Friday, May 14, 2010

Review: "Bite Me: A Love Story" by Christopher Moore

In the past few years, I’ve often bemoaned the fact that the fantasy section of the bookstore has become more like the vampire section. While there seems to be a major love affair with vampires right now, I’m, quite frankly, sick of them. So it’s a little strange to me that I find myself immersed in three straight books that feature vampires. The second is Christoper Moore’s “Bite Me: A Love Story” ($23.99, William Morrow).

The book is the sequel to 2007’s “You Suck: A Love Story” and “Bloodsucking Fiends: A Love Story,” originally published in 1995. It continues to follow the story of vamps Jody and Tommy, a young couple trying to make it as creatures of the night in San Francisco. If you missed “You Suck,” don’t worry, a summary from Jody and Tommy’s minion Abigail von Normal (also known by her day-slave name of Allison Greene), leads off the book. It’s written in her own special blend of goth, valley girl and netspeak, as are all her entries throughout the book.

Abby, her confused goth friend Jared and her geeky boyfriend Steve, who she calls “Foo Dog,” have encased Jody and Tommy in bronze to satisfy her romantic notion of keeping them together forever. While they’re imprisoned in the statue, Chet, an unusually large stray cat, has been busy. He and his homeless owner were attacked by the master vampire that turned Jody in the previous volume. He’s been building an army of vampiric cats that are roaming the streets of San Francisco and killing homeless people.

Unfortunately for Abby and Moore’s colorful cast of characters -- including a homeless man known as the Emperor, a group of vampire hunters that work at the local Safeway called the Animals and a couple of local police detectives who are in on the vampire secret – the horde of bloodsucking cats has caught the attention of another group of vampires who have arrived in San Francisco to eliminate the problem and everyone who knows about it.

Like all of Moore’s work, “Bite Me” has a lot of fun with its subject. While still presenting an enjoyable story, Moore also makes a little fun of the current obsession with vampires and the conventions of the vampire mythos. While I have to admit that the silliness of Abby’s shallow angsty ramblings does get a little tired at points, I’d rather read them than the angsty ramblings in, say, one of the “Twilight” books.

While I much prefer when Moore takes on loftier subjects with his humor, as in my personal favorites “Lamb” and “Fool,” his work is always enjoyable. This one’s a quick, fun read that offers you a chance to have a laugh at the expense of vampire stories that take themselves too seriously.

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