Wednesday, June 25, 2008

"Sucks to Be Me" Does anything But!

Sucks to Be Me by Kimberly Pauley
Publisher: Mirrorstone (August 26, 2008)
Series: Sucks to Be Me, 1
Genre: YA


Mina Hamilton's parents want her dead. (Or undead to be precise.) They're vampires, and like it or not, Mina must decide whether to become a vampire herself. But Mina's more interested in hanging out with best friend Serena and trying to catch the eye of the too-hot-for-high-school Nathan Able than in the vampire training classes she's being forced to take. How's a girl supposed to find the perfect prom date and pass third-year French when her mom and dad are breathing down her neck--literally?


Where to Buy*:
Amazon | Kindle | BN | NOOK
More Info:

My Review:

When I requested Sucks to be Me through LibraryThing's Early Reviewer's Group, I didn't really think that: A) I would actually get the book or B) Really like the book. I mean, it's about vampires, which I love, hence the reason I requested it (well, okay, I mainly requested it because nothing else really looked good that month...), but I noticed afterwards that it was written for a younger age group-- it recommends the age group of '12 and up'-- and it's not that thick, which is another thing that usually bugs me. Now, I don't mind books written for teens-- more along the lines of 16+ -- but younger than that, and it seems like it'll be.. Oh, I don't know.. Not very interesting? But when I finally got Sucks to be Me in the mail, I was excited and, as I started reading it, very surprised: I actually really liked this book!

The first thing that really grabbed my attention in this book was on the first page. And no, it was not the introduction, which is what usually does the trick. No, it was a sentence a few paragraph's down, when Mina is talking about how her father, a vampire, is nothing like the vampires Hollywood and literature has lead us to believe: "He wouldn't know (or care) who Stephenie Meyer was if she came up and bit him."  This was one of the first things that made me start to like the book. Maybe it's an odd reason, but it was one of mine nonetheless.

The book is written almost like a journal of Mina's thoughts and actions. Mina is just about like every other regular teenager in the country: she has parents that she is not always happy with, she has to worry about school work, friends, and her love life (or lack thereof), and, oh yeah, the fact that her parents and uncle are vampires-- and now she has a little over a month to decide if she wishes to become one also! Okay, so maybe she's not so normal.. but she is still human, and she does still have some of the same problems anyone else would!

Mina is always telling the readers just how wrong our views on vampires are: they can go out in sunlight, though they get bad sunburns; they can eat, though they don't have to; they do have a reflection; they don't sleep, and especially not in a coffin; they are not usually bitten, instead it is passed on through a turning ceremony, which only requires the newbie to drink his/her sponsor's blood. She is always very witty and sarcastic through out the book, but never to the point of being annoying or rude. She's shy and bashful around boys, just like many other girls around her age, and, in this case, she can actually say that her parents are freaks.

For her first book, Kimberly Pauley twists together the normal thoughts of an average teenage girl with the slightly abnormal (not to me, of course) plot of living with vampire parents in a world where the humans are not to know that they exist. In fact, Mina's parents were not suppose to have had her. Vampires don't reproduce, but since her mother got pregnant before she was turned, well, her Mina is today! But they hid their existance for years and Mina's up until recently. Now she must take 'classes' to prepare her on whether or not she will become a vampire. But if she chooses not to, her parents will be fined even more, they will be moved again, given a new identity, and her memory will be wiped by the vampire special forces, making her believe, along with the other humans, that her parents have truly died-- and they were only regular humans. So what's a girl to do? Be a bloodsucking vampire who will live for centuries, forcing her to leave behind her best friend (and almost sister) Serena? Or stay human and watch her parents get shipped away, only to forget it afterwards? As if highschool wasn't already hard enough....

Along the way, she meets three guys: two that she places in the 'hot' category, and one who is 'sweet, not too bad looking'. Aubrey is from her vampire prep class, as is George, the sweet one. Nate is the hottest, most popular guy in their school. Translation: He's human. But she spends some time crushing on both Aubrey and Nate. Aubrey is a jerk, though still hot, and doesn't last long (he even decides against becoming a vampire). Nate lasts a little bit longer, but it soons becomes apparent that he's falling for Serena instead. But in the end, she gets George, the caring, funny, and, yes, even fairly good looking boy, in the end.And most importantly, he is a really good kisser! They both become vampires, and, though the story stops after that, will live 'happily ever after'.

Picking it up, I didn't have high hopes for this book. But by a few chapters into it, I knew I was hooked! This was a great first work from new teen author Kimberly Pauley and I only hope that she continues the great work soon!

4.5/5 stars. Don't miss this fun and witty book!



Until Next Time,
*TBQ's Book Palace is a member of both the Amazon and Barnes and Nobles affiliates program. By using the links provided to buy products from either website, I receive a very small percentage of the order. To read my full disclosure on the matter, please see this post!


Lenore Appelhans said...

If you ever feel like getting rid of this, let me know and I'll take it off your hands :)

The_Book_Queen said...

I will keep that in mind! Lol. It is really a good book, better than I thought it would be. It is different from the other teen vampires *and adult vampire romance* books that I have read, but it was still very good.

In the off-chance that I don't get rid of this, I would still suggest that you go out in buy it when it comes out in August. It's worth it!

Now if only Early Review could get more books similar to that... is it just me, or do they seem to have more nonfiction and plain regular fiction in the batches than any: A) Fantasy, B) Teen, or C)Romance? I understand that they can only get what certain publishing companies are willing to send out,but I do wish they could get more of those three kinds of Genre...

Ooh, I noticed that they had Chosen (House of Night, book 3) by P.C. Cast on their last October, about 5 months before it came out to the public, but I was ONE DAY--ONE little tiny DAY!-- past the request date (this was when I first joined ER's...) I was very mad, as was my best friend, who I got into the series. Maybe St. Martin's Press *that's the publishing company for her books* will give LT ER's of Untamed in the next few months? I hope so!!

Oh, just wondering, but have you read the House of Night books? They are really quiet good!

Traci said...

I requested this one, too. But I, like you, didn't think it'd be all that wonderful due to the audience it was geared towards. I didn't get the book (I got The Richest Season, which was mediocre), but after reading your review, I'll be looking for it at the book store.

The_Book_Queen said...

Well, I am glad that my review has, in a small way, made a person want to go out and read the book. That is what a review, a critic, if you will, wants, correct? For people to read what they have to say and either (depending on the critic's opinion on the matter) go out and try it or never pick it up again.

The one thing I should have put in my review, and I may still go back and edit, is that even though it says 'ages 12 and up' I really think it should be more towards the teen ages, which may have changed both of our views on the book when we saw it on LT. I mean, when I talks about a junior in highschools life (a few times her mom and dad try to bring up the sex talk), how many twelve year olds would you recommend it to? True, some could handle it. But I don't think that should have been their main age group to shoot for, and it seems like they published it with that age group printed on the info page without really thinking that her story appeals to a slightly older one. But when you read it, please, tell me what you thought of it. I'm interested to know. I don't think I've seen another review for it up yet, except for on that has been on B&N for a long time now, way before LT had them in the ERs...

Lenore Appelhans said...

No, I haven't read the House of Night books, but I'll check them out. thanks for the suggestion.