Last week my latest Completist column posted to SF Signal, this time featuring Peeps, the young adult vampire apocalypse duo from Scott Westerfeld:
Vampires, we all know them and at one point they were supposed to be scary creatures that could take over your soul, drink your blood and destroy you. Well, over the years to say the vampire has lost some of its scary edge is an understatement. While Dracula did have some sexiness to him, the modern perception of the vampire is less scary and more sexy. Enter Scott Westerfeld and his two book series which includes Peeps and The Last Days. These books tell the story of a world on the brink of apocalypse, overrun by vampires, but not your average vampires and are rarely referred to as such. Rather, they are “peeps” as the title indicates, peep being a shortening of the term parasite positive. You see, in Westerfeld’s tale, parasites cause the stricken person to shun both the light and that which he or she loved in their previous life. Throughout the first novel Peeps, Westerfeld injects a logical scientific explanation for many of the tropes of the vampire legend. By doing this, Westerfeld allows the novel to be read on many levels: a vampire novel, a young adult novel [which it is marketed as], a horror novel (mashed up with science fiction), or a dark fantasy novel.
Also, my role at SF Signal has grown in the past few weeks. In addition to the occasional book review, I am now one of the Mind Meld curators for the SF Signal overlords John DeNardo and JP Frantz. As such, my first Mind Meld posted yesterday and asked the question:
Q: How long do you have a book before you read it? We, as biblioholics and voracious readers often accumulate books at a greater pace than we can read them. What is the longest you’ve had a book before you’ve read it and/or how long do you typically let a book sit before you read it?
The participants included:
- Ellen B. Wright, the Senior Marketing Sorceress for Orbit books
- My long time friend and colleague from SFFWorld - Mark Yon (aka Hobbit)
- Kristen Bell, purveyor of the fine blog/web site Fantasy Café
- Mark Chitty, another SFFWorld colleague, but he and I have been internet pals before he was writing for SFFWorld back when he was running the great SF blog Walker of Worlds
- Twitter chum Kathryn A. Ryan (aka @Loerwyn)
- N.E. White, Writer/Editor and fellow SFFWorld moderator and reviewer (and editor of the forthcoming Wars to End All Wars themed anthology (for which I'm reading some stories and doing some edits)
- Jennie Ivins, a fellow NJ SFF fan and one of the folks behind Fantasy-Faction
- SFF blogger and fellow beer aficionado Joe Sherry
- The great Sarah Chorn owner and supreme overseer of Bookworm Blues.