Title: Infinite Days
Author: Rebecca Maizel
Release Date: August 3, 2010
Lenah Beaudonte is, in many ways, your average teen: the new girl at Wickham Boarding School, she struggles to fit in enough to survive and stand out enough to catch the eye of the golden-boy lacrosse captain. But Lenah also just happens to be a recovering five-hundred-year-old vampire queen. After centuries of terrorizing Europe, Lenah is able to realize the dream all vampires have — to be human again. After performing a dangerous ritual to restore her humanity, Lenah entered a century-long hibernation, leaving behind the wicked coven she ruled over and the eternal love who has helped grant her deep-seated wish.
Until, that is, Lenah draws her first natural breath in centuries at Wickham and rediscovers a human life that bears little resemblance to the one she had known. As if suddenly becoming a teenager weren’t stressful enough, each passing hour brings Lenah closer to the moment when her abandoned coven will open the crypt where she should be sleeping and find her gone. As her borrowed days slip by, Lenah resolves to live her newfound life as fully as she can. But, to do so, she must answer ominous questions: Can an ex-vampire survive in an alien time and place? What can Lenah do to protect her new friends from the bloodthirsty menace about to descend upon them? And how is she ever going to pass her biology midterm?
Summary from Goodreads.com
My Review: I received this ARC from the publisher at one of the conferences I attended this year. It is a book I have been hearing a lot of buzz about so I was excited to read it myself and see what everyone was talking about. Let me just say, whatever I was thinking this book was going to be about, I was wrong. It took me completely by surprise and I was immersed in this world from page one. Lenah is not just a good girl playing the part of a vampire, she was an evil queen who had no soul and no remorse for any of her actions. She was heartless! Throughout the book you are taking in to some of her memories and they are horrific. I am not sure I was ready for that once I read this book, I thought it was going to be a little lighter than it was, however, I was happy to be wrong. I think it is a nice change to read a darker book and not always know what to expect. Lenah has a very dark past and this novel is her trying to come to terms with that and move forward.
One of the things I especially loved about this book was watching Lenah get acclimated to our world. She has been out of society for a hundred years and the world has come a long way since she has been “hibernating”. I actually am not going to make a separate section for “language love” this time because this next paragraph is it and I want to talk about it here in the review. This is when Lenah hears music on a CD for the first time:
The aria was Handel’s “Se pieta” and it moved throughout the room, wafting over the foam walls and carpeted floor. finally it settled on me. The feeling of the drawn-out strings, the vibration of the cellos, flowed through my body like blood. Violins-many of them-how many, I could not decipher. I could almost feel the bow moving across the stings. My lips parted, and my breath escaped in a slow exhale. The cellos came next-the low melancholy stings made goose bumps roll over my arms. I reached forward and touched the tiny holes of the place where the mus came out. I could feel the machine vibrating from the sound. How on earth was this possible?
I love how she is so in touch with the music and so fascinated by how technology has changed how we listen to it. When you read her describe her life experiences it is almost like you are experiencing them for the first time too. It also reminds me that we sometimes take a lot of things for granted. Little things that vampires in this world cannot experience, the warmth of the sun on your skin, the soft touch from someone you care about, these are things a vampire cannot feel and when I saw these things through Lenah’s eyes, it made me look at them in a new light. I was really not expecting that when I picked up this book.
Justin is also an interesting piece to this puzzle. At school he runs in the popular crowd, he is a jock and he has girls swooning all over him. He also does not seem to immediately take to Lenah. She sees in him the previous life she had with her coven, reign over the people with cruelty and that is not a path she wants to walk again. I have to say though, he really grew on me as the book progressed and I think he might actually be exactly what Lenah needed. As the book began to reach its climax I began to feel so sorry for Justin, because I did not see this ending well for him. Actually, I am not really sure how the book ended at all. I can always pull out my own theories and ideas, but Rebecca has left with you with a bit of cliffhanger there and I am not sure what to make of it. I know that on Goodreads, I have seen that there will be a second book so I am holding onto hope that we will get some of the questions answered there.
Overall the story is addictive, watching Lenah grow and learn in this new life is captivating. The mysteries of her past, her ex’s serving as a constant reminder of what she has done and a coven demanding their queen’s return are the thoughts that haunt Lenah and keep her clinging to every moment she has as a human.