From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. This witty vampire novel from British author Haig (The Possession of Mr. Cave) provides what jaded fans of the Twilight series need, not True Blood exactly, but some fresh blood in the form of a true blue family. Dr. Peter Radley and his wife, Helen, have fled wild London for the village of Bishopthorpe, where they live an outwardly ordinary life. The Radleys, who follow the rules of The Abstainer's Handbook (e.g., "Be proud to act like a normal human being"), haven't told their 15-year-old vegan daughter, Clara, and 17-year-old son, Rowan, who's troubled by nightmares, that they're really vampires. A crisis occurs when a drunken classmate of Clara's, Stuart Harper, attacks her on her way home from a party and inadvertently awakens the girl's blood thirst. Peter's call for help to his brother, Will, a practicing vampire, leads to scary consequences. The likable Clara and Rowan will appeal to both adult and teen readers. (Dec.) (c)
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Despite the saturation of vampire books, television, and movies, the reviews of The Radleys
suggest that readers everywhere have not yet tired of these bloodsucking (or, in this case, mostly abstaining) beings. Although each vampire novel differs from the next, critics quickly pointed out that Haig’s offering, at heart a family drama, contains some unique elements, including references to vampire pop culture both old and new as well as thoughtful inquiries into the nature of morality and identity. Yet though smart and witty, the novel often overstates its case in its presentation of right and wrong. Still, fans of the genre will rejoice in this new addition to vampire lore—and its planned sequels.