With all the teen angsty vampire books I bet you’re thinking, “oh yay more vampires.” This is true…it is more vampires, but what isn’t true of this series is the Twilight Saga sweetness that most vampire novels today embrace as standard. Let’s hear what our OBS staff member has to say.

Brought by OBS staff member Britta

Book One: Vampire Kisses Series

The mansion on top of Benson Hill has stood empty for years. But one day it seems to be occupied, and its mysterious, handsome inhabitant Alexander Sterling becomes the source of much talk around town.

Raven, a vampire-obsessed Goth-girl who has always considered herself an outsider in “Dullsville,” is determined to uncover the truth surrounding the secretive Alexander. As she gets to know him, and their spark intensifies, Raven finds herself in some unanticipated situations. Can Alexander make her lifelong dream come true? But love always has its complications-especially when it can only be awakened at nightfall.

Vampire Kisses is a very entertaining and lighter alternative to the more intense vampire novels of the genre. I will offer the warning that this novel (series) may not be for the hardcore vampire fan.

Raven is an interesting character to journey with because, she is headstrong, and has a handle on who she is. She can be a good role model because she does represent ‘outcasts’ standing up for their right to be different. I loved that she was Gothic, because this added a certain angst filled spice that would not have come across if she were the damsel in distress. The scenes involving playful banter with her younger brother, ‘Nerd boy,’ and tense flirtations with the popular star student, Trevor Mitchell, were the most hilarious and entertaining scenes in the novel.

However, I did find the Gothic philosophies, and constant allusion to vampirism a bit forced, to the point of borderline cliche. Raven’s desire to become a vampire, from the very moment she discovered them as a child, could have been more intriguing if it was not harped on in almost every chapter. Her obsession with vampirism later becomes the entire town’s obsession as the new neighbors arrive, and move into the dark mansion of ‘Dullsville.’ Raven is drawn to her gothic new neighbors, and more importantly, she is drawn to Alexander Sterling, the pale boy with long black hair, leather jacket and combat boots.

I was disappointed that Alexander was not introduced until the latter half of the novel. I wished there were more scenes that fleshed out their relationship, or gave us more insight into Alexander himself, and his journey. I will say that, even though their relationship did feel a bit rushed, it also flowed naturally, and seemed inevitable.

Overall, I rate this novel, on a scale from one to ten, a seven. It was very entertaining, the writing very sharp and witty at times. Most of the important character’s were round, and interesting enough to continue. However, the incessant push of vampirism and perpetual blackness seemed to dilute what could have been more mysterious and climactic in the end. With this is mind, I will say it’s worth moving forward to Kissing Coffins, the second novel in the Vampire Kisses Series, to see how Raven and Alexander’s relationship grows in the vampiric world.