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Vampirates: Demons of the Ocean

July 16, 2014

Demons of the Ocean is the first in a YA series about Vampirates.  Yes, Vampirates.  Vampire Pirates.  I know, it took me a little time to get used to, too.  Just go with it.

Grace and Connor Tempest are twin siblings whose father passes away and leaves them with absolutely nothing.  So they decide to get in a tiny boat and set sail in the face of a giant storm.  This does not go well for them, and they are separated.  Both are picked up by pirate ships, but Grace’s ship is crewed by vampires.  The first book tells the tale of the twins’ adventures adjusting to their new lives aboard their respective ships and their plans to try and find each other.

The series isn’t bad, but it often felt like a fuzzy black and white movie with random bits of cartoon color.  One moment the author would be describing a room in rich detail, including a quirky cast of characters, and the next moment he would be glossing over what felt like some pretty important plot points.  For instance, the book is set 500 years in the future, but there is very little indication of that.  I eventually managed to work out a general time line based on how old various Vampirates were, but that was halfway through the book.  Prior to that, it just felt like it was set in this weirdly nebulous past/present that refused to be pinned down.  Old timey weapons, jobs, and social roles, but lots of modern slang that was rather jarring.  Finally, the book ends on a cliffhanger which I suppose is intended to encourage the reader to pick up the second book, but there isn’t enough of an over arcing plot to this book to tempt me to pick up a second.

As far as YA books go, I would classify this one as below average.  I wouldn’t even call it candy reading.  The writing simply isn’t good enough.  It wasn’t so bad that I didn’t finish it, but unless you or some other YA reader in your life is simply obsessed with vampire pirates, I wouldn’t recommend it.

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