Friday 7 June 2013

Blood Calling by Joshua Grover-David Patterson

Lucy Leary's eighteen year old life is a wreck. Her parents divorced, she's earned a DUI, and her grandfather has died. He left her a single possession: A vampire slaying kit with a note that says, "They're real. Fight them."

Lucy finds answers in a place she never expected--the homeless shelter where she has to perform her community service. The Sundown Shelter is only open at night, and the man who runs it disappears during the day. But digging into the truth is dangerous. What Lucy learns will force her to abandon her life and confront an ancient vampire out to get her family.

I picked this up because it was a cheap e-book and I like vampire stories. And it was surprisingly good! Proper vampires that burn in the sun, some murderous and some with remaining humanity, that weren't romanticised. However, the story does take a turn that the synopsis does not mention, so look out for that! 

So Lucy was the typical female protagonist of a vampire story: normal looks, little anti-social, broken home life. But she wasn't anything special. In fact, she was a little annoying, rambling on about nothing when there was nothing else to say. Very much like real life, yes, but not dramatic enough for a vampire tale. Plus, half the time I forgot her name, but that's just because of the first person narrative. Her counter-part, sort of, was Wash, the boss at her community service homeless shelter, who just happened to be a vampire. Wash was pretty epic; a secret vampire that ends the life of those about to die. He gives them a chance, a painless death that also helps him - having never seen this before, I thought this was nicely fresh take on humane vampires. And then there's Emma, the other vampire. Her story was fascinating and a little heartbreaking, and although I kept forgetting she was supposed to be about 16, I really liked her.

The narrative is worth a quick mention: it was written in past tense, as Lucy was, apparently, way older and looking back at the beginning of her story. It was good, reasonably well done but I kind of forgot about it half the time which meant when future-Lucy butted in, I was a little confused. 

All in all, it was a good, funny, fairly original vampire story with some good dramatic scenes that were too few and far between the bore of normal life and hiding out in hotels rooms. Worth a try for paranormal lovers and hopefully would pick up speed in the next book. 

Published 11th October 2012 by Red Iris Books. 

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