Yeah, Scott Burtness, I’m talkin’ about you.
So there was this Kindle book for free, called WISCONSIN VAMP, and I downloaded it. For why?
I had just read a couple of kind of heavy books, and wanted something light, so I opened this one and read it.
You can tell from the title, series name, and cover image that this is a funny concept novel. But, right from the first, you can tell the tone is not going to be predictable. Right from the introductory “It Had to Start Somewhere,” Burtness uses a masterful blend of foreboding, humor, stomach-oochiness to let you know you’re in for a bumpy ride.
Okay, Burtness asks, “What if a dorky, nice-guy bowling nerd got bitten by a vampire mosquito and turned into a vampire before he even knew it was happening?” Funny idea, right? That’s what sold it to me. But the-e-en, Burtness asks, “No, seriously, what if that happened?” Not so funny, eh? Kinda yes, kinda no.
The amazing thing about this book is how deeply I cared about the characters. I didn’t expect that. I wasn’t pulled through the story by wanting to see how the vampire trope played out, or how the schlub-turned-charismatic-competent trope played out, but by wanting to accompany Herb and see how he coped with his changes; I wanted to see how he and his friends adjusted — or didn’t adjust — to their altered interpersonal dynamics.
That’s pretty good stuff for a “silly” book, eh?
So guess what? I — yes, I — paid cash money for the second book in the series, NORTHWOODS WOLFMAN. It takes place in the same small Wisconsin town, and features another of the three pals of whom Herb was one. It makes me wonder if the third friend will be the Monster in a third book and, given the friend, really wonder what sort of monster he’ll turn out to be.
I would say more, but I hate spoilers.
Oh, and this:
*** AUTHOR IS DONATING 50% OF HIS OCT NET ROYALTIES TO THE AMERICAN RED CROSS, NORTH CENTRAL BLOOD SERVICES FOR VAMPIRE BOOKS FOR BLOOD! ***
The book’s tagline is, “Midwestern nice” is hard to pull off when you’re a bloodthirsty monster.
But not, apparently, when you’re a mensch.
You can buy WISCONSIN VAMP on Amazon in print or for Kindle. You can also buy NORTHWOODS WOLFMAN on Amazon in print or for Kindle.
BTW, my books are available there, too. Just sayin’.
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: What if the nicest person you know turned into a supernatural “monster”? How would they cope?