This is the first book I have ever reviewed but I put off writing it for a short while for several reasons:
The first is because Vampeire: The Débutante is out of my comfort zone as it falls into the teen vampire category which I loath. Vampires are not my genre and the appeal of tv shows like True Blood and The Vampire Diaries goes right over my head. It’s best I don’t even mention my hatred for all things Twilight.
Secondly I know the author Andrea White as we worked together for several years and we still live in the same town.
I have to admit that The Débutante is not a book that I would read under normal circumstances and it only appeared on my radar because I am friends with the author. My friendship with the author aside I have tried to write my review without bias and in my normal, incoherent and rambling fashion.
PLOT: Layla is a young woman born from a human mother and vampire father. A young American named Regan meets two mysterious Irishmen named Frankie and Kite who take him to Glenarm to meet the dangerous Colleen. After Layla and Regan’s paths cross Layla heads up to the Highlands with Duncan and her friends and there she begins to discover her vampire heritage. Despite Layla and Regan’s lives changing dramatically they fall in love but will they be able to live happily ever after? END PLOT
The notion of vampires in Northern Ireland is very intriguing and works much better than you may expect. The present is only as strong as the past and the mythology behind the inner workings of the vampire covens is very well thought out. The same can also be said by the vampire hunters in the Scottish Highlands.
The history of vampires in Northern Ireland and the hunters in Scotland is something that I hope is covered in greater depth or at least expanded upon in the next novel. The section up in the Highlands with Layla discovering the thrill of the hunt was my favourite part of the novel.
Vampeire: The Débutante is aimed at young teens but what makes it different is the usage of the Ulster Scots language and colloquialisms which added a sense of familiarity. The language coupled with the Celtic version of vampire mythology gives The Débutante a local feel which makes it stand out from normal vampire fare.
My main dislike for Twilight is the characters themselves. The films only serve to highlight the problems with the books but I will refrain from going off topic on a Twilight rant………..
Layla is a very decent lead character and her relationship with Regan is grounded. This may be a teen vampire novel but thankfully there is no “sparkling emo” nonsense. There are heroes and villains but the characters are not unlikeable.
Even though Layla and Regan are the main characters it is Duncan who is the most interesting. Duncan’s transformation from the joker to the most conflicted character is the arc that interests me most; like the mythology this is something I would like to read more about in the upcoming novels.
If I were to pick a fault in the book, and in the grand scheme of things it is only a tiny fault, it would be the ending which was almost too understated and quiet. The Débutante is the first novel in a trilogy and the quiet ending has laid very solid groundwork for the next novel. I know there is more to come from Layla and Regan’s story and I am invested enough to wait for the loud dramatic moments.
I enjoyed Vampeire: The Débutante much more than expected. I had severe reservations about teens and vampires but once I got over my own snobbish and misplaced apprehensions The Débutante is a very very good read.
Vampeire: The Débutante has done more than enough to pique my interest. I will read the next instalment of the trilogy because I want to know more about the characters and not because I know the author.
Is it too early to declare myself on Team Duncan?
Andrea you should be very proud. Kx