ARC REVIEW: The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden, #1), by Julie Kagawa

RELEASE DATE: April 24, 2012
SERIES: Blood of Eden, #1
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Teen
SOURCE: NetGalley, for review

In a future world, Vampires reign. Humans are blood cattle. And one girl will search for the key to save humanity. 

Allison Sekemoto survives in the Fringe, the outermost circle of a vampire 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 is attacked—and given the ultimate choice. Die… or become one of the monsters. 

Faced with her own mortality, Allie becomes what she despises most. To survive, she must learn the rules of being immortal, including the most important: go long enough without human blood, and you will go mad. 

Then Allie is forced to flee into the unknown, outside her city walls. There she joins a ragged band of humans who are seeking a legend—a possible cure to the disease that killed off most of humankind and created the rabids, the mindless creatures who threaten humans and vampires alike. 

But it isn’t easy to pass for human. Especially not around Zeke, who might see past the monster inside her. And Allie soon must decide what—and who—is worth dying for.


The reading world seems to have been taken by storm by Julie Kagawa. She wrote an amazing series called The Iron Fey — a series I’m still woefully behind on, only having read the first book (but really loved it!) — and is now sharing a new series, Blood of Eden, going away from the faeries and entering the world of the vampires.

To some, vampires might be completely overdone. They’re everywhere! In a ton of books, on the TV, in the movies. Everywhere you turn, someone’s falling in love with a vampire or a vampire is trying to make it in the human world.

To me, vampires are still holding a place in my heart. Reading Twilight was what got me back into reading and it introduced me to the wonderful world of YA books. I even really love watching The Vampire Diaries on TV (though I really disliked the books), and Being Human is one show that my husband and I both agree on.

When I saw that NetGalley had Julie Kagawa’s latest book up for grabs, I pounced on it like … well, like a ravenous vampire. I couldn’t wait to dig in and enter the wonderful world of vampires that Kagawa will have created. If it was anything like her world of faeries, then it was bound to be good. However, I was disappointed.

A lot of my disappointment in this book lays in the fact that it took me forever to read. When I like a book, I like it. I want to lay down with it, crawl inside of it, and actually be a character in its world. I don’t want to put it down. Even with audiobooks, I find that I’ll find random things to do around the house — you know, those piddly things that you put off — just so I can listen to my audiobook and not feel bad for just sitting around doing nothing.

But this book, The Immortal Rules, just didn’t grab me like I wanted it to. It was dreadfully slow-paced. Even though Julie Kagawa’s writing was just as beautiful as ever and her dystopian world of vampires was exactly how I had wanted it to be, I found that I could only get through maybe 30 pages at the most before falling asleep. I had no desire to keep myself awake to finish this book. And at just over 500-pages, that meant this book took forever to finish.

A lot of my hesitation in reading it was with the characters. When I started reading this, I was comparing it to another vampire book that I had read years ago, The Last Vampire, by Christopher Pike. In that book, I could not relate to the main character at all. I felt that she was flat and displayed no emotion. The main character in this book isn’t so flat, she displays a lot of emotion (which is understandable since her human life was cut short), but she also displays such horrid characteristics as a lot of the female leads in books like this. She doesn’t think, goes out on her own in a world where she wouldn’t have dared to go out on her own in, and just does a lot of stupid things.

And Stick! Stick! I can’t understand why all books must have such an annoying character as Stick. I would like to think that if the world did come to be ruled by vampires and we were all to fend for ourselves that a character like Stick would die out early. For the entire time he was in the story, I was annoyed and didn’t understand how such seemingly-strong characters could put up with him — or, for that matter, how he would have even survived for so long.

The only character I really liked was Kanin — Allison’s creator and mentor. He was a pretty cool vampire and I was sad that he wasn’t in a lot of the book. Instead, it was filled with characters who I couldn’t connect with and, really, characters I just didn’t like.

For me, the plot moved slowly. At about page 350, the pace suddenly picked up and I was interested, but then it dropped back down and I wasn’t interested again until about page 450. This book just seemed way too long. Pages and pages of description for one small thing bored me and I just wanted to finish the book so that I could read something else. I wanted something more exciting to happen, or for something to just grab my interest and make me want to keep turning the pages. Unfortunately, the pacing was so slow and I was left wondering why so many people were gushing about this book.

Like I said earlier, I really wanted to like this book, but it just didn’t grab me, which is sad because a lot of the book bloggers I love — whose opinions I cherish — LOVED this book to no end and I just couldn’t understand why. I still have a huge appreciation for Kagawa — she has an amazing way with words and can craft sentences like few authors can — but I think I’ll stick with the Iron Fey series instead.


Read More Reviews of This Book

Savannah’s review –> Books With Bite
Taschima’s review –> Bloody Bookaholic
Danny’s review –> Bewitched Bookworms

© 2012, Reading In Winter. All rights reserved.


11 thoughts on “ARC REVIEW: The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden, #1), by Julie Kagawa

  1. I’m almost to page 400 in this one…and you’re description of the process of getting through it is completely accurate. It’s a ‘good’ book, but not what I had hoped for and too loooo(ooo)ng. I also agree that the ‘Sticks’ in any type of Apocalypse need to die early on 🙂 Great review!

  2. I am exactly like you when it comes to books. If I like it, I won’t want to put it down and I’ll probably stay up just to finish reading it. I’ll probably want to live in the story’s setting, or maybe be friends with the characters or something like that, and that’s how I know I really like a book. And I also like faster moving plots. I mean, I like back story, but I don’t want it to move too slow getting to the actual story…

    Great review! I hate annoying characters (don’t we all?), so I don’t think I’ll be buying this. Maybe I’ll wait until my library gets this and then give it a read.

    • I’m happy I got it through NetGalley and didn’t buy it based on the reviews. Everyone loves the book! It’s a little nuts. It just wasn’t for me. I’m like you, I like to feel that I’m there with the characters having a good time. If I hate everyone and the book is slow, that’s not really a scene I want to be a part of.

  3. I feel like we’re sort of long lost twins. I’ve read only the first book of Kagawa’s The Iron Fey series too, hated The Vampire Diaries first book (and never tried to read the series again, although I do love the TV show), and I’ve recently finished The Immortal Rules and wanted to kick Stick’s face every time he’d show up.

    The Immortal Rules wasn’t as slow for me as it was for you to read, but I do see your point. The slow paced narrative wasn’t the best, I got bored in a couple of occasions, but I only sat down to read it twice–and then I was done reading it. It’s long, it could be a lot shorter, I feel like we spend more than half of the book being introduced to Allie and her world and then we finally have some development…

    Murphy’s Library

    • We must be, Maeva! I got bored so much while reading this book that I felt so bad for requesting it. BUT I really did enjoy the first book in the Iron Fey series, so I didn’t think it would be that much of a let down.

      If you’re definitely my twin, then I would suggest avoiding Christopher Pike’s ‘The Last Vampire’ and Charlotte Roche’s ‘Wetlands.’ The latter shouldn’t even be looked at in the store or online because it’s that terrible. I wasn’t fond of Chuck Palahniuk’s ‘Pygmy,’ either.

      Thanks for commenting!

  4. Pingback: FEATURE: My Favourite Vampire Books (So Far) — And My Least Favourite | Reading In Winter

  5. Pingback: On a Book Bender

My home is where my books are. - Ellen Thompson

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s