I picked this book up on a whim at my local book store and was glad I did. This anthology of female vampire tales combines old classics...

Book Review: VAMPS Blood-chilling Tales of Lady Vampires


I picked this book up on a whim at my local book store and was glad I did. This anthology of female vampire tales combines old classics like Carmilla and Clarimonde with more contemporary tales by Stephen King and Richard Matheson. Here's a run down of some of my favorites.

In One for The Road, Stephen Kings gives us a short vignette of what would become Salem's Lot.  Here the dreaded place is Jerusalem's Lot and it's the site of many unexplained disappearances at the hands of vampires who live on that unhallowed ground. In this story two natives of a nearby town try to help a city fellow who leaves his family and their car mired in a snowbank in the Lot.

 

The Cloak by Robert Bloch is a fun little number about a man who desperately needs a custume for a high end Halloween Party. He gets more than he bargained for when his authentic cloak begins working vampiric changes on him. He also chances to meet another cloak owner at the party.




 

Although I'm irked that they called Clarimonde by Theophile Gautier Clarimonda, the story by any other name is just as good. In this tale the title seductress steals away a devout monk on the eve of his vows. He sacrifices his morality and religion for her undead embrace.







One of the few stories of a female vampire by a woman in this collection is Luella Miller by Mary Wilkins Freeman. Luella is a helpless and relusive southern belle who has the bad habit of killing anyone who comes near her. Her constant need for attention kills her hard working husband, an aunt and several domestics. A far cry from the blood sucking ladies of most of the stories in VAMPS, Luella Miller is an energy vampire who drains life without spilling a drop.
 

The Girl with the Hungry Eyes by Fritz Leiber casts the female vampire has a fashion model. Known only as The Girl, she is the culmination of a million mens' dream desires. An unfortunate photographer becomes her lackey and almost one of her victims as she skyrockets to fame.






The Dress of White Silk by Richard Matheson is told from a child's perspective and reminds me of the Bad Seed.  Egged on by a female playmate, the little girl telling the story takes the girl to her dead mother's room to show her the dress of white silk. Things don't end well much to the dismay of the girl's grandmother.




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