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The Countess' bloodthirsty book list for budding bloodsuckers
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If your exploration of the dark and bloodthirsty world of vampires started and ended with Twilight, we’re going to change your perceptions this year with a custom book list from The Countess herself.
Locked away in Anne Rice’s world since the 1970s, The Countess offered a few CCPL librarians eternal life to free her from the confines of flamboyantly French, tortured, and handsome bloodsuckers for a chance at finding stories of other vampires. You can be sure of one thing: this is a book list that won’t… suck.
She’s put together this list (and a bonus pick of a just-released book from Renee Ahdieh you’ll NEED on your TBR!) just in time for Halloween.
The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice
Rice’s original vampire series that spans 40 years and 13 books revolves around Lestat de Lioncourt, a French nobleman turned vampire in the 18th century. The series has turned into movies, merchandise, and now a Hulu series. Here are the first three books in the series.
Vampirina Ballerina by Anne Marie Pace
Oh, to be a ballerina! It's a challenge for any little girl, but even more so if you happen to be a vampire like Vampirina. First of all, you have to find a class that meets at night. Then you have to figure out how to perfect your form when you can't see yourself in the mirror? And then there's wearing pink (not the most flattering of colors if you happen to be undead) and that nagging urge to take a little nip out of the other dancers. And worse of all? STAGE FRIGHT!!!
Vampirina at the Beach by Anne Marie Pace
With her signature poise, Vampirina and her clan gear up for a festive time at the beach. Keeping her ballet lessons in mind, Vampirina demi-pliés on a surfboard, leaps for a volleyball, and finishes each competition with style, even if she doesn't always come out on top.
Vampirina in the Snow by Anne Marie Pace
Vampirina and her clan are determined to suck as much fun as they can from a host of wintry activities. From sledding to snow angels, there is quite a lot to do on this hauntingly beautiful night and it’s not complete until Vampirina tests her ballet skills on the ice!
Amelia Fang and the Unicorns of Glitteropolis by Laura Ellen Anderson
Amelia Fang and her friends love their dark and gloomy world of Nocturnia. But when Tangine's mom, Queen Fairyweather, goes missing, they must brave the journey to the terrifying Kingdom of the Light.
With fairies and angel-kittens lurking around every corner, who can they trust? And will they finally uncover the real villain keeping the kingdoms of Light and Dark mortal enemies?
Amelia Fang and the Barbaric Ball by Laura Ellen Anderson
Then the King's spoiled son Tangine captures Squashy, Amelia and her friends must escape the party to plan a daring rescue!
In their race against time, they begin to realize things in Nocturnia may not be quite what they seem...
Fake Blood by Whitney Gardner
It's the beginning of the new school year and AJ feels like everyone is changing but him. He hasn't grown or had any exciting summer adventures like his best friends have. He even has the same crush he's harbored for years. So AJ decides to take matters into his own hands. But how could a girl like Nia Winters ever like plain vanilla AJ when she only has eyes for vampires?
When AJ and Nia are paired up for a group project on Transylvania, it may be AJ's chance to win over Nia's affection by dressing up like the vamp of her dreams. And soon enough he's got more of Nia's attention than he bargained for when he learns she's a slayer.
Now AJ has to worry about self-preservation while also trying to save everyone he cares about from a real-life threat lurking in the shadows of Spoons Middle School.
Tana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown's gates, you can never leave.
One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black.
Dracul by Dacre Stoker and JD Barker
The prequel to Dracula, inspired by notes and texts left behind by the author of the classic novel, Dracul is a supernatural thriller that reveals not only Dracula's true origins but Bram Stoker's--and the tale of the enigmatic woman who connects them.
It is 1868, and a twenty-one-year-old Bram Stoker waits in a desolate tower to face an indescribable evil. Armed only with crucifixes, holy water, and a rifle, he prays to survive a single night, the longest of his life. Desperate to record what he has witnessed, Bram scribbles down the events that led him here...
A sickly child, Bram spent his early days bedridden in his parents' Dublin home, tended to by his caretaker, a young woman named Ellen Crone. When a string of strange deaths occur in a nearby town, Bram and his sister Matilda detect a pattern of bizarre behavior by Ellen--a mystery that deepens chillingly until Ellen vanishes suddenly from their lives. Years later, Matilda returns from studying in Paris to tell Bram the news that she has seen Ellen--and that the nightmare they've thought long ended is only beginning.
Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Atl, the descendant of Aztec blood drinkers, must feast on the young to survive and Domingo looks especially tasty. Smart, beautiful, and dangerous, Atl needs to escape to South America, far from the rival narco-vampire clan pursuing her. Domingo is smitten.
Her plan doesn't include developing any real attachment to Domingo. Hell, the only living creature she loves is her trusty Doberman. Little by little, Atl finds herself warming up to the scrappy young man and his effervescent charm.
And then there's Ana, a cop who suddenly finds herself following a trail of corpses and winds up smack in the middle of vampire gang rivalries.
Vampires, humans, cops, and gangsters collide in the dark streets of Mexico City. Do Atl and Domingo even stand a chance of making it out alive?
A People’s History of the Vampire Uprising by Raymond A. Villareal
This panoramic fictional oral history begins with one small mystery: the body of a young woman found in an Arizona border town, presumed to be an illegal immigrant, disappears from the town morgue. To the young CDC investigator called in to consult with the local police, it's an impossibility that threatens her understanding of medicine.
Then, more bodies, dead from an inexplicable disease that solidified their blood, are brought to the morgue, only to also vanish. Soon, the U.S. government--and eventually biomedical researchers, disgruntled lawmakers, and even an insurgent faction of the Catholic Church--must come to terms with what they're too late to stop: an epidemic of vampirism that will sweep first the United States, and then the world.
With heightened strength and beauty and a stead diet of fresh blood, these changed people, or "Gloamings," rapidly rise to prominence in all aspects of modern society. Soon people are beginning to be "re-created," willingly accepting the risk of death if their bodies can't handle the transformation. As new communities of Gloamings arise, society is divided, and popular Gloaming sites come under threat from a secret terrorist organization. But when a charismatic and wealthy businessman, recently turned, runs for political office--well, all hell breaks loose.
The Raven by Sylvain Reynard
Raven Wood, an art restorer at Florence's Uffizi gallery, finds her life changed forever when a senseless attack leaves her unconscious. When she awakes she is inexplicably changed. No one recognises her and, worse, she's been named prime suspect in one of the largest art robberies in Uffizi's history. To clear her name and uncover the truth about what happened, Raven must seek out one of Florence's wealthiest and most elusive men. Their encounter leads her to a dark underworld whose inhabitants kill to keep their secrets.
The Radleys by Matt Haig
Just about everyone knows a family like the Radleys. Many of us grew up next door to one. They are a modern family, averagely content, averagely dysfunctional, living in a staid and quiet suburban English town. Peter is an overworked doctor whose wife, Helen, has become increasingly remote and uncommunicative. Rowan, their teenage son, is being bullied at school, and their anemic daughter, Clara, has recently become a vegan. They are typical, that is, save for one devastating exception: Peter and Helen are vampires and have for seventeen years been abstaining by choice from a life of chasing blood in the hope that their children could live normal lives.One night, Clara finds herself driven to commit a shocking and disturbingly satisfying act of violence, and her parents are forced to explain their history of shadows and lies. A police investigation is launched that uncovers a richness of vampire history heretofore unknown to the general public. And when the malevolent and alluring Uncle Will, a practicing vampire, arrives to throw the police off Clara's trail, he winds up throwing the whole house into temptation and turmoil and unleashing a host of dark secrets that threaten the Radleys marriage. The Radleys is a moving, thrilling, and radiant domestic novel that explores with daring the lengths a parent will go to protect a child, what it costs you to deny your identity, the undeniable appeal of sin, and the everlasting, iridescent bonds of family love. Read it and ask what we grow into when we grow up, and what we gain and lose when we deny our appetites.
The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh
In 1872, New Orleans is a city ruled by the dead. But to seventeen-year-old Celine Rousseau, New Orleans is a safe haven after she's forced to flee her life as a dressmaker in Paris. Taken in by the sisters of the Ursuline convent in the middle of the carnival season, Celine is quickly enraptured by the vibrant city, from its music to its fancy soirées and even its danger. She becomes embroiled in the city's glitzy underworld, known as La Cour des Lions, after catching the eye of the group's enigmatic leader, Sébastien Saint Germain.
When the body of one of the girls from the convent is found in Sébastien's own lair--the second dead girl to turn up in recent weeks--Celine battles her attraction to Sébastien and suspicions about his guilt along with the shame of her own horrible secret.
After a third murder, New Orleans becomes gripped by the terror of a serial killer on the loose--one who has now set Celine in his sights. As the murderer stalks her, Celine finally takes matters into her own hands, only to find herself caught in the midst of an age-old feud between the darkest creatures of the night, where the price of forbidden love is her life.
At once a sultry romance and a decadent, thrilling mystery, master storyteller Renée Ahdieh embarks on her most potent fantasy series yet.