Sunday, November 13, 2011

Overbite by Joseph Allen

Nutshell:  Joseph Allen puts a refreshing spin on the paranormal genre, making vampires and werewolves more--dare I say it--human.  Some sex, some action, and nice characterization make for an enjoyable read in this novella.  Four stars.

Review: So after a long break I took up yet another entry in the seriously undead genre of vampire stories.  Overbite's product description pulled me in:

Aurelia believed in the line about living fast, dying young and leaving a good-looking corpse.

Well, except for the dying young part. As for the good-looking corpse, she was all set.

Life as a modern vampire has its perks: raves, espresso bars, and, of course, online shoe shopping. But for Aurelia, a bite of the wrong guy could plant the seeds of her own destruction—and John Burke is that guy. Now, to save her not-quite-life, she has to find Burke and uncover his secret before she literally fades into oblivion.

The story was at times amusing and even (at least for me) surprisingly touching.  I enjoyed the dialogue and the ending also provided a good setup for the following novella, which is not out yet.  One of the things that I liked most was that Allen apparently didn't feel constrained by the typical stereotypes of the genre, allowing him to kind of make his own rules for the paranormal world.  That allowed for a more interesting story than I was expecting, frankly.  Overall I thought it was very nicely done.

Rating: Nicely composed but in a somewhat tired genre, Overbite will probably reward existing vampire fans and may even make a few new ones.  This one's a keeper.  Four stars.