Author: Julie Kagawa
Source: I received a copy free of charge from the publishers via NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion
From Goodreads: "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."
My Opinion: When I got approved by NetGalley to read and review The Immortal Rules, I think it's the first time I actually cheered out loud to get an ARC of a book! I even did my own version of a happy dance, which luckily only my dog saw since I tend to look a bit spastic when I'm dancing all by myself! I haven't read Julie's Iron Fey series yet, but I'd have to be living under a rock not to have heard how awesome it is, and I couldn't believe I was getting the chance to read The Immortal Rules because I LOVE vampire stories! Then I got worried because maybe I was putting too much pressure on myself to like the story, and maybe it wouldn't be able to live up to the hype - but I shouldn't have been worried, because it was everything I had hoped it would be ... and MORE! I loved it! I actually read it about a month ago but life got in the way (it has a way of doing that, doesn't it?) and I wasn't able to write the review until now. I have a bit of a review list going on, but as soon as I got word I'd been approved to read it, I jumped on it and started reading it right away - and I didn't put it down until I was finished! Yes, it was that good! You know how sometimes when you're reading books for review, you keep checking to see what page you're on because no matter how much you're enjoying it, you're trying to get through each book as quickly as you so you can mark it as read and move on to the next one? Well, I definitely kept checking to see what page I was on, but not because I wanted to get it finished quicker - it's because I kept hoping that I wasn't very far in because I didn't want it to end! I even tried to read slower so it would last longer, but the writing was so well done that I couldn't read it slowly if I wanted to! The characters were well developed, and there was definite character growth from start to finish, the pacing was excellent, and there was just the right amount of action and emotion. I felt like I was invested in the story from the get go, and I really cared about the characters.
One thing that I really loved about this book was the fact that not only is it a vampire story, but it has a dystopian/post-apoc setting as well. A virus has swept through the human world, wiping out a fair number of them, which allows the vampires to come out of hiding and take over. Humans now have to register to donate blood regularly, and they work for the vamps. Some humans try to stay off of the grid and live in hiding, including Allison Sekemoto, who harbors a strong hatred of vampires after watching her mother die and blaming the vampires for it. Unfortunately, one night she's out after dark and is attacked by a band of rabid vamps. Another vampire finds her and offers her the choice: die there and then, or be turned into one of the things she hates most in the world. Her survival instinct kicks in and she opts to be saved, even though being a vampire goes against everything she believes in. The vampire who saved her, his name is Kanin, is a loner who agrees to teach her what she needs to know to survive. In time she finds out that there's a lot more to Kanin than meets the eye! Allie sets out to learn what it means to be a vampire and what her place is in the world now, and she ends upon a quest that will take her far from her home and way outside her comfort zone!
I can't say enough how much I loved this book! After reading it I've decided that I'm definitely going to read Julie Kagawa's Iron Fey series, and I will be waiting impatiently for the next installment in the Blood of Eden series, which can't come soon enough for me :D