Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “A Taste for Red” as Want to Read:
A Taste for Red
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

A Taste for Red

3.61  ·  Rating details ·  441 Ratings  ·  93 Reviews
A sixth-grade Goth girl who thinks she’s a vampire encounters her greatest nemesis when she enrolls at Sunny Hill Middle School in this hilarious and entirely original take on the vampire genre for middle graders.

Svetlana Grimm has recently discovered she’s a vampire. The clues are all there: she can eat only red foods, has to sleep under the bed because of her heightened
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published June 15th 2009 by Clarion Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about A Taste for Red, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about A Taste for Red

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Rebecca McNutt
This book seemed like it'd be original, but all it was, was another melodramatic and generic copycat of books like the Meet the Kreeps series, My Sister the Vampire, Oh My Goth or Emily the Strange. The main character has this idea that just because she dresses in black it somehow makes her different from everybody at her school, and her opinions of her new classmates is rather cruel, shallow and superficial. The writing was choppy, had extremely limited vocabulary and was more appropriate for e ...more
I found this to be a fun and enjoyable read about a young lady that is just trying to figure out how come she now thinks of herself as a vampire. A great spooky book for October that won't scare a young one too much, although they may look sideways at a teacher or two for a few days.

Svetlana has come into a change in her life where now she only finds comfort in sleeping under her bed and eating red food. What does this mean? Am I a vampire? Why does my science teacher give me such bad vibes and
Jul 14, 2014 rated it it was ok
It seems like I should have loved it, but I never did.
Jul 06, 2009 rated it really liked it
Svetlana—not Stephanie!—Grimm thinks she’s a vampire. How else would you explain her preference for red-colored foods, her ability to read and influence other people’s thoughts, and why she likes sleeping under her bed? Unfortunately, there’s nothing Svetlana can do to change her parents’ minds about her new schooling arrangement—sixth grade at Sunny Hill Middle School. Having been previously homeschooled, Svetlana is not looking forward to spending multiple hours in the company of kids she has ...more
Apr 28, 2010 rated it it was ok
Svetlana Grimm seems to have become a vampire. And she’s moved from Texas to somewhere else, and she’s gone from being homeschooled to being a 6th grader at Sunny Hills Middle School. The kids on the whole are welcoming, but the science teacher definitely is not. She’s scary and threatening (to Svetlana) and she smells like rotten meat. With the help of a couple of boys from her class, Svetlana ultimately learns she is not a corrupted vampire (one who needs blood) but a good guy (the good guys s ...more
Oct 13, 2010 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 06, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: din, vampire
Stephanie opps, Svetlana picks up school in 6th grade. (She had previouly been homeschooled.) Things have become different for her; she has developed strong olfactory senses, will only eat food that is red (white is neutral), and prefers to sleep under her bed. She must be a vampire! but how?

I enjoyed the author's word choice: cranium; coccyx; "glandular issues",

"...she sashayed off into the carnival crowd. The din of music, laughter, ringing, dinging, and voices came over me ina flood, as
Morgan Williams
Sep 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
Rachel and me read this together. It was fun.
Sarah Sammis
Aug 21, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Sarah by: Manga Maniac Cafe
May 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
It's not a terrible book, the mystery and action is okay enough, but as with a lot gothic young fiction it suffers from a certain pretentiousness. It's one of those books where we're expected to see the main character as supremely intelligent and so much obviously better than all the dumb and shallow "normal people" around her, when in actuality she often comes across as full of herself and needlessly judgmental.

This would be a pretty solid book for middle schoolers going through a "dark" phase,
Stephanie  Law
May 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Svetlana Grimm is a goth girl who believes she is a vampire. It is a little edgy for a kids book, but fine for grades 4-6.
Jennifer Conrardy
Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
A quick, interesting read. This has the feel of a prequel novella.
Emma (Miss Print)
May 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: amazon-vine
Svetlana Grimm, the protagonist of Lewis Harris' debut novel A Taste for Red (2009) is not your average eleven-year-old. Even after starting at Sunny Hill Middle School in California, after years of being homeschooled in Texas, Svetlana is just not like the other sixth graders in her class. Svetlana has a penchant for black clothes that his almost as strong as her preference for red foods. She sleeps under her bed. She can sometimes read, and influence, people's thoughts. And she thinks she migh ...more
Dec 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
Another book I obtained from Amazon Vine. This is just a little slip of a book but it was an entertaining read.

Svetlana is different from other kids. She only eats red things and likes to sleep under her bed; oh and she can hear people's thoughts. Ms. Larch also only eats red things but to Svetlana Larch smells like the worst of all rotting things. Then three girls at school go missing and Svetlana is convinced that Ms. Larch is involved. Can Svetlana find out the truth before it is too late?

Emily Morris
Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was not sure what this book would be when I picked it up. Was it "Twilight" for the younger set? Was it a mockery or satire of the entire vampire genre? Was it baby Goth fluff? Was it "Goosebumps"?

While I found a twinkling of each in the book, none of those are quite the right category for "A Taste for Red". While there is nothing wrong with any of the above, I found the separation here, quite frankly, a relief. This is more of a good old-fashioned story in the general sense of the word, one
Apr 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Stephanie has changed in the weeks since she and her family moved to California from Texas. She can't sleep in her bed, but sleeps very well under it. She no longer cares for her old favorite foods, but loves red foods of all types. She is becoming very sensitive to odors, and suddenly looks fantastic in black. Strangest of all, she is beginning to sense the thoughts of others. "Svetlana," as she now wants to be called, thinks she is turning into a vampire.

When Svetlana meets her new science te
May 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
Svetlana (aka Stephanie) is making the transition to 6th grade - and not just the going from elementary to middle school - she's also moved from Texas to California, gone from home school to public school, and discovered that she believes she's a Vampire.

A Vampire you say?

Well she's not sure what she is - but she only eats red foods, only wears black, can read people's minds, and sleeps under her bed. So the only thing that fits all those categories is vampire right? But then what is up with t
Sep 09, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: grades 5-7
Recommended to Sarah by: 5/6 list
Shelves: children-fantasy
Stephanie (who prefers to be called Svetlana) moves to a new town and attends a new school. Many of the kids think that she’s a bit of an oddball; Svetlana prefers wearing black, only eats red food, has extrasensory powers, and believes that she’s a vampire. Is that really so strange? What Svetlana finds strange is her new neighbor Mrs. Bones. At first glance, Mrs. Bones seems like a perfectly normal old lady, but Svetlana soon learns differently.

Meanwhile, Svetlana and her classmates meet their
Dec 31, 2012 rated it liked it
Svetlana Grimm is a snarky and hilarious narrator of middle school life. She describes her classmates and teachers as if they're from another planet and prefers to remain secluded in the tree of doom, her personal hideout than risk their company. However, she's forced to attend school for the first time in her usually homeschooled life.

From the first day of class she's suspicious of the science teacher. Although Ms. Larch is beautiful Svetlana can smell the evil in her. Literally, Larch smells l
Tabitha Olson
May 09, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: recent-reviews
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kid-lit
Svetlana (aka Stephanie) Grimm is not your average 6th-grader, as she will be the first to tell you. And she is certainly not looking forward to life at Sunny Hill Middle School. Sunny Hill?? Not exactly the kind of place a young vampire feels comfortable. Yes, Svetlana is a vampire (or so she thinks) and "being a vampire is a solitary business". But despite her best efforts, she finds herself making friends at her new school, as well as getting to know her elderly neighbor, Lenora Bones. Unfort ...more
Alice Liu
Jun 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Self-named and self-proclaimed, Svetlana Grimm is a charming and clever girl who believes she is a vampire. Consequently, she can only eat red things...or white, because white is neutral. What makes Lewis Harris' "A Taste for Red" stand out is that the funny parts come out of Svetlans's compulsions and idiosyncrasies, rather than merely out of snarkiness. The story begins on Svetlana's first day in public school after having been home-schooled her entire life. At first, it's hard to tell if she ...more
Mar 09, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ich finde das Cover nicht wirklich sehr ansprechend. Man kann Svetlana unter anderem auf dem Cover erkennen und eine Fledermaus. „Die Vampirin lieber untot als todlangweilig“ ist ein Einzelband.

Das Buch ist sehr witzig und kindlich geschrieben, was meinen Geschmack nicht wirklich angesprochen hat. Ich wollte zwar mal wieder ein lustiges, leichtes Buch lesen, aber nicht so ein übertriebenes.

Die Geschichte ist ja eigentlich nicht so schlecht gewesen, doch mit der Schreibweise bin ich einfach nich
Ed Dexter
Sep 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Artemis Fowl by way of Charles Addams?

This was the first impression I got of the main character, Svetlana, as I was introduced to her and her world. She's got a little bit of the super-genius "holier than thou" attitude but she also has a slightly dark twist to her humor. I felt she'd be right at home as a cousin of the Addams Family.

The author introduces a new take on vampires and supernatural creatures which I found interesting and refreshing. I don't want to give away much about the mythos in
Jan 31, 2009 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Madelene Gallon
Sep 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book has a calm aspect to it, it filled with plot twists, spooks, adventure, and trouble, yet you can still read it with a calm aesthetic. You can keep calm, imagine a dark red tint to everything that's happening, and be very entertained without your eyeballs jumping out. You can bite your fingernails, but not hastily. The main characters slightly apathetic and calm behavior is passed on to you, and you feel how she feels half the time. You imagine her class, her friends, her mother, her fo ...more
Jun 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: msba-nominees
Stephanie has been homeschooled her whole life, but when her family moves and her mom takes a job, she is forced to attend public school for the first time. Simultaneously she begins to notice other changes. She can only eat red foods and she can only sleep UNDER the bed to name a few. Stephanie, who suddenly prefers to be called Svetlana believes she is turning into a vampire. When her new science teacher seems to share similar traits, Svetlana believes she has found a kindred spirit, however, ...more
Apr 19, 2015 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: young readers, anyone
Very cute YA book and a quick read. I really like the main character, I guess because she reminds me of a good friend. The concept is really cute. Picked it up for the cute cover. Not something with much depth, but would recommend for a younger reader, especially a girl. I would almost like to see it as a series. Vampire and supernatural creature YA books are definitely the thing these days, and I think that parents would love to see their kids reading stories about Svetalana and her adventures ...more
Anna Serra i Vidal
Oct 21, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids
Svetlana Grimm (that's how Stephanie wants to be called now) has changed her taste in food (she only wants to eat read food) and dressing (she kind of likes black now). But she's also changed her Texas home schooled live to a California middle grade school. She's not happy about it and she shares her views with a sarcastic voice I loved, and I'm sure kids will do too.
With this changes, she even believes she's a vampire but when she meets face to face with the evil vampire she has to change her
Apr 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Spring break officially started this afternoon and "A taste for red" is the first book I've read for pleasure since the Christmas break. I'm off to a great start. This book is quick and funny. The main character, Stephanie a.k.a. Svetlana, is smart and funny. I thought this was going to be another vampire story, but it has a twist. There is action and some violence, but I think this book is appropriate for sixth grade. I look forward to recommending this to students, especially girls that are lo ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • War Games
  • The Anne Frank Case: Simon Wiesenthal's Search for the Truth
  • Dessert First
  • Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything in It
  • The Problem with the Puddles
  • Freaky Monday
  • Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go
  • Sweet Miss Honeywell's Revenge: A Ghost Story
  • Sammy Keyes and the Cold Hard Cash (Sammy Keyes, #12)
  • Here's How I See It--Here's How It Is
  • The Humming of Numbers
  • Unusual Creatures: A Mostly Accurate Account of Some of Earth's Strangest Animals
  • Bunnicula In-a-Box (Bunnicula, #1-3)
  • Kiki and Jacques
  • Journey Home
  • Tortilla Sun
  • A Rat's Tale
  • The Big Book of Barry Ween, Boy Genius

Fantasy & Science Fiction Deals

  • Off to Be the Wizard (Magic 2.0, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Beneath the Shine
    $3.99 $1.99
  • The Stepford Wives
    $9.74 $1.99
  • Time's Divide (The Chronos Files, #3)
    $5.49 $1.99
  • The Long Earth (The Long Earth, #1)
    $5.49 $1.99
  • Gilded (Gilded, #1)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Infinity Lost (The Infinity Trilogy #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • The Man of Legends
    $4.99 $1.99
  • All the Breaking Waves
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Fellside
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Timebound (The Chronos Files, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Banished of Muirwood (Covenant of Muirwood, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Muirwood: The Lost Abbey: The Graphic Novel
    $7.99 $0.99
  • 2061: Odyssey Three (Space Odyssey, #3)
    $8.99 $1.99
  • Alas, Babylon
    $9.74 $1.99
  • 3001: The Final Odyssey (Space Odyssey, #4)
    $8.99 $1.99
  • Fractured (Guards of the Shadowlands, #2)
    $4.99 $0.99
  • The Queen's Poisoner (Kingfountain, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Zeroes
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Dreams and Shadows (Dreams & Shadows, #1)
    $9.49 $1.99
  • Touch of Eternity (The Curse #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Touch
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Dragon Rider
    $5.99 $1.99
  • An Unwelcome Quest
    $4.99 $1.99
    $4.99 $1.49
  • Luna: New Moon
    $9.99 $2.99
  • The Traitor's Kiss (The Traitor's Circle, #1)
    $7.80 $2.99
  • The Void of Muirwood (Covenant of Muirwood, #3)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Dreadnought (Nemesis, #1)
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Dirty Magic (Prospero's War, #1)
    $8.99 $1.99
  • A Plague of Giants (Seven Kennings, #1)
    $8.99 $1.99
  • The Fire Queen (The Hundredth Queen, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastard, #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Red Knight Falling (Harmony Black, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Star Wars: Thrawn
    $9.99 $1.99
  • Zoo City
    $9.99 $2.99
  • The Wishing Spell (The Land of Stories, #1)
    $7.99 $1.99
  • Sanctum (Guards of the Shadowlands, #1)
    $3.99 $1.99
  • Unmasked (The Vampire Diaries: The Salvation, #3)
    $3.49 $0.99
  • Afterlife
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Unseen (The Vampire Diaries: The Salvation #1)
    $3.49 $0.99
  • The Dwarves (The Dwarves, #1)
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Dryad-Born (Whispers from Mirrowen, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • The Unbroken Line of the Moon (Sagan om Valhalla #4; Valhalla #1)
    $4.99 $1.99
  • Blackfish City
    $11.99 $2.99
  • A Knot in the Grain and Other Stories
    $6.99 $1.99
  • Supernatural: Bobby Singer's Guide to Hunting
    $8.49 $1.99
  • Silvern (Gilded #2)
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Some Fine Day
    $3.99 $0.99
  • Random Acts of Senseless Violence
    $15.99 $1.99
  • Mystic (Mystic, #1)
    $9.99 $2.99
  • Spell or High Water (Magic 2.0, #2)
    $4.99 $1.99