Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Rain and vampires... two of my favorite things...

Yesterday it rained!  Well sprinkled really.  But since it was the first precipitation in what seemed like forever, it felt like a monsoon.  And it was awesome.  I even had to go outside and roll my windows up that I had left cracked to avoid blistering burns from my black car interior.  And then, five minutes later, it was over.  L  Since I don’t have TV… and honestly, when the weather is dry and 100 degrees for so many days in a row, you just kind of figure that’s what it’s going to be again tomorrow…. I had no idea I should expect the rain to come back.  So imagine my surprise as I’m lying in bed… trying to ignore my cell phone that is already going crazy with emails and text messages at 6:45 am… when I hear a little rumbling outside.  Could that be thunder?  It is!  Yay!  Normally on rainy days, getting out of bed is harder than normal.  But not today.  Today called for a celebration.  So I continued to ignore the messages, put the iPhone on the stereo, turned the music up and danced around my house while I got ready for work.  I even got ready early enough to do a load of laundry, clean the bathroom and still get to work 10 minutes early.  Thank God for the rain and for my good mood today.  I needed it.  J
Because I’m having a shortage of exciting things going on in my life this week, today I’m blogging about a new book I just started reading.  I should preface this by saying that I am kind of a vampire fan.  I love vampire shows… from The Vampire Diaries on the CW to True Blood on HBO to movies like Underworld and Van Helsing (and not just because I might have a little girl crush on Kate Beckinsale).  No matter how cheesy, I still enjoy them.  Not the bloody, gory, nasty ones, but the ones where the vampires show their human side and you are able to get attached to the characters.  I rented the entire set of DVD’s from Blockbuster to catch up on The Vampire Diaries after not having cable forced me to miss a whole season.  I know… I’m that ridiculous. 
Now I will say that the Twilight movies are terrible, horrible acting and in many ways they leave out important parts from the novels.  But then maybe that is my problem with them.  I read the books first.  And discovered that I love vampire books as much, or maybe more, then vampire shows and movies.  I am a little ashamed to admit this, but I breezed through all four Twilight books, as well as read the start of the fifth one online.  Sadly, Stephenie Meyer never finished writing it, but she did write The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner… Bree was one of the young vampires killed in the novel, Eclipse, the third book in the Twilight series… and of course I read it too.  But before I read them, I spent many months after the books got popular making fun of all my friends who religiously read the books and bought their movie tickets a month in advance.  I assumed they were cheesy and childlike and not worth my time.  When my then boss came into my office to tell me how he just finished the series, I thought, “Really?  And you’re a guy.  What adult male admits that he read the Twilight books?”  And of course I teased him like crazy.  But being so sassy always has its downside… one night, while house sitting for my boss and his wife who were out of town, I got a little bored.  I saw the books on the shelf and thought, “If nothing else, it will help me fall asleep.”  That was at around 10:00 pm.  At 4:45 am, I was still reading.  I hadn’t put it down yet.  In that weekend I read all of books one and two and most of the third one.  When my boss walked into my office the next Monday I told him I had a confession to make.  He said he already noticed it was missing from the shelf and handed me the final book.  As you can imagine, all that teasing I gave him... he gladly returned to me.  So, after weeks of harassment and punishment for my judgment, I became an advocate of vampire books.  I’ve read several different ones in several different series since then.  None of them were as well-written as the Meyer’s series, but entertaining none the less. 
My older sister, Sarah, who also has a love for the vampire books, suggested I read this new series, The House of Night series by PC and Kristin Cast.  So I just started reading the first book, Marked. 
Marked bookcover
While it is probably cheesier and more juvenile then Twilight ended up being, I have really enjoyed it.  I did manage to read nine chapters just before going to bed last night.  Anything that can hold my attention for nine chapters without a break must be pretty good.  One of the things I like most about The House of Night series is that the vampires, or in these books, the vampyres, are all from Tulsa.  The story is based locally.  The main character attends Broken Arrow SIHS at the start of the book.  All the things they talk about are actual places, like Cascia Hall (where the vampyre finishing school is located), the Gilcrease Museum, Philbrook, the Ambassador Hotel… even the Little Black Dress in Utica Square.  While some of the elements are a bit fictionalized, they are actual places that I’ve been to, so there is an immediate connection to the story.  The characters are easy to get attached to as well.  While I’m not far enough in yet to give a book review, I am far enough in to know that I’m hooked.  I have already purchased the first six books and will most likely have them read by the end of the month. 
For more information on the books you can visit the House of Night website.  If you like to read, I would encourage you to check them out.  Don’t worry, they aren’t what Wes Craven and my mom think of vampires… vicious creatures who exist for the sole reason of killing humans… they are just like people, they just live longer and have different diets.  J  If you’re like I was at first, and you’re reluctant to admit you like juvenile vampire books, you can just say you’re supporting a local author… well… at least if you’re from the Tulsa area.  Otherwise you’ll just have to read them when no one else is around.  Save them for a rainy day... pending we have another one in the next couple months.  J

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