Friday, December 7, 2012

The Farm ~ Emily McKay review + giveaway

The first book in, what looks to be, a promising new paranormal-slash-vampire series was released earlier this week: The Farm by Emily McKay - and after a quick review I have a giveaway (thank you Penguin!).

The Farm (The Farm #1)
Berkley Trade
December 4, 2012
420 pages
add to Goodreads/add to Book Depo/or Amazon

Life was different in the Before: before vampires began devouring humans in a swarm across America; before the surviving young people were rounded up and quarantined. These days, we know what those quarantines are—holding pens where human blood is turned into more food for the undead monsters, known as Ticks. Surrounded by electrical fences, most kids try to survive the Farms by turning on each other…

And when trust is a thing of the past, escape is nearly impossible.

Lily and her twin sister Mel have a plan. Though Mel can barely communicate, her autism helps her notice things no one else notices—like the portion of electrical fence that gets turned off every night. Getting across won’t be easy, but as Lily gathers what they need to escape, a familiar face appears out of nowhere, offering to help…

Carter was a schoolmate of Lily’s in the Before. Managing to evade capture until now, he has valuable knowledge of the outside world. But like everyone on the Farm, Carter has his own agenda, and he knows that behind the Ticks is an even more dangerous threat to the human race...
As with The Immortal Rules, Black City and The Hunt, I love the new take that The Farm gives us on vampires - or undead, blood drinking monsters, to be more precise. The Ticks in Emily McKay's novel are quite unlike anything I've read about before, as is the world in which Lily and Mel are living.

We get a great picture of the Farm where they live (which may be what was Austin College). It would have been nice to have some of the terminology explained more or sooner. Words, though, were not as big a part of the story as how the things worked and what had happened to the U.S. after the Ticks infested the country. McKay paints a great picture of that.

Lily happens to remind me a bit of one of my friends a little bit -- but in the same way that Claire from the Morganville Vampires series and a few other female YA characters (that I can't remember at the moment) do. It may be the tough, resilient, on their own personalities and I just view them as similar. Or stronger, female characters in (not contemporary) YA reads may be having quite a few similarities - at least in the books I read. (It's not really a problem nor do I think they seem like carbon copies, just reminiscent and worth noting.)

 Lily's twin sister Mel being autistic (and some of the chapters being told by her) added an interesting element to the story. I thought we learned interesting things about the characters and the plot from Mel's chapters as well as how characters interacted with Mel and things she said in other chapters.

The Farm has a good but slightly slow start but after that it really gets going. Once the action - and suspense - pick up, it's definitely hard to put this one down and you'll be wanting to read just that little bit more . . . and more.

Rating: 8/10

thank you to Penguin for my copy for review & for making the giveaway possible
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I am so excited for this book. It just looks amazing. Thanks for reviewing.

  2. I keep hearing great things about this book. I love the unique take on vamps. That is SO nice! And i like the cover, too. I can't wait to read it. I love that there is an autistic character and they are written in a good light. All in all, I think this could be a fabulous book for me!

  3. I am so in love with this book! I love all of the action and Mel's POV was definitely my favorite. I love all of the hints she gives the readers in her own way. Great review :)

    Jesse @ Pretty In Fiction

  4. I'm really hoping for more from this author. I'm really intrigued and can't wait to read more from her!

  5. This sounds so good. Great review!!!


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