Modern Vampires: Have I heard this already? Or, “How many freakin’ vampires am I supposed to care about?”

SO, when I get into something, I get into something. I can’t stop reading a series in the middle, for example, which probably got me into this trouble anyway.

A friend recommended the Twilight Saga to me, and I read them in quick succession. I don’t feel too ashamed about it. I can see their flaws, I can see why people love them, and I get a good laugh at the movies with RiffTrax. (And, I’m Team Switzerland, FTW.)

Since I fell in love with the Aurora Teagarden mysteries, I decided to try Charlaine Harris’s other, more popular series, Sookie Stackhouse/ True Blood. ← I was hooked, but not enough to buy the series… but I did obsessively read them, through various methods. (Yeah, I was a little nutty about it– I was frequenting the library, on-line library, and used bookstore, and it seemed like I had very little time between waiting that way.)

I read all of the Princess Diaries over the summer. Meg Cabot came out with a vampire book, Insatiable, that was in the on-line library. “What the heck?” I thought. “May as well try it.”

I realized my vampire overload may make for an interesting “Halloween-esque” post. I’ll go ahead and admit: I’ve never read Stoker, although I need to. Right now I need a break from vampires, big time. Because you know what? Modern vampire tales have a ridiculous amount of similarities. And to be honest, I’m a little over it. I had to laugh at a commenter on Netflix when they said True Blood copied Twilight in a lot of ways. Nope– Harris was on it before Meyer. But apparently, some elements have to be the same or else the universe explodes.

Let’s compare vampire tales and their heroines: Twilight (Bella Swan), True Blood (Sookie Stackhouse) and Insatiable (Meena Harper).

Ridiculous Simularities in Modern Vampire Tales

Supernatural powers of those attracted to vampires & vice-versa:
Sookie Stackhouse: telepath
Meena Harper: psychic (only can tell how people die)
Bella Swan: nothing interesting as a human, other than Edward can’t read her mind. (Does she have anything to read?) Edward et al. each have extra powers, though.

Vampires’ Inexplicable Attraction to Protagonist & vice-versa
Sookie: (hope this doesn’t ruin it, if you haven’t gotten past book 7 or so)… being with “supes” and vamps helps quiet her brain. She has fairy blood and apparently, this makes the girl irresistible.
Meena: I don’t quite get this, but Lucien thinks he found his soul mate. She thinks it’s nice that she doesn’t see immediate death in his future. ODDLY ENOUGH…
Bella: Edward’s after the mystery since he can’t hear her thoughts, and for whatever reason, she smells really good.

Love triangle
Bella: I’m pretty sure that’s the whole point of the book? Team Jacob/Team Edward? Of course, as one is a werewolf and one a vampire, they’d fight anyway.
Sookie: Look, the girl is making up for losing her virginity relatively late and taking advantage of not hearing their inner monologues about her fat thighs. She rarely stays with one guy (/supe?) for more than two books. For simplicity’s sake, the main triangle is between two powerful vamps, Bill and Eric.
Meena: Between the Prince of Darkness (son of Dracula) and a vampire hunter.

Governing Boards:
Twilight
: Volturi, really stinkin’ old vamps.
True Blood: There are apparently kings and queens of various states, sheriffs of districts within those states, and lots of politicking.
Insatiable: Um, Dracula’s family (although Dracula himself is disposed) is still very much in charge. Not to say there’s not politicking and fighting– there were two sons, after all.

Yeah, they like blood, real blood, but there are ways around that…
Insatiable: Blood banks, baby!
True Blood: Synthetic bottled blood.
Twilight: Animal hunting. We ate meat as humans, right? When Bella gets knocked up with mutant baby, they too “borrow” from a blood bank.

Myths, Revisted
Insatiable
: Actually, it appears to be a modern retelling of Dracula. Only big one is Lucien makes Meena breakfast, so the sun didn’t effect him– inside, anyway. Go UV protection. Some can turn into bats.
True Blood: Not many are really disputed; but they tend to get killed off like crazy, usually by more than stakes, the sun, etc. Don’t ask me to list the ways.
Twilight: Woah-k, so, sun doesn’t kill them, just makes them sparkly. Stakes are a joke, only decapitation, tearing up limbs and burning them really kills a vampire. No sleep.

What’s it like, dating a vampire?
Um, hot? In a really cold way, temperature-wise?
And you get a big target on your back and everyone wants you dead. Any questions?
Disclaimer: None of our heroines get the vampires that are going to drain them, etc. These girls only go for the tall, dark, and sensitive vampires.

Class Stuff: Due to sexual nature, Sookie will have to wait until later for the kids in my class. Twilight— I’ve joked before, kid-tested, mother-approved. I don’t know if middle schoolers would like Insatiable.

Academic Vampires: I do want to pass on another novel recommendation, The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova.  It’s a huge book, but I read it nonstop during standardized testing last year.  I wouldn’t have it in my classroom because it wouldn’t appeal to a middle schooler. It’s about the search for the historical Vlad Tepes.

Did I miss anything? You may add similarities from other series, but don’t overwhelm my brain. 😉

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