Monday, February 23, 2009

College Sucks in Morganville

It’s a small college town filled with quirky characters. But when the sun goes down, the bad comes out. Because in Morganville, there is an evil that lurks in the darkest shadows- one that will spill out into the bright light of day.

Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. The popular girls never let her forget just where she ranks on the school’s social scene: somewhere less than zero. And Claire really doesn’t have the right connections- to the undead who run the town.

When Claire heads off campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don’t show many signs of life. But they’ll have Claire’s back when the town’s deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood…

Title: Glass Houses
Author: Rachel Caine
Series: Morganville Vampires, Book 1
Start & Finished: 10/16/08- 10/17/08
Published: 2006
Publisher: NAL Jam
Pages: 239 (paperback)
Genre: YA-Paranormal

The vampire genre has been “done to death,” especially since Joss Whedon created Buffy and Angel but Rachel Caine decided that she would tackle the genre only if she “come up with a new attitude and a new take on vampires.” Fortunately she did, so she published the first book in the Morganville Vampire series in 2006 called Glass Houses. All of the books are set in the “planned vampire community” of Morganville where some humans are Protected while the "loners, the sideliners, the dull and average and strange"... "were the cattle."

Out of all paranormal creatures, I’ve always had a fondness for vampires so I wasn’t entirely sure if I would enjoy this series or not despite the great (also lukewarm) reviews I’ve read about it. I needn’t have worried because these are really good books! Yeah, about 98% of the vampire population that runs Morganville are evil but it was Claire, Eve, Shane, and Michael that kept me in the book. Even though logically, I should have went with the more popular Stephanie Meyer vampire series (especially since I own the first two books), I decided that my first venture into YA vampire fiction would be with the well-loved (albeit not as popular) Morganville Vampires series.

What really surprised me was to find that this was the author's first try at writing in the young adult genre. From the way it was written I would have thought she was a professional as her characters all act the way they should for their age, never are they too childish or too adult (although Michael seems to take on the mantle of the "grown-up" more than anyone else in the series as he is “the responsible one“). I was also very surprised to discover that this first book wasn’t a cliché, surprised but pleased. It didn’t take me long to realize that Rachel Caine is truly a great author who could capture my attention and my imagination within seconds.

Every book in this series is less than 300 pages long so they’re very quick reads (it took Caine about two months to write Glass Houses) but they also end in serious cliffhangers. Needless to say you’ll want to have the next couple of books on hand when you finish this one! Each one sees Claire and her new roommates being sucked farther and farther into this vampire world…

Morganville Vampires Series
1. Glass Houses (2006)
2. Dead Girl's Dance (2007)
3. Midnight Alley (2007)
4. Feast of Fools (2008)
5. Lord of Misrule (2009)
6. Carpe Corpus (2009)

Links: Author Wikipedia, Morganville Wikipedia, Author MySpace, Fan Club, Author Livejournal
Interview: Cynsations

Picture Explanations
Eve’s car
Bible- Vampires generally don’t like religious artifacts
Liquid Nitrogen- Claire is very resourceful and she uses her head when she needs to ge somewhere she’s not supposed to be


  1. Nice review treatment of the first in this series. Glad you liked it. If you want to try another fresh YA urban fantasy check out P.C. & Kristen Cast's House of Night series or Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy.

  2. Bwahaha! I love your title for this post, and how true that is! I was really surprised that I liked this series as well. I am not a huge teen vampire book fan, but I love Rachel Caine's writing and since I was so in love with her adult series I tried this one out.

    However I am finding it hard to get into the 5th book (Lord of Misrule) I don't know if it's because I have been so busy and fighting this cold/flu thing or not, but I just don't feel like reading it. I hope to get over that soon though because I need to read!!

  3. I REALLY like this review and the way you present it. So much time and thought went into it! Thanks for sharing! I shall have to take some pointers when doing my reviews over at BOOKIN' WITH BINGO! Thanks for the great post!

  4. I love these books!! And I am sooo looking forward to Carpe Corpus.

  5. I've heard a lot about this series. I may have to check it out, if I ever get the time.

  6. I'm so glad to hear that you enjoyed this one as I have it checked out from the library. Maybe I should have the next one checked out as well if they end in cliffhangers...

  7. SciFi Guy: Thank you! Those two are both on my list of books that I want to read but haven't gotten around to it. I also want to read the Vampire Diaries (I think?) since it's supposed to be made into a TV series soon.

    Cat: Lol :o) Glad you like my title! I haven't tried her adult series yet but I would like to. Oh, know what you mean about starting the fifth one! I think it's our mind's way of trying to save us from the cliffhanger at the end. I bought it a couple of weeks after it came out and I only finished reading it yesterday. Very, very good though!

    Bingo: I'm glad you liked it! *blushes*

    Chelle: Oh you have no idea! I'm going nuts trying to figure out what will happen and of course the author just had to include a little excerpt of the next one in the back of the book.... Gah!!!

    CarolsNotebook: That's how it started for me too but I gave into temptation...

    Samantha: Oh you won't regret it if you do stockpile the next few. As you'll see in the review coming tomorrow, I read the next three back to back.

  8. I'm glad you enjoyed this one. I had a few issues with it, but I am planning on reading the next one at some point. The books just keep piling up! Argh!

  9. I hadn't read this series before I received Lord of Misrule in the mail. I read that and really enjoyed it, I keep meaning to buy the others to read, but I know I'll read the next!

  10. Really great review, Ladytink :) I think this one sounds good too. I keep reading your reviews and then I want to add the books to the've got to stop being so good!
    Happy Reading!

  11. Darla D: Yes I certainly know how that is! No matter how big the pile is, I just keep adding to it!

    ChariDee: Oh I couldn't read this series out of order (or any series for that matter), it would drive me bonkers! I really liked Lords of Misrule though :)

    The Chic Geek: Aw thanks! *blushes* I hope you enjoy them as much as I did (don't worry, they're REALLY quick reads).

  12. Attntion grabbing title!
    this does sound very good.
    great review :)
    very cool that the author got it right being that this is her first time writing in this genre.

  13. I really like this series. I still haven to get a copy of the newest one, but I haven't bought it yet! I haven't read her adult books, but I do own one of them. I just figure I should work on this series first. And, I hear you on the cliff-hangers! It's both a good and a bad thing!

  14. Point noted about having the next one ready to read because of cliff hangers at the end. I have the first couple to hopeuflly read this year. I know it's silly to love a series because the covers are glow in the dark, but what can I say!

  15. How many chapters are in Glass House? I got the book off the internet and am not sure if it is the whole thing or not lol

  16. Naida: lol. Yeah, this is a great series

    Kailana: I finished reading it right before I started writing this review.

    Rhinoa: I didn't know they glowed in the dark, neat!

    Anonymous: Oh I really wish I could help but I borrowed this from the library :(

  17. Great review Jen! I love that the books are so short. I am already onto book two and loving it. I actually read book 4 months ago as my first book. I know bad. A review site sent it to me and I reviewed it without having read the others. Then recently I was offered all the others to review so I jumped at the chance. I know alot of things that are going to happen though since I already read book 4. It's still great reading though. Loving it!



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