Survive the Night Blog Tour + GIVEAWAY & INTERVIEW

Title: Survive the Night 
Author: Danielle Vega 
Pages: 272 pages 
Published: July 7th, 2015 
Genre: YA Horror
Source: ARC from Penguin Random House
We're all gonna die down here....

Julie lies dead and disemboweled in a dank, black subway tunnel, red-eyed rats nibbling at her fingers. Her fingers think she's just off with some guy- no one could hear her getting torn apart over the sound of pulsing music. 

In a tunnel nearby, Casey regrets coming to Survive the Night, the all-night underground rave in the New York City subway. Her best friend Shana talked her into it, even though Casey just got out of rehab. Alone and lost in the dark, creepy tunnels, Casey doesn't think Survive the Night could get any worse...

.... until she comes across Julie's body, and the party turns deadly. 

Desperate for help, Casey and her friends find themselves running through the putrid subway system, searching for a way out. But every manhole is sealed shut, and every noise echoes eerily in the dark, reminding them they're not alone. 

They're being hunted. 

Trapped underground with someone- or something- out to get them, Casey can't help but listen to her friend's terrified refrain: "We're all gonna die down here..." in this bone-chilling sophomore novel by the acclaimed author of The Merciless. 

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**I received an ARC copy from Penguin. This has in no way affected my thoughts on this book**  

WARNING: This is a YA Horror novel. Although its intended age group is young adult, some imagery and things mentioned are more disturbing. I suggest you read the quote below to see if you're okay with the horror of the novel. That's as scary as it gets :D 

When I saw that Penguin was going to publish this horror YA novel, I was completely flabbergasted and rushed to get my hands on an ARC copy. Horror is super awesome to read and I love how I can imagine all the blood and gore. Now I had really high hopes for this one because Danielle Vega is no newbie when it comes to the horror genre. Her debut novel The Merciless had high ratings on Goodreads and from my friends, so I was more than confident that this book was going to give me the scare of my life.

As a warning, I know some of you readers appreciate your very beautiful and elegant writing styles which can be seen in some books such as Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone trilogy or the poetic style of Tahereh Mafi's Shatter Me series. The writing style of this book is generic and simple, nothing sophisticated, which I have to admit kept me asleep half the time. There's nothing really special about the writing style.

The story follows Casey and a group of friends that she chooses to go with to an underground club that plays a game called Survive the Night. Casey makes some bad decisions, and I feel like as a character who didn't hold a great reputation in the beginning, she began to pick herself up at the end and realize her mistakes. That's really all the character development you could ask for in a character who makes terrible choices. She redeems herself. The story itself was all too fast, I felt. There was no background information about our character other than that she was in rehab and now she was out. I wanted to know what happened before rehab and what occurred to get her in there. 

Okay let's talk horror. I can see why Danielle Vega is known for her horror stories! This book gave me the chills and freaked me out. Just imagine being trapped in an underground club, think sewer-like, with a serial-killer on the loose that likes to pull your intestines out and make a hole in your stomach. I bet the line I'll insert below will scare you!

"My eyes travel to the wound in her stomach. Raw meat stares out from the gaping hole. The flesh looks shredded, like it's been put through a lawn mower. Blood clumps around her ruined skin, and intestines drip from her gut in a gruesome, glistening tangle. I can see the moldy walls through the wound. Something tunneled straight through Julie's body.

Julie's body rocks forward again and a bloody eyeball hits the ground with a sickening plop. It rolls across the tunnel, stopping at the toe of my shoe. The familiar brown iris stares up at me." 

- Danielle Vega, Survive the Night
Did this imagery convince you to read this book?  

I definitely had my qualms with this book and it wasn't a perfect read, but it was unpredictable and fun to visualize ( I mean this in the non-nastiest way possible :) ). It was scary, for one thing, which I really enjoyed and feel like the people who want a scare are definitely getting it here. There is so much character development and because the group has to work together in order to get out alive, there is a lot of support from the girls and the guys. It wasn't a knock-your-socks-off-5-star book but I know all fans of the horror genre will love this and readers who want something a little more excitement than their mainstream fantasy read. I highly suggest giving it a try! 

Will you be picking up Survive the Night? 

Interview with Danielle Vega 

1.     Wow, a YA horror novel! What's it like to write in the horror genre but still keep the writing appropriate for YA audiences? Is it difficult?

It’s not as difficult as you’d think. Content-wise, teens can handle as much as adults can—most horror movies are marketed to teens, after all! I think the real difficult is in making sure that the fear comes from a place teens can identify with. Their fears are largely different from the fears of adults, and it’s important to me to make sure I keep the stories grounded in their day-to-day reality. I want the stories to be relatable! The scariest stories are the ones you can imagining being true.

2.     I'm a huge Goosebumps R.L. Stine and Stephen King kind of girl! What were some of your favorite horror novels growing up, if you had any? Any scary TV shows or movies?

I was a really big SCREAM fan. In fact, a friend and I wrote down all the lines from the first few scenes (this was before you could find any movie scripts you wanted online.) We’d each pick a character and do a read through of the script, and then we’d switch and read the entire thing again. Horror movies of the 90s were absolutely magical—I also loved THE CRAFT, and SILENCE OF THE LAMBS.

When it comes to books, I’ve long been a Stephen King fan, and I’m just starting to get into Thomas Harris. I think Gillian Flynn is one of the best horror writers today, and Mark Danielewski’s HOUSE OF LEAVES is still one of the only books that’s ever really scared me. As far as TV goes, HANNIBAL is beautiful and eerie and wonderful. I’m also a huge fan of PRETTY LITTLE LIARS.

3.     Do you see yourself writing in any other genres but horror?

I have a dark and twisted sci-fi book coming out next April under a different name (BURNING, by Danielle Rollins) and I can see continuing in that genre for a little while. But I’m a horror girl at heart! Even when I write something slightly different, I’ll always come back to the scary.

4.     I've never read any of your horror novels so I must ask: What kind of experience do you want your new/old readers who pick up this novel to get from reading it?

There are so many different ways to write a good horror novel. I see authors like Nova Ren Suma doing the slow-burn filled with creeping dread, or books like HOUSE OF LEAVES, where the horror is all psychological. My books are fast-paced, and I think they’re enjoyed best when read in one, intense, breathless sitting. I want readers to keep turning the pages to see what happens next.

5.     I've heard of your novel The Merciless. How do the two novels compare (The Merciless and Survive the Night), except from the fact that they're both terrifying :D?

Both books are about peer pressure and twisted friendships, and both take place over just one night but, other than that, they don’t have much in common. THE MERCILESS is about a new kid in town—Sofia—who falls in with a group of girls who seem cool, but have a wicked side. The girls kidnap another student at their school, and perform an exorcism on her while Sofia watches, horrified she might be next. SURVIVE THE NIGHT is about a girl fresh out of rehab, who immediately gets talked into going to an illegal rave—but the party takes a terrible twist, and she finds herself racing through the subways with her friends, worried she’s being hunted. Both books are visceral and fast paced, but you don’t have to read one to enjoy the other.

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