The Immortal Rules (Review)

Book cover for "The Immortal Rules" by Julie Kagawa.Title: The Immortal Rules

Author: Julie Kagawa

Publication Year: 2012

Pages: 464

Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy

Source: E-book version borrowed from the public library

From the cover:

Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a walled-in city. By day, she and her crew scavenge for food. By night, any one of them could be eaten. Some days, all that drives Allie is her hatred of them — the vampires who keep humans as blood cattle. Until the night Allie herself dies and becomes one of the monsters.

Forced to flee her city, Allie must pass for human as she joins a ragged group of pilgrims seeking a legend — a place that might have a cure for the disease that killed off most of civilization and created the rabids, the bloodthirsty creatures who threaten human and vampire alike. And soon Allie will have to decide what – and who – is worth dying for…again.

(This is the first book in the Blood of Eden series.)

After reading Kagawa’s Iron Fey series, I wanted to read other books she had written. I waited quite a while in the library holds list for this one, and then devoured the book within a day or so.

The Immortal Rules is not the usual kind of vampire book. First of all, Allison – the narrator – doesn’t start out as a vampire, and actually rather hates them. She becomes a vampire, but is filled with self-loathing for much of the first half of the book. There isn’t the romanticism towards vampires in this book that there is in so many other series. They’re not seen as something to aspire to, or something seductive. They’re just plain old scary.

There’s also the element of the rabids – a mix of zombies and vampires, created decades earlier while trying to find a cure for the Red Lung virus that wiped out so much of the human population. And that right there is how this book ends up being a dystopian vampire series. Seriously. Two of my favourite things wrapped up into one.

I loved the world-building that Kagawa has done in preparation for this series. There’s so much there, it’s not just a superficial story like so many other YA books. It’s meaty and intriguing and thoughtful. Plus, the other characters – particularly Kanin and Zeke – are nuanced and realistic, with their own secrets that they’re trying to hide.

There’s just so much going on in The Immortal Rules that it’s impossible for me to say more without giving plot details away. Go ahead and pick up a copy for yourself and you’ll see what I mean.


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