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Tantalize Paperback – July 22, 2008


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Product Details

  • Series: Tantalize
  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; a edition (July 22, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 076364059X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763640590
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.4 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #950,649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Following her parents' death, Quincie Morris was left in her Uncle Davidson's care, and the fate of the family's Italian restaurant was left in hers. Now 17, Quincie, who narrates, and her uncle have renamed the place Sanguini's. They've remodeled it with a "vampire theme," which they believe will sell in their Texas college town since "vampires are a fringe population, and Austin is a tolerant place." A month before the grand re-opening, however, the longtime chef is mauled to death in the kitchen, and the murder suspect is a werewolf. Quincie finds this problematic, since her lifelong best friend and love interest, Kieren, is a "hybrid werewolf" who traces his lupine heritage to the wolves that roamed Ireland with St. Patrick. A new chef shows up who may be talented but is also spooky, with red contact lenses, pale hair and a menu featuring sweetbreads, blood sausage and baby squirrels in honey cream sauce. Best known for her Native American stories, Smith uses advertisements, newspaper clippings and menu pages to liven the pace, and creates palpable tension in the novel's second half. Quincie's story hews closer to the campy Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes (e.g., " 'You ate the police?!' I exclaimed") than to the elegant romanticism of Stephenie Meyer's books, but horror fans will be hooked by Kieren's quiet, hirsute hunkiness, and Texans by the premise that nearly everybody in their capitol is a shapeshifter. Ages 14-up. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up–Orphaned at 13, Quince Morris, now 17, has been living with her Uncle Davidson and managing the family's restaurant. Her best friend and the love of her life, Kieran, is a werewolf in training who can not fully control the monster in him. As a result he will not return her affection for fear of the harm he could do to her. Within weeks of the grand reopening of the new vampire-themed restaurant, chaos breaks out. The chef is brutally murdered werewolf style, thus making Kieran a possible suspect. Quince has a month to transform the newly hired chef, Brad, into Sanguini's vampire extraordinaire and at the same time deal with the fact that Kieran is abandoning her to join his own wolfpack and that Brad is making advances. Readers will be tantalized by this dark, romantic, and disturbing fantasy of vampires, werewolves, and a strong no-nonsense heroine. Fans of Stephenie Meyer and Annette Curtis Klause will eat it up.–Donna Rosenblum, Nassau Boces School Library System, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

I hate to sound harsh, but I really just did not like this book.
Rebecca
There was very little character developement throughout the book, none of them seemed even remotely real.
Chin
It was very abrupt and didn't really tie up all the loose ends as a conclusion should.
Nymah Nicole

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 50 people found the following review helpful By K. Gilligan on March 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Amazon recommended this book to me, so I decided to check it out. The cover art immediately drew my eye, as well as the title. "Tantalize" by Cynthia Leitich Smith has an interesting premise. The main character is Quincie Morris, a regular girl with a werewolf bestfriend. Well, they'd like to be more than friends, but let's not get into that... Quincie's uncle has decided to remodel the family restaurant with a vampire them. It's going swimmingly until the head chef is found dead; the police suspect a werewolf to be the culprit.

I agree with some of the other reviewers who stated that the first half of the book was the best. I liked Kieren, and wished we had seen more of him. The new chef, Brad, was a pretty good character, and his two menus (Predator and Prey) for the restaurant were neat. I'm not sure what bugged me about the end of the book. Again, I agree with other reviewers when they say it isn't on par with Twilight. I think it was kind of in the middle of serious and lighthearted which confused me. One minute people are joking around, and the next minute somebody else is dead. And after the first death (of the head chef), none of the characters really seemed to care.

I'm not sure I'd recommend this to somebody else. If you're looking for serious vampire/werewolf stories, check out Stephenie Meyer's books. If you'd like lighthearted vampire/werewolf stories, check out books by Charlaine Harris. Specifically the first book in her Sookie Stackhouse series: Dead Until Dark (Southern Vampire Mysteries, Bk. 1)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By BlueBlack on May 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I'm not the one to prejudice books based on title or other reviews here - but I feel compelled to review this one... and with that help people save their money. Smith's writing is great - she articulates Quincie's thoughts and attitudes beautifully without being obvious, but I also noticed the type was huge and the pages were small... it kind of told me that the book was not all that long. Quincie's an honest to god Texan girl with red cowboy boots and the protagonist of this novel. She's connected to the 'otherworldly' side of life through her best friend, Kieren, who's a hybrid werewolf. I'm not going to summarize this book.

The first half of Tantalize was great, I loved Quincie's open mind and attitude. The story was sound - a new take on vampires and shapeshifters in the human world. It is hazy thought, the social relations between the humans and the others' though you definitely see some hostility toward vampires and shapeshifers, so you don't get a clear idea of where they stand in society which makes the story a little confusing. As for the second half, thing get a little chaotic. Upon the first reading, I had to force myself to finish because I was confused as to what had transpired in less than ten pages (suddenly she's on a bed wearing sexy lingerie and she's THISTY? Whaaa?) so I had to go back and actually make note of events changing and what eventually led up to a dramatic end.

- Tiny spoiler warning -
The ending was absolutely confusing, rushed and I had to read the last few pages twice to make sure that I had read right, and that Kieren had really gone away in les than two sentences. Two sentences. Suddenly, he was there, making out with Quincie after killing Bradley and next, he was gone.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Luke Wickenheiser on June 26, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Too many people reviewing summed up the back story. So I won't. It was a very original setup. I was willing to go along for the ride. It seems that the author had sat down and worked out a bunch of lore, so she could be consistent. Like she mapped out things like which weregroups were allies and enemies and the way the vampire society worked. But much of that didn't work its ways into the story, except for the casual mention. And really bad things happened to the main character, a gripe which I understand to be a personal problem. I've been reading too many character shield book where nothing bad happens to the main character, except superficially. So what I'm saying is that this book made me sad and I didn't like that. It was well written though and seems to be setup for a sequel, which I'll read just to see if anything got resolved.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Bibliophile on November 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I, like other reviewers, kept getting this book recommended to me by Amazon. Then I'd go the book store and see copies of it on the shelf, read the summary--how this is a story with a deadly love triangle and a werewolf as the heroine's first love--and think..."Well, it's a vampire/werewolf book, and Libba Bray and Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (two authors who rock) both recommend it, and I LOVE their books." So I bought it.

And about 25 pages in, I knew it was a bad decision. But I kept reading, hoping it would get better.

It didn't. It got MUCH worse.

There wasn't enough content, any reason for why things developed and turned out the way they did. Most of the characters are difficult to care for, and the ending is absolutely horrid. I was beyond disappointed, especially when I really WANTED to like the book.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca on April 8, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I read so many great reviews for this book, and it seemed really great at first, but the whole story just sagged. The plot was completely predictable, the ending abrupt and completely unrealistic (I know that's ironic in a story about werewolves and vampires, but if you've read it you know what I mean), and the writing was just not good enough to really draw me in. I hate to sound harsh, but I really just did not like this book. It's a quick read because hardly anything is really described in as much detail as it needs, so I did finish it, but this is one buy that I really regret.
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