Friday, July 29, 2011

Feature: The Superiors by Lena Hillbrand

As part of her promotional tour, Lena has provided three ebook copies of The Superiors for a little giveaway!  Details following the review...

The Superiors
By: Lena Hillbrand
ASIN:  B004ZGB2I4 
Published May 4, 2011 by Lena Hillbrand
Available Format: ebook

My Rating: ★★★★☆

The Superiors is not a gushy, young adult vampire novel.  Set in a future that is dominated by a hierarchy of vampires who raise humans as livestock, just as we humans raise cattle for beef, you’ll find no sparkly love interests and certainly no angsty love triangles.  As a matter of fact, you can forget about romance entirely.  This is a tale of a dark, dystopian future with little hope for the happiness of humankind.

Not all the vampires are heartless.  The main character, Draven Castle, is more than kind and considerate to the saps (humans) he feeds from, especially the intriguing Cali.  He risks a great deal to ensure her safety and eventually in pursuit of ownership, something uncommon for a lower class Superior such as himself.  How far will Castle go to satisfy his preference for Cali’s blood as well as his discontented position in life?

I admit, I found the beginning of this novel a bit stiff, which is why I knocked a star off the rating.  The Superiors speak and act very formally while most of the humans have a rather unrefined (dare I say, southern?) dialect and mannerisms.  To perhaps make this a positive, I think this possibly helps separate the two species even more, actually adding a little extra depth.  The further I got into my reading, the more the characters seemed to loosen up, and the more I reveled in the story.  Otherwise, however, I enjoy the concept.  It isn’t something I want to see come to pass, but the idea that these supernaturals rise in power and take over the world makes for a thought-provoking read. 

I love the dynamic between the characters, especially later in the story.  The vampires relate rather indifferently toward each other, which is understandable considering they basically have an eternity to spend together.  Any real connection is rare or short-lived, unlike human commitment.  It makes for a very interesting contrast with the humans in the story, especially the community type setup that is found in the human confinement camp. 

The ending of the The Superiors leaves you with a bit of a twist (I was beginning to suspect) and a hunger for the sequel to find out what the fate of our main characters will be.  I think it would be fantastic if Hillbrand would do something of a prequel and give a more detailed narration of the evolution and rise of the Superiors!

I definitely recommend this novel for mature readers who enjoy something a bit dark and different from your mainstream vamp story…

To learn more about Lena Hillbrand and her work:

This one is easy, breezy!  All you have to do is leave a comment below answering the following question:

If the world was taken over by vampires, would you rather be a Superior that was essentially immortal OR would you rather maintain humanity, content to suffer for a short time before moving into the afterlife?

The first three to comment will receive a free ebook of The Superiors!

But please, don't stop there!  Inquiring minds want to know... :-)