Friday, December 10, 2010

Cat the Vamp-Christine Martine

Cat the Vamp
Christine Martine
By Light Unseen Media, Dec 1 2009, $12.00
ISBN: 9781935303015

With the death of her grandmother, the parents of teenage Catherine Taylor explain her heritage that they concealed from her. They and Cat are vampires, a species that lives in secret amidst the humans.

Her parents take the stunned Cat to Blacklune Castle since she is old enough for initiation into the species. They leave, while she and others her age receive ethics training as well as use of their powers. Cat is shocked to meet Morgan, who has starred in her dreams. They become close but they also struggle with their formal education as each feels the glamour of their powers and a thirst to taste human blood. Cat and Morgan flout adult authority including admonitions from their instructor River while paying no heed to what their actions do to others especially their classmates. When they go too far and harm another, the pair finally learns what others had been telling them, but it may be too late.

This exciting urban fantasy places a wonderful conceptual twist on the vampire sub-genre by having the lead teenage pair behaving as juvenile delinquents. That fresh approach comes across as a two edged sword; the pair causes all sorts of rule breaking havoc which gets increasingly worse and nastier while teachers and administrators do little even when a major violation that borders on criminal activity of assaulting a human donor of their blood occurs. Still this brisk updating of Evan Hunter’s Blackboard Jungle into an urban fantasy landscape makes for a brisk unique thriller.

Harriet Klausner

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