Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn Series #1)

( 105 )

Overview

Only sunlight can save us.

We built the wall to keep them out, to keep us safe. But it also makes us prisoners, trapped in what's left of our ravaged city, fearing nightfall.

After the death of my parents, it's up to me—as the newest delegate for humanity—to bargain with our vampire overlord. I thought I was ready. I thought I knew everything there was to know about the monsters. Then again, nothing could have...

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Darkness Before Dawn (Darkness Before Dawn Series #1)

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Overview

Only sunlight can save us.

We built the wall to keep them out, to keep us safe. But it also makes us prisoners, trapped in what's left of our ravaged city, fearing nightfall.

After the death of my parents, it's up to me—as the newest delegate for humanity—to bargain with our vampire overlord. I thought I was ready. I thought I knew everything there was to know about the monsters. Then again, nothing could have prepared me for Lord Valentine . . . or his son. Maybe not all vampires are killers. Maybe it's safe to let one in.

Only one thing is certain: Even the wall is not enough. A war is coming and we cannot hide forever.

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Etienne Vallee
Following the violent deaths of her parents, Dawn is appointed Delegate from the human city of Denver to Valentine, the vampire overlord of the area. In a world where humans fought a violent war against vampires for thirty years—and lost—she represents the agency that runs Denver in blood deliveries negotiations with the vampires. During a vampire attack on her and her best friend Tegan, she meets Victor, who later reveals he is Valentine's vampire son and is getting ready to wage a war against his father to save the decimated human population. Can Dawn survive being in the center of a dangerous power play, avoid falling in love with Victor, and at the same time, protect her friends from Valentine's deadly vampires? J.A. London takes the reader into a vampire world different from most settings, one where the vampires rule what is left following a long and devastating war. Dawn is realistically portrayed, with her hatred for vampires slowly being replaced by doubts as she learns to trust Victor, her enemy. A love triangle between Dawn, her boyfriend Michael, and Victor is only matched by a triangle of enemies and allegiances between Dawn, Sin (Valentine's other son), and Dawn's brother. The supporting characters are also fairly described, and are appealing. This story will be appreciated by those who like other vampire or supernatural novels, but it may be a hard sell for boys. Reviewer: Etienne Vallee
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up—The VampHu Treaty has ended the 30-year-long war between humans and vampires, but it has not brought peace. Still grieving the loss of her family, Dawn Montgomery becomes the youngest delegate to serve the vampires. As liaison to the Great Vampire Lord Valentine, the teen must make sure that the human blood supply quota is met and that human-vampire relations are sound. In exchange for blood, humans are guaranteed safety within the city of Denver walls. But vampire attacks are increasing and humans are quickly losing faith in the system. The world needs change and Dawn's hatred for the elite vampire ways compromises her position. Then she meets Victor, Valentine's son, who rescues her and whose mindset is exactly what Dawn has been waiting for. Though at first the two are suspicious of each other, they eventually come together to fight his father and a "new kind of monster" that threatens the city. This new twist on the vampire genre is action-packed and full of plot turns. The main characters are compelling, and the love triangle that evolves between Dawn; her boyfriend, Michael; and Victor adds to the suspense and intrigue. A satisfying read with a cliff-hanger ending that leaves readers thirsty for more.—Donna Rosenblum, Floral Park Memorial High School, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062020659
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/29/2012
  • Series: Darkness Before Dawn Series , #1
  • Pages: 342
  • Sales rank: 104,804
  • Age range: 14 - 17 Years
  • Lexile: HL650L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

J. A. London is the mother-son writing team of Rachel Hawthorne and her son, Alex London. Rachel has written many novels for teens, including the popular Dark Guardian series. Alex, a recent graduate with a degree in Historical Studies, enjoys combining history and fiction to create unique worlds. The Darkness Before Dawn series is their first joint project.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 105 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(61)

4 Star

(26)

3 Star

(10)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 105 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 14, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    When I first heard about Darkness Before Dawn, I couldn't not be

    When I first heard about Darkness Before Dawn, I couldn't not become obsessed with it. It blends dystopia with paranormal, which for me is just the perfect mix. Darkness Before Dawn didn't disappoint and left me even more eager to the next installment: Blood-Kissed Sky.

    The plot was extremely well-done. Everything fell in the right place and right time for me; yet the twists were still just as unexpected. I loved the dystopian aspects of the novel, since dystopia is my favorite genre. I still find that the authors (written by a mother and son team!) could have spent less time with Dawn's mixed feelings towards Michael and Victor and instead focused more on the fascinating aspects like on the relationship between the humans and vampires or even on Dawn's political life. Another thing that bothered me were the romantic scenes! They were sometimes TOO kitschy. I mean, the guy has lived for over hundreds of years and he has never seen someone as brave as Dawn?! She is not even that brave!


    The characters were mostly amazing. Dawn was a determined and strong main character. Yet I didn't like that she couldn't be a bit more open to Victor's different life style; she was just too stubborn even though it was evident that he was a nice guy. I loved Victor; he was just plain swoon-material and I liked the different sides to his character; I can't wait to see how being in charge will change him in the next novel. The side characters didn't have such big roles but I liked all of them and hopefully we will still hear from them in the sequel.


    Darkness Before Dawn was certainly a strong beginning to the trilogy. It surely had its faults but I wasn't that bothered by them. Some questions were left unanswered but this is a trilogy, so I will be expecting answers in the next two novels. I can only say that I thoroughly enjoyed reading this one and I hope you will all enjoy it too!

    21 out of 24 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 29, 2012

    This book has some many twist and turns, great writing and story

    This book has some many twist and turns, great writing and storyline, it is not a silly take on Twilight either.I literally finished this book under 17 hours I usually take a few days to finish, but this book sucked me into it and i couldnt even put it down. The Author does a really good job expressing the charcters emotions. I recommend this book to everyone, best book ever :)

    12 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2012

    Enjoyed this!

    This book was a little slow in the beginning and I wasn't sure if I would finish it or not. Thankfully I did finish, because it ended up being a great read! I loved Dawn and the personality she posseses. All to often, the girls get whiny & sappy. I kept waiting for her to accept Victor a little faster than she did, but it flowed nicely. Can't wait for book 2! December is to far away....

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2012

    Great Read!

    This book pulled me in on the very first page. I was very intrigued with this new world that humans shared and were over powered by vampires. The characters were great. I can't wait for the next book.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 17, 2012

    Surprisingly Awesome

    After reading The Immortal Rules I decided against reading this book because they sounded so similar and I honestly didn't like The Immortal Rules all that much. I didn't dislike it by any means, it just didn't really do anything for me. Anyway, I assumed Darkness Before Dawn was going to be the same but last night all I wanted was to read something and couldn't find anything that caught my interest, so eventually I just thought screw it and bought it anyway. While the overviews of the two books makes them sound like they're basically different versions of the same story, I was so happy to discover that in reality, they were nothing alike. I actually really liked this book. The writing is great and I thoroughly enjoyed the world that the authors created. I never found myself getting bored with the story, which trust me, is no easy task when it comes to me... I'm probably one of the most ADD people you could ever meet. From the beginning I was intrigued, It grabbed and held my interest extremely well and remained that way until the end. It's hard to explain why I enjoyed this book so much. I can't even pin point what it is exactly that I liked so much about it; I suppose it's irrelevant really, all that matters is that I did. My one and only complaint is that it just wasn't long enough, I reached the last page and was so bummed that it was the end! I really, really wanted the book to continue. I want more and I can't wait until the second book comes out. I'm dying to see where the story goes from here!

    6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 5, 2013

    It was Okay...

    I was expecting more from this novel. It was pretty slow in my opinion. I enjoyed reading it and will be reading book #2. And, what is up with this gothic cover? Really? There is nothing gothic about the book. This cover is just as dumb as the "Fallen Series".

    4 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2012

    Amazing

    I have read this many times and love it i would highly recomend this book!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 6, 2012

    This was a pretty good book. I've never read a book like this fr

    This was a pretty good book. I've never read a book like this from two authors. I didn't even know two different people wrote the book until I got it. You find out what the title means in the first few chapters - I did, anyway. There are a few twists, and it keeps you guessing at times. I did not see the ending coming. I can't wait to read more of this series.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 17, 2012

    this is an amazing story with plenty of romance and action i lov

    this is an amazing story with plenty of romance and action i loved this book!!!!!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2013

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    Dhebdhdbr djcdjwnwhdchwndgciwebxiwjw hi dudndbcwowbdhekwddhejsjsmsbdsiwkwjs

    3 out of 26 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I have to be honest and say this wasn't really on my to-read li

    I have to be honest and say this wasn't really on my to-read list. But, it showed up on my doorstep unsolicited and I wanted to give it my best shot. I think I would have liked it more had I not read another book with a similar storyline first.

    I enjoy the idea of a future society ruled by vampires. In a world were every ancient society has some legend of vampires, whose to say that in the future the human race can't depend on them? In return for protection from rogue vampires, humans donate a quota to the existing ruling vampires. It was intriguing that the ruling Vampire, Lord Valentine, insisted on a human delegate. From what I saw, the delegate really does nothing. I think Lord Valentine enjoys watching the delegate squirm under his demands and not be able to do a damn thing about it.

    I liked Dawn. She been raised around Vampire politics. She knows what's at stake. But, she also has a fresh outlook and the characteristics that only belong to teenagers. She makes a few rash decisions and I think she wants to believe that there is something good in everyone. She really wants to show those around her what's at stake if they mistakenly believe that the human race doesn't need the vampires. But, she also wants to show the vampires that they also can't survive without the humans. It's definitely a delicate line to walk. Especially when no one understands why she was picked for the job when it obviously should have gone to someone else.

    I liked Dawn's interactions with other characters. As reckless as her best friend can be, she also brings a lighter side to Dawn. Something she desperately needs in light of everything. I loved her building relationship with Victor. He's an interesting character and their involvement goes against everything each of them know. Neither one of them can afford a weakness, especially when it's the other person.

    Despite all the things I did like about this book, it seemed slow and incredibly drawn out. And the thing that bothered me the most was at the beginning it's hinted that there is something questionable about Dawn's heritage. That there's something special about her. I be damned if I know what it is. Is it that she was specifically chosen as the delegate by Lord Valentine? Is it that she might bring about a new vampire rule? If there was an answer in the story...it wasn't clear to me what it was.

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    J.A. London introduces us to a dystopian society where vampires

    J.A. London introduces us to a dystopian society where vampires rule over human cities. In exchange for protection, humans "donate" blood to their vampire overlords. Unrest stirs in the cities, as the humans grow complacent, believing that others will donate blood in their stead, teenagers question the need to stay behind the walls, and activitists protest the need to remain subservient to vampires.

    My favorite part of the novel is the world building. The idea of vampires ruling the world with humans locking themselves up in walled cities intrigued me, and J.A. London has done a fantastic job introducing us to the history behind the war between humans and vampires and its devastating outcome. I also enjoyed seeing Dawn act out her role as her city's delegate to vampires and how she grows out from her prejudice against vampires (warranted as it is) to accepting them and eventually caring for one.

    Character-wise, it doesn't feel as though Dawn has a steady personality. Her train of thought is hard to follow in places, such as her sudden switch from hating vampires to understanding and accepting them. While I can see where the changes takes place, it's a rocky transition in the wording. Overall, it feels as though Dawn's thoughts are inserted where it seems the reader would like to know them rather than playing out naturally. I do appreciate Dawn's growth as a character. Initially, she starts with self doubts, being the youngest Delegate to the vampires in history, and she hates her role because the vampires took everything from her. However, she gains more confidence as the novel progresses and even grows to appreciate the her parents' dedication to their role as the Delagates before her.

    As a heads up, there is a love triangle of sorts in this novel. However, it's not a bad one or one with instalove. In fact, it's pretty obvious who Dawn's going to be with. While Michael seems like a great guy, he's missing for the most part, as Dawn and Michael's duties to the city keep them away from each other. When they're together, they don't talk about anything important and mostly derive comfort from each other. Overall, it is what it is: two friends who got together after they tried kissing. I was pretty indifferent to Michael until he suddenly feels the need to prove his self-worth to Dawn, leading to some unpleasant incidents. I very much liked Victor. He's a vampire, but he's compassionate towards humans and vampires alike... and I probably shouldn't go further than that because I'll end up giving spoilers. Let's stick to I-want-to-see-Dawn-and-Victor-together.

    The pacing is pretty slow for the most part, as the novel focuses on world building and setting up the plot, but the action picks up towards the end as the plot unfolds. I see potential for more to happen in the second book of this trilogy and will be picking it up to see what happens next.

    2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 14, 2012

    Darness Before Dawn

    So i checked this out from the library(huge waiting list but worth it) because the cover looked pretty. I didn't know what the story was going to be about, but i was not disapointed. I liked the fact that Dawn had a human boyfriend and hated vampires but slowly got to know one and fall in love. Her chacater was very well developed. The ending kind of threw me off, i was right about one thing but did not expect the other at all. It left me wanting to read the next book for all the answers that wern't addressed. I would recommed this book to anyone who wants to read a love story with some action.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2012

    Great book

    I was absoluetly rivited. This is by far my favorite vampire book and i cannot wait for the sequel!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 24, 2012

    Wonderful

    I loved the twist about her brother and sin while the fact that the book doesn't continue farther kills me

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2012

    This book deserves all five stars

    Its so good. I enjoyed it so much.
    Really couldnt stop.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 6, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Pretty good start to a new trilogy

    Darkness Before Dawn is an enjoyable read that didn't want to put down. I liked this book much better than the Immortal Rules. I compare those two books because they're the only two dystopian vampire books I know about. While it's not the most original novel out there, Darkness Before Dawn has complex characters and an intriguing plot. It's a book that vampire and dystopian fans will like.

    The main reason for my preferring this book to Immortal Rules is that I like Dawn. The poor girl has been through hell, but she still fights every day to make the world a better place for the people in her town. She's strong without being bratty, and she's complex without being angsty. She also tries to do the right thing, and not just what's right for her. She tries to do right by everyone, and I respect that about her. I enjoyed seeing things from her perspective, and I trusted her as a narrator. She seemed to be fairly self-aware and honest.

    I also adored Victor, of course. Give me a guy with black hair and blue eyes, and I'm sold on the book. Seriously, though, he's an extremely complicated character, but he still comes across as realistic. I would have liked to learn more about him, and I look forward to being able to do that in future installments. He seemed to be torn about his feelings for Dawn, but he wasn't all emo and creepy about it like some vampires I know, *coughEdwardcough*. I think deep down, he's a good guy and a perfect match for Dawn. I'm totally team Victor in this series.

    The supporting characters were hit or miss. I absolutely hated Michael, but he was pretty much a typical teenage guy. I liked Tegan and Rachel quite a bit. I would like to know more about Jeff and Clive, and I, of course, hated Lila. The most fascinating people in this novel were the vampires. They all seemed much more complicated than the humans (other than Dawn). I would like to see more complication with the humans in future novels instead of having all of them but Dawn seem innocent and ignorant.

    The world London created was fascinating, but nothing original. The blood donations idea is already done in Morganville Vampires, but London added a twist to it. The vampires live outside the city, and donating is not required by law. Therefore, there is always a blood shortage. Vampires attacking other vampires has been done as well (VA and Bloodlines), but the way London executed it is a bit different. The world of vampires living outside the city and humans living within, only to be separated by a wall was also done by Kagawa in Immortal Rules, but the way the vampires behave and the treaty between the humans and the ruling vampire families puts a spin on that idea. I know it sounds like nothing in this book is original, but I'm a firm believer that no idea is original anymore. Also, give two people the exact same ideas, and they'll write two completely different books. That's what happened here. London may have been inspired by other novels, but Darkness Before Dawn is a completely different story than any of these other books.

    The plot is intriguing, and a lot is going on. The big reveal was a bit shocking. I didn't see it coming. Also, there was enough suspense and mystery to keep me reading. The pacing is pretty spot-on, and I didn't get bored once. The ending wraps things up nicely while still leaving quite a few things up in the air for the sequel. But since some things were answered, I'm pacified... for now.

    Overall, I'd recommend t

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 7, 2012

    Awesome

    The book is in denver and even though the main character is annoying at times, she is strong and determined. Even though a lot doesnt go as planned it just says that life is just that unpredictable especially where victor is involved. Near the end when she talks to victor in his parlor you get the jessica rules the dark side vibe. The most surprising thing is is that victors brother is not who you think he is, and a person from the past comes back with a lot of bite to the point where Victor almost dies mainly because he lied about his injuries after his fight with his dad. All in all its good save for a few people in the book

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2013

    Help

    Can someone tell me the name of the second book in the series please?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2013

    <3

    Cant wait to get the next one!!!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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