"Undead and Unsure" by Mary Janice Davidson

Pros: Certainly unique; very funny at times
Cons: I’m so tired of brand-name-shoe-obsessed heroines; characters that are very unlikable
Rating: 2 out of 5

Release date: August 6, 2013
Review book courtesy of Penguin Group

 

Betsy is the queen of the vampires… and that’s the most normal thing happening in Mary Janice Davidson’s Undead and Unsure. After that we get to the childlike vampire king, the whiny antichrist, the weird pregnancy that no one seems to be able to think about… And did I mention the time travel/parallel universes thing?

First things first. Undead and Unsure is the latest in a very long series of books. (12th, I think?) Yes, I ended up reading it without reading the rest of the series first. (One of the perils of reviewing books. See my rant about series books before chastising me, please.) Although I just barely hung on by my fingernails, I do not, repeat, do not recommend reading this book without reading the others first. Although some things became clear over the course of the book, I never did piece together all the time travel and parallel universe material, and it was hugely important to the plot.

Unfortunately, while sometimes picking up a series in the middle makes me run, not walk, to pick up the previous books, that wasn’t the case here. The book is very funny at times. In many ways it presents a remarkably unique world, which is a rarity these days; the author is to be lauded for that.

However, I found some of the important characters to be almost entirely unlikable (read as: Betsy, our shoe-obsessed heroine). Don’t get me wrong; unlikable certainly can work. It just didn’t work for me in this case. While Betsy’s obsession with designer shoes is cute, I ran out of patience for that character trait a few years ago. (Of course I don’t fit the female shoe-loving stereotype, so your mileage may definitely vary.) Also, Betsy’s vampire king was, for a goodly part of the book, a little too childlike, making the sex awkward rather than sexy.

I think this is a series that will definitely be very personal-taste-dependent. Hopefully I’ve included enough of my reasons for not loving it that you’ll be able to tell for yourself whether it would entice you.

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