Review: For the Love of a Vampire (Blood Like Poison) by M. Leighton

Publication Date: April 20th, 2011
Format: Paperback, 270 pages
RATING: 2 out of 5 Stars
Ridley Heller thought that all her problems would be over if she could have Bo back;back from the dead. But what Ridley didn’t know was that her wish would come at a price.
Bo survived a condition that would have killed a lesser vampire, or any vampire for that matter. The only reason he didn’t die is because of who he is, someone Ridley doesn’t know at all. Someone Bo himself doesn’t know at all.
As Ridley gets closer to finding out Bo’s true identity, she discovers that loving him could also come at a price, a price much higher than she ever could have imagined. The question is: is there any such thing as a price too high to pay for Bo? For his love, for his safety, for eternity in his arms?

This book is highly typical of any vampire/human romance books I’ve ever read; where the girl is incredibly drawn to the mysteriously dark, brooding newcomer. So the story proceeds on like it should, wherein I fought off the urge to call it a Twilight copycat. But as I delve deeper into the story, I found that For the Love of a Vampire has its unique twists on the legends and the myths of this highly overused breed of monsters in the literary mainstream.

Ridley’s been going through life like a drone; on auto-pilot, and doing exactly what was expected of her. But three years ago, she was a different person. Three years ago, she’d probably been bothered with the latest gossips, fashions and can be found drooling over the popular guy. That was then, when her sister Izzy was still alive. Her family had drifted apart since Izzy died. Her mother turned to alcohol and her father have tried to stay away as much as he possibly could. Now, she’s existed by being invisible and being careful not to ruffle any feathers. She’s kept the perfect student persona, academically and socially. But with the arrival of a new guy, she’d been feeling more of a fraud than ever. There was something about him that sees through the facade, and the constant need to be near him confuses her to no end. As days go by, and as circumstances thrown the two of them more and more in each other’s paths, the pull was undeniable and staying away was no longer an option. There are a lot of things she doesn’t know about Bo, and there are secrets, if uncovered, could cost her her life. She was only certain of one thing and one thing alone: she’d do anything to save Bo from an inevitable death no matter the cost.

Well, fellow bookworms, I have found myself on the outside looking in again. This book has been getting some rave reviews on Goodreads and I’m feeling left out. The writing was pedestrian. The plot even more so. I did appreciate that the author tried to give her vampires a different spin but at the end of the day, and I apologize profusely for saying this, I still heard echoes of Edward Cullen’s inability to stay away from Bella Swan. The self-sacrificing, “I’m no good for you” syndrome and Bo’s stalker tendencies were still resonant of the sparkly one. Also, once upon a time, there was a group of ancient vampires that tried to live in harmony with the humans by establishing laws prohibiting the senseless killings for feeding purposes. I don’t have to tell you who they were.

I also found the introduction of the antagonist Lars to be lacklustre. In fact, he DID NOT SAY ANYTHING AT ALL until close to the very end. I don’t know, maybe it’s just me. But when you’re trying to develop an evil character, there’s got to be a build up – an attempt at manipulation of fear or the very least, intimidation. That’s quite hard to do if the character doesn’t open his mouth and speak of all the evil things he’d set out to do.

Anyway, I did say there were some good among the…prosaic. Ridley started off a jellyfish – an invertebrate. She’d kept her mouth shut through the queen bee’s every single diatribe. She tolerated her mother’s alcohol abuse and brush it off to grieving. Sometimes, her decisions didn’t make any sense at all. Like, going for a drive with an ex who popped her one and broke her jaw. So of course, the drive didn’t end well. *sigh* But she did wake up.  I felt a smidgeon of admiration once she did. She was fearless when it comes to saving Bo’s life regardless even if she knew it was a futile cause. But then again, this is a typical heroine MO isn’t it?

I like the intricacies with which a vampire gets turned. It wasn’t just a basic exchange of venom-laced bodily fluids. Bo could heal Ridley without turning her and the bond that exist between the drinker and the drink-ee.

To summarize, I get the allure of this book. The book just didn’t get me.

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