Saturday, November 21, 2009

Book Review: Pretty Dead by Francesca Lia Block

Charlotte Emerson is a vampire. But immortality isn't all it's cracked up to be. The girl who has everything (a villa on the cliffs overlooking the Pacific, closets full of designer clothes, shoes and handbags), Charlotte suddenly has nothing when her one and only friend, Emily, is found dead in her bathtub, an apparent suicide. Lonely before she became friends with Emily, Charlotte is devasted by her loss, sunk deep into her own isolation. The only thing she wants, she can't have - to be human again.

Charlotte isn't the only one missing Emily - Emily's boyfriend, Jared, also can't recover from her death. So much so that Charlotte, worried, starts following him around to make sure that he doesn't try to join Emily in death. And it helps that when she's with Jared, Charlotte feels almost alive, for the first time since she was created, 100 years ago.

But then Charlotte's maker, William, who she ran away from years earlier, reappears in her life, and strange things begin to happen. A broken nail. A blush. A zit. Things that only happen to living girls. And Charlotte begins to wonder if the thing she wants most of all, the one thing a vampire girl can't have, might just be within her reach.

This lush, romantic tale is much, much more than just another vampire novel. This is the story of a girl who's pretty dead, and discovers that she might just be able to wake up. The story of a girl living an opulent, never-ending life of wealth and riches, but a life without love and companionship, who finds that perhaps, love is all she needs. Step into Charlotte's world, where Francesca Lia Block makes sadness and loss is a tangible thing, and the hope of humanity all that there is to want.

(now reading Spout by Dale Peck and laughing out loud!)

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