Title: Black City
Publication: November 13, 2012
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons BYR
Rating: 4 out 5
A dark and tender post-apocalyptic love story set in the aftermath of a bloody war. In a city where humans and Darklings are now separated by a high wall and tensions between the two races still simmer after a terrible war, sixteen-year-olds Ash Fisher, a half-blood Darkling, and Natalie Buchanan, a human and the daughter of the Emissary, meet and do the unthinkable–they fall in love. Bonded by a mysterious connection that causes Ash’s long-dormant heart to beat, Ash and Natalie first deny and then struggle to fight their forbidden feelings for each other, knowing if they’re caught, they’ll be executed–but their feelings are too strong. When Ash and Natalie then find themselves at the center of a deadly conspiracy that threatens to pull the humans and Darklings back into war, they must make hard choices that could result in both their deaths.
Refreshing and original.
Ash is a twin blood meaning he has no heartbeat, which is one of things he craves other than Natalie. He fits into neither human nor the Darkling world and desires to someday see the family that the wall keeps him from being with. At a young age his mother left to be with her lover, leaving him with his human father. Ash is an interesting character; he is more than those surrounding him believe. They see him as the Haze drug dealer, the heartless Darkling but Ash is a good bad boy and a preacher's son. Sound good to you yet? Wait there is more.
Natalie is expected to be obedient and follow the rules as the good Emissary daughter that she is.... not. She is rebellious and brave. She was forced to watch her father die at the hands of a sinister enemy and her sister forever deformed from that encounter. Her mother is cold, unfeeling and more concerned about her own political games, whatever they may be. Her behavior towards Natalie is shocking and confusing. She suddenly decides to send Natalie where she becomes drawn to Ash, the one boy she is forbidden to be with and the consequences are death if they are found. But for some reason she can't resist the tug that pulses within her heart whenever Ash is near. Do they risk everything to be together or will the sparks just be stifled flames.
It seems as if the author took a blend of genres and combined them to make this book. You have vampires who have two hearts, their hair moves to seek out available blood and they are being treated horribly by the government. There is no secrecy about their existence. Feels like everything I've read lately has some sort of dystopian aspect and this book is no exception. The government seeks to control the people by making them believe that the Darklings are bad and they should vote for Purian Rose's Law to not integrate the two races. So many things are going on in this book from the romance, pending uproar and the political struggles...
I really like the characters in this book; I think they are well developed. The concept of this work is fascinating and I look forward to what happens in the next installment. I think vampire lovers will find this take on the lore to be interesting. Told from the perspectives of Ash and Natalie, this made for a good read, so check it out!
*Received this book from Around the World Arc Tours*