As a curio, I read Melissa de la Cruz‘s Blue Bloods, the first of the Blue Blood YA vampire series. I’m certainly not in the right market (wrong sex, too old) but the book does worry me slightly. The blue is not so much royal but a paler shade…
Don’t get me wrong; fast reading fluff is fun. Occassionally you need to read something that does not make you think, reflect or want to do anything apart from just disengage brain and enjoy. Yet the rampant label dropping and commercialism are slightly worrying. At some level I understand (and remember) the social standing with regard to clothes and places to be seen in but the constant need for the various protagonists to belong limits the individual.
Schuyler van Alen, though moving in the same circles, never belongs to them, preferring to begin questioning the inner circle, the Blue Bloods. They control the social scene and operate like a fraternity to preserve their anonymity. So far the social scene becoems deterministic, that certain people will always rule. Underlining this there is a message that the reader needs to belong and that not belonging means that one is on the outside and somehow inferior. Even Schuyler who leaves the world temporarily appears to come back to the exclusivity.
At the same time, de la Cruz constantly links them to the Mayflower landings, linking it to the Roanoke disappearances and the legend “Croatoan”. Somehow this reminds me of Anne Rice when she started mixing all the mythologies together which de la Cruz does here: vampires, fallen angels, strange historical mysteries and devils. Rather than coming across as an American take on the vampire, it comes across as merely messy.
There’s something Twilightesque about the world, archaically out of touch and projecting a certain lifestyle though here de la Cruz opts for aspiration and attention rather than religion. It’s all about me, myself and I. Rather than looking towards the Story of the world, it tries to set down another layer on it; the arteries further thicken rather than thin, adding to the strain on the heart.
I’m sure that the series will do well and I may dip into it again but this is not a series that I’d actively try and follow.