Thursday, May 24, 2012

Review: 'Darkness Before Dawn' by J.A. London

Darkness Before DawnDarkness Before Dawn #1

Expected publication: May 29th 2012 
Rating: 4/5
ARC provided by HarperCollins Publisher

Humans huddle in their walled cities, supplying blood in exchange for safety. But not even that is guaranteed. Dawn has lost her entire family and now reluctantly serves as the delegate to Lord Valentine, the most powerful vampire for miles. It isn’t until she meets Victor, Valentine’s son, that she realizes not all vampires are monsters....

Darkness Before Dawn is a fresh new story with captivating characters, unexpected plot twists, a fascinating setting, and a compelling voice. Written under the name J. A. London by a talented mother-son team, the trilogy is perfect for fans of True Blood and the House of Night and Morganville Vampires series.

~My Review~

Welcome to the city of Denver, where vampires and humans co-exist based on a treaty, "keep them fed so your children can rest their heads," if you get my point. This is a place where party bouncers check for fangs rather than the usual identification, oblivious to the fact that seventeen year olds are drinking beer. And people wear crucifixes like their lives depended on it, though the item has proven useless being that vampires themselves are wearing them.  But then again these aren't your silly storybook vampires we're talking about here; they have heartbeats, and their skin is warm to the touch. Not something I'm used to hearing about bloodsuckers but then again you'll find that nothing about this city is normal after reading Darkness Before Dawn
Schools have replaced past curriculum with survival courses like vampire psychology and excessive training schedules. Agencies have been established for the sole purpose of maintaining order. And Denver has become a society desperate to protect what is left in hopes of having a future where humans will still exist. This is where Dawn Montgomery comes in.  

Dawn is the newly appointed delegate for her city, but while she serves as a representative for humans who negotiates with vampires, her distaste for the latter is hardly unrecognizable. And with logical reasoning. The responsibilities of a delegate fell onto her shoulders after the brutal killing of her parents. Interestingly enough, her distaste towards the specie wavers as she comes in contact with a very hot number, Victor, who rescues Dawn and her BFF from ending up as food for the 'lessers'. However, a growing love between the son of a vampire lord and the city's chosen delegate is without a doubt highly unacceptable. Nonetheless, their journey towards being together is very enjoyable. I was particularly amused by her humorous denial of developing romantic feelings for a vampire. Luckily, a rising problem seems to speed this love along and I'm enamored with nothing else but that. 

All in all, the story was entertaining and well-written at start, drifting a bit in the middle, then picked up the pace towards the end. So, that's not so bad. I completed the book in one day because my hands refused to give it any rest-aside from the detrimental bathroom breaks-and wanting to see where this was going. I wasn't bombarded with too much details, and the mystery kept everything balanced. Aside from the fizzling here and there, Dawn was absolutely fascinating...her fierceness totally outshines everything else. She wasn't some flimsy damsel in distress and unable to put up a fight. Dawn's the girl who brings it. Trust me, there's never a dull moment with her, never. And Victor, well he was just a hot vampire walking. There's no need to mention anyone else for their presence failed to impress me. 

Darkness Before Dawn is a tolerable take on mythical creatures ruling society in the future. This was super writing from a mother-son team. However, the next book should be more uplifting, more consistent, more adventurous...just more!


  1. I think we pretty much agree on this one. I really like how you went into detail on the way of life.
    Nice review!

  2. Oooh ! So lucky you got an ARC of this one :)
    I've been dying to read it !
    I didn't know the book is set in Denver ! :)
    That's going to be my home for the next 4 years :)

    It seems like the main character is one I will really enjoy. Fierce characters are always the best :)

    Excellent review, Shane :D
    I can't wait to read the book !

    1. Thank u for stopping by! The book isn't bad. Nice dystopia!

  3. This definitely sounds right up my alley! I love the premise and Dawn sounds awesome and easy to root for. And it's written as a mom-son point of views? That's really neat! Lovely review, Shane!

  4. I've definitely been curious about this one since I heard about it. Glad to hear it's mostly pretty good. I think it's one I'll watch for at the library unless I happen to win a copy or something. Thanks for the review!

  5. Sounds like a fun read! Dawn seems like my kind of heroine.. I've been seeing this book more and more, and it's hard to miss with that beautiful cover.. Great review!

    *New Follower*

    Happy Reading :)

    Realms of an Open Mind


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