by Flynn Meany
Reading Grade: YA
Publishing Type: traditional
Publication Date: October 2010
Source: public library
Rated: Teen (14+)
Some vampires are good. Some are evil. Some are faking it to get girls. Awkward and allergic to the sun, sixteen-year-old Finbar Frame never gets the girl. But when he notices that all the female students at his school are obsessed with a vampire romance novel called Bloodthirsty, Finbar decides to boldly go where no sane guy has gone before--he becomes a vampire, minus the whole blood sucking part. With his brooding nature and weirdly pale skin, it's surprisingly easy for Finbar to pretend to be paranormal. But, when he meets the one girl who just might like him for who he really is, he discovers that his life as a pseudo-vampire is more complicated than he expected. This hilarious debut novel is for anyone who believes that sometimes even nice guys—without sharp teeth or sparkly skin—can get the girl.
Bloodthirsty really isn't “paranormal” fiction, but because it at least mocks vampire fiction the same way Northanger Abbey by Jane Austin mocks 18th century gothic literature, or even how Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes mocks knight-errant fiction (popular in his time), I feel this book belongs on my blog. And, I just really wanted to read a book with a premise like this one.
This book was hilarious pretty much the entire way through! I think it took me longer to read because I had to pause to laugh so many times. The protagonist is Finbar Frame, a 16-year-old boy, also called “Finn”. He goes to an all-boys Catholic school in Indiana and is basically considered a total loser/geek. He has no friends, and to top it off, he has a very good-looking, popular jock fraternal twin brother named Luke who is his opposite in every way. That's so not fair!
They move to New York City for their junior year of high school, and, thankfully, he and Luke end up going to different schools. Finbar starts to notice that vampire romance fiction is really, really popular with all the girls at school ('cause it's in everyone's face 24/7. Even we know how that is). He also notices how a few not-so-right-in-the-head girls actually believe vampires exist. Or, at least, they can be made to believe that quite easily. He decides to use his own weaknesses, very pale skin, being a loner, having a sun allergy, to create an opportunity to make the girls at his new school believe he is a real vampire. This guy's out to get some tail however he can.
He ends up making some friends-that-are-girls for the first time in his life, and discovers something perfectly befitting the after-school special: that your real friends will always like you for who you are on the inside. Aww... But, it really is a great story. The characters are colorful and realistic. Finn is super funny and his mom is hysterical—nearly worthwhile enough to make me read the book solely for her (although, she's a minor character).
This book is great for those who hate vampire fiction and are tired of the Twilight fad. But, it's also great for those who love it, so long as they don't take their sparkly vamps too seriously.
My score: 4 out of 5 stars