Author: Peter Moore
Published: February 8, 2011
Genre: YA, Paranormal
Being only half-vamp in a high school like Carpathia Night makes you a whole loser. But Danny Gray manages to escape the worst of the specists at his school. Thanks to genetic treatments he had as an infant, most people assume Danny's other half is human. Which is a good thing.
Ever since the development of synthetic blood – SynHeme – vamps have become society’s elite, while wulves like his father work menial jobs and live in bad neighborhoods. Wulves are less than second class citizens; once a month they become inmates, forced to undergo their Change in dangerous government compounds.
For Danny, living with his vamp mother and going to a school with a nearly all-vamp student body, it’s best to pretend his wulf half doesn’t even exist. But lately Danny's been having some weird symptoms — fantastic night vision; a keener-than-usual sense of smell; and headaches, right around the full moon.
Even though it's easy to be in denial, it's hard to ignore evidence. There's only a month until the next few moon, and Danny's time is running out.
Red Moon Rising is the story of Danny (Dante), a teenage boy living in a world divided into three very distinct and separate classes. There are the vampires – elite, rich and powerful, there are the humans – desperate to be everything the vampires are, and at the bottom of the pack are the wulfs. Danny, unfortunately, is part wulf. He’s had treatments to make him look more like the exclusive vamps with whom he attends school, but he had to stop them, and now his symptoms are getting worse. To top it all off, Danny has to deal with conflicting emotions towards his biological father, qualms with his mom and stepfather, and the snotty kids at school. Throw in a love interest, and Danny’s world is ready to turn upside-down.
I don’t like vampires and, frankly, werewolves tend to bore me because it’s the same-old, same-old every time…usually. Red Moon Rising isn’t your typical werewolf and vampire tale. With a teenage boy as your narrator, a society that’s twisted and skewed and every bit of teenage angst you can bear, Red Moon Rising is daring and quirky. Author, Peter Moore, took your traditional paranormal tale, turned it upside-down, threw in a snarky MC and added an actual undercurrent of morals throughout the story – an intriguing and infectious combination.
I’ve decided I don’t read nearly enough books from a male POV. Red Moon Rising was a fun read, in large part because of Danny’s narration. He’s every bit a teen boy with humour and hilarity, but his emotions run a bit deeper, and a little more subtle at times, though perhaps more powerful because they boil over at the right (or wrong – depending on how you look at it) moments. I think there’s a real theme of prejudice in the story, as well. Society has class divisions, certain species are considered subhuman, and frankly, this adds a deeper note to what could have very well been a shallow tale. I think the main highlight of the story was the developing relationship between Danny and his father though, and the internal battle for acceptance that Danny consistently dealt with. The only real qualm I had with Red Moon Rising was that the plot becomes a bit predictable after a while and let’s face it – I like to be surprised, and there were a lot of unanswered questions.
Overall though, Red Moon Rising was a great paranormal read, and it definitely exceeded all my expectations. I give it a strong 4 out of 5, and I’d recommend it for a YA audience (or upper MG), especially those who enjoy paranormal stories.
I received this ARC free of charge from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This, in no way, affected my opinion or review of this book.