Monday, July 6, 2009

Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men-Molly Harper

Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men
Molly Harper
Pocket, Aug 25 2009, $7.99
ISBN: 9781416589433

In Half Moon Hollow instead of allowing children's librarian Jane Jameson to die, Gabriel converted her into a vampire and his lover (see NICE GIRLS DON'T HAVE FANGS). She loves her “sire’ dearly but also knows he is not honest about where he goes when he leaves town or who the mysterious Jeanine is. Gabriel asks Jane for more time, but swears he will explain all to her soon; she agrees to his request. Meanwhile she works at an occult bookstore owned by Mr. Wainwright who accepts her for what she has become unlike her blood family who are ashamed of her fangs.

She's a bridesmaid for her best friend Zeb and his fiancĂ©e Jolene the werewolf. Both families are against the marriage and will do anything to sabotage it. Zeb’s mother wants her son to marry Jane and Jolene’s pack demands she wed a were. They show their opposition in violent ways, which leaves Zeb to wonder if he can live safely on the same land as his future in-laws. If that is not enough to occupy Jane, she wonders how a dead man can be alive with a zillion spouses who did not survive the first year after saying I do while worrying about her Grandma Ruthie who is next to the altar with this Black Widower.

NICE GIRLS DON'T DATE DEAD MEN is a humorous down to earth vampire thriller with various subplots that add depth to the story line. Molly Harper’s take on the vampire mythos is not totally new (see MaryJanice Davidson’s Betsy’s shoes and all), but refreshed by a terrific heroine who lost her library job due to the hours the place is opened. The eccentric cast adds depth in terms of jocularity as they drive Jane crazy. The different species effectively turn Half Moon Hollow into a unique locale in the urban (make that small-town) fantasy sub-genre. Readers will enjoy what happened to Jane as she finds herself as the forever bridesmaid in dresses that she would not want to be caught dead in let alone attend a wedding.

Harriet Klausner

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