Being Human is a Young Adult-targeted vampire story with a twist. Ms. Lynne examines the relationship between two brothers—twins—one of whom is turned as a teenager, the other of whom remains human and loyal to his brother. Tommy, the twin who is turned, and Danny share the uncanny bond that so many twins share. Even after Tommy commits what he, even with his remorseless, serial-killer instinct that infects all vampires, realizes is an unspeakable act, his brother stands by him. And, so it goes through their relationship as Danny grows up, goes to college, marries, and has a family. Tommy stays close and struggles to remember and recapture the feelings
he had as a human.
Because of its focus toward a YA audience, the violence tends toward the intense, but not graphically so. The author leaves the details of the attacks to our imagination, and
that is actually how I prefer it—my imagination is wild enough to picture exactly what is happening without a blow-by-blow (bite by ripping bite?) description.
The bond between the twins is what makes this story unique. As readers, we look at ourselves as human through Tommy’s eyes. He is a stranger in a foreign land after he is turned. As he hunts, he is, in turn,hunted by authorities and people who would like nothing better than to dispose of him permanently. As the story progresses, Tommy begins to experience human emotions, and the reader begins to wonder if there truly are redemptive expressions of love and caring that can bring back or free even the darkest of creatures.
Now, I’ll admit that I’ve talked to some of my more voracious YA readers at my library about the story, and I’ve given out the Smashwords code more than once to readers who want to check out the story for themselves based on my description of the characters and events.
The prose moves quickly, the dialog is realistic and believable, and the conveyance of emotion is spot on. My only bias lies in the non-use of dialogue tags. There has been quite a bit of debate about using or not using these identifiers. My bias lies in that I’m
functionally dyslexic (really, I am), and sometimes I get lost amid rapid-fire dialogue; it’s a serious problem for me, and I find I have to read a passage that contains this type of tag-less dialogue several times before I completely comprehend it. But, again, that’s just me.
It’s definitely a pick up and read story, and if you like YA books, this is a go-to book for you. As I said, four of my most voracious YA patrons are getting ready to plunk down
real money on Smashwords and download this to their iPads.
(I purchased BEING HUMAN in ePub format for my Nook (No Nookie Like My Nookie!) from Smashwords. Four stars for a fun YA read with wide appeal)
You can find Being Human at these book outlets:
Barnes & Noble Nook:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1105383518?ean=2940011487033
And now, as promised, an interview with author Patricia Lynne Enjoy!
1. What do you do to unwind and relax?
I knit. Been doing it since I was 7 or 8 so at this point, I barely have to look at my hands if I’m doing a basic stitch. It’s pretty relaxing… usually. It gets a little frustrating when I get a good chunk knitted and realize I don’t have enough yarn and have to frog it (Frog it is a knitting term for tearing a project apart because you riiiiiipit!) Sometimes jewelry making relaxes me too if it’s not too involved.
2. What do you see as the influences on your writing?
Honestly, I have no idea how to answer this one. Nothing pops to mind. I mean, aside from the answer to question number three. I could say Twilight was an influence because I wanted to write a vampire story were the vampires were complete pansies. But other than that, nothing really springs to mind. I’m sure I’ll think of something later.
3. Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Heather Brewer. She can create characters that put me through a whole slew of emotions and makes me forget about the real world.
4. The perception of the horror writer is that he/she is just a little bit weirder than most–kind of like half-a-bubble-off-plumb. Do you find yourself–and other horror writers–to be more idiosyncratic than the average person?
Oh yeah. I mean, who else can get away with saying “I write because the voices tell me to” and can get away with it? And horror writers are the craziest of the bunch. After all the voices are telling them to scare the crap out of everyone. 😉
COFFIN HOP 2011 Continues!