Friday, December 19, 2008

Goodnight Kiss 2 or “A Terrifying Tale of Bats on ‘Roids”

Sorry long time no blog, guys. I had to pull myself out of an eggnog haze to write this thing. I swear post-Christmas I’ll be much more timely. And now, time for some more Super Chiller sequels! Let’s go back to Sandy Hollow to see how those beach-loving vampires are getting along. I’m pretty excited about this book, since in the first one all the main characters were a) killed, b) became walking corpses, or c) turned into boyfriend-murdering vampires. Also, surprise twist ending, where sweet little April eats her boyfriend up. All of the above means I have high expectations.

The prologue consists of Eric and Diana, walking along the beach at night. They sit under a random beach umbrella, left in the sand for the evening. Diana looks longingly at Eric’s neck, then tells him she brought him there to die. Before Eric can get out a wtf, Diana goes for … the beach umbrella, really a clever stake in disguise, and plunges it into Eric’s heart. Ooh, tricky Diana! Looks like we have a vampire vigilante in town, that should make things interesting!

Nate (the douche), Jay (the nerd) and Billy (the intense emo) are all spending the summer in Sandy Hollow, and they’re talking about what an AWESOME summer they’re going to have. They’re from the tiny town of Holcomb, which has no relation to Shadyside whatsoever. But how will we know this is a Fear Street book? Billy tells them the story about Vampire Island, the creepy island off the coast, always covered with a swarm of bats. Billy’s really into his vampire story, and the other guys make fun of him. That is, until two bats carry off a dog to the island. Yikes. I mean, it was a little dog, but that still seems pretty creepy. And implausible. Nobody’s laughing anymore, and Billy coldly vows to himself that he will destroy all the vampires by the time summer’s over. Ooh, looks like we have another vampire vigilante. I hope Billy and Diana hook up, that’d be fun.

The other guys are like, Billy, what the eff? So he explains last summer his girlfriend Joelle was killed by a vampire, and he spent the past year in a mental institution getting over it. Nate and Jay feel the treatment didn’t take, and maybe they let Billy out a little too soon.

Next on is April, the little blonde from last summer with the inappropriate bikini who callously ate her boyfriend after he (almost) saved her life. I love the continuity of this story! She meets two other vampires, Kylie, the stunning redhead, and Irene, the stunning blonde. They whine a lot about wanting nectar. This certainly is no Anne Rice novel, nobody ever seems to be having any fun, or getting enough to eat. Being a Fear Street vampire is hard! Things look up for them, though, when they spot the three boys wandering around town. They invite them to be in a play, called ‘Night of the Vampire.’ Yah, right. It conveniently only has rehearsals at night. You think Billy, as vampire vigilante, would pick up on these hints, but not so much. They all heartily agree that a play would be the best party of all the summer.

The vampire girls decide to make a little bet between themselves, to see who can turn their boy the first. Wait – I’ve read this plot line before! Was there NO other way to make vampire teens on the beach interesting? Whatever. They all meet the next night at the play tryouts. Up to this point, actually, I didn’t think there was a play called ‘Night of the Vampire,’ but I was so wrong. These teens really did decide to spend their evenings at the playhouse. Irene makes headway with Nate, and April’s getting along fine with Jay, but Kylie cannot catch Billy’s interest because he’s too busy looking for vampires. And flirting with another girl, Mae-Linn.

Mae-Linn gets the lead in the play, AND the guy, it appears, because Billy goes out with her after the play. Kylie must have been pretty choked, because next thing you know, M-L turns up drained of blood in a sand dune. Poor Billy, he keeps on losing girls. But the show must go on, and Kylie is given the lead part. Girl works fast, she got rid of the competition quickly. Meanwhile, Billy’s starting to get suspicious of April, because Jay’s been all tired and lethargic, and she’s too pale. Oddly enough, he doesn’t think about the OTHER two pale girls she hangs out with.

His suspicions seem to be confirmed about April when a guy name Rick Taylor runs up to her, telling her he remembers her from Shadyside. Hah! So for sures it’s a Fear Street book now. April freaks out and hustles Rick away. Billy demands to see Jay’s neck, and Jay tells him to eff off, and goes home to sleep some. Since Billy has no one left to accuse of vampirism, he lets himself be pulled into Kylie’s bloody kisses. Oh boys. They’re too easy.

Kylie and Billy decide to be adventurous and explore Vampire Island. Um, good plan Billy, since you know there are vampires out there. TIME FOR A PLEASURE CRUISE. They run into a bunch of bats, and then a wolf attacks Billy. A wolf on a tiny island off the beach, um, k. But apparently not really a wolf, because Billy turns into some kind of warrior and drives a table leg into the wolf’s chest. Huh. Anyways, it’s a vampire wolf he just killed, so go Billy! Billy goes to find Kylie. What do you do when you just killed a vampire and you’re a vamp vigilante? Make out with the hot redhead who is in no way a vampire, of course. Billy’s kind of a tool in this book. The party doesn’t last long, though, because they stumble over the body of Rick, April’s old Shadyside chum. There’s never a good time to be from Shadyside, I tell you.

Billy really ups his vigilante game, and runs to Nate and Jay, telling them their girlfriends are vampires. Nobody is amused, and they pretty much avoid him after that. He has no one to go to but Kylie, and her hot, hot kisses. At least they aren’t hot and dry this time! He feels a prick on his neck, and wonders what it could be? Why, mosquitoes, of course, she replies, miserable little bloodsuckers. Teehee. Billy has got to be the dumbest guy around. He’s LOOKING for vampires, he has one attached to his neck, and he just can’t seem to find any.

Despite being obtuse as to Kylie’s undead status, Billy is convinced April is a vampire, so he decides to set a trap. He convinces Jay to go along with his plan, luring April into the basement of the playhouse during a storm, and lying about what time it is until the sun was well and truly up. Good plan Billy. He shoves April into the streaming sunlight and – she doesn’t go poof. April’s all, duh, Billy you idiot vigilante, I am clearly not a vampire. And my name is actually Diana, the vigilante from the prologue! She’s April’s cousin from Shadyside. April went home after last summer newly undead, but she was unhappy being a monster, so finally stepped into the sunlight, killing herself. Hence, Diana is a vigilante monster-killer, to avenge her cousin’s suicide. She went WAY deep undercover, living with the vampires, who didn’t notice she was pumping full of fresh juicy blood.

Billy has found his soulmate, and they go to Vampire Island to finish things. They get there near dusk, in a creepy dark rain. They have the awesome plan that they should split up. Billy stumbles onto a shack, with three coffins in it. One of the coffins was full of clothes, the others full of Kylie and Irene. Wait – did they use an extra coffin as a closet? Like they couldn’t have used an actual closet? No time to worry about that, because both girls wake up at the same time, and advance on him. He is able to stake Irene, but Kylie has the upper hand on him.

This chapter is awesome, entitled ‘Kylie has Eyes for Billy.’ She lifts him off the ground like a doll and tries to bite him, but he uses the ancient art of ‘poking her in the eyes’ to get her away. April/Diana shows up at that point and rips a board off the window of the shack, letting in a stream of sunlight, because apparently it is now a) daytime, and b) really sunny out. Not impressed, no consistency here. Anyways, awesome part. All of Kylie disintegrates, except her eyeballs. “Only the eyeballs remained, staring up accusingly at him. Staring. Staring. Until they too melted and became wet, green puddles on the floor.” I have no idea why I love that passage so much, clearly it’s too much Fear Street. Billy and Diana embrace until the inexplicably shining sun sets.

They celebrate with pizza that night. Billy tries to help Diana cut their pizza, but accidentally cuts himself deeply with the knife. Only … there’s no blood. What could this mean? Turns out, Billy was a vampire all along, turned last year at the time of the death of his girlfriend. He wasn’t in a mental institution, he was in a coffin last year. He hated the vampires for turning him last year, so decided to kill them all. But apparently Billy didn’t have super self control, as he was the one who killed both Mae-Linn and Rick. And now that Diana knows his secret, he might as well eat her in front of a restaurant of frightened people …

Oh, come on! You did that twist last time! At least with April turning out to have become a vampire, it was kind of cute and explainable, but Billy wandered around all summer, getting bit by another vampire who never noticed he had no blood himself. This just isn’t likely, I don’t like it. What I DO like is this cover – very Harlequin romance. There’s totally a wind machine on the models. Who are they, though? Maybe Diana and Billy, but I prefer to think this is depicting the prologue scene, with Diana and Eric. Billy just didn’t seem like a long-haired romance novel type. Hmmm, I don’t think this sequel was redeemable. Thank god there wasn’t a Goodnight Kiss 3, I have a feeling it would be a little predictable. I give it 13 puddles of green eye goop out of 45.


LAK said...

Is it wrong that I feel all vampires now need to glitter or sparkle after seeing Twilight? And have Muse playing in the background? I don't know, I guess I prefer vampires who are lovers (and slightly stalkerish), not vigilantes.

Good call on the cover getting massive points for being better then your average Harlequin romance cover. I wish they still did their covers like this one!

L. K. Stine said...

SLIGHTLY stalkerish?

The cover is awesome, I love it. I felt especially juvenile while reading that one in public.

Anonymous said...

The cover for the first one was was better

Anonymous said...

I can never keep up with all the characters in these. Anyway if Billy's a vampire, how was he... he was walking around in sunlight, right? I guess being a vampire vigilante would be a good excuse for sneaking around in the dark.

LAK said...

What it's not normal for a guy to sneak into your room and watch you sleep?

Anonymous said...

Not if he doesn't ask permission first.

Anonymous said...

I have wondered about the cover since this book was first published- is that cover model Nicole Eggert circa the Baywatch days?

RecallerReminder said...

Cant believe how hypocrite the main character can be!! And April seems to be taking nice what happened to her in the past book, so I dont get how she become depresed to go so far.
The plot and the cast are just stupid. Stine just dont know how to write vampire stories.