Zombie, post-apocalyptic and dystopian books are like shoes - you can never have enough.
Hands up who's heard me say I don't enjoy vampire novels? And I honestly think it was this whole 'nice vampire' trend that went down a few years ago - I like my paranormal creatures to be scary, hardcore and gory, not all puppies and flowers and skipping through fields. Therefore I'm always a bit wary of vampire books, but I knew that Rhiannon Frater I was in pretty safe hands....and I definitely wasn't wrong.
Pretty When She Dies is a 'proper' vampire novel - there's death, destruction, ghouls, hot vampire lurve, bad language and flawed characters - and I loved it all. The inclusions of well-known and lesser-known vampire lore also makes for fascinating reading - do religious icons really work, does a vampire need to be invited inside your home, does that garlic choker just make you smell like an Italian feast?
From the moment Amaliya wakes up buried in the forest (greatest fear ever, anyone?) I knew she would be a character that I would love, and although her family life was pretty much a train wreck, she has a great balance of toughness and vulnerability, along with an unconditional love for those people who deserve it.
I thought her grandmother was particularly awesome, and even the slightly irrtating Samantha had her redeeming features. Cian is one hot vampire, and definitely not in the sparkly sense - his story also added an extra facet to an already fascinating storyline.
I love that Rhiannon Frater set this book in Texas - her knowledge of the state really shone through, and gave the book a gritty, real feeling.
I dare anyone to read Pretty When She Dies and not love the characters whilst being fascinated by the examination of vampire lore and carried frantically from page to page with perfect pacing and realistic dialogue. I can't wait to move onto Pretty When She Kills - mark this day down peeps, I'm hungering for a VAMPIRE book!
Read more of my reviews at The Aussie Zombie