Author: Catherine Jinks (site)
Published: April 4th, 2011 by Harcourt Children's Books
Price: $11.46 Amazon $12.74 Book Depository (PRE-ORDER)
Series: sequel to The Reformed Vampire Support Group
Synopsis: I still hadn't fully absorbed the terrible possibility that I might actually be a werewolf. A werewolf. I kept stumbling over that word; it made no sense to me. How could I be a werewolf? Werewolves didn't exist.
When Tobias Richard Vandevelde wakes up in hospital with no memory of the night before, his horrified mother tells him that he was found by the police. At Featherdale Park. In a dingo pen.
As if that isn't weird enough, suddenly a very menacing looking guy and a priest show up at his door.
As the mystery unfolds, Toby finds himself keeping company with some very strange and sickly looking people - members of a suburban vampire support group. And when he's abducted in broad daylight, he will need all their help to break free ... and to come to terms with his own incredibly rare condition.
Initial Thoughts: I was drawn to this one initally because of the amazing cover. It's dark, dangerous, and a bit comic-book like. It seemed like it would be a different take on the whole werewolf story.
Review: The characters in this book were great. I loved the main character. He wasn't a soulful, broodingly romantic hero. He just seemed like any other guy at that age, idiotic and thrill-seeking. He and his friends did stupid things to pass the time (home-made bombs, over-the-door buckets of slime). It was so refreshing to read about a character that was completely realistic. I remember what guys were like when I was 13 and they were idiots, not brooding young Byrons. I'll admit that I like to read about those kinds of characters as much as the next girl, but sometimes it's nice to read about types of guys that you actually encounter in the wild. Toby wasn't just some idiot, though. He did quite a bit of growing up in the book and, even before then, he had doubts about his friends' schemes. The friends were pretty typical guys as well; the Pushy Leader type and the Wussy Follower type. Some of the other supporting characters felt a bit half-sketched, but this was probably just because I hadn't read the first book (in which they play a much larger role.)
This book was full of action right from the start. As I was reading, I kept thinking to myself this would be great for [Anonymous 12-year-old brother]. The characters are very relatable (especially to young boys), there is plenty of action and no romance, and there aren't any lengthy philosophical discussions. Perfect for your typical guy. I loved it as well, it was nice to take a break from the sometimes emotionally draining YA books that are full of drama and romance. This one was a nice, fast, entertaining ride. I don't know if there's a follow-up book in the works, but it tied things up well enough that I'm happy to wait- or even to leave the series after this installment.
Quick Review: This book was a very fun, fast-paced, action-filled werewolf adventure. I would recommend it to anyone who likes supernatural or just YA books, especially boys. I'll be getting a copy for my younger brother. You don't need to have read the first book in the series to enjoy this one.