Welcome to Morganville. Just don`t stay out after dark.
Morganville is a small town filled with unusual characters - when the sun goes down, the bad come out. In Morganville, there is an evil that lurks in the darkest shadows - one that will spill out into the bright light of day.
For Claire Danvers, high school was hell, but college may be murder. It was bad enough that she got on the wrong side of Monica, the meanest of the school's mean girls, but now she's got three new roommates, who all have secrets of their own. And the biggest secret of all isn't really a secret, except from Claire: Morganville is run by vampires and they are hungry for fresh blood . . . (from publisher's site)
Glass Houses is the first book in the Morganville Vampire series. Which came out in 2006 in the US but have just had an Australian release at the beginning of this year. AND I do completely LOVE the new funky looking covers ~ the colours kind of shimmer in the metallic-y way in the light...
However, the covers are only thing here that sparkle, heheheh :) The vampires in this novel are the traditional bad guys...
So ~ this was a whole reading outside my genre thing, being a contemp girl. I don't mind branching out now and then to see if I can get hooked. This series did interest me because it's been so well received and it's (hordes) of fans claim that once you read the first one you're addicted.
Glass Houses gets off to a slow but intriguing start.
When sixteen year old Claire moves to Morganville to begin college she has no idea how trippy things are going to get. Straight off, she's bullied (and left for dead) by the mean girls on campus which leads her to seek alternative accommodation ~
Enter a gothic-esque but very cool house (complete with hidden passage-ways and secret rooms) with three older house mates:
Eve: a funky goth, spunky yet nurturing
Michael: enigmatic and mysterious muso-boy
Shane: video game junkie, slacker and all-round hot boy
Claire (our protag) is a funny character herself: a kind of blend between being tough and having melt-downs, she's determined but often unsure, smart yet incredibly dense at times, innocent and right at that perfect coming-of-age age.
My favourite part of the book was the dynamic between the house mates. I enjoyed the banter and the mysterious undertones with lots of the characters. There's a smidgen of romance bubbling away as well (and of course the boys are hot :D)
As for the vampires? The whole town is absolutely shrouded in history and it's rather creepy and dangerous and absolutely deadly. And Claire's gutsy (or foolish) choices definitely keep her from falling under the radar.
Reading this book was fun. Once you get past the first mini hump ~ it's a very speedy, relaxing read. The camaraderie between the house mates adds a lightness to the otherwise dark and foreboding setting.
I think to enjoy this title I really had to settle in and just go with the flow and see where the author was taking me. There was a few occasional 'what the?' moments for me in terms of plot or character motivations ~ but I don't think you should go into the book expecting it all to make sense straight up ~ Rachel Caine dives right into the story and I recommend just going along for the ride ~ which is wild and fun and occasionally spooky a promising start to a series.
As for making me crave more of the paranormal genre? This book didn't cure me, haha. I had a good time while reading it and sailed through it in two days BUT it's still not really my thing. I do prefer the creepy vampires to sparkly ones but overall, I'm yet to be thrilled by books that feature vampires at all (or most paranormal beings. sigh...).
I have it on the best authority (from multiple sources) that from here on in, The Morganville Vampire series just gets hotter and more addictive. I did LOVE the older dynamic, with all main characters (but Claire) being older than high school age. I can see the appeal for both teens and adults.
Recommended: Glass Houses is a fast read with dynamic chemistry between characters making it grin-worthy and fun while still being sufficiently dark and creepy. If you love vampire books you'll be missing out by not checking out this series, hey. My tip is to suspend your disbelief (if it hovers around while you're reading) and go along for the ride.