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American Vampire Vol. 4 Hardcover – October 2, 2012

4.6 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
Book 4 of 7 in the American Vampire Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

After a quick flashback to an early chapter in Skinner Sweet’s pre-vampire life in the Union army (drawn by Spanish artist Bernet), the series returns to its main story line of new-breed bloodsuckers creeping through progressive American eras. We’re in the 1950s now with a major new character, a leather-jacket-clad teen greaser armed with a sneer and a helluva cause: exterminating every last undead abomination he can sniff out. Snyder’s become one of DC’s most in-demand writers since beginning this series, and if it seems like his scripts are getting a bit thinner, that’s easily outweighed by regular artist Albuquerque’s consistently great, gory work. --Ian Chipman


"Looking for a vampire story with some real bite? Then, boys and girls, Scott Snyder has a comic book for you. . . ."—USA WEEKEND

"Surprisingly fresh vampire spin... It sure feels good to root for evil once in a while."—Booklist


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Product Details

  • Series: American Vampire (Book 4)
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Vertigo (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401237185
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401237189
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.6 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #602,682 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Scott Snyder is one of comics' bestselling authors. His works include BATMAN, AMERICAN VAMPIRE, THE WAKE, SUPERMAN UNCHAINED, SEVERED, and WYTCHES among others. He has also been published in Zoetrope, Tin House, One-Story, Epoch, Small Spiral Notebook, and other journals, and has a short story collection, Voodoo Heart, which was published by Dial Press in 2006. He has taught at Columbia University, Sarah Lawrence University and NYU and lives in New York with his wife, Jeanie, and his two young sons.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
AMERICAN VAMPIRE VOL. 4 isn't the best in the series, but it gives fans plenty of meaty material to sink their teeth into (terrible pun completely intended). This volume of American Vampire is divided into two portions. The first takes place in the 1800s during the Indian Wars, and the second portion takes place during the 1950s. It's a Skinner Sweet-heavy volume, which is great, because Skinner is such a fun character (and by fun, I mean evil and terrible. But the worst villains make the best characters). Pearl barely makes an appearance, which is a fault in my opinion, but that speaks to the quality of Snyder's and Albuquerque's work-I get upset because they have not given me enough awesomeness.

The first story takes place before Skinner was turned into a vampire. He's in the US Army, fighting the Indian Wars, along side his best friend, James Book. This portion gives readers some great backstory on Skinner and how he has always been a monster of one sort or another, even as a boy. It also hints at other types of vampires running around the American West.

The second portion has two protagonists. The first is Travis Kidd: teenager, greaser, vampire hunter. Another badass in a world that seems to be lousy with them, Travis is obsessed with killing vampires because they killed his family. But Travis has a sense of style. He has to do it his own way, outside of the Vassals of the Morning Star, as much as they would love to have him as a new recruit. He's a smart, vicious, and capable guy. I hope this isn't the last time we see him. Oh, and Travis's story offers readers just a hint about the big things that happened between the Vassals and Skinner after Volume 3. I hope we get to learn more about that.
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Format: Hardcover
AMERICAN VAMPIRE gives us something rarely seen in comics since the days of the old Wolfman/Colan TOMB OF DRACULA comics: Really scary vampires. I know that Steve Niles and Ben Templesmith really did some nice work with 30 DAYS OF NIGHT, but despite all the tie-ins and films and so on in regards to that title, it was really a one-off. AMERICAN VAMPIRE, created by Scott "The Best Writer DC Has Had In Years" Snyder, Stephen King (yes, THAT Stephen King), and artist Rafael Albuquerque have introduced a vampire tale for the times. It's a tale that spans centuries, but it's a uniquely American take on what essentially is a mythology for the entire world at this point. And Snyder keeps taking us to new times and new characters, but never losing sight of the mission of this comic: creating a new mythology that branches out on the old.

The first half of this trade is, sadly, not terribly good. While having some really nice art by Jordi Bernet, "The Beast in the Cave" is something of a letdown, where we get a pre-vamped Skinner Sweet and his once-upon-a-time best friend James Book and their duty as soldiers and their battle against Indians. The tale just never really picks up a lot of steam and kind of plods along with a more anecdotal quality to it that seems forced. Basically, a little too much of Snyder's English degree shows through here.

Fortunately, this trade also introduces us to the coolest member of the VMS to ever hit the streets in "Death Race". Set in the early 1950's and wearing the traditional garb of the "greaser", Travis Kidd seems to be as much of the problem as he is the solution. He's THE rebel. When killing vampires, he wears false fangs. He's totally anti-authoritarian.
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Format: Kindle Edition
My library finally got in the next several volumes of American Vampire, among other things! So that’s awesome, and has the side-effect of placing a large stack of graphic novels next to my bed for the immediate future. Since this is a series, this review will unavoidably offer some spoilers for previous volumes (Volume I/Volume II/Volume III). You’ve been warned….

This volume contains three different stories from the world of American Vampire. First off, we have The Beast In The Cave, which shines a light on the relationship between Skinner Sweet and Jim Book before the one became an outlaw and the other became a lawman, starting with their childhood as near-brothers and continuing into their actions in the Indian Wars. Turns out, Skinner Sweet wasn’t the first vampire forged in the New World. That honor goes to Mimiteh, the young native girl who played Sacajawea to an expedition led by a pair of vampires. The experience proved…transformative. Now rogue Apache leader Hole In The Sky plans to unleash Mimeteh and her fury on the Cavalry forces hunting him. If she cooperates, that is…. On the whole, this was good stuff. It was good to see some more of the backstory between Book and Sweet before their eventual parting of the ways, and Jordi Bernet’s artwork was a good match to the general feel established by Rafael Albuquerque–enough so that I didn’t realize it wasn’t him doing the work on this particular story. You could, however, argue that Mimiteh and her story somewhat undercuts the significance of the events in the first volume and steals the thunder from Sweet. Oh well, moving on.

Returning to the forward-moving portion of the story, i.e. 1954, we meet young vampire hunter Travis Kidd in Death Race.
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