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5 Vampire Books To Slip Twilight Readers (And Do So On a Budget)

Twilight Sparkly Vampire and Consort

So I understand there are people quite perturbed at the amount of Twilight-mania that’s going on, since Part 1 of the “final”* book has hit cinemas this weekend. People are going apeshit over it (vampshit?) and it will make a ton of money. This is known. And granted, I’m not saying don’t make fun of them (a certain incident we staged with a pinata springs to mind), but keep it in perspective.

So for those of you who find yourselves overly concerned about the amount of attention this is giving to Vampiricus Sparklibus, I have three things for you:

  • Recall that at some point in your life–more than likely it’s been more than one point, in fact–you too have been fanatical about something that made others wonder what the hell you had been smoking. I’m not talking about those old school photos you posted on Facebook with your own remarks regarding the hairstyle and/or fashion sense of the day. I mean, at the time, somebody thought you were stoned. We’ve all done it–this is just theirs.
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  • Recall that the fact that while you’re more than likely a Reader and don’t understand how people can’t be, the majority of people these days don’t read. So the fact the series is getting anyone to crack open a book–any book–is actually pretty cool.
  • Once they’ve cracked open one book, there is an opportunity to get them to crack open more books. To introduce them to different kinds of vampires and vampire fiction. Granted, there are people who, having read a certain series, are sated. (I recall hearing about someone who stated that they had read the Harry Potter series…and were done with reading, postulating that it couldn’t possibly get any better. People like this are beyond the scope of this particular article, hopeless and should be ostracized as intellectual lepers.)

    If you need some suggestions to throw at them, save these five in your internal memory storage and call upon it in your hour of need. “Sorry to hear your vampire series is over…have you tried…?” In fact, if you know any of these folks, grab a used copy from Amazon (or a bookstore, whatever works) and throw it at them for Xmas.

  • Five books to throw at Twilight fans in the hopes of getting them to read more. In alphabetical order. Go.

    I Am Legend Light at the End by John Skipp & Craig Spector

    #1. I Am Legend. Screw the movie. Movies. Nothing can touch the original Richard Matheson book. Long touted as Stephen King‘s favorite novel, it’s something that you can easily read in one sitting (I did). The last man on earth vs. gajillion vampires. Here, here’s the opening paragraph. One of my favorite in all of fiction.

    On those cloudy days, Robert Neville was never sure when sunset came, and sometimes they were in the streets before he could get back.

    Love it. I’m amazed how many genre-knowledgeable people haven’t read it. It’s a great one to throw at people because it has name recognition because of the movie. (Available in paperback used on Amazon for as little as a penny.)

    #2. The Light at the End. John Skipp & Craig Spector’s novel about a punk who gets turned by a much older vampire (as I recall it) just for the hell of it. Then turned loose on the streets of New York City. This sets in motion a series of people who want to stop his murders. Hijinks ensue! It’s been a while since I cracked this open, but damn, I remember it being a fun read. Vampire hunters and vampires under New York City–what’s not to like? (Available in paperback used on Amazon for as little as a penny.)

    Salems Lot by Stephen King Tomb of Dracula, Vol. 1 Vampire$ by John Steakley

    #3. Salem’s Lot. I know, you’re thinking, “Who hasn’t read Salem’s Lot?” But no, a lot of people have not, especially your target audience with this conversion routine. And this is a nice stepping stone backwards to, say, Stoker’s original, since that was the direct model for King’s tale of a town under attack by a vampire lord. One of my favorite “starter King” books to recommend to folks–and, even with my limited amount of reading time, I’ve still managed to read this through seven times. It’s that good. (Available in paperback used on Amazon for as little as a penny.)

    #4. The Tomb of Dracula. A comic book? Yes, a comic book. Marv Wolfman and some of the finest vampire art ever from the late great Gene Colan. Seventy issues of the Lord of the Vampires facing off with the descendents of the Harkers and Van Helsing. Yes. The other lead-in to this is: they may be aware of Blade, which spun out of its pages. (Admittedly pricier than the above, Vol. 1 goes for $10 new or used. So still not bad.)

    #5. Vampire$. Screw the movie. This is, as Bailey first told me, “John Wayne vs. the Vampires.” Full-on testosterone, “Get the women and children to safety,” type of action. Just hellaciously fun. The thing I tell people to give them a taste: each of the vampire hunters have a custom made stake to be buried with them in case of their demise. One character’s bears the inscription: “Not One Damned Regret.” Badass. Granted, use this one selectively, as this is about as far as from soap opera sparkle as it gets. (Again, we’re back in bargain territory: Available in paperback used on Amazon for as little as a penny.)

    Remember: Twilight may have their attention now, but it will end for long enough to use your opportunity to broaden their horizons. Remember: every time you convert someone from a Twilight-only reader to a genre lover for life, a real vampire gets his fangs. And we all know vampires see non-readers as easier to kill than readers. So everyone wins! Good luck!

    P.S. This is just five. I’m sure there are scads of others out there. What would you give to someone to try to convert them? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.

    *–Final my ass.

    1 comment

    • I am Omega is a pretty good movie adaption of I am Lengend, far better than the recent release