Joy Randall's Top-five tips for vampire hunters:
©2003 Marthe Arends (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers
Smarmy lead guy with antiquated language "Baby" this and "Baby" that. Really idiotic leading female whom all the men in the story inexplicably fall head over heels for. One lonely vampire almost as an after-thought? This is a Vampire story. Where are the sexy Dark Ones?
This book is nowhere near the level of the books later in the Dark Ones series. I really enjoy Katie MacAlister. I think her writing is irreverent and down right laugh out loud funny. Maybe this book was written before she really developed her style.
If you've never read the Dark Ones before, start with a newer one. (I started with Zen and the Art of Vampire, because that was what Audible had before the first three were re-issued.) Then come back and get the first ones just so you can find out how some of the characters end up with their beloveds.
A smarter, more mature female lead. I read/listened to some immature, idiotic female characters before but Joy takes the cake.
Emma Galvin or Kristine Hvam. They're both awesome.
It was a fun story.
The best friend Roxy was also really annoying.
AKA The Geeky Blogger
Listened for Fun (Audible)
Tracking Books Read Review (Short)
Overall Rating: 3.75
Story Rating: 3.50
Character Rating: 4.00
Audio Rating: 4.00 (Not Part of the Overall Rating)
First Thought when Finished: A Girl's Guide to Vampires was a fun read and my favorite part was the friendship between Roxy and Joy!
Overall Thoughts: Fun! Fun! Fun! This is one of those reads that I had zero expectations going in and ended up really surprised how much I enjoyed the characters. I loved the friendship between Roxy and Joy and the chemistry between Raphael and Joy was hawt! I thought the story took awhile to get going but the second half really took off. I will check out more from this series. The epilogue was hilarious and perfect for Roxy's voice.
Narrated By Karen White / Length: 13 hrs and 19 mins
I like Karen White's narration. She is excellent at bringing to life fun, spunky leading ladies. She did a great job with Joy and Roxy!
Final Thoughts: Will have to work book 2 into my book budget!
Sassy dialogue, humor, and a great reader are important to me.
if you need laughs in your life, this is the book. You must be doing something that enables you to have the time to laugh out loud. This a light listen with core romance and mystery.
Humor and whit are the gifts Ms MacAlister brings to her stories...these are not FSOG type
material, just good old story telling that will make you laugh
Joy, her name tells the why. Her side kick made for a lot of laughs as well. If you want a complicated story, this is not for you. If you want to get an up lift in your attitude by listening to a core romance, this maybe for you.
I have purchase most of Ms White recordings as she has such a rich range and reading speed that captures written good humor. I found the MacAlister stories by hunting down what Ms White reads. Her US series are a lot of fun. Enjoy
yes, when Joy feels she is more important, than letting our hero keep his secret
Bad story, bad reading, really terrible. Kept thinking it would get better.... it didn't.
I love to read - but it is a pleasure to listen to a story that has a good plot, romance, intrigue and makes you laugh out loud.
CJ Dante! Handsome 900 year old dark one with a conscious first and Roxy, the life long best friend who tells it like it is!
When Joy and Rafael realize he didn't enter her mind or visit her early I the evening.
Time weighs heavy for the Dark One....and then... beloved.
I first started listening to Ms MacAlister with the "Dragon Series". I thirsted for each book as it came out. Always pleased with the product, I came back time and again for more. Those series (Green, Silver, Light, Black, etc.) were witty in dialogue, well characterized in number of distinct personalities, broad in storyline and worthy of the public acclaim that they achieved.
Then, having no more in that series to read, I started with some of her "other" Vampire books only a few of which were carried by Audible (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Fang, etc.) and found the surprisingly good as well.
When these 3 books came out in 2013, I was so eager to feed my habit that I did not even listen to a sample of the books, I just purchased them. These books, apparently all in the "Dark Ones" series (but neither labeled nor numbered that way except for this first book) are little more than formulaic with flat characters, shabby storylines and a blind of overly descriptive sex scenes that neither arouse nor deceive the listener into believing that this is up to the previous Ms MacAlister's writings. If these were her first works, I could allow that, as a beginner, she could in time grow to be the KM we all know. However, that is not the case and it appears that these works are merely trying to "cash in" on her previous legacy.
Needless to say I will not be following this series.
It's a VAMPIRE book and the vampire is not even one of two main charaters!
The premise of the series is supposed to be a vampire finding his one true mate. Except that's NOT what happens. It felt like a waste of time and money when you expect to get a vampire romance, and then don't get that!
I liked her performance fine.
If I could play editor, this book wouldn't have gone in this direction at all, or would have been returned to be rewritten.
If you name a book A Girl's Guide to Vampires, I expect one of the two main characters to BE a vampire.
No. The story is called A Girl's Guide to Vampires, but there is very little girl/vampire interaction. The only redeeming quality about this story was the sex.
As it turned out, I did. I don't really love her as a narrator.
It helped the bumper to bumper traffic stress, but otherwise it was not the best few hours of my time.
We read to know, we are not alone ~ C.S. Lewis
I should preface this review by saying that I have been a fan of Katie MacAlister (and her alter-ego for YA/Teen Reads) Katie Maxwell for a long while now: my daughter and I would pass her books back and forth repeatedly and read them regularly. So it was particularly wonderful to have won this AudioBook copy.
Significant parts of the story are told in the heroine, Joy’s, voice: smart, self-deprecating, funny and charmingly inept in relationships Joy and her best friend Roxy are off to the Frankfurt Book Fair, with a side trip to the Czech Republic to bask in and hunt down their favorite author, the reclusive CJ Dante, author of the Dark Ones series: full of alpha male vampires and the heroines who love them.
From one moment to the next, this story is full of gentle teasing and outright laughs: Joy is marvellously snarky and Roxy is a bit of a Chihuahua: tiny, mouthy and full of energy. Roxy also completely and utterly believes in the existence of vampires, and feels, from her obsession with Dante’s books, to know all about them. Her list of “how to tell if someone is a vampire” is quite amusing, and completely understandable as a reader who wants to be transported by every story.
Several interesting characters come under the scrutiny of Joy and Roxy: while Joy’s belief and patience for the poseur vampire Dominic is waning, her own beliefs are being tested as she is having visions and feeling ‘invaded’ by a distinctly vampiric male. There is also a traveling Goth Faire in town: and here Joy meets the man of her dreams in the form of Raphael: tall, dark, handsome and protective: he is the head of the security detail for the tour.
So we have Roxy determined to find a vampire and meet the author, Joy curious about and enamored with Raphael, a ringmaster/magician with fake fangs and a slimy bent insisting on calling joy ‘mon ange’ as well as several different nationalities and skills from the workers of the faire, the story is loaded with plenty of side stories and moments of interest. When a particularly distasteful and nasty ‘witch’ from the fair is found dead, exsanguinated and with her throat torn apart the search for the killer is all encompassing.
Narration is provided by Karen White who manages to slip in and out of voices and accents with near seamless precision: adding in a tone and breathing that emphasizes moments of exasperation, insecurity, tension, anger and even sexual frustration and satisfaction. The French accents are spot on, with a solidly Slavic intonation in the voices of Christophe and the police captain, and the smooth yet often frustrated and flummoxed British accent affixed to Raphael managed to convey him with panache. Never overreaching for male or female voices, all of the characters were clearly delineated and crisply delivered and added to the character visualizations.
Yes, there is a romance, but it is done in a uniquely ‘MacAlister” way: euphemisms are heavily used to allude to actions and parts, to great effect, as the humor with which Joy (and the author) see the world and their place in it is quite apparent. There isn’t a great load of drama or tension or even a load of angsty heroes and heroines in this series: it’s fun: it pokes fun at the genre, the readers and the characters as it presents a new series with a wonderful story and plenty of characters to learn more about. MacAlister’s books are light and fun reads: perfect diversions after a long day or to while away a weekend.
I received this AudioBook copy as a blog tour win. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
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