’s fans from start to finish and leave them hoping for another bone-chilling, vicarious tour of Coldtown.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Vampires plus reality TV plus romance plus Holly Black (plus a multiplatform marketing campaign) equals a potential mega-bestseller that fans are already waiting for. Grades 9-12. --Candice Mack

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316213101
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316213103
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (444 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #264,462 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Holly Black is an author that I can rave about for days. I have read and reviewed a few books by her. I have also had the pleasure of meeting her on quite a few occasions. I consider her to be a personal hero of mine. I admire the way she creates these new worlds in her books, and characters that I have grown to love and adore. At BEA this year, I made it a priority to pick up her latest book The Coldest Girl in Coldtown.

This book was really good. It's the type of book that makes you wish that there were more hours in the day, so you can read more. It's just so captivating. But unfortunately for me the week that I read this book, I was so incredibly busy with real life, that I had to keep putting it down. I would try to force myself to stay awake a little bit longer to keep reading, and actually fell asleep while reading a few times. Most people fall asleep while reading when a book bores them, but it's actually the opposite for me. It's usually me doing everything to stay awake, but my body just collapsing on me.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is an extension of the short story of the same name that Holly Black wrote a few years ago. I actually did not read the short story, but after finishing the book I am gonna to hunt down a copy and read it, so I can compare the two. The novel is a modern take on vampires. Now it's been awhile since I've read a vampire book. But this book reminded me how captivating and seductive vampires can be, and also how dangerous they are. There is a perfect balance of human fascination with vampires and a nerve wracking fear.

The novel starts off with a seventeen year old girl named Tana waking up in a bathroom at a party to discover that everyone at the party has been slaughtered by vampires.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As someone who grew up loving vampire books, I was a bit hesitant to read this as I heard that Ms. Black's inspiration to write it came from THE VAMPIRE CHRONICLES by Anne Rice (which I have been a longtime fan of). Since I was lucky enough to receive a copy at ALA in June, I decided to give it a go anyway.

I ended up loving it. From the beginning of the story where Tana wakes up amongst a houseful of dead people - to the suspenseful ending -- I LOVED IT. It's the first vampire novel in a long time that I've loved so much -- and it doesn't disappoint. It's whimsical and gory and fabulous.

A good vampire story is always hard to write. You could end up with something fluffy like Twilight -- or something dark and almost horrible like Carmilla. Holly Black finds the ultimate balance between the two -- writing a world where vampires are looked upon as gods by some, but everything is not as it seems. The story is a rich tapestry of blood, decadence, disgrace, and awesomeness. If you like a decent vampire story, I suggest reading THE COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN immediately.
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Format: Hardcover
*Review posted on Page Turners Blog on 9/3/2013*

Sometimes a book inspires you to think back to the very first time you read a similar character in a genre. And The Coldest Girl in Coldtown made me do just that. PTB readers, do you remember your first vampire? I cannot forget mine; his name was Lestat. He was not a hero by any means; he was world weary, always jaded, but there was something about him that made me read on. I remember the thrill of picturing what his life would be like. I've met (fictionally, of course) many vampires since Lestat, but none teased my curiosity as much as he did. Until now.

Holly, Holly, Holly, what have you done? You've not only refreshed the concept of vampiric lore, but you've built an entire, credible (yes, I know vampires are fictional but you all know how involved I become in these matters) world. Coldtown is a tempting, seductive place where humans can be infected, where the entire world can watch vampish goings-on through their internet/TVs, where the allure of becoming cold is something that everyone can crave.

And Holly gives us this world through Tana's eyes. Tana who has a back-story that will haunt you as you read on. Tana who is strong and yet, flawed and worried about the repercussions of her decisions. Tana who is loyal to her friends and family even when the risk to her life is astronomically high. I simply adored her, no, I loved her. If you're like me and are tired of the super-strong-can-do-no-wrong characters, read Tana. She's so very, very believable.

I want to quote my favorite parts here, I really do, but they're so filled with spoilers that I can't.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
4.5 Stars

Oh, how delightfully delicious this was!

The Coldest Girl In Coldtown has been one of my most anticipated book of the year! I love Vampires books, even though I have been wayyyyy burnt out with them and haven't read one since April. But anything to do with Vampires, Dystopian, Quarantined Cities, and feasting on human blood in a dystopian setting, I'M IN! And The Coldest Girl In Coldtown has satisfied my craving for my Vampire-dystopian fix! Even though I would of liked these vampires to have been more...gritty, and gruesome, but they were still awesome, they just lacked that horrific, spine-chilling, menacing feel! But still definitely satisfied!

The main characters were well developed. Tana was a enjoyable, strong character, that wouldn't give up no matter the cost. And Gavriel, he had this mysterious sex appeal that just kept me drawn to him, whenever he was around! He had this rough around the edges feel to him. But once Tana broke through his hard layers, he revealed that something softer was in the inside.

Holly Black had an interesting way of writing this novel. She had one chapter of the main plot, then the next chapter had some background information on any character. Which was and interesting way for her the write Coldtown, but oh so annoying when a chapter ended with a fast-paced, heart-pounding scene, that you just had to see what was coming next, but then it would abruptly change to something that happen in the past. Sometimes I found myself screaming "NO, I DON'T CARE, take me back to the main plot, I need to know what happens!" But when the chapter didn't end on a heart-pounding note, it was interesting to get some back info on said character.
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