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Welcome to Books R Us, a recommended reading blog from InfoSoup librarians and users and home to A Year of Listening Dangerously, the 2014 InfoSoup Reading Challenge! Find a great book to read next, add your own reviews, and check out our book related resources such as NoveList and BookLetters.


Author: Laura Bickle

Two totally different genre are combined into an interesting storyline that I had never conceived.  The ever popular "Amish girl" type Christian romance is intermeshed with an unknown "infestation" (read vampires) in the "English" world.  Will her family and community be safe on their "hallowed ground" or will the darkness infiltrate?  It definitely has a creepy vibe to it.   Recommend it. 

Originally posted in: APL Picks

The Passage

Author: Justin Cronin

This first book in a trilogy is the product of a conversation the author had with his eight year old daughter. In the story, Cronin takes the pieces of that conversation and sets out to make the vampire myth his own in a harrowing tale that covers 100 years and leaves a death toll in the billions. In the process he creates a plausible back story that makes the “Viral” a tangible opponent for humanity.

The story begins with the discovery and attempted isolation of the virus that creates Virals. We then fast forward one hundred years to a post-'Great-Viral-Cataclysm' landscape where the Virals not only have decimated the human population, but their voracious appetite has also impacted the entire ecosystem.

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Originally posted in: APL Picks

Dead Girls are Easy

Author: Terri Garrey

This book would appeal to those of you who like reading chick lit, paranormal, or just enjoy a fun story. I am normally not a reader of things unworldly but love this series, so do not let the “paranormal” label scare you away. Nicki Styx, the Goth owner of Gladrags, a vintage clothing store in Atlanta, has a near-death experience and now finds herself able to see and interact with dead people. Nicki tries to live a normal life but the ghosts of Atlanta keep seeking out her help straightening out the messes they left behind.

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Title: Soulless
Author: Gail Carriger

Alexia Tarabotti lives in an alternate version of Victorian Britain, where vampires, ghosts and werewolves have been accepted into society. While most women follow society rules to the letter Alexia, with her lack of beauty, strong personality and dry sense of humor is felt to be unmarriageable. It doesn't help that she is best friends with vampire Lord Akeldama while striking sparks with Lord Connel Maccon, leader of the Woolsey Pack of werewolves. With her parasol full of protective gadgets she defends herself when she becomes enmeshed in mysteries of the supernatural kind. The story is fleshed out with details like the floating dress weighted at the hem, to be worn while in the airship. Soulless combines paranormal romance, snappy dialogue, eccentric characters, and steampunk elements. It is the first book in the Parasol Protectorate series. The next two in the series are Changeless and Blameless, with a fourth expected in summer 2011.


Title: Vamped
Author: David Sosnowski

If you can get past the vulgarity, and I suppose what can you expect from a book about vampires?, you actually encounter a pretty rich plot with subplots and an emotional development of the narrator/main character. This book is full of puns and off-color jokes and the vampire culture is very well woven throughout. There actually is a very sweet relationship here between the vampire and the young mortal girl who he adopts. There is also a happy ending. There are vague references to this world inhabited by vampires and I wished we were told more about how & why that all came about. The way technology was described in this future place--the fears and capabilities--were reminiscent of today which is kind of weird because the novel is already five years old. Not for the faint of heart--get used to all the blood and be able to laugh about it and you will be okay!

You're so Vein

Author: Christine Warren

Ava is a stunning human with otherworld friends. She doesn't understand how her friends are attracted to them and is determined to remain "human". Until, she is walking home from a girls night out and is attacked by a vampire. She swallows some of his blood and now her future involves becoming a vampire. The hero is in town to hunt up a rouge vampiress and comes to her aide, killing the attacker and taking her home to help her through the transition. She and he become involved in love and the scheme to capture the rouge vampiress. The book was an entertaining romance involving the otherworld characters. Easy read.

Laughing Corpse

Author: Laurell Hamilton

Anita Blake is able to raise the dead and a vampire hunter. Vampires now have rights in St. Louis so an execution order is required to kill a vampire to stay legal. Anita stays on the right side of the law, mostly. People want bodies raised for many reasons; to settle a will dispute, forgiveness, even to find out who killed them--as long as their throat wasn't ripped out. Anita is also on the police Spook Squad that is called to investigate murders that may have been committed by vampires or other otherworld characters. She is also involved with Jean Claude, a very old vampire that becomes the Master of the City--kind of like mayor for the vampires in the area. Anita is only 5'3" but armed with her silver bullets and silver knives, she takes on the oldest and most powerful vampires she comes across, usually with a little help from her friends. The books are very graphic in describing the deaths of the victims and zombies Anita raises. The action moves the plot along and there is usually a mystery of "who done it" that gets resolved. This is the first series of Anita Blake books. I have read several and while it would be helpful to read them in order, it's not absolutely necessary. I've enjoyed them and will finish the series.

Undead and Unwed

Author: MaryJanice Davidson

This is the first of a list of books starring Betsy, the Queen of the Vampires. Betsy is having a really bad week. First, she loses her job, then she is killed in a car accident. Betsy can't seem to stay dead, as she has been turned into a vampire. Her first concern is how she was nearly buried in cheap knock off shoes instead of one of her designer pairs in her closet. There are very funny scenes of her adjusting to her new life. This is Chick Lit meets Vampire.

Mr. Darcy, Vampyre

Author: Amanda Grange

Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy are now married, and have gone to the Continent for an extended honeymoon. Elizabeth is concerned because while Mr. Darcy professes his love and treats her with care and consideration, he has limited his passion to an occasional kiss.

Their visit to Paris is wonderful—Darcy has many friends and an amazing number of houses and hunting lodges spread throughout Europe. The trip becomes more perilous as they proceed. Wolves howl as they traverse the Alps on their way to visit Darcy’s uncle—who is a Count, with a mysterious castle surrounded by a deep moat. Their visit is cut short when they must flee the castle as an angry mob approaches. Strange frightening dreams begin haunting Elizabeth’s nights after they arrive in Venice, despite (or perhaps because of) the masquerade ball held in her honor. When they are invited to Prince Ficenzi’s villa near Rome even more perilous events test Elizabeth’s courage, and the love between Elizabeth and Darcy. 

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The Historian

Author: Elizabeth Kostova

This is an original and engrossing tale, beginning when a sixteen year old girl discovers a mysterious book with a dragon print in the center. She begs her father to tell her about the book, and he reluctantly relates the story of his research, intertwined with the research of his professor and mentor, until he vanishes. The story carries us throughout Europe and back and forth in time, with different narrators, as several historians search for the truth about the book and the story of Vlad Tepes, and attempt to rescue those who have disappeared. The characters are detailed, the writing is beautiful, and the descriptions of Dracula and various events can cause goosebumps. Both adults and older teens would enjoy this despite its length (be prepared for some description of Vlad the Impaler's misdeeds).