Thursday, February 03, 2011

Janice Eidus Gives Voice to Adolescent Virgin Vampire

The Last Jewish Virgin: A Novel of FateThe Last Jewish Virgin: A Novel of Fate by Janice Eidus

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lilith, her feminist mother Beth, art teacher Mr. Rock and fellow student Colin, they could be the regular cast for a Young Adult coming of age story. That is, if it wasn't for the intriguing introductory paragraph. Soon after I started reading I forgot about the foreshadowing (or is it a flash-back?) of the age-old mystery that surrounds the life and death of vampires. Yes, The Last Jewish Virgin is a vampire story, and if you're a fan of the genre you'll probably be focused on that. But on another level, Janice Eidus, who has an uncanny way with the voice of adolescence, presents what could be just another foray into adulthood.

To read a first person account in the voice of an adolescent that doesn't depend on the all encompassing "like", is a relief! That the author spices the narrative with adverbs instead, is something even a reader who is usually allergic to words ending with "-ly" can accept as a worthy and useful alternative to run-of-the-mill Ado Convo Lingo.

As for accompanying Lilith to Bennett School for Art and Design, it was as though I got to re-visit the art academy I attended. And again, while fans of vampire stories will look at The Last Jewish Virgin for signs of the undead, I was constantly reminded of memories of mere mortals that live on.

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This work by Judith van Praag is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License