Reviews for Vampire Kisses
Booklist Reviews 2003 November #2
Gr. 7-10. Sixteen-year-old Raven is a Goth surrounded by "lesser" folks: her parents have transformed themselves from hippie to corporate, and her only friend at school is an outsider everyone picks on. In Raven's rich imaginary life, she is bold and special and in love with the idea of meeting a vampire. Schreiber uses a careful balance of humor, irony, pathos, and romance as she develops a plot that introduces the possibility of a real vampire--in the form of an extra-handsome boy, of course-- while exploring how a girl like Raven finds ways to cope with a bully who is both class- and gender-conscious of his supposed superiority. Raven's voice is immediately charming, in spite of her alleged bravado and coldheartedness. Her hometown could be any Small Town, USA, and its possibly haunted mansion just lightens the scene rather than making the story silly. This tale slides down easily and will be welcomed by Goths willing to look on the lighter side of their own culture as well as by readers who have an openminded appreciation for the vagaries of their peers and, perhaps, of themselves. ((Reviewed November 15, 2003)) Copyright 2003 Booklist Reviews
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2004 Spring
A goth girl living in ""Dullsville,"" Raven is thrilled that the new hunky goth boy might be a vampire--but will she lose him when he discovers her assumptions? Despite some snazzy dialogue, the plot is a lame contrivance, resolving when the town implausibly refuses to judge by appearances--a point undermined when the goth boy turns out at the last second to be a real vampire after all. Copyright 2004 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2003 July #1
An awkwardly endearing tale of teen angst and Goth romance. Vampire-loving Raven is a misfit in the town she calls "Dullsville." Her black lipstick, combat boots, and sneering dislike of her classmates leave her nearly friendless. Dullsville has only one exciting feature: the Mansion, abandoned years before. Now the owners have returned, and Raven has never been more excited. A creepy butler, a mysterious Romanian couple nobody sees, and the gorgeous teenaged son, Alexander, populate the spooky mansion of her childhood vampire dreams. Alexander is perfect-a gothic prince, a dark and broody knight of night, maybe even a vampire! Alexander seems equally intrigued by Raven, who knows it must be love. In a sweetly silly climax, troubles in Raven's relationship with Alexander allow the townspeople of Dullsville to show themselves as fun and decent people despite their suburban sameness. Cheesily written, but cute. (Fiction. 10-14) Copyright Kirkus 2003 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Library Media Connection Reviews 2004 February
Raven Madison is the sixteen-year-old daughter of former hippie parents now turned yuppies. Carrying on their youthful rebellious spirits, Raven decides in kindergarten that she wants to be a vampire when she grows up. Raven expresses her darker side by wearing black clothes, black lipstick, and combat boots. Life in "Dullsville" takes an unexpected turn when a family moves into the supposedly haunted mansion previously belonging to a Romanian baroness. A series of misadventures result in Raven being caught by resident seventeen-year-old Alexander Sterling. Alexander's dark good looks and lovely manners impress on Raven that she may have finally found her soul mate. They begin dating, but the relationship is almost destroyed when Raven takes Alexander to her school's Snow Ball. Trevor, Raven's nemesis for years, shows up determined to sabotage her happiness by convincing Alexander that Raven was interested in him only because she thought that he was a vampire. Alexander is humiliated and leaves Raven distraught. Almost too abruptly, all ends on a happy note as Trevor's best friend, Matt, sees him for the superficial ego-maniac that he is. This novel will be a good choice for young teens who want a light, eerie read. A combination of mystery and fantasy, the plot sucks the reader into vacillating back and forth as to whether Alexander is a vampire or not. Recommended. Becky B. Stephens, Library Media Specialist, Hearn Elementary, Frankfort, Kentucky © 2004 Linworth Publishing, Inc.
Publishers Weekly Review 2003 August #1
Readers don't have to share goth girl Raven's passion for vampire lore to appreciate her misadventures in Dullsville, a town "bigger than a cave, but small enough to feel claustrophobic." Growing up with her brother, Nerd Boy, and ex-hippie parents now bent on climbing the corporate ladder, 16-year-old Raven has always been a misfit. Alternately tormented and chased by popular soccer player Trevor Mitchell, Raven fears she will never meet a true soul mate. Then some ghostly pale Romanians move into a nearby abandoned mansion. While rumors regarding the new family's vampire tendencies fly around town, Raven becomes enamored with the hauntingly handsome son, Alexander Sterling, who rarely ventures from his attic bedroom. Some second-rate sleuthing around the mansion gets Raven in trouble but also wins her a date with the youth she rapturously calls "Gothic Guy, Gothic Mate, Gothic Prince." As in her Teenage Mermaid, Schreiber adds some refreshing twists to genre archetypes and modern-day stereotypes. Raven's ill-fated flirtation will bring more laughs than heartache, and if the ending is a bit rushed, elsewhere the comic timing is dead-on. Ages 12-up. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 2003 August
Gr 7 Up-Raven, 16, doesn't fit in at school or home. This goth-girl is obsessed with vampires and when a new family moves into the old town mansion, she is convinced that the son, Alexander, is a vampire. The story swirls around and through sibling rivalry, peer relationships, friendships, and love. Raven is a feisty protagonist with a quick wit and a real sense of self. She defends herself and her friends, often besting her peers with humor and a quick tongue. As her connection with Alexander deepens, she comes to understand her family better. It is through his shadowy character that readers are kept off balance. Schreiber weaves a tale that is more about acceptance and friendship than about vampire behavior and culture, and sustains a tone that draws readers to the characters rather than to horrific plot developments that would keep them reading. There is far less intensity than in Annette Curtis Klause's Silver Kiss (Laurel-Leaf, 1992) and less moodiness than that found in Amelia Atwater-Rhodes's Midnight Predator (2002) and Shattered Mirror (2001, both Delacorte). While the ending isn't tied up in a neat and pretty bow, it fits the style and tone. All in all, a good read for those who want a vampire love story without the gore.-Molly S. Kinney, Peach Public Libraries, Fort Valley, GA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
VOYA Reviews 2004 February
There is not much to do in rural "Dullsville" for a feisty self-proclaimed Goth teenager named Raven. She has always been fascinated by the abandoned mansion on Benson Hill, originally built by a Romanian baroness and said to be haunted. On Raven's sixteenth birthday, Alexander, a teenaged descendant of the baroness, and his eerie butler, Jameson, move into the mansion. Raven believes that she has met her true love in Alexander. He is different from her schoolmates, having traveled all over the world and been tutored at home. He is handsome, artistic, gentlemanly, very cultured, and a Goth like Raven. A rumor begins circulating that Alexander belongs to a family of vampires. At first Raven is thrilled by the idea, but she later becomes ashamed of herself and defends Alexander against the vicious gossip. In a rather odd twist, after the "Dullsvillians" have accepted him, Alexander reveals to Raven that he is a vampire after all. Schreiber, a former comedienne, writes a witty and enjoyable book. Raven's obsession with the "dark side" is a little over the top at times, and the other characters in the novel tend to be poorly formed. Nevertheless, Schreiber portrays the sexual tension between Raven and town bully Trevor realistically, and she captures Raven's bittersweet infatuation with Alexander in a tender way while keeping it innocent. This novel is more romantic than suspenseful, and will be especially enjoyed by female readers.-Dotsy Harland PLB $16.89. ISBN 0-06-009335-8. 2Q 3P J S Copyright 2004 Voya Reviews.