Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Drink, Slay, Love by Sarah Beth Durst


Pearl is a sixteen-year-old vampire... fond of blood, allergic to sunlight, and mostly evil... until the night a sparkly unicorn stabs her through the heart with his horn. Oops.

Her family thinks she was attacked by a vampire hunter (because, obviously, unicorns don't exist), and they're shocked she survived. They're even more shocked when Pearl discovers she can now withstand the sun. But they quickly find a way to make use of her new talent. The Vampire King of New England has chosen Pearl's family to host his feast. If Pearl enrolls in high school, she can make lots of human friends and lure them to the King's feast -- as the entrees.

The only problem? Pearl's starting to feel the twinges of a conscience. How can she serve up her new friends—especially the cute guy who makes her fangs ache—to be slaughtered? Then again, she's definitely dead if she lets down her family. What's a sunlight-loving vamp to do?

Firstly, I just need to say that this is the best cover ever and I did guffaw slightly over the title. Shallow stuff aside I've got some serious love for this book. I expected a humorous take on the vampire genre and yes, there's plenty of that but I was surprised by how taken I was by Pearl. She starts the book as a cold killing machine but while feasting on the kid who works at the Dairy Hut she's stabbed by a unicorn. When she wakes up at home with her huge family we start to get an idea of how horrendous Pearl's life really is. Always on guard, weakness is quickly punished by her mother whom the whole family is scared of. Even Pearl's boyfriend Jadrien is a waste of good (stolen) blood. Always goading Pearl by trying to make her jealous Pearl is forced into situations where she has to use violence to prove a point. Talking things through is not an option with her family.

However, a miracle has occurred and Pearl can suddenly withstand the sun. This gift opens up a new world to her and she finds herself at high school on the orders of her mother. The vampire king of New England is paying a visit and it's up to Pearl to find the feast - her new friends are just the things to feed visiting royalty. Gradually though, like her appearing reflection, Pearl starts to feel for her human companions and isn't as keen as she should be to feed them to the king. I admired Pearl and her ability to withstand the pressure from her family to deliver. She also fits straight into high school and cuts a swathe through the cliques with her own brand of humour and idea of justice.

She gets to know the chivalrous Evan who certainly shows Jadrien a thing or two about how to treat women. She starts to feel for him despite her determination not to. In fact, this book has just about everything I enjoy with snappy dialogue, romance, humour but with an underlying finger on the pulse of high school and what it takes to fit it - plus what to do if you don't. I was pleased to be surprised by Drink, Slay, Love. Pearls journey from smooth killer to vampire who just doesn't fit in was a wonderful read.


Jenni (Juniper's Jungle) said...

That cover is brilliant! I like the sound of this, it sounds just that bit different from the other vampire offerings around at the moment.

So Many Books, So Little Time said...

Ireally want to get my hands on this as I LOVED Ice.

Ynysawdre Elderly Residents Association said...

Brilliant review - I really want this book now. Reading your reviews is bad for my bank balance :P