Review: “Vamped” and “ReVamped”
Summer will be here before we know it. That means vacation and beach reading time! And what summer would be complete without a vampire to cozy up with? (We remind you that [[[True Blood]]] season 4 premieres on HBO June 26th.)
This summer, let me recommend that you bring along installments 1 & 2 of Lucienne Diver’s Vamped series (Vamped, [[[ReVamped]]]; installment #3, [[[Fangtastic]]], comes in January, but watch for her urban adult fantasy Bad Blood out June 28th). They’re upper-level Young Adult novels, but I say, why should the kids get all the goodies? And these vamps do not sparkle, as if, thank-you-very-much! These books are the paperback equivalent of umbrella drinks – sweet, tasty, gone before you know it, go to your head, and can’t drink just one!
So, y’see, there’s Gina Covello (Hey! Diver’s Italian from the ‘burbs—she writes what she knows and kicks it—y’got-a-problem-wit-dat?!), the snarky, high school fashionista and, well, she has a bad day and suddenly she is, indeed, a vamp. Now what?! No mirrors—how do you do hair and make-up?! OMG! ‘Cause it is All About Gina—only it’s not. After all, she’s got a posse—and an anti-posse of evil to defeat! She may be snarky, but she’s a righteous chick! And, of course, she’s got a heart-throb BF by the name of Bobby Delvecchio (“of the old ones”…nice pun, that!) and the road to romance and adventure is full of twists and turns and…stakes! ‘Cause who wants to spend eternity being bored?! A whole lotta vampy goodness goin’ on.
This is Buffy with a bit of suburban northeast True Blood and enough camp and character to keep even a drag queen happy, snap-snap! And I do mean snappy, like Diver’s dialogue. My few complaints (Hey! Nobody’s perfect!): there are moments by book 2 that if I see one more amusingly alliterated nickname for a character I will severely roll my eyes; not totally sold on the manner of death of book 2’s big bad, and I liked the first installment better than the 2nd. Otherwise, you get all that and a bag o’ chips: pithy pop culture references up the wahzoo, FBI, adolescent angst, vampire council intrigue, renegade psycho-psychic vamp with sire issues, raves, first bite, very special episode, prophecy, bad drugs, rescue missions, TV crews, car chases, great escapes, police, and a surprise appearance from a historic weirdo who just doesn’t wanna freakin’ die (but I won’t give away that morsel…wink)! What more can a gal ask for besides her lengthening mascara so she can bat her eyelashes fetchingly whilst kicking evil ass? Have fun!
- We are the Night (comicmix.com)