Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Revamp - Beck Sherman



Title: Revamp
Author: Beck Sherman
Genre: Horror
Published: 2012
Formats: Paperback/Ebook

Available at:
Amazon
Amazon UK

"Revamp" by Beck Sherman is a novel that explore vampires in the way there were originally envisioned, evil killing machines. There are absolutely no friendly, cuddly vampires that sparkle in the sun which I was thoroughly pleased to see. But the best thing about this story is that there was no attempt to make a love triangle out of vampires, humans and werewolves. In fact there are no werewolves in the story at all; this is purely about vampires and the horror that surrounds them.

The story itself follows Emma Spade, a young college student whose visit to LA for an interview soon descends into chaos as she stumbles into an attempt by vampires to overthrow humanity and take control of the United States for themselves. Very soon Emma finds herself fighting for her life alongside a small group of human resistance fighters who are determined to find a way to survive and gain freedom and safety for themselves.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book; Sherman has managed to make vampires into something to fear again alongside a well paced plot that was quite engaging as it revealed the overall story to the reader and Emma at the same time. Whilst it was quite dark at times, the horror is well tempered with some rather wry humour which really helps to enhance the enjoyment factor.

The premise about Vampires conducting a blitzkrieg style attack on the United States and take over was superb and it resulted in some rather interesting political implications and satirical events. In particular I enjoyed seeing how Vampire society ended up being exactly like human society with the rich enjoying a lavish lifestyle whilst he poor, worked away with very little in terms of material objects and also blood itself.

Another aspect of the novel I was impressed with was the realism of some elements. For example it takes a full third of the novel before Emma will actually admit to the possibility that vampires exist. It was so nice to see a character really struggle with this in a novel rather than just accept it after a couple of pages. This sense of realism spread to other aspects of the story such as the logical way in which the humans trained to fight the vampires and the budding romance between Emma and Cooper that worked well considering the situation they found themselves in.

The characters were also superb, each one of them strong individuals in their own right with different foibles, abilities and fears. The various flashbacks that are interspersed throughout the novel also do a great job in teasing out the various back stories and ensures the reader is just bombarded with violence right from the start.

If I had to pick an issue with the book then it is actually about the synopsis which mentions the blackout, implying that it would take up an important part of the story. However, the blackout is barely mentioned and whilst it is actually important to the plot the reader is just told of its importance in a paragraph. It doesn't detract from the story; I just think it would have been nice to really follow what went on during it as an enhancement to the story.

Overall, this is a dark, witty, intelligent and entertaining horror story that really explores the violence of vampires. This book worked for me on many levels, the action, horror, characters were all brilliant and I now hope that Sherman decides to write more books set in this world and around these characters. I highly recommend it to any fan of horror, especially those who like the more in your face story of fear, grime, violence and danger.

Challenges Book Counts Towards:
Ebook Reading Challenge (Workaday Reads)