Gr 9 Up–Jenn Leitner is part of a group of hunters who are working to keep humanity safe from the Cursed Ones. These vampires are charismatic and living in plain sight. Their leader has even appeared on television to assure the people of the world that they have no interest in killing humans, but are able to sustain themselves with animal blood. Only out-of-control, renegade vampires do those horrible things and give the rest of them a bad name. The United States has called for a truce with the Cursed Ones, but more and more often there are reports of cities under siege and humans being manipulated to do their evil bidding. The political intrigue and global scale of this story are what make it stand out. The vampires take on the role often played by alien races in science fiction. They have invaded and then brainwashed many humans to work with them and defend them with the promise of rich rewards. Jenn’s family dynamics also twist what might be a predictable story in a new direction. Her father, having grown up with radical parents, is terrified of rocking the boat and angering the Cursed Ones to the point that he puts family and friends in danger to protect himself. The fighting and plotting scenes are well written and, once hooked, readers will be anxiously waiting for the sequel.–Genevieve Gallagher, Charlottesville High School, VA
HOLDER, Nancy & Debbie Viguié. Crusade. Bk. 1. 480p. S & S/Pulse. 2010. Tr $16.99. ISBN 978-1-4169-9802-0; ebook $9.99. ISBN 978-1-4169-9808-2. LC number unavailable.