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Drawing Blood

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4.02  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,243 Ratings  ·  222 Reviews
Escaping from his North Carolina home after his father murders their family and commits suicide, Trevor McGee returns to confront the past, and finds himself haunted by the same demons that drove his father to insanity.
Paperback, 416 pages
Published October 1st 1994 by Dell (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Paul Jr.
Jul 05, 2009 Paul Jr. rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: horror readers, m/m fiction readers
Back when Anne Rice was all the rage, dozens of authors jumped on the brooding, melodramatic historical vampire quickly turning what Rice wrote into a literary cliché. The shelves were littered with Rice wanna-be’s. Then along came Poppy Z. Brite, a short story writer who was making the horror world sit up and take notice by blending very realistic, human characters with an almost splatter-punk kind of sensibility. To boot, Brite was doing what many authors had never even contemplated. She was m ...more
Gemma
Dec 17, 2007 Gemma rated it liked it
Talk about your guilty pleasures, eh?

I'm always torn about Poppy Z Brite's books. On one hand, lots of hot sex scenes between pretty boys, lashings of the supernatural, and comic books.
On the other, her female characters are all mothers/bitches/vaginas/die horribly delete as applicable. It makes me conflicted. The things I really love, along with pet peeves.

This is the only one of her books I would actually recommend- one of the female characters actually lives, and I don't want to actively slap
...more
Wealhtheow
Jul 30, 2007 Wealhtheow rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of slash, Crumb and gore
My favorite Brite novel, and the one with the best characterization. A young man returns to the home where his father went homicidally insane years ago. While there, he meets and falls in love with a hacker on the run. Is their love enough to combat the sinister madness of the house?
Robert Beveridge
Poppy Z. Brite, Drawing Blood (Dell, 1993)

I've been a fan of Poppy Brite's novels ever since I read Exquisite Corpse back in 1997, but (and here I lose most of my cred with my goth friends), I've never been a fan of Steve and Ghost. It's a testament to Brite's characterization ability that my problem with them is a simple personality clash; they just never clicked with me. Because of it, however, I never did read Drawing Blood, a Missing Mile novel that, as it turns out, contains Steve and Ghost
...more
Anne
May 07, 2007 Anne rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
Please ignore the cheesy title and crappy back cover descriptions. This is less a horror novel than a love/adventure story — in fact, I would say that the "horror" elements are the weakest part of the story (thank goodness they're only really heavy in one chapter towards the end). Brite's lush descriptive prose is enticing (an outdoor market in New Orleans is bursting with such fantastic color and scent it makes the mouth water) and she's created some fantastic characters, most notably in Trevor ...more
Eddie
Jan 31, 2010 Eddie rated it it was amazing
Somewhere near the end of this book, I decided it was the best story I've ever read. I actually did like it to this extent and I highly recommend this book to all the young gays out there who wouldn't mind a little bit of gore and some exaggerated mentions of drug use, filthiness and death.

Although many of you would think of "Drawing Blood" as a horror book, I found the highlight of its plot being the love story between the two protagonists Trevor McGee and Zachary Bosch, the two cross paths in
...more
M
Oct 17, 2014 M rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Billed as a horror, but this felt more like a love story. Nothing wrong with that, but it was just a bit too emo for me in places, and a little pretentious. I might have liked it better if I were fourteen and going through the 'no one understands me' phase.
Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!}
Oct 30, 2011 Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!} rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people who like horror, vampires, and gay fiction.
Recommended to Rabbit {Paint me like one of your 19th century gothic heroines!} by: a comm on LJ called Bookish
LOVED this novel. Erotic and terrifying. Hot sexy times as well.
Anna
3.5 stars. This was good, but oh so weird.

The first 40% were pretty boring, especially since the two MCs didn't even meet until that mark. But when they did meet it started getting reaaally good. I absolutely LOVED the connection between Zach and Trevor. From the moment they met, they immediately connected and I loved reading about it. I do feel like they fell in love kind of quickly and it wasn't very realistic, but then again, like Zach said, he'd been waiting 19 years to fall in love and it j
...more
Charles Dee Mitchell
Oct 30, 2011 Charles Dee Mitchell rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
Poppy Z. Brite offers up another dreamy, sex-filled story of teens and young adults who have grown up to be punks, goths, and the beautiful, fragile people on the margins of late 20th century society. Her writing here is less florid than in her first novel Lost Souls, but then again none of these characters are vampires. She also has a real plot for this novel, unlike her first. It's an unlikely love story with a smattering of the supernatural, much of which is actually drug-induced hallucinatio ...more
Talyn Falls
Oct 13, 2010 Talyn Falls rated it it was ok
It was a typical Poppy Z Brite novel. :/ Very nicely written, great descriptions and beautiful prose but promising a lot more than it delivered. I was not satisfied at all with the few short incidents that could actually be considered the horror aspect in this novel. Instead it's a fucked up M/M romance novel that was set in a haunted house. It took FOREVER to get to the climax of the story, where they enter Birdland, and it was brief and not really satisfying...however I was full up on gay sex ...more
Anna Kļaviņa
“Aren’t you scared he will freak out and murder you in your sleep”
Zach laughed.”No. If Trevor decides to kill me, he’ll make sure I’m wake for it”


After Zach (19, runaway hacker) talked out Trevor (25, an artist) of killing him they become friends and lovers. Zach has to keep running away from law but he stays with Trevor who has returned to house where his father 20 years ago murdered his wife and younger son and committed suicide leaving behind his oldest son alive. While with every day agent
...more
Private Grave
Apr 02, 2014 Private Grave rated it liked it
Recommends it for: goths, deathers, poppy z. brite fans
Shelves: 2010, dark
Growing up P.Z.B., as a writer, meant so much to me. Her dark, twisted, and aching characters filled my head as if they were people in the real world –stories from a darker part of the world that if I looked hard enough on the fringes of society I could find.

I’m twenty-five now, an old man by my standards, and I find myself rereading P.Z.B. books looking for that key to the darker world. The key to the place where I feel like I truly fit in.

At twenty-five I see P.Z.B.’s characters as childish, y
...more
Alanahurley
May 15, 2007 Alanahurley rated it really liked it
Poppy Z. Brite seems to have been excoriated for the Gothic trappings of her writing, or possibly simply her wild-child, pretentiously "decadent" persona. Although she trips up in her short story collection, "Wormwood," and can veer into ridiculousness with her overlong and sometimes florid descriptive style, underneath the layers of lace and eyeliner, her longer works of nonfiction have legitimately interesting characters and original plots. Drawing Blood is particularly good, as Brite revists ...more
Furio
Jul 15, 2013 Furio rated it liked it
I did not think i could find an horror novel escapist but this was the case with this one; it is my first book by Ms Brite and I found much in it to be pleased about.

The story, if not particularly original, is not worn out and/or dumb. Writing is fairly good and to the point but could be more polished and achieve both more beauty and more tension: from the first page I knew there was going to be a happy ending and as much as I love my endings to be happy I still wish to get more thrills.
I would
...more
Addy
Aug 12, 2014 Addy rated it it was ok
I've come to find Poppy's short stories better than her novels. I hope to change my mind with Exquisite Corpse. This book had great descriptions of New Orleans and it started off bizarrely enough to keep my attention, but then slowly turned into some gay romance I wasn't really into. I was hoping for more horror but didn't get much, which was disappointing. It took me forever to finish only because I wanted to give it a chance, but the ending turned out to be unbearable when it turned into hallu ...more
Doyle Mills
Apr 20, 2014 Doyle Mills rated it it was amazing
I read this book back when I was young and Poppy became one of my favorite writers at that time and I think her style has had a big influence on me. Even though this book is Drawing Blood I felt the connection to lost souls. Zach and Trevor seemed so different to me, yet they were really lost souls until they found each other and their love I felt like it saved them. Where would these two characters have ended up if life had not had it's way of bringing them together. Poppy Brite is a very uniqu ...more
Nicolle Cornute-Sutton
Apr 18, 2008 Nicolle Cornute-Sutton rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite of Poppy Brite's books. As the two main characters, Zach and Trevor, fell in love with each other, so I fell in love with them. The horror aspect of the book became an interesting backdrop for the romance.

The prose is a bit on the purple side sure but it's also lush and descriptive and fun, almost but not quite as over the top as say, VC Andrews.

If you like boys who like boys and the supernatural this is the book for you.
James Berry
Apr 02, 2013 James Berry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
Love Poppy Brite and man, can he write a book. It was instant love between the two protagonists but didn't feel unnatural and forced like most people make it feel, and I definitely had mixed feelings about them both. I genuinely felt scared in my own house after reading this too, imagining the faucets leaking a certain way or being transported to Birdland. Wish he was still writing because I know I'm going to soak up the rest of his work so fast.
Robb Bridson
Mar 14, 2015 Robb Bridson rated it it was ok
This is the first novel by Poppy Z. Brite I've tried reading. Before that I only read Wormwood and that was a long time ago, originally turned on to that book by one of the stories appearing in an anthology.

I don't know if it's just changing tastes or if I only like her work in small doses, probably a bit of both. I was much younger when I read Wormwood and was intrigued because it was some of the sickest, weirdest stuff I'd read.
But trying to read a full novel by Brite... just didn't work for
...more
Kim
Nov 23, 2013 Kim rated it it was ok
This was definitely not as good as Poppy's first book Lost Souls. This book is a collection of short horror stories. I found that although a few stories were great such as, "His mouth will taste of Wormwood", and, "The sixth sentinel"; that others just did not hold my attention. Poppy is no doubt one of the best horror authors of her time, and I am among her true following, however this book did not do her justice.
Oriolidae M.
Apr 08, 2014 Oriolidae M. rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Folks interested in m-m, weirdness and some pretty creepy spooks


Uh, what was that again? This one is a mind-fuck, truly. And I'm still wondering about the vampires... Huh.

I'm kind of surprised that this was written twenty years ago, it has a pretty modern feel to it, aside from the ancient phones. There was an odd mix of a weird buzz, hot sex, horror, some deep moments and clichés thrown in here and there. Sometimes I liked it a very big lot, and sometimes I kind of just sighed inwardly. The whole supernatural aspect was kind of odd. The novel could have eas
...more
Heather
Nov 25, 2008 Heather rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, horror
Everyone has those books that reach out to them and affects them in one way or another, regardless of if people agree or not. This was one of those books for me. Trevor has become a very dear character to me, and I find myself rereading snippets of this book whenever I'm bored, lonely, or just want to get in touch with the character I fell in love with.
Avis Black
Dec 15, 2008 Avis Black rated it did not like it
The main problem with Brite is that her work always falls short of expectations. She has a lot of attitude but doesn't go anywhere worthwhile with it, and has never shown the discipline or brilliance to be a good writer.
Amy
Feb 12, 2014 Amy rated it it was amazing
"Drawing Blood came out not long after; it wasn’t about my beloved Steve and Ghost, but I loved it just the same. Love and loss and murder and longing and art; Trevor and Zach finding one another and holding each other up when they weren’t sure they could go on anymore. At the heart of Brite’s work is love, and loyalty; things I love, things I cherish, things I relate to. And there were some recurring characters in the book, which was like coming upon old friends; I actually remember cheering wh ...more
Chad Perrin
Oct 20, 2015 Chad Perrin rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror, dark-fantasy
It has been a long time since I read this novel, but I recall being quite amazed by the absorbing moodiness, evocative prose, and compelling themes. My impression of Brite's writing, especially on the subject of vampires, is that she is everything that Anne Rice fans think of Rice -- but where Rice falls short of the legend, Brite exceeds all expectations.

Some of Brite's preoccupations in her writing (which somewhat mirror Rice's, but Brite is less coy about it) get to be a bit much for my taste
...more
Nick
Nov 24, 2015 Nick rated it really liked it
Shelves: gothic, favorites
Very hard-edged thriller. Lots of goth-subculture, sex, drugs and the goth equivalent of rock'n'roll. Not a great book, but maybe it's a great example of postmodern gothic...without vampires.
Jan
Feb 21, 2009 Jan rated it really liked it
A horrifically supernatural gay love story about two pretty boys, written by a female author who appears to be obsessed with blood and other bodily fluids. What's not to like?
Alex  Jimenez
This book features an insanely rushed romance that barely gives you time to breathe before it happens and that was very bothersome. I wouldn't really lump this book into the horror genre, unless you're talking about the horrors of such an unrealistic romance. But see here: Brite is a very, very good writer. It kind of hurt to find flaws in the story when the writing was so lovely and the whole thing was very entertaining and kept me busy on a boring Saturday afternoon. Everything would have flow ...more
Joanna
Mar 23, 2010 Joanna rated it it was amazing
one of my favorite books of all time. i wore out my first copy and had to get a second. pretty angsty, gory and trippy, but very fulfilling.
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Poppy Z. Brite (born Melissa Ann Brite, now going by Billy Martin) is an American author born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Born a biological female, Brite has written and talked much about his gender dysphoria/gender identity issues. He self-identifies almost completely as a homosexual male rather than female, and as of 2011 has started taking testosterone injections. His male name is Billy Martin.

He
...more
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“All at once it hit him: this was power too, just as surely as smashing your fist into someone’s face, just as surely as putting a hammer through someone’s skull. The power to make another person crazy with pleasure instead of fear and pain, to have every cell in another person’s body at your thrall.” 16 likes
“+
He wasn’t much for erasing anyway. Sometimes your mistakes showed you the really interesting connections between your brain, your hand, and your heart, the ones you might otherwise never know were there. They were important even if you had no idea what they meant.
Like now, for instance. Coming back here might be the biggest mistake he’d ever made. But it might also be the most important thing he’d ever done.”
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