Don’t Want to Be Your Monster

Tundra. Jul. 2023. 304p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781774880494.
Gr 6 Up–Classic vampire lore gets turned on its head in this delightfully gory read. Adam and Victor are typical brothers: they bicker over who’s in charge of the TV, sneak out of the house to see R-rated movies together, and cover for each other with their parents. They also happen to be vampires. In the home where they are growing up, along with their nonbinary, university student sibling Sung, their mothers have saved the lives of hundreds of children over the years by turning them into vampires. The safety and security their mothers have built for them is threatened when Adam and Victor happen upon a murder. Adam befriends young mortals Luis and Shosana, and Victor develops a complicated relationship with Luis’s sisters who are all determined to find and stop the murderer—who may just be a vampire hunter. This story promises bloodthirsty suspense and intrigue on every page, along with plenty of humor and heart. Told in alternating viewpoints through Adam’s and Victor’s distinct voices, this story poses questions of what makes a family and what it means to be a monster. Reads will devour this vampire adventure-mystery in a couple of sittings.
VERDICT Fans, young and old, of classic vampire stories should sink their teeth into this fresh take.

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