Friday, July 16, 2010

Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side

A Little Background: Sharing a love of reading, a young middle school friend of mine proposed this book as something I might enjoy. I took her up on Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side and here is what I think of suggestion…

Book Description: Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side by Beth Fantaskey

What if you had a secret identity? What if it was so secret even you didn’t know about it!

Jessica has always known she was adopted but the exact circumstances were not clearly known. Jess’s parents, a laidback, vegan and tofu loving couple have got quite a story to tell. To put it succinctly, Jessica is a vampire princess from Romania who was betrothed at birth to one princely Lucius Vladescu. Tell me if that wouldn’t knock your sox off!

Lucius travels from Romania to claim Jessica as his betrothed but instead of finding a royal princess finds a slightly geeky, high school "mathlete" more interested in doing her muck raking chores on the family farm than dressing and acting royally. Think of it this way, he’s a little bit country and she’s a little bit rock and roll.

Indeed, the imperious Lucius is at a loss and sends off letters to his Uncle Vasile back in the old country. These little missives provide a lot of biting (hehe) and prickly humor for me. A few examples….

On Making Do: I write to you from my “loft” above the Packwood’s rundown garage, where I am housed, not unlike some sort of unwanted automobile or forgotten piece of luggage, no doubt breathing in stale vehicle exhaust day and night.

On American Cuisine: And do not speak to me of “Jello-O” and “sloppy joes.” FOR GOD’S SAKE, VASILE. How much must I endure in the interest of peace between the clans?

On School: Can I ever again be happy in our soaring Gothic castle after walking the halls of Woodrow Wilson High School, a literal ode to linoleum?

On Holidays: Best wishes as we approach All Hallows’ Eve. You would so enjoy the universally na├»ve but ubiquitous depictions of vampires the Americans somewhat compulsively display at this time of year. One would think our entire race consisted of pale, middle-aged men with a genetic tendency toward “widow’s peaks” and a penchant for the over application of hair gel.

On Jessica: In sum, Jessica Packwood is not a vampire. Living in America seems to have cleansed our future princess of all traces of the royal blood that we know must have coursed through her veins at birth. She has undergone a terrible cultural dialysis, so to speak.

Lucius tries his best to impress upon Jessica the importance of their union to prevent an all out war between their two clans, the Vladescu’s and the Dragomir’s. But will Lucius manage to convince Jessica in time and will Jessica acknowledge the growing feelings she has for Lucius. You will find out what pluck this all American girl/vampire princess has and what she will do to prevent pending bloodshed.

My Take: I enjoyed it! It is a book good enough to satisfy Twi-hards and other lovers of the paranormal genre. Now where can I get a copy of a Teen Vampire's Guide to Dating, Health, and Emotions? That sounds like an interesting read!

About the Author:

Beth Fantaskey was raised and still lives in rural Pennsylvania, a place that features prominently in her books. Apparently there's nothing unusual about getting stuck in Amish buggy "traffic" where she lives.

Fantaskey has slung her share of burgers, was a teenage tax collector, a journalist, and now a part-time professor at Susquehanna University. But her most fun job is "YA author," because she gets to interact with so many interesting readers.

You can visit Beth at her website and also via Twitter and Facebook. Interested in reading Chapter One of Jessica’s Guide, just click here.


  1. great review! I'm looking it up right now!!

  2. Sounds like a cute fun read! I'm definately checking thia on e out! Thanks for the heads up. Oh yeah-I'm your newest follower!

  3. Hey sweetie! This review really is shiny! It definitely made me want to check out this book.

    Thanks for visiting and from wishing the camp well. Today was the last day of it and the kids did great. Think you'll probably get around to The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo before me, since you actually own it. Hugs!

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  5. Sounds like a must have read for all those who love their vampire fiction, thanks for the recommendation.

  6. My favorite part is how he "permanently expatriated" the dolls in his room or something to that effect.