I want to like this book more than I actually do. The promise is in its premise, and there are occasional spots of 4-star worth story telling. The big picture, however, falls short of that "really liked it" mark. I loved the idea of Coldtowns. I find it strangely believable that people would be addicted to the live feeds coming out of the Coldtowns, drawn to the macabre and using them as a means of escaping a terrifying reality. Wouldn't there just be people willing to turn themselves in for the promise of a good time or immortality? I'm not a huge vampire fan, so I have no strong opinions on the lore or how it was portrayed here. I did appreciate that it was gory and that vampires were not entirely bad and definitely not good. The opening scene was fantastic. In some ways, I think it set a pace and expectation that the rest of the story failed to live up to. The pacing overall was inconsistent and there were times when Black flashed to the past and completely halted the momentum of her story. I liked Tana well enough. She was a flawed heroine, but I loved her brand of bravery. She had to push herself to do things, but she did them. She saved people, but she also defended herself and fought for her life. She had a little bit of a sarcastic bite, though her characterization wasn't such that I feel like I know much more about her. Gavriel was interesting, especially if you like your romantic hero tall, dark, and crazy. For most of the book, the relationship between Tana and Gavriel was nicely developed and paced, especially since it was heightened in the midst of the craziness of their situation. I do wish, however, that it didn't fall into the insta-love trap somewhere near the end. You've been alive forever, Gavriel, and you've known Tana like 3 days. Calm it down. The dialogue was sometimes cheesy. Also, I feel like sometimes the reactions of the MC were a little understated considering the blood and guts galore she was a part of. The writing was okay, if a little cliched. I mean, the chapters all started with quotes about death. Also, there were phrases that Black just (I'm about to pun) sucked dry. I can't tell you how many times Tana was holding back a hysterical giggle. By the 80% mark I was yelling at her to just freakin' laugh already. Between Aiden and Gavriel, there was a lot of sexual smiling and one corner of the mouth turning up.I had a fun time reading it, though I don't know how memorable it will be in the long run. It's almost a shame that Holly Black didn't do more with this interesting take on vampirism.