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Blood and Chocolate Paperback – August 14, 2007
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Characterizing the adolescent experience as monstrous is not exactly a new idea. M.T. Anderson's woefully confused teen vampire in Thirsty and Jean Thesman's reluctant young witch in The Other Ones serve as excellent examples of this metaphor set to fiction. But no one really captures how our hormones make us howl as well as Annette Curtis Klause. Blood and Chocolate chronicles the longings and passions of one Vivian Gandillon, teenage werewolf. Her pack family, recently burned out of their West Virginia home by suspicious neighbors, has resettled in a sleepy Maryland suburb. At her new school, Viv quickly falls for sensitive heartthrob Aiden, a human--or "meat-boy," as her pack calls him. Soon she is trying to tame her undomesticated desires to match his more civilized sensibilities. "He was gentle. She hadn't expected that. Kisses to her were a tight clutch, teeth, and tongue... His eyes were shy beneath his dark lashes, and his lips curved with delight and desire--desire he wouldn't force on her... he was different." But Vivian's animal ardor cannot be stilled, and she must decide if she should keep Aiden in the dark about her true nature or invite him to take a walk on her wild side.
Klause poetically describes the violence and sensuality of the pack lifestyle, creating a hot-blooded heroine who puts the most outrageous riot grrrls to shame. Blood and Chocolate is a masterpiece of adolescent angst wrapped in wolf's clothing, and its lovely, sensuous taste is sure to be sweet on the teenage tongue. (Ages 13 and older) --Jennifer Hubert --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
When a 16-year-old werewolf falls in love with a human, she begins to live uncomfortably between two worlds. Klause propels her bloodthirsty tale with "darkly sexy prose and suspenseful storytelling," said PW. Ages 14-up.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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I absolutely love this book. The twist on lycanthropy is refreshing in comparison to the werewolves we see in today's culture. They are predatory, and embrace their nature whereas most of the movies and shows you see now, the werewolves are rarely ever in wolf form. When they are, they hate it. Not these wolves - no, they embrace the beast inside them.
Also, the love story. It is passionate, wild. From the beginning, I felt that it was doomed and A.C.K. did NOT disappoint. I was happy that she didn't; I feel that the way the book ended was how it should have. I am entirely pleased with every aspect of this book and will certainly read it more than once.
Thanks to Annette Curtis Klause, because of this novel, my love for werewolves was born. I think the most amazing thing about this book is how the author glamorizes this "curse", as we are meant to see it. I wanted to be a werewolf after reading this!
Not only is this book a wonderful story about young love and coming of age, it also portrays the struggle of self-identity and family versus friends. Most kids think they have it hard growing up, but imagine being a werewolf! Vivian, the main character, knows she is a beautiful creature, but she can never show herself to the people she goes to school with, and she is somewhat of an outcast in her pack because she doesn't really identify with anyone there.
The pack she is a part of is desperate to find it's new leader after her father(the previous alpha) was killed in a fire. Pack mates are fighting and everyone is on edge. Gabriel seems to be the best fit for the role of alpha, but Vivian doesn't like him one bit. She's 16, he's 24, and her widowed mother is her forties. Her mother, Esme is constantly fawning of this younger man and its embarrassing for Vivian to deal with. It's only been a year since her father's death, show some respect Esme, jeesh!
Vivian eventually distracts herself with a human boy named Aiden, who is obsessed with the supernatural. She soon finds herself blending in with the humans, and she's unbelievably content. Unfortunately, her pack is always there to remind her of what she really is. But Vivian is blinded by adolescent love, and when she finally reveals herself to Aiden, she doesn't get the reaction she had hoped for. It's quite heartbreaking really...
Things begin to spiral out of control; a body is found and Vivian has had two black-outs while in her wolf skin. She is terrified she has killed and knows she will be punished for her crimes.
I don't want to give away too much, but the way this story ends is absolutely fantastic. It definitely is a page turner!!! Vivian finally comes to terms with who and what she is, and the interesting relationship her and Gabriel have throughout the book develops into something unexpected.
This book is edgy, sexy, colorful and addicting... The way Annette writes is simply beautiful. Her words are poetic and the images they paint in your head are dreamy and gorgeous. The environments are palpable, and the emotions are raw. Thanks to this book, I will forever wish I was a loupe garou!!! Five stars all the way!
Vivian and her parents, Ivan and Esme, are members of a werewolf pack in West Virginia, descendants of loup-garoux who fled France centuries earlier, immigrating to Louisiana, and later moved to West Virginia, combining with a Pennsylvania pack of German descent. Their pack is skilled at hiding, until one young member, Alex, takes the life of a human girl, and while in jail awaiting trial, five other young wolves kill another girl, to prove his innocence. Alex is acquitted but executed by the Pack, but the other Five are left to live. However, townspeople set fire to the Pack's home and outbuildings, and Vivian's father dies in an attempt to rescue others. So the remaining pack members move to Maryland to stay with Vivian's Uncle Rudy.
Now Vivian can't fit in. Her art teacher is impressed with her talents; boys watch her but never approach; and the Five young male werewolves virtually stalk her. But the high school girls won't allow her anywhere near, and the boys act as if they're afraid. Finally she feels she's achieving some fame (or at least notice) when her sketch is published in the school literary magazine, and right alongside it is a poem, celebrating wolf-hood, by a human male!
"Blood and Chocolate" is riveting. I'm so glad it was recommended to me. This is a fine exemplifier of why, at my advanced age, I still read and enjoy YA fiction. The well-illustrated characters, tight plotting, subtle minuet of romance, and for me, especially the background, history, and sociology, of the Pack, made an exciting and enrapturing novel I am so happy to have read, and to be able to reread. A great pleasure!
Blood and Chocolate