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Vida Nocturna [Kindle Edition]

Mark D. Diehl
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $9.95
Kindle Price: $0.99
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Book Description

Only the need will last forever.

Sara has always escaped her real-world fears by reading fantasy and horror stories. Now, as a social-phobic college freshman, she enters a dark world where horror is not supernatural and fantasy is a trap.

Evil is contagious. Victims become predators, and every predator was once just like Sara. Imagining she’d be different was her first step toward them. Now, draped in the decadent ‘80s subculture, she’s rendered helpless by powers she never imagined.

Editorial Reviews


"I whole-heartedly love this story. I love how the author portrays such a sad girl and her lonely journey that leads to an ending that I couldn't have guessed at."
                                 --Christy at

"Never before have I loved, pitied, and hated a character more than Sara."
                               --Lizzy at Lizzy's Dark Fiction

"This book is as dark and fast paced as they come. Set in the 1980's Vida Nocturna paints a very gritting and disturbing picture of the growing underground cultures that began to expand uncontrollably around that time."
                                   --Ami O'Neill-March,

From the Author

I wrote "Vida Nocturna" in graduate school at the University of Chicago. As I learned about the publishing industry, it became obvious that the books corporate publishers picked up weren't necessarily good stories. The key to getting published was that the book be predictably profitable. 
At that time, there was tremendous pressure to write a series about vampires in love. "Twilight" had been bringing good returns on the publisher's investment and the others wanted a similar product to market. Vampires sell, and so do romances. 
But when authors are forced to chase the market like that, no new ideas can get in. It's a death spiral of creativity. 
This book was my experiment, to see how far I could stretch the idea of vampires in love and create something new. Did it have to be real love? Did the vampires have to be supernatural? 
I have known real vampires. They are real, you know. They're just not supernatural. 
Vampires are creatures with an insatiable need to fill up that space where their souls used to be. I knew people who lost their souls. In fact, this book is largely based on the life of a good friend of mine who disappeared about twelve years ago. 
In "Vida Nocturna," Sara, a college freshman crippled by social phobia, fantasizes that her new boyfriend is a vampire but discovers he's a cocaine addict. The scenes are short and the transitions between them are abrupt so that readers experience Sara's trepidation and sense of unreality. As she slips further into the decadent '80s subculture, she becomes, in a non-supernatural way, undead. Fantasy, horror, and reality become one. Which was the first bite that started her transition? When did the victim become the predator? 

Product Details

  • File Size: 513 KB
  • Print Length: 234 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1463554060
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005067WJQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,267,160 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sara: Loved, Hated, and Pitied June 20, 2012
Never before have I loved, pitied, and hated a character more than Sara. As soon as the story begins, Sara is in trouble. She's failing all of her college courses and tries to hide this from her father, who both pays tuition and expects only the best from his daughter. And then we find out that she's involved in a vampire club. Then the books flashes back to a younger Sara and we get the first glimpse of her childhood. The first flashback is a happy one. Most of the ones that follow are not. At first, the non-lineral narration is confusing, but about a quarter into the book I was thankful for it. The present Sara is falling deeper and deeper into a fantasy world of addiction and Vampires. Some of the scenes are so intense that I want to scream at the book and the characters. Sara isn't your typical heroine. She makes very bad decisions, but worse are the people that surround her.

I think that Sara's parents are the most developed and intriguing set in any YA novel. Any child of divorced parents can vouch for the constant back and forth hatred and jealousy. Sara's father is jealous of her seemingly happy relationship with her mother and vice versa. Her parents have a huge impact on the decisions she makes and had either one of them acted like an adult, Sara might not have chosen the path she did.

Overall, this is a story about addiction. The powerlessness of addiction. This is a psychological horror in the fact that Sara loses control over herself and her life chapter by chapter. There are sections where the only relief to the darkness is the flashbacks.

The only escape for hardcore druggies is rehab, jail, or death. At different parts of the novel, I was hoping for a different one of these things. I hoped that she'd get better. I hoped that she'd get caught. I hoped that she'd find peace in death.

As for the ending, I firmly believe that she deserved it. And it scared me that I felt that way.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping and dark June 17, 2012
Cross posted from [...]

Vida Nocturna is the Début novel of America based Indie Author, Mark D Diehl.

Loosely translated as "Night Life" Vida Nocturna tells the story for Sara; a chronically shy individual whom is obsessed with Vampires. Due to her over bearing shyness Sara is a somewhat troubled and lonely College Freshmen, whom falls into the wrong crowd after taking a shine to, Alexander. To Sara, Alexander appears to be a Vampire but, in reality is one highly dangerous individual.

Taking Sara under his wing, Alexander unknowingly feeds Sara's addiction for all things dark. Can Sara be saved from this treacherous path she appears to have willing chosen for herself, or is she headed on a down-ward spiral into the depths of hell?

This book is as dark and fast paced as they come. Set in the 1980's Vida Nocturna paints a very gritting and disturbing picture of the growing underground cultures that began to expand uncontrollably around that time.

On reading this book you will undoubtedly find that you are instantly sucked into Sara's world, becoming hooked on her adventures almost instantly. At first you may experience difficulty in finding your bearings within the intricate plot-lines of the story, given that the narrative jumps in and out of different time-lines and realities throughout. However, rest assured you will soon find yourself in tune with the general rhythm of the book as a whole.

Admittedly, the climax to this tale is not at all what you may most likely expect. However, I am sure any reader will agree, although unexpected, the ending is most definitely fitting to the mood of the book as a whole.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beyond the dark and disturbing story... July 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
...are extremely well-developed characters that the writer enables the reader to truly experience the story through. The book was both hard to put down and hard to pick back up at times due to the intensely graphic nature of the content. I still found it well worth reading and finishing even though it isn't a book I'd automatically gravitate to. Because of his ability to develop such complex characters and tell a story in a unique way, I believe Mark Diehl is an author to watch.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars First Class Characters and Subtle Suspense August 8, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Despite a lack of high energy action or intense intrigue that might normally create a draw, I couldn't put this book down. Mark Diehl has a simplistic way of creating pace and suspense and involving you in the past, present, and future almost simultaneously. You're not sure what it is you're expecting to happen, but you're clearly waiting and knowing that something is just around the corner. The horror, however is not on the outside as much as it lives and breathes inside the characters.

Mark Diehl is remarkably skilled in portraying the psychological disorders of his characters including: Borderline Personality Disorder, Narcissism, PTSD (including dissociation), and severe drug addiction. He has either been trained in mental health or personally known and observed these disorders because his nuances for them and their interactional styles are exquisite. The mother character is especially well developed. As a mental health clinician, I would encourage students in social work and psychology programs to be sure and read this engrossing book. It will leave you with solidly accurate and lasting comprehension of these disorders. The deep understanding of drug addiction and the subculture of drug abuse that Mr. Diehl shows is another hallmark of success for this first time author.

Vida Nocturna will definitely leave a mark on you as surely as its suggested vampires puncture their victims. But these vampires are not those of Anne Rice. These are the vampires that exist within and among all of us.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow..just wow..
First of all, i totally agree with the author about mainstream publishers not necessarily publishing good books,but only those that they feel are "on trend" at the moment. Read more
Published on May 22, 2013 by Kindle Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars boring
I bought this book for free, and expect to get not the best quality of writing. This one I abandoned several chapters in, either the writing was too stiff or the plot was too... Read more
Published on January 29, 2013 by J. Hall
4.0 out of 5 stars Realistic story
This book makes the reader think and wonder about possibilities and impossibilities.This is a story about getting lost in the "darkness" of life. Read more
Published on January 19, 2013 by KaileighATara
5.0 out of 5 stars loved it
Vida Nocturna

Sara is lost, Sara is alone and Sara is an addict. Are some addictions too deep, too real to be just addictions. Read more
Published on October 30, 2012 by David Ramsey
5.0 out of 5 stars Vida Nocturna
Her name was Sara, an unwanted, mentally abused daughter of a insane narcissistic mother and a cold corporate father. Read more
Published on September 13, 2012 by jerrykimbro
1.0 out of 5 stars Contrived
I see what he is trying to do here but I felt that the whole vampire thing was quite contrived. the whole thing had an odd Sci Fi bent to it that I just didn't get. Read more
Published on August 21, 2012 by Leah
1.0 out of 5 stars ugh

This book was horrible. I will wait a while before I purchase anything self published again. No one would have published this book. Read more
Published on August 19, 2012 by natasha
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a great effort
Got this book free and still feel I paid to much. Needs an editor and the author needs to put away his big book of metaphors. Not everything needs a description of what it's like. Read more
Published on August 9, 2012 by Bobby Jacobs
4.0 out of 5 stars Vida Nocturna by Mark D. Diehl
Never had I been so back-and-forth on my feelings for the main character of a story before. Until Vida Nocturna. Read more
Published on July 2, 2012 by Christy @ Captivated Reading Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to La Vida Nocturna
Posted on <[...]>Books and Blossoms</a>.

Wow. This is a powerful story. This is an important story. Read more
Published on June 24, 2012 by Roxanne Galpin
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More About the Author

JUST ANNOUNCED! Mark D. Diehl has won the Maine Literary Award for Speculative Fiction with "Seventeen: Book One!"

Mark D. Diehl writes novels about power dynamics and the way people and organizations influence each other. He believes that obedience and conformity are becoming humanity's most important survival skills, and that we are thus evolving into a corporate species.

Diehl has: been homeless in Japan, practiced law with a major multinational firm in Chicago, studied in Singapore, fled South Korea as a fugitive, and been stranded in Hong Kong.

After spending most of his youth running around with hoods and thugs, he eventually earned his doctorate in law at the University of Iowa and did graduate work in creative writing at the University of Chicago. He currently lives and writes in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.


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