Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Vampire Week: Review - Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer

Format: Paperback
Released: March 13th, 2008
Grade rating: C+

Amazon summary:

Thirteen-year-old Vladimir Tod really hates junior high. Bullies harass him, the principal is dogging him, and the girl he likes prefers his best friend. Oh, and Vlad has a secret: His mother was human, but his father was a vampire. With no idea of the extent of his powers, Vlad struggles daily with his blood cravings and his enlarged fangs. When a substitute teacher begins to question him a little too closely, Vlad worries that his cover is about to be blown. But then he faces a much bigger problem: He’s being hunted by a vampire killer.


I didn't enjoy Eighth Grade Bites as much as I thought I would, and I'm not sure why. Vampires are my thing, so add some humour to the mix, and on paper I should love it. Instead I found it a fairly hard book to get through, and finished it feeling little to nothing for the characters.

I like what Brewer tried to do with the humour, and I admit I did appreciate all the vampire jokes and references. There's something about a teenage vampire with a garlic allergy that made me laugh, and the fact that Vlad takes it all in his stride just added to the over all tongue-in-cheek feel of the story.

The characters are where my problem lies, which is a shame, because they had the potential to be really good. For me, they lacked any real depth, and I didn't come away from the book feeling like I really knew them. Maybe this improves in later books, which I am still planning to read at some point in the future.

The great ideas were there, I just don't think it was executed as well as it could have been. Still, it was interesting to hear about vampirism from a teenage perspective, and Vlad's father's journal entries interspersed throughout were a nice touch. Although Eighth Grade Bites was slightly disappointing, I'll give the next book a chance, and hope I enjoy it a bit more than this one!


So Many Books, So Little Time said...

It's a shame you did't like this too much, but I love the idea of a teen vampire with a garlic allergy! Hopefully you'll love the rest of the series!

SusanKMann said...

I don't think I will put this high up on my to read list, maybe once I have run out of vamp books to read. I will wait for your verdict on the next book before deciding. xx

Kate Evangelista said...

It's wasn't so good? To think I was considering it as a part of my reading list. Thanks for the heads up!

prophecygirl said...

Kate - I didn't personally love it, but you never know, you might! I'll let you know what I think of the next one when I read it :)

Nina said...

Sorry you didn't like it. It sounds like a okay book, but I'm not that much of a vampire girl. :)
Thanks for the great review.

Steph Su said...

Hmm, I'm glad I read this review. I was weeding through my TBR pile last week, and kept this one because I couldn't stop grinning and cracking up in the first chapter. Now I'm even more excited to get to it, to see if our opinions will converge/differ. Thanks Jenny!

Luisa at Chicklish said...

It's interesting to read your thoughts on this. The book seems so cute! Thanks for the review.