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Hermione

The Mystical and the Magical

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The Immortal Rules - Julie Kagawa 5 stars. After deciding to read The Immortal Rules a second time around - which I totally don't regret, seeing as I loved it even more after I read it again - I want to clap myself on the back. As a person who tends to make crappy mistakes all the time, rereading TIR was not one of them.

First of all, can I just say how badass Allison Sekemoto is? Like, I have a total girl crush on her. And the fact that she's Asian - Japanese, I'm assuming, from the last name - is another added plus. BECAUSE OH MY GOD THIS GIRL IS FANTABULOUS. I will never doubt Julie Kagawa's abilities ever again. (I really shouldn't have, in the first place, anyway.)

Another one of my favorite characters was Kanin. Oh, Kanin, Kanin, you sexy, ruthless, centuries-old vampire with a weakening heart. YOU ARE SO AMAZING. I am so excited to see where we go with him in the sequel.

Sadly, another feeling that remains the same are my feelings for Zeke and Allison. I feel more of them ... but there isn't the connection I'm hoping for, to be swept away. I love both Zeke and Allison as characters, just not sure if I want them together, as I said before in my earlier review.

On that note, is it just me or is bloodsucking just extremely sexy and intimate? Like when Allison sucked Zeke's blood at the end ... That was very sensual. And I liked it. A lot.

Another fact: action-packed, amazing writing, lovely world building. I couldn't expect any less from the legendary Julie Kagawa.

Anyway, I loved how the book ended. Literally. The last paragraph blew my breath away. Allison, in the moonlight, surrounded by barren landscape and mushy trash and hungry, fiesty rabids with a gleam in her eyes as she slipped her katana from her scabbard, and smiled as she dove at them?

SO

FREAKIN

BADASS.

With that said, I loved this book and all I can say for the sequel is: BRING IT ON, BABY!

___________

The first coherent thought when I finished this book was probably Damn, Julie Kagawa can write.

I've just not-so-recently read her first book, The Iron King, a few months back, and between then and now, I've noticed some remarkable differences. The first thing, definitely, is that her writing's improved. It's much more fluid, and just ... I don't know ... better. I enjoyed reading her book; and she creates a much more suspenseful or dramatic tone with her words in this novel. In the first hundred pages, I felt myself literally shiver at her choice of diction. Either my imagination gone's haywire or her writing is really better, but since this has never happened to me before, I give full credit to Kagawa's writing. The Human part of the novel was just ... plain out creepy. Really suspenseful, really dramatic, all leading up to this breathtaking mini climax, and I thoroughly devoured it. Absolutely loved it.

The next thing I noticed was her characterization. I was thoroughly amazed at how stoic, tough, and fearless Allison was. And honestly, when she was human I didn't really think she held much "humanity" in her; it was after she spent time with Zeke and the group as a vampire did I realize she gained some really great values: self-sacrifice, commiseration, and the whole feeling of family. Kagawa's done a brilliant job, and I was astounded by the growth that occurred in Allison by the end of the novel. And I especially love the way it ended.

Zeke was another guy I absolutely adored. He was so caring, so willing, and definitely self-sacrificing. He's the sobbing kinda guy, which I've come to love, but it's nice to see men sob their heart out when they're sad. It shows emotion and a definite insight into their feelings, their heart. Zeke has been raised by his father to hate vampires, to kill them on sight. He's been taught beliefs that they're inhuman, are soulless, and hold no humanity in them. This is definitely not the case in Allison -- actually, I believe it to be the quite opposite: she gained much more values that she had ever known. And this is why I loved the idea why Kagawa kept Allison as a vampire as a secret: Because it can show growth between relationships, and when the truth is finally out, the person finally starts opening up, doubting himself of the morals he was taught. It shows a whole new perspective of a person, and it's amazing.

Though I adored Zeke and Allison both as characters, I did not like them together. I have no idea why. Usually I'm totally for the cannon pairings in novels, but their relationship just didn't click for me. Some might think it's because it isn't the stereotypical vampire-boy/human-girl kind of relationship. I honestly don't think that's why. I absolutely love the twist that Kagawa used. I just don't think they're right for each other. Though their differences are large, and they're almost complete polar opposites, I still think they'd find a way to work out. I know I may be the minority in this topic, but I found myself supporting Kanin and Allison. I was absolutely devastated when I found out he was gone.

The timing of the romance was good. Despite the fact that I don't find myself rooting for them, I think that if I were cheering for them, I would find the pacing to be good. It's just ... there was this one scene, when Zeke and Allison teamed up to rescue the others that they had an intimate moment. They kissed, okay? And in the whole situation, with Zeke's family almost eaten by rabids and his father locked up in a tower with a vampire, I was just absolutely shocked that they kissed right in that moment. I just really ended up being bothered by that. Again, I have no idea why. Maybe because they were lost in their attraction for each other in the dark, completing forgetting that they're wasting time and anyone of their family members could die? Yeah, I think that was it.

A lot of people died in this book. And the ending definitely wasn't necessarily happy, but I'm really looking forward to the next book! (Because it has something to do with Kanin! /squeal) And maybe, just maybe, I'll end up supporting Zeke and Allison, too, if their relationship strengthens in the next novel.

4/5