Vampire novels I have read – Ranked!

When I was writing my recent review of Vlad by Carlos Fuentes, a literary relocation of Dracula to modern Mexico, I was struck by the large number of vampire novels that I’ve read over the years, especially since I began blogging – probably more vampires than zombies, fallen angels, demons and perhaps even ghosts added Read More

Season of the Living Dead 2020

It’s October, the nights are drawing in, it’s raining and many of us will turn to reading choices to match that mood. I could sign up to the #RIPXV challenge, but instead I’m resurrecting my own banner from the dead to usher in my ‘Season of the Living Dead‘ 2020. (Search for that tag, or Read More

Book Group report: The All Souls Trilogy: volume 1

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness I have a confession to make. When this book was first published in 2011, I was sent a proof copy. I think that back then, I was a bit ‘vamped’ out, so I put it on the shelf – and forgot about it – until we managed to Read More

The Six Degrees of Separation Meme: Wild Swans

Hosted each month by Kate at Booksaremyfavouriteandbest, the Six Degrees of Separation meme picks a starting book for participants to go wherever it takes them in six more steps. This month’s starting point is Jung Chang’s wonderful memoir of three generations of women in her family, Wild Swans. I remember loving this when it first Read More

The Six Degrees of Separation Meme: Shopgirl

Hosted each month by Kate at Booksaremyfavouriteandbest, the Six Degrees of Separation meme picks a starting book for participants to go wherever it takes them in six more steps. This month’s starting point was suggested by me! Shopgirl by Steve Martin I read this book and saw the film last year – read my full review Read More

Annabel’s Shelves: C

This post was republished into my blog’s original timeline from my lost post archive. We’re up to the letter ‘C’ on my Annabel’s Shelves Project – and it was a case of if at first you don’t succeed, try again…. C is NOT for: Italo Calvino – DNF Oh dear, I tried and tried to Read More

Lighten up Anita

Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K Hamilton I am profoundly aware that I often read books in the wrong order. I’m not referring to books in a series here though – I always prefer to start from the beginning with them; instead I’m talking about influence. This means for instance that it was forty years before I Read More

A novel in reverse…

Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick This is a rather different kind of YA novel. The cover of the hardback, would have you believe it’s full of blood, and possibly vampires. Blood, yes – and there is a part with a vampire, but in reality the paperback’s cover with hares leaping around the red moon (below), gives Read More

The case of the randy old goats and the vampire!

Linger Awhile by Russell Hoban The ex-pat US author Russell Hoban, who lived in London,  died at the end of 2011 aged 86. He kept writing right up to the end.  I haven’t paid a visit to Hobanville in a while, and this short novel published in 2006 neatly filled in the gap between more Read More

One man against a world of vampires …

This post was republished into my blog’s timeline from my lost posts archive. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson I am Legend was first published in 1954; it was Matheson’s third novel. His fourth would go on to make cinematic history – The Shrinking Man would become a huge film hit as The Incredible Shrinking Man in 1957.  I remember adoring Read More

War & Peace – without much peace, but with added Vampires…

It’s that time of year again when I like to pepper my reading with a bit of blood and gore and undead creatures.  I won’t be reading all vampires and zombies – the plan is to alternate roughly, so do come back later if the undead are not your thang! My first book in the Read More

Gaskella meets … Charlie Higson

This post was republished into my blog’s original timeline from my lost posts archive Gaskella meets … Charlie Higson This afternoon it was my delight to accompany a party of boys from my school over to the Abingdon school theatre to hear author, actor and comedian Charlie Higson talk about his zombie horror series of books Read More

Sookie Stackhouse #2

Living Dead In Dallas by Charlaine Harris Living Dead in Dallas is the second in the hugely successful Sookie Stackhouse series of vampire novels by Charlaine Harris. If by any chance you’ve not encountered them before, either as books or in their TV incarnation True Blood, I suggest you start here with the first. In this second novel, Sookie is Read More

Black magic in Madchester

To the Devil: A Diva! by Paul Magrs. Magrs is the author of the totally wonderful Brenda & Effie series of novels, gentle comic paranormal mysteries set around Whitby – Never the Bride is the first, and I gave it ten out of ten – but don’t take just my word for it – Juxtabook and Savidge Readsboth adored it too. After so Read More

You’ll never look at your neighbours in the same way again!

The Radleys by Matt Haig Don’t let the next sentences turn you off this book, for I thought it was brilliantly original and I loved it.  The Radleys is being given the full crossover novel treatment with a young adult edition, however I firmly believe that it is an adult book (pictured) that teens will enjoy rather than Read More

More modern vampires

Fledgling by Octavia E Butler Fledgling was the last choice for the season of the ‘Not the TV Book Group’, and the lively discussion was hosted by Kim at Reading Matters. Published shortly before the author died, Fledgling is another different and slightly SF take on the vampire novel. Shori looks like a twelve year old black girl, but is actually Read More

Only for Twilight fans who need something else to read…

Fallen by Lauren Kate I wish I could say this YA novel, which is nominally about fallen angels, was new and exciting, but with every page I read I could feel the burden of it trying to live up to the Twilight phenomenon.  It was also very derivative: * A new girl arrives at a Read More

My Season of the Living Dead is over!

My month of vampire reading is over – Ended! Finito! I’ve read six novels back to back, mostly extremely enjoyable until I came to the last. Dracula – the Un-dead by Dacre Stoker and Ian Holt … Co-written by Bram Stoker’s great-grandnephew and a vampire expert, this official sequel tries to shoehorn in every single Read More

A chilling and contemporary twist on the vampire novel

Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist Translated by Ebba Segerberg All the other vampire books I’ve read in my ‘Season of the Living Dead’ have been rather cosy or had a good sense of humour. But then they’ve been mostly aimed at teens and young adults.Then I came to a Nordic vampire Read More

Sookie & Vampire Bill – what a couple!

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris The high-school vampire novels I read last week were but mere hors d’oevres in preparation for this – the main course. The Sookie Stackhouse novels have been given the HBO treatment by Alan ‘Six Feel Under‘ Ball, and are currently on our screens as True Blood, but before I Read More

Now I can see why teenage girls love vampires …

Although I have more of the same stacked up, (vampire novels aimed at teenagers that is), I think I’ve worked out why teenage girls love reading them… They have all the features of many traditional favourites:- set in schools pupilled with bullies, geeks, jocks, all the usual stereotypes are there; there’s good/bad, sympathetic/not teachers; an Read More