The Eternity Cure is the continuation of the series Blood of Eden about Allison Sekemoto who became a vampire and inexplicably sandwiched herself in the crisis of life and death situation that would spell doom to the the vampire and the extinction of the humanity.
First, there’s the whole whitewashing thing that everyone is so concerned about that you bug the publisher for publishing with a caucasian model for the front cover of the first book and pat behind your back saying you’re defending the right of ‘minorities’. Now, you have an option with the cover showing no picture of any model at all or the ones with the picture of an east asian girl staring broodingly at somewhere.
I would commend the publisher for that but I think thats quite unnecessary when the character herself isn’t Japanese. In fact, Sekemoto isn’t even a Japanese family name. Its Simlish. You know the made up language from The Sims game? The real variant is actually Sekimoto. What is wrong with a good Japanese name like Sekimoto Arisa? Which is a nice unique name by the way.
Sure, the author says she’s Asian. Two books did says she look ‘Asian’ but if you read it by a glance, there’s not much to point out her ethnicity at all. In fact, in this book, I hardly ever find anything at all that made her ethnicity compelling enough that a person need to be constantly reminded that the main character is an ‘Asian’.
Honey, even non-Asian can look Asian and vice versa with Asian who look non-Asian. Thats 101 Genetics of human diversity. And Asia is a huge continent and everyone dont look the same and why is the Americans are obsessed with labelling people by their continents? Honestly, how is that not racist? Plus, how is that Allison is supposedly ‘pure’ Asian, when there’s no ethnic variation among the rest of the population in this book. Are there any relevance at all besides being a ‘minority’ main character?
Now, here’s my major problem with Allison. She is a copy of the Japanese character named Saya who is a brooding teenage Japanese vampire girl with primary weapon – a katana. However, unlike the awesome demon killing vampire counterpart who goes undercover and wear sailor outfit, we have vampire and zombie killing vampire counterpart who most of the time pines for the blue eyed blonde guy she left behind and her constant self-decrepitating about her choice to be a vampire and how the world is mean to her and then on the other hand she still maintain about how super special vampire she is and that she’s not like the rest… Hmm… sounded so familiar
Honestly, when Jackal came into the scenes, I was finger-crossing for a romance because Zeke is quite a meh person (he’s like Peeta and Gale combined) but then here’s the second most annoying part of this book. The whole vampire blood family thing.
Sure, they’re sired by the same person, but just because you’re in the same lineage, doesn’t mean you’re related. I mean, imagine the quadruple romance between Katherine Pierce, Stefan Salvatore, Damon Salvatore and Elena Gilbert which now just went down to a four way incestual relationship, err…
Jackal is deathly annoying with his “Sister” suffix thing with Allison just as I was annoyed with the whole stereotyped Wise Sensei relationship that Kanin and Allison had in first book. When will it be the day when we don’t have this trope on this planet?
Third, the descriptive settings. Unlike the Iron Fey series where I could imagine myself in an ice cave or a summer palace or an ice palace or a gigantic city filled with gremlins, “Blood of Eden” have the most boring descriptive and skippable boring paragraphs that made it repetitive and frankly exhausting.
Sure, you’re in a vampire city with vampire towers and elevators that went up so high and filled with people who used to want to kill you. And then you’re in a sewer and you got insane cannibalistic people around trying to eat you. Sure, it sound interesting in the beginning, until you soon find yourself imagining you’re in an under budget movie with bad props and fake studio settings. That is how I felt through this book.
I am not a fan of too much descriptive either but was it too much to make the atmosphere in the city or the sewer more interesting instead of “crumbling towers”, “white towers”, “glimmered towers” and my favourite, just “vampire tower”. There’s simply lack of imagination going on here which made reading repetitive verbs plus “towers” stuck up like a sore thumb. Why can’t it be, “phallic shaped towers with monogrammed “V” letter in red blood” thing? Or how the shadow plays around the towers from a far. How it look so ominous and gangrenous… just a small descriptive sentence instead of “looking up to the vampire towers” thing. Have you ever went into a city with a prominent famous tall building and just say its “just a building”?
Other than the lack of a more diverse wording community, why does the female population in this book just magically disappear and everything is controlled by men? I notice that besides Allison and the female vampire in the beginning of the book, there’s no prominent female side characters anywhere that wasn’t dying of rabidism. Its like being in a male harem…
And the fourth reason why I was put down by the book was the whole predictable plot. I think everyone in this book is just running around in the same place at every point. There’s basically no rising tension or what. The antagonists basically are two dimensional characters. No one is complex nor deserve of compassion and even if one antagonist basically found some redemption, we’re are then constantly reminded about how dirt evil he is. (Hi, Caroline Forbes, nice to meet you too). and even the back stories aren’t enough to make them sympathetic.. as if they deserved it anyway.
And the fifth, air-borne lung viruses out of the tube. Air borne transmission exist but air-borne vampire virus is just weird. People get ordinary flu by inhaling water droplets from other people’s who sneeze without covering their mouth but now you got people grew insane from inhaling just air. Virus die rather easily when they’re exposed too long without a good environment and a good host and are very finicky but they know how to survive. Most successful viruses don’t kill off their host immediately after exposure. And second, why you copy I Am Legend again?
The Eternity Cure is a combination of Blood the Last Vampire. The Vampire Diaries, I am Legend and 28 Weeks Later. Unoriginal, plotless, predictable, awful immature writing style for a supposedly serious YA novel, overused cliche, overused Asian cliche, with dialogues that was trying hard to look cool and in the end, the only possible way to appreciate this novel was to have an amnesia and ignore a bunch other paranormal genre out there.
Another disturbing part is, there are eight essay question by the end of the novel which a person would make a 200 words essay out of it. The problem is, answering these would have make the plot of the book even more ridiculous than ever. “What would you do if you had to take things from other -people even their lives-in order to survive? What do you think makes someone truly evil?” “What would you do if you were the one in danger in a relationship” “Why do you think humans feel the need to create memorials?” “How do we reconcile the worst life has to offer with the good that sometimes comes in the aftermath?” … I bet whatever you come up would honestly be more entertaining.
Now, I love Julie Kagawa. I really do. But I don’t love Blood of Eden at all. Just please, keep on writing Iron Fey series or any other fantasy series but never attempt scifi, again. Ever.
The ARC is provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.