Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer (#1 in The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod)

Copyright: 2007
Publisher: Speak (Penguin)
Genre: Young Adult
Pages: 182
Challenges: Young Adult Challenge
New-to-me author? Yes
Author's website

Simple Description
Vlad is a vampire. However vampires are still a secret to the rest of the world so he has to act like a normal boy. Vlad isn't your super handsome, super popular vampire. Instead, he is the kid that the bullies pick on. He doesn't know how to talk to girls and other than his best friend, Henry, he doesn't have any other friends. He also lives with Nelly, his Mom's best friend. His parents died in a fire about 3 years ago. Vlad is able is go out in sunlight, as long as he wears lots of sunscreen. He does attend school like normal boys. But he isn't normal. He can hover and he needs blood to survive.

One day one of the schools teachers disappears and they get a substitute teacher. This teacher is rather odd and seems to know what Vlad is. Vlad soon thinks that this new teacher, Mister Otis, killed his parents. At the same time, Vlad has found a diary that his dad, Tomas, kept. He begins to learn more about vampires. It also appears that somebody is after Vlad and if not Mr. Otis, then who is?

Now what you really want to know…my thoughts:
I thought this was a great ya book! I loved that the vampire isn't loved by everyone and is somebody that is picked on my bullies. I like it because it's just different from the other books I've read about vampires. I liked Henry too, Vlad's friend. The jokes between the two are very funny. I also loved Nelly. She is a normal human who finds interesting ways for Vlad to get blood without having to kill anybody and to make it look like he is eating normal human food. Of course, Vlad is able to eat normal human food and even enjoys the taste of some of it.

Overall this was a very quick and enjoyable read. It's one I think a lot of kids would enjoy as well as adults, like myself. I can't wait to read more in the series! There will be 5 total, right now only 3 are published.

I also had the joy of going to a book signing for this author. She was great! She gave us some background on herself, about how she was bullied growing up. That's one reason that is a major theme in this story. What I loved is that the author really connects with kids. During the question and answer section several boys asked her how to treat bullies, since they themselves were being bulled. I loved that they felt comfortable enough to ask her this and that they wanted her advice. What a great role model for kids. Oh, and her answers were awesome too. If she is doing a book signing in your area, I recommend going, It was a great time and it was fun to see the kids so excited about meeting an author.

Oh, and the town that Vlad lives in is called Bathory. I haven't had a chance to play around on the authors website to confirm my thoughts but..I think that's named after Elizabeth Bathory. How cool is that! Oh, not sure who Elizabeth Bathory, click here.

Have you reviewed this book on your blog? Leave me a comment to let me know and I'll link it below.

Sorry, no linked reviews yet.

Happy Reading and thanks for stopping by……Kris

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