REVIEW: Josie Griffin is NOT a Vampire by Heather Swain
When former good girl turned rebel Josie Griffin gets busted for what was in her mind perfectly acceptable revenge on her cheating dog of a boyfriend, she lands herself in anger management therapy. It could be worse: it could be juvvie, or she could be a zombie cheerleader like the rest of her former friends. But there’s something strange about therapy–these are not normal kids. There’s the wannabe ladies man with a weird accent, Johann; the blindingly gorgeous Helios; Avis with his wild dreads; and Tarren, the sprite of a girl with a wicked temper. And all of them keep talking about “powers.” Josie knows that has to be impossible, but strange things start happening, and nothing weird ever happens in Indiana. After all, there’re no such things as vampires, werewolves, Greek gods, or fairies . . . right?
MY THOUGHTS: 3 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS
Josie Griffin has been sentenced to anger management classes after destroying her cheating boyfriend’s car with a baseball bat. Once she gets there, she finds out that the other kids in the group are a bunch of wackos–claiming to be vampires, faeries, and oh yeah, Greek gods. But Josie is determined to get through the course and the laborious community service she has been assigned to.
As Josie gets to know her group mates, she realizes that as far out as it sounds, they were all telling the truth! Not only is she now friends with a pack of supernatural creatures, she’s also trying to uncover a mystery in the shelter where she’s doing her community service; girls are going missing without a trace. Can Josie and the group of paranormal misfits find out the truth?
This book pulled me in from the very beginning, but as I read on I struggled with knowing what rating I would give it. I couldn’t decide if this novel was hilarious or ridiculous (and believe me, it’s a fine line), so I ended up rating it right in the middle.
Josie is likable enough–she gets points just for beating up her ex’s car with a bat!–but I never really connected with her. The characterization wasn’t very deep in this novel, and I think that’s why I didn’t connect with anyone. The relationship between Josie and Helios was pretty weak. As a matter of fact, it was more interesting to watch Johann the awkward vampire fawn all over Kayla. That, at least, was funny. The group was diverse but not intriguing as a whole.
The writing was trite at times, with Tarren the dyslexic faerie botching her speech, and Josie misunderstanding things often. Though I did enjoy when Tarren mixing up her words resulted in spells which did not work they way they were intended.
I figured out the ending about halfway into the book, so when it turned out as I expected it would, that was a bit of a disappointment for me. In my opinion, this was just a very “meh” book that just left me with a few weak smiles and a lack of any other strong emotion.
*Thanks to Around the World ARC Tours for allowing me to review this ARC.