Saturday, 2 October 2010

Book Review: Masquerade - Melissa de la Cruz

Schuyler Van Alen wants an explanation for the mysterious deaths of young vampires. With her best friend, Oliver, Schuyler travels to Italy in the hope of finding the one man who can help - her grandfather. Meanwhile, back in New York, preparations are feverishly under way for the Four Hundred Ball, an exclusive gala hosted by the city's wealthy, powerful, and unhuman - a true Blue Blood affair.
But it's at the after-party, a masquerade ball thrown by the cunning Mimi Force, that the real danger lurks. Hidden behind the masks is a revelation that will forever change the course of a young vampire's destiny. -  From the back of the book.

Masquerade is the second book in the Blue Bloods series by Melissa de la Cruz. The Blue Bloods series is based on complex and unique vampire mythology. The theory is that the Blue Bloods are vampires that were once angels that have fallen to Earth. The Blue Bloods are reincarnated, and there vampire abilities begin to show in the teenage years of a vampire's cycle. It's very complex, and to understand, you'd have to read the book. Although, saying this, if you read all the books in one go, then it will all make perfect sense to you.

The first book, Blue Bloods, introduces the characters and the mythology. Because it does this, you have to read the first book first, otherwise you'll be lost. I was, when I had read the first one, and then had a break of Blue Bloods before reading the second one.  Masquerade takes the characters further, and fleshes them out. It builds on what happened in Blue Bloods, and some seemingly unimportant characters in the first book become more significant. For example, Mimi, Schuyler's arch-enemy, while being mean and selfish, is in fact an angel who is supposed to be seeking redemption. She's more important in Masquerade, and you can see the desperation and insecurity that she has.

Masquerade is full of exotic locations, lavish parties, and fabulously expensive designer clothes. This makes brilliant 'get lost in another world for a few hours' reading. There is so much drama in this book, even before you add the vampires. The young vampires are all starting to regain some memories of past lives, and past romances, and this, as well as being a teenager in Manhattan in the 21st century, adds up to a lot of drama.

The second book is a bit more serious than the first. It gets down to business with the Silver Bloods, and there aren't as many parties and clothes etc. There is the main plot, and then there are many sub plots woven through, as well as an older mystery, just like Blue Bloods.

This book will please all readers, whether they are teenagers or adults, though, having said this, a teenage audience would probably enjoy it more. It's the perfect holiday or rainy day book, and it will have you reading for hours. There is so much happening, you'll never get bored, and you won't be able to put it down!

I give it 5 Feet!

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