Sucks to Be Me: The All-True Confessions of Mina Hamilton, Teen Vampire (maybe)
Reviewed by McKenzie Tritt (age 15) for Reader Views (9/09)
Mina Hamilton’s family isn’t exactly normal. They’re far from it, actually. Her parents, along with her Uncle Mortie, are vampires. Blame it on Uncle Mortie’s weakness for attractive blondes. Mina, named after the girl in Bram Stoker’s “Dracula,” has known for as long as she can remember that her family members are vampires. It’s never struck her as incredibly unusual, and it has never occurred to her that maybe she shouldn’t know.
Then along comes the Northwest Regional Vampire Council. Apparently, Mina isn’t supposed to know her parents are vampires unless she’s a vampire as well. Now, near the end of the school year and prom, Mina has to decide whether to become a vampire or not. She’s required to attend sessions that will teach her the pros and cons to vampirism and what exactly she should expect, all while having Uncle Mortie as her sponsor. While there, she meets a few interesting characters including an incredibly hot vampire wannabe, a creepy Goth girl, a peppy cheerleader, and a not-quite-so average boy.
Now, between writing her term paper for English and dealing with not one, but three love interests, Mina must make the toughest decision she has ever faced — become a vampire and leave behind her best friend Serena, or stay a human and leave behind her family. It’s an impossible choice that only gets worse when the clock starts ticking.
Debut author Kimberly Pauley has created a delightful novel which is sure to win over any modern day teen. I know she’s got me. Mina’s character was wonderful, from her sharp humor to her messy love life. She was easy to connect with and I believe many teenagers will see a part of themselves in her. I loved that this concept, which is normally written about as serious and dark, was given a lighter, humorous side. Pauley did a great job of spinning an old tale into something new, all while making it relevant to today’s teens. I especially enjoyed Mina’s best friend Serena, a Goth-now-girly-girl, as well as Mina’s interactions with George, her best guy friend.
Pauley has succeeded in creating a modern, humorous vampire tale, all as a first-time author with “Sucks to Be Me: The All-True Confessions of Mina Hamilton, Teen Vampire (maybe).” The only downside is that we have to wait until September 2010 for the sure-to-be-hilarious sequel.