Vampire Junction

Vampire Junction
Review by Davis Farnsworth, submitted on 1-Aug-1991

The writer is trying to tie together several plot lines. Some are flashbacks to the past experiences of the vampire, others are modern-day personages who will meet up with the vampire. The author is also trying to blend in Jungian Psychology with the vampire mind - no small feat. Some (in)famous historical characters are encountered, and the action takes place in Thailand, Europe (several different countries in several different centuries), Los Angeles, and rural Idaho. This vampire is unusual in that he looks like a twelve-year-old boy (Valentine).

This author has devised a very complex plot, which is normally something I like. However, this time I found myself unable to remember who I was dealing with at the beginning of too many chapters. (Now who's Brian? What century is this? Is this in Los Angeles again?) Still, I kept reading. I am normally a very fast reader, and I have a very good mind for details.

Two things finally drove me to give up on this book though. The vampire is nearly two thousand years old, yet he still thinks and acts like a twelve-year-old. I grew weary of his lack of depth. He was always wanting to be "a good boy" and taking a child's role. I found Claudia, in Interview With The Vampire and The Vampire Lestat to be more believable in that she matured even though her body remained that of a five-year-old. I did not see Valentine maturing. He was still looking for Mom and a Dad.

The other thing that made me finally close the book, and return it to the library unfinished, was the graphic accounts of the torturing of children. Sorry, but I've got four little ones at home and I can't handle too much of that. Vampire books are frequently violent; I accept that as part of the territory, but Somtow relishes it more than I can handle. Other readers are probably not so easily bothered.

I have heard comments that Somtow's writing style is ponderous. That did not particularly bother me. I have also seen comments from people who quite like Vampire Junction. I agree that Somtow has been very creative in putting together a complex plot, covering a lot of time and place, and integrating Jungian Psychology into a medium where it is not normally encountered. He also did some rather creative thinking regarding a vampire, menstrual blood, and oral sex. (Valentine left behind a shocked, but smiling, victim that time!)

If you feel that you might like the book, I would recommend that you not buy it, but get it from a local library (as I did) and try it out. Somtow does have some original concepts going.

Fanged Films

From the Library

As the 20th century evolved, rational man turned to science to explain mythology that had pervaded for thousands of years. How could a man be mistaken for a vampire? How could someone appear to have been the victim of a vampire attack? Science, in time, came back with answers that may surprise you.Anemia
A million fancies strike you when you hear the name: Nosferatu!N O S F E R A T Udoes not die!What do you expect of the first showing of this great work?Aren't you afraid? - Men must die. But legend has it that a vampire, Nosferatu, 'der Untote' (the Undead), lives on men's blood! You want to see a symphony of horror? You may expect more. Be careful. Nosferatu is not just fun, not something to be taken lightly. Once more: beware.- Publicity for Nosferatu in the German magazine Buhne und Film, 1922  

Drawn to Vamps?

Vol. 1 No. 4
The Fiend of Chang-Sha part two : Dead By Day -- Fiend By Night!
Vol. 1 No. 7
The Duel Of The Monsters!