Partying. Pirates. Hallucinogens. Things that go bump in the night. Lace and leather. Nudity, and sass galore. Not to mention, the mention of baby bats (my little goth heart fluttered in excitement, even if there were some terrible gothy cliches there).
I may have received this book at a very cheap price (under $5), but it was well worth more than that. It would have to be the best three-dollars-something I have ever spent (see, that just doesn't sound like much of a compliment, but I swear it is). I will admit that at first my expectations for this novel were low - a young adult book about 'night creatures' screamed some trashy 'vegan vampire' fiction. Still, the cover was absolutely gorgeous (I'm a sucker for metallic pink - shiny!) so I held my breath and thought I'd give this book a try.
The story follows the journey of a young, sheltered girl named Retra in a world of social unrest and repression; and boy, does it start with a bang. The reader gets thrown right into this without much context and only snippets of information about Retra's situation. In all honesty, that first chapter was not a winner for me, it was at times difficult to follow and the writing style left a bit to be desired. Nevertheless, the mood of the book quickly shifts from fast-paced confusion to something much darker, and much-much more mysterious. Marianne de Pierres creates a rich and delectable world that is both diverse and perverse. It is extremely dark and 'adult' in its themes, to the point of this being a strange choice for young adult fiction if it weren't for the youthfulness of the characters themselves (and the necessity of that to the plot).
This short but decadent novel took me surprise and has left me wanting more. I absolutely recommend others to try it (though in the US it may be hard to find in stores, beyond the internet) and fully intend for this to be a re-read in the near future.
P.S. How gorgeous is the cover art? It reminds me of that from one of my favorite albums - how could I not give this book a chance?
... not to mention, this would make a freakin' brilliant soundtrack to this book!