Title: Darkness Before Dawn
Author: J.A. London
Release Date: May 29, 2012
Edition: Paperback (342 pages)
Cover Review: I personally like the cover... especially the font used for the title.
Series: Darkness Before Dawn, Book 1
Main Character: Dawn
"Only sunlight can save us.
We built the wall to keep them out, to keep us safe. But it also makes us prisoners, trapped in what's left of our ravaged city, fearing nightfall.
After the death of my parents, it's up to me--as the newest delegate for humanity--to bargain with our vampire overlord. I thought I was ready. I thought I knew everything there was to know about the monsters. Then again, nothing could have prepared me for Lord Valentine . . . or his son. Maybe not all vampires are killers. Maybe it's safe to let one in.
Only one thing is certain: Even the wall is not enough. A war is coming and we cannot hide forever."
Story: In this novel, Dawn is our protagonist. In her world, towns are ruled by vampires. They have one vampire overlord in Denver... Lord Valentine. A delegate is chosen in each town to talk to the Lord every month. They talk about what is best for the people, recent vampire attacks on citizens, if vampires are getting enough blood, etc. Dawn's parents were the delegates before they were brutally murdered. It was quite brutal-they never found the bodies, only found blood. Dawn is chosen by Lord Valentine as the next delegate. She must go through training and become the youngest known delegate in history. The night before she goes to visit with Lord Valentine for the first time, she goes out to party with her friend Tegan. This party is near the wall that helps to keep vampires out. It isn't qiute safe to be near the wall, but she decides that she needs a night out. While at the party, Tegan is almost stolen by a vampire. After this fiasco, Dawn gets Tegan and they head out on the night train. While on the night train, Dawn notices that everyone on the train is a vampire. She is worried that she won't be able to survive until she finds that someone else is saving her... Victor.
After the terrific escape, Victor helps them get home. Dawn couldn't be thankful enough. Once she gets dropped off at her house, she realizes that she never told Victor where she lived.
The next night, at her meeting with Valentine, she finds something she never expected. Victor is Lord Valentine's son.
The goal of the characters was to find out who was killing the vampires. Vampires were found dead with bite marks on their necks, which is suspicious considering that they closely resemble vampire bite marks. Vampires can't drink other vampires blood... or can they?
I found that most of my questions were answered and that this would make a great stand-alone novel. But I do have to say that I'm excited to read the sequel. I feel that it did have the classic vampire story ending.
Characters: I felt like Dawn didn't really want to do what others told her. She wanted to do what she felt was right. She always spoke her mind, which I greatly appreciated. Dawn talked to Lord Valentine like he was anyone else. She didn't give him special treatment. I feel like Dawn grew throughout the novel as well. She started out as a girl who hated vampires since she was brought up in a world where everyone hates them. She ended as a girl who fell in love with a vampire and noticed that maybe they aren't all monsters. She hated vampires ever since her brother was murdered right in front of her at the age of 9. She hid in the closet since her brother told her to. She never saw him again.
Victor's goal was to pretty much take his father's throne. His father, Lord Valentine, was acting as if everything was perfectly normal. He didn't believe that their was such thing as vampires drinking other vampires blood. He said that it was impossible to survive like that. Victor believed that it was happening. He knew that if vampires drink other vampire's blood, they will survive, but they will end up in the crazy house. He also knew that human blood will never be good enough for them after a drop of vampire blood is drunk.
Lord Valentine was an okay villain. For some reason, I felt like he wasn't all that evil. Yes, he didn't believe that vampires were drinking from other vampires, but other than that, I didn't find that much was wrong with him. I feel like he was bad in the past, but he isn't as bad now. In the past, he banished his other son and his mother, saying that something was wrong with them.
All in All: I believe that this was a great vampire adventure/mystery/romance novel. I'd definitely recommend it. The novel was full of mystery and questions to be answered which were fully answered at the end.
Rating: 5/5 Lightning Bolts
Have you read this novel? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Photo, info at top, and summary were all found on Goodreads.