ARC Review: Blood Orange Soda

Blood Orange Soda
Blood Orange Soda by James Michael Larranaga
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Release date: March 15, 2014

Darius Hunter is a bullied high school freshman. When he drinks Blood Orange Soda to transform into a Vampire and earn respect, he soon learns life as a Vampire has its own challenges.

Set in the future on the rural landscape of St. Cloud, Minnesota where pre-Vampire teens are required by the government to take a daily Red pill to prevent their urge to bite, Blood Orange Soda is a coming of age story of love, life and death.

Blood Orange Soda is one of those books which have a great story but suffer from bad writing. The world construct was good – a society with a vampire population that is discriminated against, a vampire lifestyle being a choice rather than some eternal thing, and finally a pubescent vampire teen who has to go through high school while navigating his transformation into a Vampire. It had good issues – bullying, discrimination and love vs lust – and I was eager to read it. The writing, however, took out all the joy of the book. It falls flat and to put it mildly, is plain boring. The characters seem one-dimensional and just don’t have any depth. I suppose it was to sound like a teenage boy’s journal but I just couldn’t be emotionally invested in the characters. I was also a bit miffed at the fact that it doesn’t really address the fact that the pre-Vampires are taking illegal substances just to fasten their transformation. It’s made for them, yes, but it is never revealed what is the source for the blood. The bullying issue was tackled okay, though it seemed a bit incredible. I, however, liked the fact that the romance isn’t reduced to all the bloodlust, which is such a common trope for vampire books. It is more of whether you want to be with that person in the future.

Received a copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

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4 thoughts on “ARC Review: Blood Orange Soda

  1. I contemplated this one for a while, as I have a hard time saying No to the ‘Read Nows’ at Netgalley… It seemed like it would be a really interesting and original plot line, but now I am kinda glad I did not give in to my book hoarding temptation. Too bad the writing didn’t live up to expectation.
    Lily @ Bookluvrs Haven

  2. I tossed up whether to download this one from NetGalley…buuut, I’m kind of glad I didn’t. I really struggle with characters that aren’t fleshed out and writing that is on the dull side. Meh. But the whole having a vampire as a lifestyle is REALLY intriguing.
    I’m stopping by from the YA Romantics review link up. 🙂

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