I Kissed a Zombie, and I Liked It. Adam Selzer. 2010. Random House. 192 pages.
Watching a vampire make out with an idiot is kind of like going to the farmers' market and noticing just how many farmers have lost fingers in on-the-job accidents.
Our heroine Alley (aka Gonk) thinks she knows what she wants in a guy. One of the things she's looking for is a guy who's willing (and able) to leave town after high school. A pulse and heartbeat are also important factors. Dead guys just don't appeal to her like they do to her friend Marie.
"Dead people have no reason to live," I say. "Shouldn't we have stopped thinking vampires were awesome when we found out they spend most of their time acting all emo?"
"You're just jealous, Alley," says Marie. "Can you honestly tell me that if some guy rose from the grave and spent a hundred years looking for just the right person, then fell for you, you wouldn't think that was totally romantic?"
"I'd think he was a stalker," I say.
"It's true love!" says Marie. (3)
"You guys are just prejudiced," says Marie. "I would kill to date a vampire. I mean, he's crazy strong, but not strong enough to stay away from her. How romantic can you get?"Which is why it's funny when Alley is the first of her friends to date a dead guy. Of course, she doesn't realize--at first--that Doug is a zombie. Doug is the first guy that Alley has liked enough to date. Usually she's all about making out with random guys--guys she doesn't like like, but never guys she dislikes. Alley hasn't wanted to feel anything with a guy. The fact that she feels for Doug? Well, it surprises her--even more when she finds out the truth--but soon Alley's convinced that Doug is the best boyfriend ever. That he is her everything. But no relationship is ever that easy. And this one has its challenges...
"Right," says Peter. "I think that's on page one of How to Get Teenage Girls to Fall in Love with You."
"And her parents probably think he's a monster, but she truly understands him," I chime in.
"See?" asks Peter. "Textbook." (4)
As a paranormal romance, I Kissed A Zombie, And I Liked It didn't quite work for me. As commentary on the paranormal craze, it worked well. It was funny. It was insightful.
I swear that looking around in disgust is one of vampires' actual powers--every vampire I've ever known is an expert at it. (13)There is even a pamphlet entitled "Vampires, Zombies, and You: Questions and Answers About Post-Humans for Teens." One of the questions is even:
Sometimes I think vampires have spent centuries just honing their pickup lines. But I'm immune to pickup lines. (51)
When a vampire glares at you, man, you stay glared at. (51)
I spend the next hour just making snarky comments to girls who think it's great that their boyfriend pressures them into dying instead of pressuring them to have sex. (130)
My boyfriend/girlfriend and I totally want kids. If we were both posthumans, the babies would be, like, superbabies, right? (125)So I enjoyed reading I Kissed A Zombie and I Liked It. It was funny. It was smart.
© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews