Vampirates: Demons of the Ocean by Justin Somper
Updated: Feb 14, 2020
Summary: Twins Connor and Grace have just been orphaned with nothing to their name. After stealing their recently deceased father's boat, they wind up being separated at sea and start an adventure to reunite filled with pirates and vampire pirates.
Review: I feel a little bit bad giving one star. A friend lent me this book as it is one of her favorites, and perhaps middle school me would have enjoyed it. However, adult me about hit my head off a brick wall trying to get through it.
Let's start with the fact that the review on the cover states it is "Totally original." Except it didn't feel original in the slightest. It felt as though the author stuck a copy of A Series of Unfortunate Events, A Comedie of Errors, Twilight, and Pirates of the Caribbean into a blender and this is what came out. Everything felt stale and like I had seen or read it before.
Then there are the characters. Honestly, I hated the twins. They were pompous and downright rude in the beginning. Plus, so cliched with Connor being "athletic" so of course Grace has to be "intelligent." Yet, it takes her longer than her brother to figure out what ship she is on despite constantly singing that retched shanty. Not to mention the commune-esque pirates and vampirates who are just instantly accepting of the new crew members and have mottos like "only kill if you have to." Sure, I get that it is a kids book, but really? The only characters I really resonated with were the regular adults left standing on the dock hoping the insubordinate little jerks would just die at sea.
The one positive though? Not one reference to walking the plank.