Thursday, December 18, 2008
Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantasky
I’ll start by admitting that I picked this book up simply because of the title (and the cover), which are hard to resist, don’t you think? So glad I did!
Jessica is a Pennsylvania teen who is good at math and is sighing wistfully over high school wrestler, Jake. But things change (oh, do they change) when Lucius Vladescu arrives on her doorstep from Romania claiming he is a vampire prince, destined to marry her, a union that will bring peace between two warring vampire clans. In fact, the promise of this marriage is the only thing that has kept a tentative peace for all these years. Did I mention that he claims she is really a vampire princess who was smuggled out of the country when her parents were being chased by an angry mob to keep her safe? And that her parents signed a pact declaring she would marry Lucius, the enemy clan prince, when she turned 18 to bring peace between thee clans. Of course Lucius is everything he should be, dark, brooding and gorgeous — but also arrogant, overbearing, and Jessica finds him incredibly annoying. And, equally naturally, Jessica doesn’t believe a word Lucius tells her. Who would? (OK, she knew she was adopted but vampires? Please!).
Lucius brings Jessica a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Teen Vampire’s Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions to help in her transition (full of tips lke, “just remember, girls: The young vampire is a predator by nature. Some boys may look at you not only as a romantic interest, but as prey!”). But just at the point when she thinks life with Lucius is what she really wants, not the nice, safe, relationship Jake could offer, Lucius changes his mind and starts dating Faith, the blonde, star cheerleader. How confusing is that? So now Jessica has to choose to fight for Lucius (if she really wants him), try to stop a vampire war (which apparently would decimate her clan), and try to save Lucius from himself.
There are many twists along the way, and the author (can she really be called Fantaskey?) manages to keep you guessing right to the end. A great addition to the ever-growing teen paranormal genre.