The Wannabe Vampire by Alex Taylor
ORDER A COPY: The Wannabe Vampire (Michael Alexander/Kari Logan)
Publishing Date: June 23, 2012
eBook: 168 pages
Rating: 3.5 stars
Michael Alexander is not your typical vampire. He has a house in a small coastal California city, a software development team in Mumbai, and a black Toyota Prius. He wants nothing more than to enjoy the pleasant life he’s crafted for himself and the friendship of Kari, his new next door neighbor.
Unfortunately, Michael also has a stalker. Bruce is convinced that only the power of a vampire can save him from the ghost that haunts him. After a chance encounter in the grocery store, he turns to Michael for help. When Bruce’s entreaties are rejected, his unstable nature takes over. Trapped between a desperate and deranged man and his fantasies, Michael and Kari are caught in the crossfire.
This is a short-story introduction to our characters Michael Alexander and Kari Logan. Kari Logan has just moved into the small middle-class California town. Kari doesn’t realize that her handsome new neighbor is, in fact, a vampire.
Michael Alexander likes his current life. He is the supervisor of a software company located in Mumbai which allows him to work at night. He enjoys his quiet life, snacking on odd human food and watching old movies. But Michael was not always a mainstreaming vampire. No, once upon a time, he terrorized the people of the European countryside, until the night that the villagers rose up against him and very nearly killed him. He has since learned he will live longer if he tries to live quietly with humans.
This predator is now being stalked. Bruce Thomas has spent his whole life being tormented by ghosts, but his vast internet research has shown him that the only being not subjected to ghosts are vampires; if only he could find one and get them to turn him. One fateful night, Bruce runs into Michael and he will do anything to get Michael to turn him and if that fails, Bruce will do what he can to keep the pretty Kari from being Michael’s next victim.
This was a very interesting read. Except for the trouble caused by Bruce, does it lack a bit of excitement since it was a set up story where we spent most of the time getting to know Kari and Michael and watching their friendship build. Lack of excitment does not mean it was a bad story. Michael is a bit quirky, but we are all creatures of habit and I guess if you live for centuries, your habits become more ingrained. He is more the guy-next-door than the usual larger-than-life vampire. We only briefly meet three of Kari’s friends, all of which seem very stereotyped, a hippie, new ager with her flowery dress and crystals, and a gay couple; and they disappear after helping Kari move in. Michael has no friends except for Kari.
Sadly, Kari and Michael’s relationship does lack heat. They become comfortable friends as the story progresses, and the lonely Michael would like to take their relationship further. Kari is moving on from a dangerous stalker boyfriend so she seriously weighs the pros and cons of a relationship with a vampire. This slow set up could make for a strong bond for our characters for future stories. We’ll see.
There is also an interesting set up which I am presuming is for the next story, and that is that only one person in the chat room seemed to believe that Bruce actually found a vampire, and that person was a little too interested; a possible vampire slayer? Or Michael’s maker? Michael appears to have no knowledge of himself. He believes he is the only vampire and doesn’t indicate either being born a vampire or being made and he has no knowledge about whether or not he can make a vampire or if it is even possible to make a vampire.
It was an easy read, and I am interested in seeing where the next story goes from here.
Received an ARC from the author. Thank you.
Click here for an interview with author Alex Taylor and you can learn a little more about his characters and where he plans to take them in his next books.
She rested for a few minutes, taking a drink of water. She started to chuckle, thinking back to her last movie night with Michael. They had made it a regular habit, but this time, bored with the idea of watching another movie, he’d led her the back way across a mostly-dry river-bed into the city’s largest park.
Following his graceful steps, she had stumbled in the dark, soaking her shoes. By the time they arrived in the park, she was breathless and laughing. She felt like a teenager sneaking out after dark. They weren’t supposed to be there; the park was posted with signs announcing its closure at dusk.
They had sat on an empty picnic bench, watching the moon rise. He told her joyful tales of hunting for hidden treasure with his childhood best friend. He’d lost touch with her over the years; last he had heard, she was happily married with two kids.
It didn’t take long before they were caught by a sour-faced lady ranger. She had whipped out her pad, ready to write them a ticket, when Michael proceeded to charm her socks off. He was visiting the United States on holiday; his English wasn’t so good, and he was so very sorry for entering the park when it was forbidden. His sister Kari, regrettably, spoke not a word of English. He spread his accent, thick, like butter, stumbling over the unfamiliar language. By the time he was finished, the ranger was twisting a lock of her hair around her finger and asking how long he would be in town. Kari had to bite her tongue to keep from laughing.
Damn, he was good, she thought.
Still giggling, she turned back to her work.