Welcome to The Dark Days Pact blog tour!
In last year’s The Dark Days Club, Lady Helen is one of many young ladies to host her coming-out ball during London’s Season, but hers is one of the few that ends in mayhem and murder, all thanks to her knowledge of a secret London society that protects humankind from the demons in their midst. Lady Helen’s debut is unusual, to say the least.
In 1800s Europe, ladies of a certain stature had coming-out balls when they were deemed ready for marriage. This was their official entrance into society and their introduction to the royal family. In the US, the elite had similar parties for their debutantes, called cotillion balls, in order to introduce their marriageable daughters to “polite society.”
In honor of Lady Helen’s egregious party and the January 31st debut of the second novel in the Lady Helen series, we’re taking a look at some YA balls/cotillions/proms that went appallingly wrong. So put on your long gloves and high heels and grab a glass of champagne, because you won’t want to miss the gossip at these shindigs.
Gossip Girl – “Hi, Society” (Season 1, Episode 10)
This show always delivered on exceptionally beautiful parties-gone-wrong, and season one’s cotillion was no exception. Serena’s grandmother was doing plenty of scheming and backstabbing, trying to keep her from no-society Dan by dangling Sebastian Stan in her face; Blair was torn between Nate and Chuck, and we pretended for a little while that she wasn’t going to choose Chuck, cracking his stone-cold heart; Nate punches Sebastian Stan (No! Not the face!); and we learned that Lily was bribed to leave Rufus all those years ago, breaking his super-soft heart. These people really needed to pace themselves as they had parties like this almost every Friday night.
The O.C. – “The Debut” (Season 1, Episode 4)
One of the more dramatic cotillions on the list, this episode really cemented The O.C. as a must-see teen soap and set up the expectation that whenever these rich Californians have a party shizz is about to go down. The teenagers provide the angst by constantly switching up their escort partners, but the drama of the episode really comes from the adults. Jimmy is exposed as an embezzler who stole more than a hundred thousand dollars from his friends in attendance and proceeds to get beaten up. Sandy also gets a punch in the jaw for his efforts to prevent Jimmy’s beat-down. Never try to stop a fight at a ball, ladies and gents. Just let it happen and take discreet videos with your phones.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer – “The Prom” (Season 3, Episode 20)
Nothing ever goes according to plan for Buffy; let’s be real. Surprisingly, her actual prom event is fairly uneventful—she even gets a touching recognition as the Class Protector—but the events leading up to prom are where things go off the rails. Buffy has to stop demon Hellhound foot soldiers (trained to attack people in formal wear) from murdering her classmates—all because a dork got turned down for a prom date. The worst part of it all comes when Angel breaks up with Buffy because he was
getting his own show worried Buffy would never get a chance at a normal relationship. He shows up at prom to give her one last night of high-school normalcy, but it’s all very bittersweet.
Gilmore Girls – “Presenting Lorelai Gilmore” (Season 2, Episode 6)
In true Gilmore Girls fashion, this debutante ball doesn’t have hellhounds or fisticuffs, but it does feature many gut-punching emotional blows. Emily and Richard are fighting in public, and this shocks Lorelai and the other society moms. Even though this is one of Emily’s favorite events, she finds thing after thing to criticize, until finally she cuts Lorelai with an extremely hurtful comment on her life choices and walks away. As a final blow, Lorelai finds out Christopher is dating someone else, even though they were flirting with each other all weekend. Ouch.
The Vampire Diaries – “Miss Mystic Falls” (Season 1, Episode 19)
Mystic Falls is always having some kind of Founder’s Day celebration, complete with a vampire lurking in the background ready to pounce. This episode takes place at the Founder’s Day Ball, featuring the reveal of Stefan’s dirty little secret about being back on human blood to Elena; the subsequent kidnapping, compulsion, and feeding on a deb by Stefan (bloodstains totally clash with her dress); and, once again, a swapping of escort partners, culminating in a prescient smolder-y dance between Elena and Damon.
Pretty Little Liars – “Game Over, Charles” (Season 6, Episode 10)
Being the season finale, this episode was extremely dramatic. The identity of A was revealed, there was an attempted suicide, murderous secrets were spilled, people got trapped in high-tech rooms, disguises were taken off, and character backstories were divulged. Plus, everyone was wearing dresses inspired by Disney characters, which, in my professional opinion, makes everything that much more theatrical. Certainly a prom people will still be talking about at the twenty-year reunion.
Dawson’s Creek – “Promicide” (Season 4, Episode 20)
The Creekers attend their final prom, but nobody, except for Jack, leaves happy. Pacey’s cruel and public breakup with Joey is just painful to watch. It seems like the height of sadism to humiliate your girlfriend at prom, on a boat, so she has no good escape route once it’s all over. Jen gets wasted and tries to jump off the side of the boat to avoid her own troubles, while Gretchen feels her twenty-something age all too keenly as she parties with these teenage drama-queens, prompting her to dump Dawson. Right when he thought he was going to get laid! Way to go, Witter family. You made this a prom no one will want to remember.
The Official Word
To find out more about the aftermath of Lady Helen’s coming-out ball and what it did to her society status, be sure to read The Dark Days Club sequel, The Dark Days Pact.
After the scandalous events at her presentation ball in London, Lady Helen has taken refuge at the fashionable seaside resort of Brighton, banished from her family and training as a Reclaimer with the covert Dark Days Club. She must learn to fight the dangerous energy-wielding Deceivers and prepare to face their master, the elusive Grand Deceiver.
As she struggles to put aside her genteel upbringing, Helen realizes that her mentor, Lord Carlston, is fighting his own inner battle. Has the foul Deceiver energy poisoned his soul, or is something else driving him towards violent bouts of madness? Either way, Helen is desperate to help the man with whom she shares a deep but forbidden connection.
When Mr. Pike, the hard bureaucratic heart of the Dark Days Club, arrives in Brighton, he has a secret mission for Helen: find the journal left by a mad rogue Reclaimer, before it falls into the hands of the Deceivers. Coerced by Pike, Helen has no choice but to do as ordered, knowing that the search for the journal may bring about Lord Carlston’s annihilation.
About The Author
Alison Goodman is the author of the internationally bestselling and award-winning Eon/Eona duology, as well as a YASF thriller, Singing the Dogstar Blues, and the adult novel A New Kind of Death (originally titled Killing the Rabbit). She was a D.J. O'Hearn Memorial Fellow at Melbourne University, holds a Master of Arts, and teaches creative writing at the postgraduate level.
Alison Goodman has a great eye for historical detail in this series! If you enjoy Regency England and paranormal secret societies, point your carriage to the nearest library or bookstore.
Click here to enter the publisher's Rafflecopter giveaway for a chance to win either one (1) grand prize set of Lady Helen books, including a paperback of The Dark Days Club and a hardcover of The Dark Days Pact by Alison Goodman (ARV: $28.98), or to be one of five (5) second prize winners to receive paperback copies of The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman (ARV: $10.99).
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on January 23, 2017 and 12:00 AM on February 13, 2017. Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about February 14, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.
Look over the rest of the blog tour to get yourself in the Regency-reading mood:
1/23 – A Page With a View – Like/Try/Why
1/24 – Tales of a Ravenous Reader – Interview
1/25 – Twinning for Books – Review + Mood Board
1/26 – My Friends Are Fiction – Guest Post
1/27 – In Wonderland – Review
1/30 – Alexa Loves Books – Bookish Style File
1/31 – The Reading Nook Reviews – Interview
2/1 – Xpresso Reads – Playlist
2/2 – The YA Book Traveler – They Did What?!
2/3 – Icey Books – Guest Post
2/6 – YA Book Central – Excerpt
2/7 – Fiction Fare – Guest Post
2/8 – Forever Young Adult – You’re here!
2/9 – Dark Faerie Tales – Interview
2/10 – Adventures of a Book Junkie – Reasons to Read
Join us tomorrow for my full report on the book! Click here to read my full report on The Dark Days Pact! And let us know which is your favorite YA debutante ball below.