Edmund Colell's Reviews > The Faggiest Vampire

The Faggiest Vampire by Carlton Mellick III
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's review
Dec 18, 2010

really liked it

One may be forgiven for thinking that weird examples of facial hair are among some pantheon of bizarro deities, especially when books like Carlton Mellick III's The Faggiest Vampire roll around. Mustaches are everywhere in Broodsarrow, having become an epidemic thought to either be caused by bacteria or by the charismatic Dargoth Van Gloomfang, the faggiest vampire in the land. This title sounds far less like an insult when swapping "faggy" for "suave," which is exactly how the word "faggy" functions in the world of this book.

And fagginess must be upheld, especially for Dargoth, who takes great care of his imperial mustache through the services of his human servant, Rococo. Unfortunately for Dargoth, there is another vampire who has come along to suck all the fagginess out of him and overthrow his seat of fagginess - Baron Van Ravengraves, the vampire with faggy modern-era dress and a pencil mustache thinner than any Dargoth has ever seen. With the mustache competition forthcoming, the rivalry between the two vampires provides the conflict for the story as they sabotage each other and strive for supreme fagginess. The whimsical plot and narrative oftentimes brought me into a state of mind where Stephen Fry was narrating the story, and the feeling was certainly helped by the doughy and swirly illustrations. All in all, a pleasant experience that provides a convincing argument that current children's fiction is still worth reading.

However, I can't help but get the feeling that there are far more adults than children reading this book. While the narration and plot certainly don't fall anywhere out of acceptable fare, the title will certainly bring out a knee-jerk reaction from concerned parents not familiar with bizarro. It's true that kids lingering in the 6-12 age bracket would love the title (knowing how me and my friends were back then), but it's hard to sneak this one by parents when the best way to buy it is through Amazon on a card.
As for any issues with the story itself, I do find it a bit odd that Rococo's hand-made party hat hoarding is brought up and never quite resolved, left only to a certain act of betrayal by his master. The hats are used again later on, but the actual act of hoarding his creations could have been a pretty good plot point if it had time to develop.

A faggy good time with little getting in the way of telling a charming story, even if the choice of title makes it more available to an older demographic.
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