Fright Court by Mindy Klasky

Fright Court by Mindy Klasky
Sarah Anderson quit law school after one year, and has been bouncing around jobs ever since.  Now, she has acquired a job she loves as a court clerk for night court in Washington D.C.  However, it all seems a little strange right from the start.  Her first night in the courtroom of Judge DuBois is anything but normal.  In fact, she almost dies when the defendant attacks her, and the Head of Security saves her life.  (And no, she doesn’t become a vampire.)  Read this book to find out what happens next!

It is actually a fairly light read that is perfect for the summer, or anytime you want a little bit of adventure and a bit of fright.

Summer Reading Online (Book 8 of 30)

Blood Diaries: Tales of a 6th Grade Vampire by Marissa Moss

Blood Diaries: Tales of a 6th Grade Vampire by Marissa Moss (2014)

This is a cute book that I would have definitely enjoyed back in fourth or fifth grade . . . I like to think my mom would have let me read it. (She was always pretty cool about letting my choose my own, but tried to steer me away from horror, and toward mystery.  Let’s just say, I tended to prefer more horror to mystery.   That has maybe changed a bit as an adult, but mystery isn’t always my favorite genre, but then I’ve mostly gotten away from horror as well.) 

Edgar is a vampire, as is his family.  Vampire children and adults can choose to age as they wish.  Edgar could choose to age faster and skip sixth grade at school, or choose to skip middle school entirely.  He doesn’t want to.  He wants to experience the same age as his human peers.  Some of his cousins like being teens so much that they just stay the same age for  years at a time.  

So what happens when his human classmates seems to discover that Edgar is really a vampire?  And that is against the rules of his vampire family.  He needs to pass as human.  What’s a young vampire to do?

Prince Lestat by Anne Rice

Prince Lestat by  Anne Rice (2014)

This is the book I have been waiting to read for a long, long time, like many fans out there. I tried to read it slowly, but I still finished it in under five days. 

I will not give away too much.  There are many other good reviews out there, as well.   I will say that I highly enjoyed it.  

Lestat has returned after many years.  Finally!  He has been hiding out mostly, but it turns out that his life has been busier than we knew.    There are also more vampires (particularly old ones) that survived Akasha’s rampage back in 1985 (chronicled in Queen of the Damned) and we learn more about all of them in the course of this book, too.   There has been some criticism about this . . . that we meet more vampires and other creatures in this book, and that there is not enough about Lestat.  Actually, this is one of the things that I loved about this book. . . we finally find out so much more.  Many questions are answered in this book.    As well, science finally comes into play, too.  There are now scientist vampires!  I really enjoyed this and felt like there should be more science.  (Maybe in the next book!  Anne Rice has reported that there will be a next one.) 

And, of course, Louis is in this book.  It wouldn’t have been right if Louis and all of the others were not in this book.   

I could probably be more critical, but I really do not wish to be at this time.   I love this book because I loved the earlier books twenty plus years ago.  I have not loved some of the other books Ms. Rice has published in the meantime.  I liked them, but it was Louis and then Lestat that I loved most as an older teen.    I loved this book because many questions there for years were answered. 

“Interview With The Vampire”, the movie, came out in theaters twenty years ago this month.   I did see it in the theater, as well. 

Q is for Queen of the Damned

Title:  Queen of the Damned
Author: Anne Rice
Original Publication Date: 1988   
Date I First Read: 1994
Basic Category: Fiction
(Of course, I just hadto pick this one!)
Basic Summary: The third Vampire Chronicle . . . it picks up where The Vampire Lestat leaves off.  Lestat is going to perform his rock concert, and every vampire is going to be there for good and for bad.  His goal is to wake up Akasha, the queen of vampires.  Meanwhile, there are the dreams of the twins.  What do they mean?   Maharet tells the surviving vampires the story, while Akasha sets out to bring peace to the world by killing off men.     
What I Remember About the Book:  I still re-read parts of this book regularly, but what I loved most about this book is all of the vampires that we’ve gotten to know in the previous two books, plus some that are new to readers, get together in a grand meeting.  I loved reading the descriptions of each vampire, particularly as Marius comes into the room and looks at them all in turn. 
What I Took Away From the Book:  If I am a vampire, it pays to know Lestat personally (you know, since Akasha generally spared those that Lestat loved.)  If I am not a vampire . . . well, don’t go to Lestat’s concert!
Rating (1-5 stars):  5

Teen/YA Fiction Titles Recently Read

First, I do apologize for not updating this blog in quite some time.  We moved 1800 miles from where we were the last time I posted on here.  Life has been busy.  My laptop also developed a severe problem which is still being solved.   This has been a mixed blessing.  Mixed because I’ve had less chance to be on the Internet in general, but good, because I have been able to devote more time to reading!  In 2011, I read 75 books in total . . . a very low number for me.  It is still November in 2012, but I am nearing the 130 mark in my total.

Here are some of the Teen/YA title I have read in the last six weeks or so (with a few comments):

Article 5 by Kristen Simmons – I started telling my husband about this one, and he said that it is good that we have such books.  It reminds us about how fortunate we are to have our freedom.   The US had been decimated in  a war, and now the President/dictator has made everything about “morals” and “family.”  But what is family, really?  And should single parents be punished unfairly for decisions made 18 years earlier?   It is a lot to think about.   I am looking forward to the sequel . . . which, according the cover, might take place in Chicago.

Ashen Winter by Mike Mullins – I also read the first book, Ashfall, earlier this year. I really liked the first book, but didn’t care for this second one nearly so much.  The first one ended much more hopefully, which this second one truly leaves the reader hanging after a lot of truly awful scenes throughout the book.  That said, I will read the third one when it comes out.  The whole story is about a teen who survives a lot of things after a giant dormant volcano erupts and sends the midwest into an ice age.
Here is my brief review of Ashfall:

Spookygirl by Jill Baguchinsky – After reading dystopian fiction, this book was a nice change!  I think my 13 year old niece would like this book.   A high school sophomore can see and talk to ghosts, while her dad is a mortician.   I really recommend this book for tweens and young teens.  It is a nice blend of the freaky, the scary and family and friendships.  

Courtships and Curses by Marissa Doyle – Historical fiction with a little magic.  It takes place in London during “the Season”.  Sophie has come out in society.   People are surprised to see her, and looking so good, because they heard she’d become less intelligent and “hump-backed” from her illness.  No one know she’s a witch, too, and Sophie thinks this doesn’t matter because not only did her leg (but not her brain or her back, people!) become lame from her bout with polio, but she thinks she has lost her magic, too.   I really, really enjoyed this book.  (I would actually recommend this one to my niece as well.) 
Yesterday by C. K. Kelly Martin – Another vaguely dystopian fiction . . . except much of the book doesn’t really take place in the future.  It is more about time travel . . . Freya now lives in 1985, but she knows something isn’t right.  She still has memories that were supposed to have been wiped, but they weren’t totally gone.  
All These Lives by Sarah Wylie – Not dystopian!   Dani’s twin sister has leukemia.   Dani’s mother always told Dani that she had nine lives because they’ve survived an accident years before.  Now, Dani believes that if she tries to kill herself, that she’d be able to pass her life onto her sister.   She survives every attempt, a little worse for wear.   Obviously, Dani feels responsible for her sister’s life.   Overall, a very well-written book.

A World Away by Nancy Grossman – Amish girl leave Iowa for the Chicago suburbs for her Rumschpringe! She is trying to figure out where she truly belongs in life, with a few surprises along the way.  I really enjoyed this book, and couldn’t put it down until the end.

Freaks Like Us by Susan Vaught – Told from the POV of a protagonist with schizophrenia.  It was quite an experience to read this book.   I highly recommend it.

Choke by Diana Lopez – A story about girls who are befriended by the new girl in school who seems very cool and rather exotic.  She always wears scarves around her neck . . . it turns out she chokes to get high.  I had no idea this is a “thing.”

The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle – I thought I would like this book as being a combo Amish/Vampire/Dystopian novel.   I am not altogether sure I liked it at all.  The vampires are very Stoker-ish or maybe they even reminded me more of the vampires in Stephen King’s ‘Salem’s Lot.  Which took me back to my young teenage years when I had insomia due to reading ‘Salem’s Lot at 9 pm.  I read The Hallowed Ones at night, and then was imagining all sorts of odd things . . . and the head of our bed is against a window.   Oops.   Maybe I would have liked it better in the bright light of a sunny day!  Pretty much, there is something like a vampire infection spreading through the country, and the rural Amish community is not safe from it.

Epitaph Road  by David Patenaude – I actually enjoyed this dystopian novel.   The premise is that less than a hundred years from now, a virus will sweep the world – one that only kills males.   Women will be able to rule the world much more peacefully . . . but not all is as perfect as it seems.   I recommend this one.

Adaptation by Malinda Lo – Aliens.  Sort of.   Not zombies.  I appreciate aliens more than zombies, I have discovered.  This is an interesting read.

Notes from a Totally Lame Vampire by Tim Collins

Notes from a Totally Lame Vampire by Tim Collins

I picked this book up off the new book shelf at the local public library branch. It was a vampire book I hadn’t seen before. It’s an easy, fun read. It is a juvenile/teen fiction title, but that did not stop me, of course. The author basically makes fun of all of the various vampire legends and lore – including Twilight. (Anything that makes fun of Twilight makes me laugh.)

Nigel is a nearly 100-year-old teenage vampire. He has been going to school all of this time, to blend in, but he slacks off in certain subjects (hey, he’ll be learning it all again in the years to come!) He still has the typical and not so typical arguments with his parents (after all, they are hundreds of years old). Nigel did not get the beauty, the speed, and the power that most vampires acquire when they become vampires. It may have been due to his age. When he is exposed to the sun, he even breaks out in pimples! So this is what makes him “totally lame.”

Because he has no natural vampire attractions, how does he get Chloe to go out with him?

This book is written in diary format (Nigel is a talented writer, painter and musician, but he can’t show his talents to the world, or people might become suspicious as to the family’s vampire natures), and really well done. It becomes obvious that Nigel has followed the times . . . he loves various video games and game systems.

I won’t give away the ending! I look forward to reading the sequel.

Untamed (House of Night novel, book four)

Untamed (House of Night novel, book four) by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast, 2008.

I read the first three books of this series earlier this summer, and then the fourth book came out. I loved the first book (Marked), while I felt the second and third books were just kind of. . . for lack of a better word. . . okay. However, I hoped that the fourth book would be better. I wasn’t holding my breath when I started it. It didn’t take long until I got into the book. This one “sucked” me in much quicker, which was great!

The series takes place at a House of Night, where teens and young adults who have been “marked” to become vampires (the marks a kind of henna colored tattoos of moons on their forheads). In this story, they do not have to die, really, to become vampires. Except, a new kind of vampire has formed. . . young marked vamps who did not survive “the change” and died. Except now the have bright red marks. . .

Zoe Redbird is the rising star – she’s already a full vampire with tattoos over her body that form with each accomplishment. She’s also only been marked for four months. She will be the new Priestess, and she knows that something evil is going on with the current Priestess. . . the question is, what? Zoe and her friends are back, after some major rifts, working together to try to solve the mysteries.

I really enjoyed this fourth book!

Evernight by Claudia Gray

Evernight by Claudia Gray (2008)

I read this book last week. It is a new teen vampire novel. I enjoyed it more than (*gasp*) Twilight when I read that book when it first came out. The author really sets up a surprise in the middle of the book that I did not totally expect, which made it fun to read. The story starts out with the main character, Bianca Olivier, moaning about having moved to a new school and how she misses the small town she’d grown up in. Now she is in a snooty boarding school where her parents are new teachers, and she has very odd classmates. One of the classes offered is “Modern Technology”, where the students learn about iPods and how to program a microwave. It turns out this class is for vampires who are several hundred years old who need a class to learn about technology. I found this rather silly, but the rest of the book was very good. I liked it better than the House of Night books I read earlier this summer. I did not like Evernight as much as the Vampire Academy series (I read the second book in this series earlier this summer.)

Undead and Unworthy

Undead and Unworthy by MaryJanice Davidson (2008)

Okay. . . This is the seventh book in the Betsy Taylor series. I did not enjoy this book nearly as much as several of the previous books of the series. Perhaps it is because a few of the characters died and because it just was not as humorous! Where was the funny quirkiness I’ve come to expect from the author? I just didn’t feel it this time. In previous books, the humor comes from ridiculous situations such as finding out that her newly discovered half-sister, Laura, who teaches Sunday School is actually the daughter of Satan, an extremely good daughter of Satan. In this newest installment of the series, I wanted to ask the figurative question: Where’s the beef?

The Fiends are loose. Their minds are returning and they are remembereing who the are. So . . . they want to kill Betsy, because she’s the vampire queen. It’s not her fault they were made into vampires, and made to become feral, dumb creatures.

The entire book was boring, with the exception of The Ant (her now-deceased young stepmother, whose body was taken over years earlier by Satan, gave birth to Laura, who was then given up for adoption) coming back to haunt Betsy. This is really the only fun part, to me, of this book.