Book Talk: *Bite Me: A Love Story*, by Christopher Moore

Bite Me: A Love Story
Christopher Moore (Twitter) (Facebook) (blog)
Read by Susan Bennett
William Morrow (2010), Edition: 1, Hardcover (ISBN 0061779725 / 9780061779725) (Audible Audiobook ASIN B003DQVEBM)
Fiction, 320 pages
Source: purchased audiobook
Reason for reading: personal, favorite author

Opening lines: “‘The city of San Francisco is being stalked by a huge shaved vampyre cat named Chet, and only I, Abby Normal, emergency backup mistress of the Greater Bay Area night, and my manga-haired love monkey, Foo Dog, stand between the ravenous monster and a bloody massacre of the general public.’
“ – as excerpted from the journal of Abigail von Normal, Emergency Backup Mistress of the Greater Bay Area Night”

Book description, from the publisher’s website:
Whoa. And this is a love story? Yup. ‘Cept there’s no whining. See, while some lovers were born to run, Jody and Tommy were born to bite. Well, reborn, that is, now that they’re vampires. Good thing theirs is an undying love, since their Goth Girl Friday, Abby Normal, imprisoned them in a bronze statue.

Abby wants to be a bloodsucking fiend, too, but right now she’s really busy with other stuff, like breaking in a pair of red vinyl thigh-high Skankenstein® platform boots and wrangling her Ph.D.-candidate boyfriend, Steve (aka Foo Dog, the love monkey). And then there’s that vampire cat Chet, who’s getting bigger and smarter—and thirstier—by the minute. Abby thought she and Steve could handle the kitty cat on their own, mais non…

Before you can say “OMG! WTF?” Tommy and Jody are sprung from captivity, and join forces with Abby, Steve, the frozen-turkey-bowling Safeway crew, the Emperor of San Francisco and his trusty dogs Lazarus and Bummer, Abby’s gay Goth friend Jared, and SF’s finest Cavuto and Rivera to hunt big cat and save the city. And that’s when the fun really begins.

Comments: And so endeth Christopher Moore’s vampire romance…but not before a few bridges, and quite a few undead, are burned.

I started listening to the audio of Bite Me: A Love Story just a couple of days after finishing its predecessor, You Suck (also A Love Story). Part of the rush was some eagerness to continue the story, but there was also a desire to replicate the experience – You Suck was a really fun listen. Perhaps I should have waited a little longer. Or perhaps Bite Me just wasn’t quite as satisfying.

Abby meant well when she imprisoned vampires Jody and Tommy in a bronze shell during their daytime death phase; she thought it might prevent an ugly breakup. Abby’s science-geek boyfriend Steve had devised a serum that could restore humanity to vampires, and the couple were in disagreement about whether to take it. However, in order to test the cure, Steve also had to devise a formula to induce vampirism…and our little Goth girl’s dying to get some of that. Meanwhile, vampires on four legs, made the old-fashioned way, are terrorizing San Francisco.

There’s no shortage of plot contortions in Bite Me; those go with Moore’s territory. But there is a shortage of Tommy and Jody, both separately and together, and as they’re a couple of my favorite characters, I missed them. On the other hand, there’s a bit too much of Abby. I live with a sixteen-year-old perky Goth girl myself, so I like the idea of Abby’s character (although Kate’s more “Goth lite,” and a lot smarter than Abby), but I think I prefer her as a side dish rather than the main course. Susan Bennett once again got Abby’s voice just right, and was consistent in her other characterizations as well; appropriately, she has a “performed by” rather than a “read by” credit for her rendition of the novel. I just didn’t feel the material she had to perform was as strong as it was in You Suck. For me, Bite Me dragged in spots and went on a bit longer than it had to, and it just wasn’t as consistently funny – although, being a Christopher Moore novel, it definitely had its moments.

When I saw the author on his book tour for Bite Me, he didn’t actually talk about it much: “”It’s a vampire book. What else can you say about it?” Perhaps that was telling. But in the end, I was mostly content with the way he ended his Love Story trilogy, and I’m glad I “read” it on audio – but I’m ready to say goodbye to the Vampires of San Francisco.

Rating: 3.25/5 for both book and audio

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