What would you do if you had unlimited power and eternal life?
Would you…go back to high school? Attend the same classes year after year, going through the pomp and circumstance of one graduation after another, until you found the perfect date to take to prom? Would you…spend your days moping and brooding, finding your only joy in a game of baseball on a stormy day? Or would you…do something else? Anything else?
The authors of this collection have a few ideas; some fanciful, some humorous, and some as dark as an endless night. Join us, and discover what it truly means to be “vampyre.”
Piper Maitland lives with her husband on a farm in Tennessee with three bratty Yorkshire Terriers, a Chinese Crested, and assorted farm animals. She has also written novels under the name Michael Lee West. Visit her online at www.pipermaitland.com.
The Science Behind the Vampires in Hunting Daylight
Bats, big teeth, and blood drinking are beloved staples of vampire lore. Classic literature and horror films have reinforced the immortals’ unusual qualities: they sleep in coffins during the day and stalk the living at night. If a pretty girl accidentally invites a vampire into her house, she can chase him away with garlic, crucifixes, or holy water.
When I wrote my first vampire novel, I wanted to retain the core traditions and debunk others. Since myths and magic arise from undiscovered science, I decided to combine these elements. Drawing from my background in nursing, I created vampires with a human-like physiology. They would have DNA, reproductive systems, and beating hearts.
REVIEW SUMMARY: A technically well-written story about vampires and the quest to stop AIDS, but over-description and a disappointing plot twist stole interest.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: A doctor adopts a Romanian orphan baby and discovers a secret that makes her enemy number one for a Mafioso band of vampires.
MY REVIEW: PROS: Well-researched in science, location, and vampire lore; visceral action CONS: Technical jargon slowed the story; weak characters; the turn halfway through removed almost all interest in finishing the story BOTTOM LINE: Probably looked good as an outline, but the execution failed to keep interest, especially after a midpoint twist threw most of it out the window.
Children of the Night begins with a preface of the author’s first hand research visiting Romania and historical locations important to Dracula’s life, and the tragedy of that country’s orphan problem. The story begins with a team of Americans visiting Romania to investigate the orphanage system in order to report back with recommendations for aid. The characterization is interesting enough to keep you reading, and when this section ends, the reader is left with a haunting revelation about the vampires’ plans.
REVIEW SUMMARY: Fans of vampire lore, calisthenics, and combat tricks will appreciate this offering from the creator of The Zombie Combat Manual.
PROS: Ma knows what he’s talking about, from his logical take on the Vampire myth to his no-nonsense approach to fitness in a bloodsucker’s world. CONS: Is sometimes too similar to the The Zombie Combat Manual, but since the books are meant to be part of a series, it can be overlooked. BOTTOM LINE: An entertaining concept, executed well.
There are three main threads running through this book simultaneously: a discussion of the “truth” about vampires, first hand “accounts” of survivors and ghouls, and an easy-to-understand guide to preparing for a vampire attack. The vampire facts weren’t that different from what gets discussed with some seriousness by people who think the Twilight movies were way off base. Obviously, vampires don’t sparkle, turn into mist, or want to have sex with you. According to Ma, all of those myths are part of a carefully conceived plan by the creatures of the night to confuse us humans.
Faith Hunter is the fantasy author of the Jane Yellowrock vampire hunter series and a long time professional fiction writer. Oddly enough, she also has a third shift job and considers trips to New Orleans to be really interesting, hanging out of the window like a pup with it’s nose in the wind, camera in hand, while doing vampire drive-bys. Including her other pen name, Gwen Hunter, she has over 20 published books in 20+ countries around the world. Her latest addition to the Jane Yellowrock series, Death’s Rival, was released by ROC on October 2nd, 2012. She is an original creator of and regular contributor to MagicalWords.net, an industry blog for sci-fi and fantasy writers. You can find out more about Faith at her home on the web, FaithHunter.net, or visit her official Facebook page to try and find Jane.
The Top 10 Ways To Know If Your Girlfriend Is A Vampire
I’ve hunted down a lot of vampires in the past few years. Well, on the printed page as my alter ego Jane Yellowrock, but who’s counting all those little voices in my head anyways? As a result, I’ve gotten pretty good at identifying who a potential blood-fiend might be. Today I want to share these potentially date ending, life-ending, and “why-did-I-just-spend-$100-to-go-out-with-her” ideas with you. It’s your lucky day!
10. The red wine that she’s been swirling in her wine glass for the past five minutes during your date looks just a little thick, just a little warm. When it splashes on the white linen table cloth the stain looks juuuuust a little too bright. And she’s not sharing either.
Keith R.A. DeCandido has posted the table of contents for the upcoming anthology in which he appears: V War, edited by Jonathan Maberry.
Here’s the description:
A sweeping, threaded narrative of the global phenomenon known as the Vampire Wars! Mankind is silently infected by a millennia-old bacteria unknowingly exhumed by a scientific expedition in Antarctica. Now, in some rare cases, a person’s so-called “junk DNA” becomes activated, and depending on their racial and ethnic heritage they begin to manifest one of the many diverse forms of the “others” that are the true basis for the legends of supernatural creatures. These aren’t your usual vampires and werewolves – it goes much deeper than that. Conceived by Jonathan Maberry, V Wars features stories from various “frontlines” as reported by such contributors as Nancy Holder, Yvonne Navarro, James A. Moore, Gregory Frost, John Everson, Keith R.A. DeCandido, and Scott Nicholson (as well as Maberry himself, of course). The result is a compelling series of tales that create a unique chronicle of mankind’s response to this sudden, hidden threat to humanity.
Charlaine Harris is a New York Times bestselling author who has been writing for thirty years. Born and raised in the Mississippi River Delta area, her early works consisted largely of poems about ghosts and teenage angst. She dabbled with plays at Rhodes College in Memphis, then switched to novels a few years later, and achieved publication in 1981 with Sweet and Deadly. She’s the author of four successful novel series so far: Aurora Teagarden, a lighthearted mystery series about a Georgia Librarian; the much darker Shakespeare Mysteries, featuring the amateur sleuth Lily Bard, a karate student who makes her living cleaning houses; The Southern Vampire urban fantasy series about a telepathic waitress named Sookie Stackhouse who works in a bar in the fictional Northern Louisiana town of Bon Temps and served as the basis for HBO’s True Blood TV series; and dark fantasy detective Harper Connelly. Harris has also co-edited four very popular anthologies with her friend Toni L.P. Kelner with another in the works. A member of SFWA, Mystery Writers of America, the American Crime Writers League, Sisters in Crime, Romance Writers Of America, Horror Writers Association, and the International Crime Writers Association, Harris is the married mother of three and lives in small town Arkansas with a house full of rescue dogs. She can be found online at CharlaineHarris.com
SFFWRTCHT: Hi Charlaine! Let’s start with the basics: who were some authors/books which influenced you growing up and in the course of life?
Charlaine Harris: Edgar Allen Poe, Charlotte Bronte, Jane Austen, Elizabeth Peters, EX Ferrars, Carolyn Keene, Shirley Jackson. Read the rest of this entry
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: A wampyr returns to an alternate history New York in 1962 and must decide his own future.
MY REVIEW: PROS: Excellent world building; sympathetic protagonist and interesting characters; the pensive mood; the stylish writing; although this was a welcome introduction into the series… CONS: …allusions to earlier stories probably means this isn’t the best place to start. BOTTOM LINE: Even not having read any of the other books in this series, I can tell that Ad Eternum is a story that gives its protagonist some much-needed closure.
If I’m going to start a new book series, my OCD dictates that I start at the beginning. There exists an irrational fear that doing otherwise will reveal spoilers for the earlier stories, thereby destroying the experience of reading those stories. This is, of course, a silly notion. Even if I could remember any spoiled events by the time I got around to reading them, books are enjoyable in a number of ways aside from the specifics of plot. Still, the only way I will start a series in the middle or end is accidentally.
And so it was that I picked up Elizabeth Bear’s novella Ad Eternum. I realized after I had already started reading it that the numerous allusions to the protagonist’s history probably meant I was late to the party. Sure enough, I learned that it’s the latest (final?) story in her New Amsterdam alternate history series where vampires (here called wampyrs) and magic coexist. By all rights, my OCD should have compelled me to stop reading it. But it was too late; I was already hooked. Read the rest of this entry
By Matt Cardin | Monday, October 24th, 2011 at 11:59 am
I love literary synchronicities, that tendency for oddly meaningful coincidences to occur in conjunction with books and authors. Everybody is familiar, for example, with the famous phenomenon of “just the right book,” in which a new book, author, article, or essay will spontaneously pop up in a person’s life and prove to be just the thing that he or she was looking for or needing to read at that exact moment.
So maybe it’s a fortuitous sign that a minor event of this kind accompanied my recent decision to finalize and publish, at long last, the following interview with Dracula expert Ian Holt, who, working with Bram Stoker’s great-grandnephew Dacre Stoker, co-authored Dracula: The Un-Dead, the official, Stoker-family-sanctioned sequel to Dracula published in 2009. It’s been many months since John DeNardo here at SF Signal gave me the welcome assignment/opportunity to interview Ian. It’s also been many months since I actually conducted the interview via an hour-long phone call. Soon after Ian and I spoke, I went on cyber-sabbatical, withdrawing from all of my online activities and going into hibernation for five months. So the recording just sat there untranscribed, with a truly fascinating conversation lying dormant (“sleeping the sleep of the undead,” as Charlie Brewster might say) in a digital coffin.
REVIEW SUMMARY: Matt Reeves remakes a masterful, evocative Swedish film for American audiences with a good deal of efficiency but without much subtlety.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Lonely, bullied twelve-year-old Owen becomes friends with Abby, a young girl who moves into the apartment next door and who is not what she seems.
PROS: Talented leads Kodi Smit-McPhee and Chloë Moretz in challenging roles; Matt Reeves technical prowess; script not too dumbed down for American audiences; a somewhat darker picture than Let the Right One In.
CONS: Not nearly as subtle as the original; too many nods to the original; use of CGI during vampire kill sequences.
When notorious outlaw Skinner Sweet is attacked by an old enemy (who happens to be a member of the undead), the first American vampire is born… a vampire powered by the sun, stronger, fiercer, and meaner than anything that came before.
Plus… Pearl Jones is a struggling young actress in 1920′s Los Angeles.
But when her big break brings her face-to-face with an ancient evil, her Hollywood dream quickly turns into a brutal, shocking nightmare.
This is the beginning of an epic new series, spanning decades and generations, and it all begins here.
The website includes a 40 second video (shown here) and other extras like a preview of the first issue.
Synopsis: After Professor Joseph Van Helsing (Peter Cushing) gives a lecture on Chinese vampire legend, a student informs him that the legend is true and that he knows the location of the village in the legend. The student asks Professor Van Helsing if he would be willing to travel to the village and destroy the vampire menace. Van Helsing agrees and embarks with his son, the student and his six kung-fu trained siblings on a dangerous journey funded by a wealthy widow (Julie Ege). The seven golden vampires, however, are acting under the guidance of Count Dracula himself, masquerading as a mad taoist monk.
Anything that mixes vampires with King-fu can’t be all bad, can it?
@Marooned: “Science fiction authors Michael Chabon, Cory Doctorow and Annalee Newitz have joined the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF) written legal objection to privacy flaws in the proposed $125 million Google Book Search settlement. “