Reviews of children's and young adult books old and new

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hybrid Vampires are the Best

Vampire Island by Adele Griffin

The Livingstone Family fled the Old World to New York City to escape the dangers that existed for them as hybrid vampires. In the new world they stick to a strictly vegetarian diet but some of their more vampire like traits come out every now and then. Even though Lexie, Maddy, and Hudson are all over four hundred years old they still have to go to school and try their best to fit in. Each sibling has his or her own problem to deal with in this book and we get to go along for the ride as Lexie navigates her first crush, Maddy tries to convince her family that the neighbors are pure blood vampires intent on killing them all, and Hudson tries to save the planet by bullying his fellow fourth graders to recycle and conserve resources. As hybrids they only need a small amount of animal blood to survive but they still have some super human qualities that are often hard to hide.

This book is great fun. I loved the characters that Griffin creates. It is a new look at what it would be like to be over four hundred years old, have some super powers, and have to deal with middle school. In the new world the vampires give up their immortality and start to age normally, I thought that was the one sad aspect of the book. However after living for over 400 years the family might be ready for some more normal aging. Each Livingstone sibling is very different and has his or her own quirks and hang ups about this new life. I like that we get to see the kids try and figure out how to live and make friends in this new environment. My favorite character would have to be Maddy, she is the middle child and has a slightly aggressive view of the world, which in the end serves her well but could also be her greatest liability should she develop into too much of a hunter. I am excited to read how the characters continue to grow and figure out living in the modern New York City. Recommend for girls ages 8-12.

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