Reviews for Team Human
Booklist Reviews 2012 July #1
Mel isn't against vampires. They are a recognized group in the U.S., and after all, they're just nice, perfect looking, superstrong citizens. She does have a problem with her best friend falling in love with one, though. As Mel becomes more and more wrapped up with her swooning friend, a mysterious town disappearance, and Kit, her vampire-raised boyfriend, she begins to accept that there's more to being "human" than a beating heart. Larbalestier, coeditor of Zombies vs. Unicorns (2010), and Brennan, author of the Demon Lexicon trilogy, write a witty, comedic parody that adds a fresh idea to the teen vampire novel trend. With elements reminiscent of the Twilight Saga, this is a funny and fascinating take on a society where vampires are legal citizens. For readers who enjoy the classic archetype of vampires but would like to see them plausibly fit into our world, this is for you. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Spring
Creating an original vampire story is a challenge, but these authors team up successfully with a new twist that retains the essential elements--romance, suspense, and danger--as Mel investigates the suspicious disappearance of her best friend's father. Stamped with Mel's distinct brand of sarcastic humor, this book is fearsome and funny, a fresh entry in the popular genre.
Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2012 #4
Mel does not like vampires. They're cold, they hate sunlight, and, worst of all, they have no sense of humor. Though most vampires in New Whitby are law-abiding citizens, Mel firmly believes they belong in the vampire quarter of town, the Shade, not mixing with humans. When Francis, a particularly irritating vampire with a stuffy English accent, arrives at her school, Mel is horrified to see her best friend Cathy falling for him. After all, their other best friend, Anna, is still grieving over her doctor father's recent disappearance with a beautiful vampire patient. Determined to stop Cathy from making a tragic mistake, Mel follows her to Francis's house in the Shade, where she is surprised to meet a human boy who was raised there -- a very hot human boy, in fact. Kit makes her laugh and also causes her to question her preconceptions about vampires. Creating an original vampire story among the plethora of recent offerings is a challenge, but these two authors team up successfully with a new twist that retains all the essential elements -- romance, suspense, and danger -- as Mel investigates the increasingly suspicious disappearance of Dr. Saunders. Stamped with Mel's distinct brand of sarcastic humor, Team Human is both fearsome and funny, a fresh entry in the popular genre. lauren adams
Kirkus Reviews 2012 May #2
Both lovers and loathers of teen vampire romance will revel in this hilarious satirical take on the genre. Mel might not exactly have her own life sorted out, but she's always been there for her BFFs, Cathy and Anna. She indulges Cathy's passion for history, ruins and old things in general; that is, until Francis Duvarney enrolls in their high school. Vampires may be both dead and deadly, but they are also a legally tolerated minority and even tourist attractions--and Francis, with his mesmerizing good looks and stuffy arrogance, is irresistible to an old-fashioned girl like Cathy. Meanwhile, Anna sees Francis as an unbearable reminder of the collapse of her parents' marriage. Mel knows her duty to both of them: prove that Francis is up to no good, whether the clues lead her into the city's terrifying vampire district, the school's rat-infested basement, or even the arms of a cute guy. While primarily an affectionate parody of the genre, filled with clever allusions and devastating snark, the story also sympathetically illuminates the allure of vampire romance, for characters and readers alike. In an unexpectedly poignant turn, it becomes a celebration of love in all its forms: crushes and spouses, parents and children, brothers and sisters, families born and created, and, above all, friends tested and true. Laugh-out-loud funny, heart-wrenchingly sad and fist-pump-in-the-air triumphant, this sparkling gem proves that vampires, zombies and even teenagers … at heart, we're all on Team Human. (Fantasy. 12 & up.) Copyright Kirkus 2012 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2012 May #4
Larbalestier (Liar) and Brennan (the Demon's Lexicon trilogy) affectionately poke fun at vampire tropes and, in the process, create a memorable story about love, prejudice, and the lengths to which people will go in service of both. High school senior Mel Duan is not impressed when a 150-year old vampire (who looks like a teenager and talks like a 19th-century poet) enrolls in her school. Sure, New Whitby, Maine, is known for its large vampire population, but the vamps and humans keep to their own. Mel finds Francis merely annoying until her best friend Cathy falls for him and decides to become a vampire herself, at which point Mel shifts into full-blown protective mode. This smart and entertaining novel--part Nancy Drew with vampires, part thoughtful and provocative story about assumptions--fully blooms in the second half. Themes of honest friendship and freedom of choice mix with zombies, accidental romance, a diverse and complex cast, and sharply funny dialogue to create a thoroughly enjoyable read with a core of unexpected depth. Ages 13-up. Agents: (for Larbalestier) Jill Grinberg, Jill Grinberg Literary Management; (for Brennan) Kristin Nelson, Nelson Literary Agency. (July) [Page ]. Copyright 2012 PWxyz LLC
School Library Journal Reviews 2012 November
Gr 9 Up--When Mel's best friend, Cathy, begins to fall in love with a centuries-old vampire who starts attending their high school, Mel does everything she can to prevent them from becoming a couple. Afraid of losing Cathy forever, and forced to face her own prejudices against vampires, she begins an adventure that results in mystery and romance. The story is set in a town famous for being founded by vampires escaping persecution; the cast of characters deals with typical teen issues while also living in a world with vampires and zombies. What really happened to their friend's dad, a vampire psychologist said to have run off with a patient? What does it mean to be human when you've been raised in a community of vampires? Is the chance of becoming a zombie worth the risk in order to follow your dreams and heart? Larbalestier and Brennan have created a witty story of friendship that takes place in a realistic fantasy world in which people can choose to become vampires as long as they follow the official government protocol. Not your typical vampire novel, this entry into the genre has a poignancy that is rare, coupled with a dry humor that is truly laugh-out-loud funny.Sharon McKellar, Oakland Public Library, CA [Page 110]. (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
VOYA Reviews 2012 April
Mel is a realist in an unreal town where vampires and humans have learned to cohabitate in relative peace. Unlike some of her fellow citizens, Mel does not yearn to work with or date vampires. In fact, when a vampire is a new student at her high school, Mel would like nothing more than to avoid him altogether. Unfortunately, Mel's best friend, Cathy, starts to fall for the new guy and begins talking about becoming a vampire herself. Mel also finds herself knee deep in solving the mystery of another friend's missing father, last seen with a vampire patient. Then Mel begins to date Kit, a teenage human who has been raised by vampires. Throughout, however, Mel remains team human, even as she comes to better understand the vampires who are so important to the people around her. What is interesting about this book is that the authors both uphold the conventions of the contemporary vampire romance and comment on it. The book remains sympathetic to the popular vampire story; Cathy's connection to her vampire boyfriend is depicted as legitimate, and so her conversion to vampirism is fraught but ultimately not to be read as a mistake. However, antithetical to the Twilight saga, Mel, our teenage female protagonist, is critical of the romantic vampire mythos, especially the pederastic relationship between centuries-old vampires and real teenage girls. In the end, like so many readers, Mel begins to better understand the appeal and her inevitable connection to vampires, though she remains committed to human endeavors.--Jennifer M. Miskec 4Q 5P J S Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.