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Interview: Heather Brewer

April 18th, 2007 (07:05 pm)

Current Mood: awake
Current Song: Mamma Mia by The A-Teens

If you thought eighth grade was tough, try it with fangs and a fear of garlic.

Such is the tagline for EIGHTH GRADE BITES, the first book in The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod by Heather Brewer, which comes out this August. This book will appeal to young readers who wish to sink their teeth into a vampire book which moves quickly and is easy to read. I recently spoke to Heather about the fangy series.

Poor Vlad. Not only is he part vampire, but the girl he likes doesn't like him back! Which is more traumatizing?

Between dealing with a thirst for blood and trying to figure out why someone would crush on your best friend instead of you . . . give me fangs any day.

Though the book is set in eighth grade, it is light enough (very little violence/offensive language) for younger readers to check out. What is your target audience?

Technically, the book is marked for ages 9-12, but I think older readers could definitely appreciate Vlad. I like the way Butch Hartman (creator of Nickelodeon's The Fairly Odd Parents) put it: "If you're in eighth grade, or a vampire, or an eighth grade vampire, Eighth Grade Bites is a definite must-read!"

That's a cute compliment. How many books will be in the series?

If I have my way, there will be at least five books. We'll get to see Vlad all the way through high school . . . which is where his troubles really begin.

Have you always loved vampire stories?

Absolutely! In fact, I can trace my love of vampires back to kindergarten, the first time I saw a Count Chocula cereal box. It's a tie, actually—between this and the first time I saw the Count on Sesame Street. I was also a big fan of Bunnicula at the time.

There's just something about them - the books, the movies, the TV shows. Even when they're bad, they're really good.

What are your favorite cinematic or televised vampiric tales?

I love Buffy the Vampire Slayer (of course), and Dark Shadows was pretty good too. As far as movies go: Underworld, Lost Boys, Fright Night, Interview with a Vampire (loved the movie and the book), Nosferatu (for some reason, it cracks me up) . . . I could go on and on.

I loved the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

You have excellent taste. I still have a big crush on Spike.

I wasn't a fan of Spike in the later seasons, but I liked the Spike of Season Two. I recommend that you check out the book Spike and Dru: Pretty Maids All in a Row by Christopher Golden. What vampire books do you dig?

My most recent faves are Stephenie Meyer's Twilight and New Moon. Christopher Moore has a set of books out, Bloodsucking Fiends and You Suck: a love story, that are pretty good (though I much prefer BF). I'm dying to sink my teeth into Tantalize by Cynthia Leitich Smith. Honestly, I could ramble on about all the vampire themed books I've read and loved until your ears bled.

So could I! Ooh, more Golden books for you to check out: I also recommend Christopher Golden's Shadow Saga, four original dark fantasy novels about vampires, dark magic, and the power belief. Start with the book Of Saints and Shadows.

How did I miss this?? I'll definitely check them out.

It should be noted that these novels are for adults, and the first three are especially and definitely not for kids! Moving on: If you were a vampire, what would you miss the most about your human habits?

Hmmm . . . that takes some thought. See, I was going to say I'd miss the ability to go outside without sun block, but I'm a redhead, so either way, I'm bursting into flames.

Let's see . . . super-human strength, mind control, the ability to morph into things? I'm not seeing the downside to becoming a bloodsucker.

Unless I could no longer imbibe chocolate, I'm all for it.

Step out of the fanged world for a moment and tell readers what ten books - classics, contemporary releases, science fiction, whatever you like - are your favorites.

Well, apart from my favorite fanged classics (Dracula, Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles, Twilight, etc), here are a few of my faves: Stephen King's On Writing, The Princess Bride by William Goldman, Hell's Belles by Jackie Kessler, The Harrowing by Alexandra Sokoloff, The Bitch Posse by Martha O'Connor, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, The Stand by Stephen King, Shakespeare's Hamlet, Dorian Grey by Oscar Wilde, and the Maximum Ride books by James Patterson . . . just to name a few.

Visit Heather's website and read Vlad's notebook.


Posted by: Jeannine Garsee (onegrapeshy)
Posted at: April 19th, 2007 02:40 pm (UTC)

Best of luck to Heather, whom I know from Writers Net. I'm looking forward to the book, and so is my daughter!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 12:48 am (UTC)

:) to you all.

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: April 19th, 2007 06:19 pm (UTC)

I have a TON of 7th & 8th grade vampire-book fans at my library - this sounds PERFECT! Thanks for the interview, LW!


Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: April 19th, 2007 07:01 pm (UTC)
Re: Ooh

Velcome, dahling. :)

Also get (if you haven't already) the Serena Robar and Mari Mancusi girl-powered vampire/half-vampire romantic comedy trilogies. 2 are out for each series right now.

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: April 19th, 2007 10:55 pm (UTC)
Re: Ooh

Excellent! Thanks for the recs!


Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: May 8th, 2007 12:51 am (UTC)
Re: Ooh

Booklist: Vamping It Up

Posted by: mimagirl (mimagirl)
Posted at: April 19th, 2007 08:35 pm (UTC)

I just finished reading this book, so thanks for the interview.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 12:54 pm (UTC)

You are welcome. Good timing. :)

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 01:20 pm (UTC)

Thanks again for the interview, LW! :)

And oh yeah, I'd definitely second your vote for Serena Robar and Mari Mancusi--fangtastic stuff!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 01:22 pm (UTC)

Fangtastic is such a fun word.

Posted by: heather_brewer (heather_brewer)
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 01:26 pm (UTC)

Woops! I forgot to log in. The above anon was me. :)=

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: April 20th, 2007 01:38 pm (UTC)

There you are. :)

Posted by: medwriter (medwriter)
Posted at: May 3rd, 2007 05:00 pm (UTC)

This one is on my list to purchase. It sounds terrific!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: May 4th, 2007 01:03 am (UTC)

Enjoy. It comes out in August.

Pick up the other vamp books I mentioned - that way, there's something for every age / everyone in the family!

Posted by: stephhale (stephhale)
Posted at: May 5th, 2007 08:53 pm (UTC)

I can't wait for this one! The new cover is just SO awesome!


ps- I think Serena's third book just came out a few days ago! :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: May 5th, 2007 09:19 pm (UTC)

Nod nod. I am waiting for it to arrive. So are two of my customers who read the first two in both Robar's trilogy and Mancusi's trilogy.

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