Keys to The Repository
Melissa De La Cruz
Published 2010 227 pages
Summary (from the book jacket)
Lavish parties. Passionate meetings in the night. Bone-chilling murders. Exams. The day-to-day life of Schuyler Van Alen and her Blue Bloods friends (and enemies) is never boring.
But there's oh-so-much more to know about the beautiful and powerful Blue Bloods. Below the streets of Manhattan, within the walls of the Repository, lies a wealth of revealing short stories, journal entries, and never-before-seen letters about the vampire elite dating back through time. Won't you come inside?
Keys to The Repository is a companion novel to the first four books of Melissa De La Cruz’s popular Blue Bloods series. Aimed at the YA market the Blue Bloods books follow the lives of a group of privileged New York teens who, in addition to being wealthy and good looking, are also vampires. The series follows the teens as they come into their vampire powers and discover that their privileged world is not as secure as they thought, with corrupt vampires at the heart of their society wishing to unleash Lucifer on Earth from his prison in the underworld. The mixture of wealth, fashion, parties, gossip with an end-of-the-world battle between good and evil is heady stuff – it’s no wonder that the series has so many fans.
The concept of a series companion, or guide, is one that lends itself well to fantasy series. There is always more minutiae in the fantasy world that the author has built than can be easily crammed into series novels – story off-shoots, secondary characters, obscure points of history or mythology – there is no end to the extras that can fill a fantasy series companion guide. This makes it all the more noticeable when there isn’t anything new or much “extra” content in one.
Keys to The Repository has little by way of new content. It starts with a recap of the story so far and then it moves into the character dossiers, supposedly the records of the Blue Bloods that the Wardens keep in the Repository. The character dossiers read like another version of the story so far recap but this time concentrating on the actions of individual characters. There is nothing here that the vaguely attentive series reader doesn’t already know and little new insight to be gained into the characters.
To the series reader, probably the most useful information contained in Keys to The Repository is the Dictionary of Terms which gives precise definitions of some of the terms used throughout the series but this is the sort of thing that a lot of other fantasy novels would include as a glossary with each volume anyway.
Keys to The Repository contains five original short stories but only one of them, Shelter Island (Dylan’s story) actually reads like a short story (e.g. a self-contained story with a start and a finish that can be read on its own.) Schuyler, Jack and Kingsley’s short stories read more like deleted scenes, in so much as they extend or continue conversations and scenes from the series books. Yes, it’s original extra content but extended scenes are not the same as original short stories. Wolf Pact (Bliss’ story) is actually an excerpt from a new novel, one that is a spin-off from the Blue Bloods series, so it isn’t a short story either – it’s more like a teaser for the full-length Wolf Pact novel. The only other new content is the first two chapters of Misguided Angel (the next as yet unpublished novel in the series) but this is hardly content that’s exclusive to Keys to The Repository.
While there is little new information or exclusive content in Keys to the Repository the book is a useful way to recap the events of the series so far. Hardcore Blue Bloods fans and series completists will no doubt happily lap it up but the cost conscious reader may want to borrow this from the library or purchase on special offer because there is little new content here for the cover price of a novel.
Note: If you haven’t read the first four books in the Blue Bloods series yet but intend to – don’t read this book before them. It contains spoilers.
LoveVampires Review Rating:
Melissa De La Cruz talks to LoveVampires about the Blue Bloods books and gives readers a hint of her future plans for the series. Read Melissa’s interview.
You can find out more about the Blue Bloods series and the other works of Melissa De La Cruz at the author’s website. Visit Melissa’s site.