I’m officially 6 books down for the month, having finished Scott Westerfeld’s vampire novel Peeps. This is the second Westerfeld novel I’ve read this month, and I’m really becoming a fan of his YA books.
Here is the synopsis from Amazon.com:
One year ago, Cal Thompson was a college freshman more interested in meeting girls and partying in New York City than in attending his biology classes. Now, after a fateful encounter with a mysterious woman named Morgan, biology has become, literally, Cal’s life.
Cal was infected by a parasite that has a truly horrifying effect on its host. Cal himself is a carrier, unchanged by the parasite, but he’s infected the girlfriends he’s had since Morgan—and all have turned into the ravening ghouls Cal calls peeps. The rest of us know them as vampires. And it’s Cal’s job to hunt them down before they can create even more of their kind. . . .
Bursting with the sharp intelligence and sly humor that are fast becoming his trademark, Scott Westerfeld’s new novel is an utterly original take on an archetype of horror.
The novel really is a nice take on the vampire genre. It turns out that it’s a parasite that causes vampirism. It’s like the great-great-grandfather of AIDS, because it is sexually transmitted (and also transmitted through kissing.) Poor Cal is really sexually frustrated because he doesn’t want to infect anyone else.
I really loved the style of writing in this book – it’s almost casual like a conversation. The narration even refers to “you”, as the reader.
Scott Westerfeld had this to say about writing a vampire novel:
Maybe there are too many vampire novels, I thought. But that was part of the challenge, to see if I could do something that felt new and interesting, while still being full of bitey goodness. (Unsurprising confession: I am a Buffy fan.) So the book had to be original, but also icky, scary, funny, tragic, and (ahem) not sucky.
– Scott Westerfeld
I loved it! I give it 4 out of 5 stars and really recommend it to anyone who’d like a new take on the YA vampire novel. (I did some research and turns out this came out about 8 months before Twilight did, but don’t judge, I loved Twilight too!)