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The Book of Common Dread (Vincent DeVilbiss #1)

3.57  ·  Rating Details ·  158 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Nobody in Princeton suspects Vincent DeVilbiss to be anything more harmful than a charlatan psychic with an exotic name - but technology has done a lot for the assimilation of the modern vampire. Tinted contacts hide amber eyes, sunscreen deflects harmful rays, and the anonymity of catalog shopping has made it possible to move beyond the traditional cape. Yet even with the ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published September 16th 1994 by St. Martin's Paperbacks (first published June 1993)
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Feb 20, 2009 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ah, vampire stories, very popular nowadays. The Book of Common Dread is such a story, but it has a few things going for it: first, it was written in 1993, thus placing a safe 12-year barrier between it and the sparklecaust of '05. Second, the author wrote it with the specific intent to stay away from vampiric cliches, vowing instead to use new ideas and freshen up the dusty genre.

For a novel that proudly proclaims its vampiric nature, it actually plays subtly on this in the story itself, a show
Joshua Grooms
Jul 15, 2015 Joshua Grooms rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone who doesn't like sparkling vampires.
I've been a fan of vampire fiction ever since I first read Bram Stoker's Dracula when I was a kid. Thus started a somewhat long period in my life when if I needed something good to read all I had to do was hunt down a book about vampires. Unfortunately the recent influx of poorly written asinine vampire fiction ended that illustrious period. Fed up with a lack of quality vampire fiction, and longing to feel the joys of my past, I purposely searched for a book I might have missed published before ...more
Mar 21, 2009 Rebecca rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Buffy, fans of Dan Brown, fans of Anne Rice, fans of Bram Stoker, fans of genre-benders
I was browsing the library shelves looking for another book when the title caught my eye, and the jacket sounded interesting enough that I checked it out. It's been awhile since I picked something where I haven't heard of either the book itself or the author, or had it recommended to me, because my to-read list is already so long. This time I am very glad I did.

It's hard to figure out what genre this book actually is, since it pretty much hits the high points of several. It has vampires in it,
Oct 01, 2013 Esmeralda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's the time of the season to read spooky books about vampires and the like. The vampire in this book, Vincent DeVilbiss, is somewhat different from the ones we usually see in books. He is a true servant of the underworld but his daylight encounters have caused him to see humanity in a different light.

Simon Penn is a librarian at Princeton University but still has not found his life's work. After he breaks up with his materialistic girlfriend, he rents a room from a beautiful but mysterious cow
Dan Gladwell
Feb 27, 2009 Dan Gladwell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure
This is by far the best book I have read in the modern (post-HP Lovecraft) horror genre. The story is actually original, which is extremely hard to find in the vampire genre. The characters are all likable in their own very different ways and their interactions are well written. I would actually place this more in the "Mystery" genre, as there Monahan does an excellent job of introducing and building up the mystery behind those in charge of the vampire underworld. I've ended up reading Common Dr ...more
Jim Henderson
Oct 25, 2009 Jim Henderson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vampires
This was tough to get into. I persisted, and it was well worth the effort.

The library copy I was reading convinced me that I wasn't alone in thinking that some of the vocabulary was a little... well, unusual, I guess. Someone had underlined a fair number of words throughout the book. I knew what the words meant, but I wondered if the underliner was intrigued or struggling.

Definitely sits at the literature end of the scale. Dense, and somehow sparse as well. Thorough, rounded, complete.

I liked
Aug 09, 2009 A.J. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vampires, unowned
I enjoyed Monahan's unique interpretation of classic vampire lore, their strengths and weaknesses, and what gives them their superhuman abilities. I can sense a well-crafted mythology behind the glimpses given the reader in this particular tale. A nice change from Rice and Meyer. On the other hand, while I like a seductive vampire as much as the next girl, after a while all the sex got a bit unnecessary.
Arthur Anderton
Jan 28, 2013 Arthur Anderton rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the most unique and enthralling twists on the vampire mythology I have ever read. Never have I seen a story that makes you assume it is about one small part of the mythological world then completely obliterates that assumption and opens up an enormous plot that you, not anyone else, could ever imagine. The fact than Monahan did imagne it baffles me and causes my mind to cower in the corner of my head, shivering in awe of the sheer creativity demonstrated in this book.
Mar 08, 2009 Jessica rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vampire-reads
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 24, 2008 Janice rated it it was ok
Shelves: supernatural
Yep, need that half star. The vampire in this book didn't seem like much of a threat. But on the other hand, the hero didn't seem very effective either. The ending hints at a sequel, that I'm not going to bother trying to find out if it exists or not.
Feb 18, 2010 Thomas rated it it was ok
Shelves: horror, 1994-95
My favorite quote from this book (which I still remember, 15 years later), is:

"Don't call someone an asshole; call them an earlobe. At least an asshole serves a purpose."
Feb 23, 2010 Rob rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
terrible. that is all.
Dec 01, 2008 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Its OK. I'm only going to finish reading it out of curiosity about how it may end and not an overwhelming need to read it.
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