Everything is in ruins.
A devastating plague has decimated the population. And those who are left live in fear of catching it as the city crumbles to pieces around them.
So what does Araby Worth have to live for?
Nights in the Debauchery Club, beautiful dresses, glittery make-up . . . and tantalizing ways to forget it all.
But in the depths of the club—in the depths of her own despair—Araby will find more than oblivion. She will find Will, the terribly handsome proprietor of the club. And Elliott, the wickedly smart aristocrat. Neither boy is what he seems. Both have secrets. Everyone does.
And Araby may find something not just to live for, but to fight for—no matter what it costs her. -Summary from Goodreads.com
Review: I loved this book, a lot more than I expected to. I love Edgar Allan Poe, and when I saw this book, I knew I had to read it. I wasn't expecting to be super impressed, since it's a retelling of Poe's "The Masque of the Red Death." Sometimes retellings aren't as good as you expect them to be, since the original is amazing. This is not the case for this book. It was amazing.
The storyline is not mostly about Prince Prospero, but instead through the eyes of a teenage girl living in his era. The plague has taken over everyone's lives, but, as the rich do in Poe's story, the wealthy party and ignore the dying people everywhere.
One thing that Bethany Griffin did do differently from Poe's story is that she developed the type of world that they lived in more. It's hard to tell whether it's in the future, the past, or an alternate reality like ours, but different. I liked this aspect of the book, because it kept me wondering. I have only recently heard of steampunk, but I know that this is definitely it. I loved reading about the different inventions that they had.
I won't say anything about the ending except for that it is a major cliffhanger, so if you don't like those, wait until the second book comes out to read them one right after the other, since it doesn't come out until 2013(bummer, right?). I cannot wait for the second one to be released, I will definitely be reading it. I would recommend this book who likes steampunk, post-Apocalyptic worlds, unique YA novels, or, of course, Edgar Allan Poe's short story("The Masque of the Red Death").