|Title: The Immortal Rules
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: Blood of Eden #1
Cover Art: N/A
Genre: Paranormal YA
Source: Publisher via Media Masters
Reviewed by: Abigail
You will kill. The only question is when.
In the dark days since the insidious Red Lung virus decimated the human population, vampires have risen to rule the crumbling cities and suburbs. Uncontested Princes hold sway over diminished ranks of humans: their “pets.” In exchange for their labor, loyalty and of course, their blood, these pets are registered, given food and shelter, permitted to survive.
Unregistered humans cling to fringes, scavenging for survival. Allison Sekemoto and her fellow Unregistereds are hunted, not only by vampires, but by rabids, the unholy result of Red Lung-infected vampires feeding on unwary humans. One night, Allie is attacked by a pack of rabids, saved by an unlikely hero…and turned vampire.
Uncomfortable in her undead skin, Allie falls in with a ragtag crew of humans seeking a cure, or cures: for Rabidism and for Vampirism. She’s passing for human…for now. But the hunger is growing and will not be denied. Not for friendship—not even for love.
Take the social structure of Rachel Caine’s Morganville Vampires series and add the vicious, post-apocalyptic world from the Daybreakers movie and you get THE IMMORTAL RULES by Julie Kagawa. In the not-too-distant future, vampires have taken over the world, the ‘lucky’ humans are farmed like cattle, the rest are left to starve or get slaughtered by rogue vampires or the insane Rabids. Allie is one of the unlucky ones. She’s survived by being ruthless and daring. Stealing and evading the Raiders who are constantly combing the streets for fresh blood. Until one night she isn’t fast enough.
After a lifetime spent despising vampires, Allie awakens as the very thing she detests. Her anguish and self loathing is palpable. But Allie is still a survivor, and she doesn’t know how to give up. Her transition is not an easy one. She battles her new nature constantly and is determined not to become a monster. Meanwhile, the history of how the vampires came into power, the secrets they’ve been trying to keep at all costs, and the unlikely individuals who may hold the key to saving the world are revealed.
Julie Kagawa is becoming a great storyteller. Her writing style isn’t quite as polished as some of her peers, but her pacing and plotting is extremely engaging. Even at close to 500 pages, THE IMMORTAL RULES never once dragged. It’s exciting and action packed from the first page. I do wish that Allie had been a little less petulant while acclimating to her newly undead existence, but I did appreciate the more mature tone in this book as compared to her Iron Fey series. There is a great setup for the series in this debut, but it’s also just a really fun/scary/romantic story on its own.