Monday, June 16, 2014

{Blog Tour+Giveaway+Playlist+Review} Dark Metropolis: Jaclyn Dolamore

Rating: 5/10
Series: Dark Metropolis #1
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Paranormal Romance,
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Publication Date: June 17, 2014
Page Count: 304
Source: Netgalley
Format: eARC

Amazon ~ Goodreads

Synopsis: Cabaret meets Cassandra Clare-a haunting magical thriller set in a riveting 1930s-esque world.

Sixteen-year-old Thea Holder's mother is cursed with a spell that's driving her mad, and whenever they touch, Thea is chilled by the magic, too. With no one else to contribute, Thea must make a living for both of them in a sinister city, where danger lurks and greed rules.

Thea spends her nights waitressing at the decadent Telephone Club attending to the glitzy clientele. But when her best friend, Nan, vanishes, Thea is compelled to find her. She meets Freddy, a young, magnetic patron at the club, and he agrees to help her uncover the city's secrets-even while he hides secrets of his own.

Together, they find a whole new side of the city. Unrest is brewing behind closed doors as whispers of a gruesome magic spread. And if they're not careful, the heartless masterminds behind the growing disappearances will be after them, too.

Perfect for fans of Cassandra Clare, this is a chilling thriller with a touch of magic where the dead don't always seem to stay that way.

Jaclyn Dolamore was homeschooled in a hippie sort of way and spent her childhood reading as many books as her skinny nerd-body could lug from the library and playing elaborate pretend games with her sister Kate. She skipped college and spent eight years drudging through retail jobs, developing her thrifty cooking skills and pursuing a lifelong writing dream. She has a passion for history, thrift stores, vintage dresses, David Bowie, drawing, and organic food. She lives with her partner and plot-sounding-board, Dade, and two black tabbies who have ruined her carpeting. | TWITTER | FACEBOOK

What one has to know when reading and/or about to read Dark Metropolis is that this is not a normal book. The premise, plot, and characters are unlike any others that I have met before. When writing a playlist for a book, there is usually a defined feel of the book that will fit into a certain niche of music. For example, Legend by Marie Lu may have a more alternative, and rockish feel, while The Distance Between Us by Kasie West is more light and cheery pop and country. I personally can't get a real feel on what genre of music Dark Metropolis fits into, but I tried to pick songs that I feel had meaningful lyrics, or the ethereal vibe that DM gave off. 

"We were making history
                                                        Breaking rules and breaking free
Questioning the writing on the wall
Got wind from the underground
Laughing as were falling down
Soaking in the glory of it all"

Young Blood: Bea Miller ~ While I'm sure Bea Miller wasn't thinking of a teenager with magic going against his orders to revive people from the dead, the lyrics are very relatable to Freddy's struggle throughout the book, as to whether he should carry out his orders or not. 

"We wear a smile to hide that we’ve been hurt before
Keep our disasters in a suitcase by the door,
'Cause you know, you know we’re only human!"

Broken Ones: Jacquie Lee ~ It isn't so much as the lyrics that make this a good DM song, but the feel you get when hearing it, as well as the shivers that will run up your spine when listening to the vocals and then when you listen closely to the lyrics and their meaning.

Throw it Away: Kina Grannis ~ I have recently fallen in love with listening to Kina Grannis and her unique voice. Every song on Elements is completely different, and the way her voice just slides up and down embodies the almost creepy feel of Dark Metropolis.

Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley/Itching For Books Blog Tours in exchange for an honest review.


The concept of Dark Metropolis was simply astounding. In the beginning of the novel, we learn that the story is set in the 1930s and one of the main characters -Thea- works in the Telephone Club which is a nightclub, and this just makes me imagine all the glamor of the 30s with the makeup and the fashion that reminds me of the Great Gatspy and flapper girls. With just the synopsis, you already know this story will be unique, and when the magic aspect gets added, it just improves the story.

***Spoiler Alert***
I don't particularly enjoy books about zombies, I don't know if it's because of the whole undead thing, but I don't think so because I actually think being undead is really cool. Anyway (you know how I can get sidetracked), while Dark Metropolis did not turn my opinion around about zombies, Dolamore did treat the subject very well, and shone some new light on them. While it wasn't explained in detail how Freddy's magic worked, it was still such an interesting idea that he could revive people from the dead. But (you know there has to be a but), these people aren't the same and will physically wither if they don't take a serum, and can't die again unless Freddy lets them go. Yet even though they're undead, they can still love people and care for them.
***End Spoiler***   

Something people were praising a lot was the romance and I completely understand why. The relationship between Thea and Freddy is slow, and there isn't any insta-love in the vicinity *sighs in relief* yet it's almost as sweet as a light contemporary novel when Thea gushes to Nan about Freddy and how they haven't kissed YET. And when a girl says, "yet," you know she wants and expects whatever the "yet" is pertaining to. 

There was almost a minor romance between Nan and another minor character (I don't want to spoil it) who was another girl. Jaclyn Dolamore probably wasn't considering this as a big deal, but I just love how it shows progression in YA and general literature in just the 21st century. It was so subtle and treated merely as an, "Okay, that's good the two of you like each other." thing instead of a big deal/  


I have to admit, while I did enjoy Dark Metropolis, there were a number of confusing elements throughout the novel. These mostly had to do with the magic aspect of the novel which I don't want to spoiler for you. 

The pacing of Dark Metropolis was a bit slow during the first half, but eventually picked up until it had its explosive ending.

While I was reading reviews of the book, I noticed a lot of people had a tendency to like the characters and their personalities. I don't know if I just wasn't paying close enough attention, but I did not feel this.  As it happens with characters I don't enjoy reading from/about, it felt like they were just puppets being controlled by somebody, and they didn't feel very much like real people. 

I know I will usually root in favor of first person, and I truly think that it would have worked well with DM because the story is told by the three main characters -Freddy, Thea, and Nan. The story was written in third person, and would transfer every few chapters between characters. I also think that my lack of connection with the characters may have been non-existent if it was written in first person, giving me a behind-the-scenes look into their heads.

Conclusion: Dark Metropolis had a mind blowing concept including a blend of genres readers will not soon forget.
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