Sunday, December 28, 2008

Review:Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

Publisher's Summary:
The undead can really screw up your senior year . . .
Marrying a vampire definitely doesn’t fit into Jessica Packwood’s senior year “get-a-life” plan. But then a bizarre (and incredibly hot) new exchange student named Lucius Vladescu shows up, claiming that Jessica is a Romanian vampire princess by birth—and he’s her long-lost fiancé. Armed with newfound confidence and a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Teen Vampire’s Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions, Jessica makes a dramatic transition from average American teenager to glam European vampire princess. But when a devious cheerleader sets her sights on Lucius, Jess finds herself fighting to win back her wayward prince, stop a global vampire war—and save Lucius’s soul from eternal destruction


This book deals with a teenage girl who suddenly has to decide between her human normal life and one of extravagant proportions. Obviously, a hard choice.

There are 2 big aspects to this book, her human life and the vampire life.

Human Life. So complicated. So complex. As it is in real life, Jessica's life is hauntingly realistic. If you remove the vampirism from the book you have 2 people who do honestly love each other, but either don't realize it or give up on that love. Both move on in life, but this book captures the awkwardness, strangeness, and of course the regret that comes with lost love. So realistic and makes the book itself worth reading.

Vampire Life. This is where the fun begins. Having read so many vampire novels( you guys would know right) it all ends up the same in that aspect. You have to do something really spectacular for me to give you a check in the vampire lore category. Human girl and Vampire Boy-Done numerous times. Royal Vampires- See Vamps and Vampire Academy, heck Lissa Dragomir(Jessica's real last name in this novel) is the main character in that. The growth of fangs being used in a virginity type plot idea and warring clans. Now you have me paying attention. I'm obviously not bothered by reading the same plot devices over and over again-obviously since there is only so much you can do wit the vampire genre. However, I greatly appreciate an author going out and reinventing the genre for their own book. Ms. Fantaskey did just that. She turned what seems to be one of the most overused ideas in vamp literature into her own. I could go on and on but there's something I wanted to mention about this novel

The name is so misleading. To me when I read it and the publisher's synopsis I totally thought this was a Vampire Kisses-esque book, filled with Princess Diaries moments and all that jazz.

Instead you get a very dark, and painfully realistic novel.

Take for instance the cover, which depicts the 2 main characters dancing, Lucius with his fangs out. Not totally implying all fluff but with a name like "Jessica's Guide for Dating on the Dark Side" it just doesn't add up. Not a big problem or anything, but I feel the novel would do better with a title like "I am dark, and epic and you must read me" okay not really :) but you get the point. It's not a bad title-heck-it has my name on it, just not what I would have picked for the novel

Oh and another point. More props to Ms. Fantaskey for making her main character a size 10. It's so nice to see average girls in novels- not the "dresses like a frump but everyone thinks shes a model" type characters-that is so old and I appreciate it when a character is actually realistic, not a feeble attempt at it.

So yeah, I'm in love with this book. When I get caught up with everything else I've got coming up, I'm going to re-read it. I suggest it for all of my readers who want a dark and beautiful love story. I love it. It demands a sequel. And it might just be the last book of 2008, so.......It's a nice way to go out. And will be in contention for my favorite Vampire Book of 2008. Unfortunately, it will not be able to travel over to the voting contest over at Trainspotting Reads, but-I will be most sure to have it on next year. For those wondering about my reviewers choice of 2008. I haven't made any decisions yet but I will post the contenders in the next post.

Oh yeah, and you all know, when I love a book, I make a mini advertisement out of it. Which I did for this. Hope you like it.

Psst-next book is Lord of Misrule by Rachel Caine aka Book 5 in Morganville Vampires Series. I hope there s more of Myrnin aka my favorite and underused character!

1 comment:

llwild1992 said...

i read the book, awsome!