This blog is basically about how good books are nice and bad books are the pits. And then I get grumpy.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

'Insatiable' by Meg Cabot

I heard about this one, probably on one of those mass emails the big bookstores send out. I had a coupon and thought this would be a fun splurge given the 40% discount. So when I went to the store (a big one with a grand opening coming soon), I headed to the adult fiction section with the help of a really nice bookseller. It's always pleasant to be in a new bookstore, even if it is one of those cookie-cutter chain stores that have eaten up the market and pushed out the indies. Let's face it, it's not the employees fault these stores seem so often to be soulless.

So, anyway I was a bit surprised 'Insatiable' was in the adult section, I guess since Cabot always seems to be known for kids books (though she writes for adults, too.) I opened her book, took a quick peek and decided I wasn't spending the money. Too bad, it had sounded good when I'd read about it online.

The next week I went back for something else. Once again, I had a coupon. Once again, I was compelled to look at 'Insatiable.' This time I bought it. And, after a quick (for me) read lasting a few days, I have to say I thought this book was delicious.

Okay, that's one of those cutesy words that seem pretentious and overwrought, but you know what? Sometimes it just works. I loved this book. It didn't seem like a Cabot to me. For a long time, this author had perplexed me. I was familiar with the Princess Diaries series and not overly impressed. I'd dipped in to other books of hers and they all sounded the same to me as far as tone was concerned. I like a writer who can slip into different voices the way character actors slip into different personalities for their roles. But then I read her first Allie Finkle book and I thought, yeah, kids will like this. She's good.

'Insatiable,' about a soap opera writer who hates the current vampire trend and is thrust into the world of real-life vamps, is over the top and full of references to pop-culture. (Did I see a stab at the banking industry or did I just imagine that?) It's funny. It's romantic. It takes place in NYC. It features a character who walks around Manhattan in a long leather trenchcoat armed with a sword out of a fairy tale and no one blinks an eyelid. Who doesn't love that?

Points of views are from different characters at different times, though it's always in third person. You'd think this would be jarring, but it's perfect. It's laugh-out-loud funny. And, Cabot's right when you go on her website and find the cautionary note that 'Insatiable' is meant for adult readers. It's a bit sexy, too. And swashbuckling.And it features great supporting characters (caricatures?).

As I was just into the beginning pages of the book - maybe in the 60s - I thought to myself, Why did I ever think I wouldn't like this book? And I was grateful that that momentary misjudgement didn't permanently keep me from this novel. That's how much I enjoyed it.

This seems to be a bit of a habit with me. I laughed and laughed about the 'Twillight' series until I actually read them. Hoovered them, really. I should really write about those, too and fix some bad karma.

So, I liked 'Insatiable.'

And it has a pretty cover. ; )

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