Monday, February 26, 2007

Song in the Dark by P.N. Elrod

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Ace; Reprint edition (September 26, 2006)
  • ISBN-10: 0441013732
  • ISBN-13: 978-0441013739
  • I finished this book on Feb. 26
So, dear readers, you know I've been trying to find a good vampire book besides the YA variety (not that those aren't the best ever!) and after my last failed attempt, I had high hopes for this one. It was not really what I was expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised.
Jack Flemming is a vampire night club owner in 1938 Chicago. In this book Flemming has stepped into his friend's shoes as a mob boss while he is temporarily out of commission. While, as a nearly invincible vampire it is relatively safe to be in the mob, it is a bad choice of extracurricular activities if you are suffering post traumatic stress, which Flemming is. Apparently, this on is the most recent book in a huge series by Elrod. Anyway, the deal is that Flemming got tortured pretty bad in the previous tome and now his vampire tricks are all wonky.
There is some really solid historical fiction action in here, with many references to real mob guys like Al Capone and lots of talk about old songs and clothing, which I think is neat. Elrod's take on vamp mythology is a little weird for me, but I'm not mad at it. The funny part is, it's actually some of the more traditional views on vamps, but I suppose I'm used to more modern twisting of the lore. For instance, Flemming has no reflection and can evaporate into mist (which is super convenient). In a more modern vein (ask me if I'm sorry about that pun, totally not) Flemming has a conscience and doesn't feed on humans, unless they are already dead (and you encounter a lot of dead people when you're in the mob, I'll have you know). There was also a twist at the end which I had suspected the whole time, and that made me feel like a genius for a day.
The moral of the story is that this was pretty good, entertaining, sort of funny and interesting. I won't be reading more in the series right now, but I may pick them up someday. For anyone who is interested in non fiction vampire info such as details on beliefs in different cultures etc, there are several books available. I like Vampires: The Occult Truth by Konstantinos.

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