First in the Vamped contemporary Young Adult urban fantasy series.
After necking with Bobby Delvecchio in a closet on Prom Night, the car in which Gina Covello and her date, Chaz, gets wrecked and, unbeknownst to Gina, they both die. Well, only temporarily, for three days later, Gina scratches and claws her way out of her coffin completely ruining her manicure only to find Bobby waiting for her. Patiently. With several red shopping bags from Macy’s waiting on her.
Unfortunately, Gina and Bobby’s freedom doesn’t last long as Melli, the vamp who turned Bobby, wants him for his unique power so she can take over the council. Part of Mellisande’s plans is to raise her own army, which she builds by taking high school students.
Unfortunately for Mellisande, she disses Gina as unimportant. A disrespect Gina will never tolerate and so it begins with the Betsy-impersonation.
The main protagonist is Gina Covello. One of the reigning teen queens at the local high school. Almost as primary is Bobby, a member of the chess and debate clubs. Other than that, it’s the usual collection of warring teens with the popular fighting for position and boys and the meeker settling for being happy and safe.
Naturally the evil bitch-vamp, Mellisande, is evil to the max while her chief henchman, Connor, is a blank. Yeah, he’s plotting, carefully, against her but he’s not much of a conniver as Gina easily overcomes him. Melli’s remaining henchmen are rather cartoonish in their roles; I almost expected to see Wiley Coyote slamming into something.
If you enjoy MaryJanice Davidson’s Queen Betsy, you’ll love Vamped as it’s Betsy if she had been turned as a young teen. Obsessed with appearance and mad about shopping, Gina Covello has sass and attitude. And doesn’t hesitate to use ’em to get back her teen queen position amongst her peers.
I think what bothered me was this is all just too easy. Too teen-y. The lame name-calling didn’t help. Why was such a teen queen as Gina even in a closet necking with Bobby? What was Bobby doing there in the first place if he’s considered such a dweeb? Just why does Gina think Bobby is all that all of a sudden? Why did Mellisande let Bobby run around loose if he was such a treasure? Why engineer the car wreck that kills Gina if she’s a nonentity?
There’s no real drama or tension in the story other than the typical teen angst about who’s going with whom and who’s wearing what. I just couldn’t get excited.
The rules Diver begins the novel with are a crack-up…be sure your teenage daughters (and sons!) read these before heading out for prom!
The cover is fabulous! I love it! Bright red with a fanged teen mouth open as she reapplies her lipstick. As for the title, Vamped, we certainly are. Gina vamps us all with her kick-ass approach while dressed to the nines.