Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Review - Fake Blood

Fake Blood
by Whitney Gardner
Date: 2018
Publisher: Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers
Reading level: MG
Book type: graphic novel
Pages: 336
Format: e-book
Source: library

A middle schooler comes head-to-head with his vampire slayer crush in this laugh-out-loud funny graphic novel that’s a perfect coming-of-age story for anyone who’s ever felt too young, too small, or too average.

It’s the beginning of the new school year and AJ feels like everyone is changing but him. He hasn’t grown or had any exciting summer adventures like his best friends have. He even has the same crush he’s harbored for years. So AJ decides to take matters into his own hands. But how could a girl like Nia Winters ever like plain vanilla AJ when she only has eyes for vampires?

When AJ and Nia are paired up for a group project on Transylvania, it may be AJ’s chance to win over Nia’s affection by dressing up like the vamp of her dreams. And soon enough he’s got more of Nia’s attention than he bargained for when he learns she’s a slayer.

Now AJ has to worry about self-preservation while also trying to save everyone he cares about from a real-life threat lurking in the shadows of Spoons Middle School.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Awful, awful, awful. I would actually recommend that people avoid this one. Why? Because it's creepy as hell, that's why. I thought this was a contemporary story. And it seems like it is for most of the book. Which makes it really bone-chilling when the love interest (yes, in a middle grade book; that part of the plot seemed too mature... especially when these kids are finger-painting at one point) suddenly tries, in all seriousness, to stab the main character. Then the book devolves into absolute stupidity, with the teacher turning out to be a real vampire who was planning on killing all the kids. (Luckily, the protagonist's 15-year-old sister pops out of nowhere to save the day.)

I thought maybe this would be a book that showed the dangers of trying to change who you are to make someone like you. I just didn't think that it would show someone trying to kill you because you'd changed!

Oh, and the cheap shot at the French was just the icing on the cake. I know it's an American pastime to throw shade in their direction, but come on. This is a middle-grade book. Should we really be encouraging our kids to make fun of other cultures?

I'd give this zero stars if I could. Not even the pictures could save this one for me. The sooner I can get the taste of this one out of my brain, the better.

Plot: 0/5
Characters: 0/5
Pace: 0/5
Writing & Editing: 1/5
Illustration: 1/5
Originality: 1/5

Enjoyment: 0/5

Overall Rating: 0.38 out of 5 ladybugs

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