Ashleigh Paige

I'm a full-time college sophomore pursuing my B.A. in English with hopes of one day working as an editor. Cats, musicals, documentaries about cults/disasters/tragedies, and curse words are just a few of my favorite things. Also, check out our blog or I WILL FIND YOU.

Vampire Kisses

Vampire Kisses - Ellen Schreiber See more of my reviews sooner on The YA Kitten!This book is The Room of YA vampire novels and I love it anyway. That's about the most succinct description of it.I warn you now that this is in no way a fair review. This book and the three that follow it changed my life when I was thirteen and even though I have come to realize almost every one of its flaws, I still love it. Another series in this situation might become the bane of my existence, but not this book because of two reasons: 1) they're fluffy reads that are never meant to be taken seriously and 2) I owe too much to it.This book is cheesy and silly and not good at all, but I still love it. Raven is highly stereotypical, both as a Goth and as a teenager, but in rare moments, she rings true as a teenage girl instead of a stereotype. Those little moments make her one of the most realistic teenage portrayals I've read and trust me, I've read a lot of them. The way Dullsville (which is what the town is called throughout the entire novel; you never find out the town's actual name) is shown, as a small town where rumors spread quickly and different is never a good thing to them, is also fairly true. I'm a big city girl, but both of my parents grew up in small towns and they've described small town life to me numerous times.Close to the end of this book, Raven's motive for dating Alexander and first meeting him are exposed and they break up, but eventually get back together. I found this very sweet, in a strange way. Their relationship started under partway false pretenses, but as they got to know each other better over time, genuine feelings for each other developed. These feelings proved to be so strong that even when everyone found out that Raven originally started dating Alexander to find out whether or not he was a vampire (which would permanently end most relationships), they still care so much about each other that they disregard that and get back together. That appeals the little romantic in my soul, you know?I wish I didn't have the point out the flaws because I really don't mind them, but not even my totally-unfair review is allowed to leave them out. No amount of love could make me forget the flaws, though I can certainly overlook them.Raven is a Mary Sue- specifically, a Gothic Sue. For her, being Gothic means wearing lots and lots of black, being an outcast from society because she's not like them, hating preppy people, and wanting to become a vampire, but that's not what being Gothic is about at all. It's... I don't know how to explain it. Back on subject, everything ends up in Raven's favor no matter what and when she screws up (which is hardly ever because everything goes right for her), people forgive her easily. She can do no wrong.The things this girl gets away with amazes me. She breaks into the Benson Hill mansion that belongs to Alexander's family multiple times, but Raven never gets in trouble for it, even when Alexander freaking catches her in the act! He asks her about it multiple times, but he never gets an answer and eventually gives up. I mentioned further up about how Raven and Alexander's relationship began with her wish to figure out whether or not he was a vampire and even after that motive was exposed, they still ended up together. That's both a good thing and a bad one. Personally, if I find out a guy's got a hidden motive for dating me, he's gone and never coming back, even if I have genuine feelings for him and he has the same for me. There are couples out there, I'm sure, who were in a situation like Alexander and Raven's and are still together, but I imagine most people would make a decision like my hypothetical one.In addition, most of the characters in this book are flat and two-dimensional, if not all of them, and there is little depth to the story. Raven can be shallow like a kiddy pool. This novel pains some negative things such as breaking into someone else's occupied home in a somewhat positive light. I'm kind of surprised that this book is categorized as "young adult," which is labeled as ages 12-18; I would peg it more in the 9-12 range at best. I probably wouldn't let a nine-year-old handle this book, though.A year ago, I would have given this book five stars because of my strange, defiant love of it. Then my house got broken into and I could no longer disregard my disapproval when Raven broke into Alexander's house multiple times. Despite that, this series is one of my all-time favorites and I recommend it with the warning of blatant stereotypes, Mary Sues, prep hate, and general stupidity.