Thursday, August 19, 2010

Review: Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side

Title: Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side
Author: Beth Fantaskey
Pages: 384

“Marrying a vampire definitely doesn’t fit into Jessica’s Senior Year “get-a-life-plan".

Enter a bizarre new exchange student named Lucius Vladescu who claims that Jessica is a Romanian vampire princess by birth and he’s her long-lost fiancé. He’s arrogant, officious, embarrassingly overprotective, and well, incredibly hot.

Armed with a copy of Growing Up Undead: A Teen Vampire’s Guide to Dating, Health and Emotions, Jessica tries to imagine the transition from an average American teenager to a glam European vampire princess. But just when things tart to heat up with Lucius, a devious cheerleader sets her sights on him.

Soon Jess finds herself fighting to win back her wayward prince, stop a global vampire war- and save Lucius’s soul from eternal damnation. All of which leaves her to wonder: Wouldn’t life be easier if she could just fall for a nice mortal boy?”

~description taken from jacket cover

For those of you skimming, I'll say it now: Go out and buy this book. I made the mistake of getting it from the library, and now I have to wait a few weeks to have my own copy. Do yourself a favor and get your own.

Jessica, also called Antanasia, is one of the most appealing narrators I’ve ever encountered. She’s smart, honest, and most importantly, you really feel for her. When something goes right for Jessica, you cheer, and when something goes wrong you cry with her. I was entirely enthralled with the storyline, only putting it down when outside circumstances necessitated it. Even the ‘normal’ moments that weren’t especially climactic seemed it, simply because I was so interested in what happened to Jessica. This raw, emotional tie is incredibly difficult to pull off, and is what, in my opinion, truly makes a book great.

However, Jessica isn’t the only reason I love this book. I also attribute it to Lucius (or Luscious, as I like to call him... terrible pun). Lucius is nowhere near a perfect hero, but he is perfect for Jessica. He makes plenty of rude remarks about the American farmland Jessica’s grown up in, but she refuses to take any smack and hands it right back to him. Even from their first encounter in Jessica’s barn, you can literally feel the chemistry popping in the air when she stabs him in the foot with a pitchfork.

Seems a bit extreme? Just wait until you experience Lucius- you’ll understand then (and yes, he isn’t just a character, but an experience). Some of his lines are hilarious but others make you want to punch him in the face. But after you do that you want to snuggle with him all night long. Basically, he’s irresistible. One of the few heroes who you know you’ll still be fantasizing about months after you flip the last page.

The bad with this book? I couldn’t find any hints towards a sequel. There’s a brief epilogue story on the author’s website that I’m saving for when I’ve had a terrible day. Other than that, I’m not sure if there’s any planned continuation. The only consolation is that the author has published another novel, Jekel Loves Hyde, that I'll be picking up as soon as possible.

Grade: 5/5


  1. Wow! You loved this book and you know what, I did too. You are completely right about Lucius being an experience. He springs out of no where, pisses you off and then turns up the heat. The chemistry between him and Jessica is almost dizzying.

    It's one of my all time favorite and one of the raw few books I'd re-read. Glad you enjoyed it as much as I did.

    Oh, and do yourself a favor and read the Epilogue! It was so much fun!

  2. Hi there, just to let you know you have a blog award over on my site. Come check it out.

  3. I keep seeing this book at the library, and just haven't picked it up yet -- but I liked what you wrote about it!

    And apparently, the Book Bee and I are thinking alike --- I gave you an award, too: here

  4. Hi, hope it's OK to contact you here. We would love to include your blog on our giveaway search engine: Giveaway Scout ( Have a look and if interested, use our online form to add your blog ( ). thanks, Josh

  5. I loved this book! Great review :)