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Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn - Trilogy) (edition 2012)

by J. A. London

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Member:DarkFaerieTales
Title:Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn - Trilogy)
Authors:J. A. London
Info:HarperTeen (2012), Edition: Original, Paperback, 368 pages
Collections:Read
Rating:***
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Darkness Before Dawn by J. A. London

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Showing 1-5 of 18 (next | show all)
I checked this book out as an ebook from my library's ebook offerings, hoping for just a quick light read -- and so, based upon my expectations, I'm pretty satisfied with what I got.

Dawn is a teenager living in a dystopian future where, following the events of a long war, vampires have pretty much claimed dominion over humans, who now live sequestered in a handful of cities protected by large walls. An uneasy truce exists between the two species. In order to secure peace, humans must collaborate with the Old Families that rule over the vampires and voluntarily donate blood to them. In return, the Old Families prevent their vampire underlings from attacking and killing humans -- or at least they're supposed to, but there always seems to be attacks within the city and one of Dawn's responsibilities, as emissary of the humans, is to negotiate the terms and reinforcement of the peace treaty with Old Family vampire Valentine.

But things start getting complicated pretty fast. Dawn is young, really young, and even though her parents tried to teach her everything they knew before they died, the entire city doubts her ability to communicate effectively with the feared vampire leader. On top of that, there is a growing movement to cease donating blood to the vampires altogether -- an action which would have consequences that Dawn is horrified to think about. Her boyfriend has been growing distant, and one night, after an ill-advised trip out to a party after which she and her friend are nearly killed by some rogue vampires, she is saved by Victor -- a mysterious young man that she finds irresistible. But what secrets is he hiding?

I enjoyed reading about the politics of the VampHu treaty, and the way that society has developed to exist on such uneasy terms. Dawn was not the most lovable character, and was often quite annoying, but many of the side characters were interesting if sometimes a bit shallow. I liked Victor very much, and Sin -- who appears later on -- was also fun to read. The writing was so-so: passable for a quick read like this despite some shaky dialogue and lacking good description.

The action carries the story along at a brisk pace and there are many questions left unanswered by the end. I'll be reading the next book immediately to find out what happens. ( )
  vombatiformes | Apr 8, 2014 |
MEHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Review to come. ( )
  seekayou | Aug 20, 2013 |
Darkness Before Dawn is a dystopian-paranormal-romance book that takes place in Denver. The book starts off with Dawn, the protagonist, going off to party with her best friend Tegan. The readers quickly learn that Dawn isn't your-every-day average teenager but instead a delegate for Denver. Essentially it is Dawns duty to be an ambassador and communicator between the humans and vampire relations. This is a job that has Dawn both liked and hated. It offer to her by Murdoch Valentine, an ancient noble vampire, after her parents have passed. Dawn, at the start of the novel, has the perfect boyfriend : Michael and is later introduced, and falls in love, with a vampire = creating a love triangle.

Those who are keen for the paranormal romance genre will be intrigue by this book. The writing, a mother-and son duo, flows pleasantly with the quick paste of the novel. This novel does have a moment of dullness. I did not find myself slumping through it or having to takes long breaks from it.

Dawn is quite mature for a YA genre but it makes sense with her background. I know some people complain about her mature-ness but I actually quite like it. Dawn is a character who--throughout the entire novel--I did not find myself hating. She cares deeply for those in her inner circle and worries a lot about others.

However, I have mixed emotions about Michael. Michael and Dawn do work well as a couple but some of the things he did pissed me off and made me pity Dawn. However, there were times when I thought they were paired adorable together. However, I am rooting for Dawn X Tegan not Michael X Tegan.

The character called Sin was awesome...and I wished there were more scenes with him in it.

Problems I had with this book are : a) I found the antagonists scenes were few and there should have been more. b) Things would happen...the chapter would end...and then the readers are left wondering how the protagonist got from point a to point b.

Things I enjoyed about this book: a) fast paste b) written smoothly and flowed easily throughout the entire novel c) Sin d) Victor e) idea of dystopian world that has vampire in it d) character development between Victor and Dawn.

I also really liked Faith and Richard. I hope there is more of them in the next book.

The reason I gave it 4 out of 5 is that while it is a really good book it does not stand out much from other paranormal romance novels. The dystopian setting is a little bit different. I was actually quite hesitant before picking this up because with dystopians I am either for it or against it. Luckily with this novel it was perfect blend. ( )
  monsterofbooks | Jul 6, 2013 |
Bleh. I don't know how this book made me feel. When I started this book and was introduced to the dystopian world of human cattle and Vampire overlords I just had two things in mind -- [b:The Morganville Vampires|6571723|The Morganville Vampires, Volume 1 (The Morganville Vampires, #1-2)|Rachel Caine|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1292614318s/6571723.jpg|6764805] and [b:The Immortal Rules|10215349|The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden, #1)|Julie Kagawa|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1323357921s/10215349.jpg|15114912]; which I definitely think is not a good sign. The story was quite different from these books but still it felt utterly unoriginal.

It was not a horrible book. It did not make me want to tear my hair apart and break something hard. It was, in all notions, a formula book. And the thing about such books is that they usually work. But it also makes them highly predictable - and that is what happened with Darkness Before Dawn for me. I wasn't sucked into the fictional world because I knew what to expect from it. And that sort of ruined the whole book for me.

The other turn-off was the dialogue. It was cheesy to the point of being mice-infested. I wanted to see more of the creepy side of Lord Valentine but sadly he couldn't live up to the evil vampire overlord image. It was exactly what a YA novel 'should' be - cheesy romance, unnecessary love triangle, sadistic hero who gets off of pushing the heroin away 'for her own good', a excited best friend and of course a heroin who has faced so many dilemmas in her life and yet has come out strong and brave. Sorry, but this whole formula book didn't work for me.

It was not among the worst books I have read but it was not memorable. I was torn whether to give it 3 stars or 2. What sealed the deal for me was that I am not going to continue with the series because I know what to expect from it and I am simply not that interested. ( )
  shayanasha | Apr 5, 2013 |
I really, really, really enjoyed this one despite its very obvious flaws. A lot of people are judging this one by its cover's similarity to the Fallen series by Lauren Kate (same cover artist, so yeah) and its similarities in premise to The Hunt and Immortal Rules. I say meh! I read The Hunt (well, I started it) and they've got nothing in common. I started the Immortal Rules, too, and was bored to death. Either way, I say give this one a try.

Dawn Montgomery is the delegate between humans and vampires, the one in charge of blood negotiations, etc. I loved her! She was well trained in kick-ass-ness but that didn't take away from her vulnerability. She was still frightened by the scary (sort of Anne Ricey) vampires. She was broken by the murders of her parents and her older brother, and that shaped a lot of her opinions about vampires. I thought she was very believable, and probably someone I would want to be friends with.

I thought the world building was intriguing: the walled-in cities, the Night Train, the lack of travel, the trolleys, everything. London (a mother-son collaboration) really embraced the idea of vampiric monsters and I loved the emphasis on the sun's cycles. Her vampires were nothing like what we're used to seeing in YA. They weren't sparkly (lol, I had to) and they weren't cuddly. This seems to be a new direction YA vampire books are taking, and I'm 100% behind it!

This book does include a love triangle but I wouldn't let it deter you. It ends in a surprising way, one that I wouldn't have guessed. The thing that saddened me though, was the way Michael (Dawn's boyfriend) was always compared to Victor. It made Michael seem like a weakling, emasculating him in a way that I thought was unfair. I really like Victor though, and his story really intrigues me. I can't wait to read more about him in the upcoming sequels.

I have two complaints about this book. First of all, I was nearly two hundred pages in before I found a smidgen of a speck of a dust particle of a plot. Halfway through the book, I noticed that while I was loving it, I really didn't know what the plot was. I wish that the story was more evident from the beginning, but I realize that a lot of world and character building had to be done in order for it to be at all believable. My second complaint is one that I notice with a lot of YA. Dawn was only seventeen, still in high school and everything. It really made no sense why she should be chosen as delegate, even if her parents served before her. She was the youngest ever, and even if she was strong and often times very sure of herself, she was in many ways still a kid. Since this novel is sort of dystopic there was no reason for her to be 17. She could have been 19-20 and it would have made more sense. 19-20 is still a young adult (hell, I'm only 22 and I consider myself a young adult. That's what I am!) I feel like the book would have been more believable -- I mean, her 17 year old boyfriend was chosen to be in an elite task force against vampires. How does that make any sense?

In all though, I thought Darkness Before Dawn was thoroughly enjoyable. While the title coupled with our MC's name is a little cheesy, I still found Dawn to be very likable, someone I would want to be around, and someone I definitely would like to continue to read about. I like the characters -- Tegan, Michael and Sin, Dawn's friends (although I'd like to say that Sinclair also known as Sin was a character in Nina Malkin's Swoon series and that bothered me.) The story was enjoyable, and I'm definitely a fan of the more monstrous vampires that seem to be trending in YA right now. Very much recommended. ( )
  PrettyDeadly | Mar 31, 2013 |
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When seventeen-year-old Dawn Montgomery, daughter of the slain delegates to ruling vampire Lord Valentine, becomes the new delegate she finds herself falling in love with Valentine's kindhearted son, and risks her life when she is drawn into their dangerous political game.… (more)

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