Glass Houses by Rachel Caine
Series: Morganville Vampires Book #1
Published: October 3rd, 2006
Publisher: NAL Jam
239 pages (paperback)
Genre: Young adult paranormal
Acquired this book: From the library
Warning: May contain spoilers
GoodReads Synopsis: College freshman Claire Danvers has had enough of her nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don't show many signs of life, but they'll have Claire's back when the town's deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood.
I have really mixed feelings about Glass Houses. I’ve heard great things about the Morganville Vampire series, so I was eager to see what all the excitement was about. While I thought the concept was great and quite original, there were several things that bothered me.
I’ll start with the concept and why I loved it. Morganville is full of vampires, but only the people in town know it. People are either Protected or they’re not, and if they’re not Protected they’re basically fair game to the vampires. Interesting, right? Different from anything else I’ve read. I also really liked the mystery surrounding Michael, and thought that was fantastically original too.
However, I found Claire kind of annoying, and at times downright stupid. When she first started being attacked by the girls at school, I could see her wanting to ride it out, but when it turned potentially deadly and she stuck around, I thought she was a complete moron. I don’t think you could be considered a failure or a coward for leaving school when someone pushes you down the stairs with the intent to kill you or throws acid on you with the intent to burn and horribly disfigure you. Get out of there! Go home! And all the times Shane warned her to stay home and then she got in trouble or got hurt, I just wanted to wring her neck. There’s independence and then there’s stupidity and foolishness.
I also found it really hard to connect with Claire, or with any of the characters. I think the book might have been better off told in the first person - I might have been able to connect better with Claire that way. The writing style was a bit strange - I can’t really explain it, but I found myself thinking several times that the style itself was part of the reason I wasn’t connecting with the story or characters. That being said, I did like Michael and Shane for the most part, and I liked that they took Claire in and cared for her even though she was a stranger and could have caused problems for them for different reasons.
Overall, I think Glass Houses was a decent starting point for what I’m hoping will be a good series. The cliffhanger ending had me wishing I had the second book so I could start it right away (which is saying a lot since I didn’t love this book). If you’re looking for something different, or hoping to get into a new vampire series, I’d say this one is worth a shot.
Have you read Glass Houses or any of the other Morganville Vampires books? What did you think? Does the series get better?