Jason (RawBlurb)'s Reviews > Dick and Jane and Vampires

Dick and Jane and Vampires by Laura Marchesani
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Jan 05, 15

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bookshelves: reviewed, rated-3-three-star
Read in March, 2011

I was recently standing in a New Seasons grocery store and found myself looking at "Dick and Jane and Vampires", written by Laura Marchesani (and illustrated by Tommy Huntis). While my wife perused the cold cases of deli foods and chatted with her friend Ian, I stood there staring in surprised amusement.

I have read all sorts of novels where the premise has been updated to include some garbage supernatural element. Jane Austen updated to include zombies was the first that caught my interest (as I am sure it was with many readers). Now these updated novels are rather meh. They are everywhere. I was in Powell’s bookstore a few weeks back and found no less than 3 new examples on top of the 5-6 existing examples. Needless to say, it is frustratingly played out.

DJV was a different story though. It is a picture book, geared toward early readers. Anyone remembering back to their childhood can easily imagine the simplistic text “See Dick run, Run Dick Run!” and know that the memetic learning structure is geared toward quick repetitious assimilation. This is no less useful, but just slightly more interesting.

“See Dick Run, Run Dick Run” may be followed by a ” From the Vampire!”. The art work is gently massaged by Huntis to include sometimes subtle vampiric references. A vampire may be hiding in the bushes, he may be represented in the shadow of a child on the sidewalk, he may be wearing a kitchen apron and helping cook.

By the second section of the book, the Vampire has stopped being perceived as a menace, and by the third and final portion, he has become friends with the whole family. I think it is interesting that this book continues to promote the Daytime Vampire possibility.

There are a couple drawbacks to this book:

1) I read it in a grocery store. When I was finished, I put it down and did not buy it. It took me five minutes and though humorous, there was no drive to take it home. This is a typical trait of books that will find them selves only sold in novelty shops, and only bought by people who are looking for some campy gag gift.

2) It is going to further ingrain the “cuteness” and lovable nature of vampires into our culture. The only monsters that will be left for children to be scared of are politicians and catholic priests.

The huge bonus to the book:

The next time I read a kid the book “Are you my mother” and refer the the worms being pulled from the ground as the intestines of the planet and adlib in sections about the chewy nature of intestinal linings, I will get fewer nasty looks from family members. (Sorry Aunt Kelli and Cousin Tara)

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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Stacey (new)

Stacey LOL, you thought the vampire was cute? I thought he was creepy pedo-vamp (Hey! a little like Edward Cullen!) and the kids were probably mindmelted.

I totally didn't add this to my feed because I also read it in the grocery store (WTF, right?) and didn't buy it. Maybe I should have. It could stand as a warning.

Jason (RawBlurb) Stacey wrote: "LOL, you thought the vampire was cute? I thought he was creepy pedo-vamp (Hey! a little like Edward Cullen!)"

pedo-vamp. sounds like a metal band :)

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