I initially downloaded the book, Sleeping Beauty: Vampire Slayer by Maureen McGowan, because the title was so cool. Sleeping Beauty a vampire slayer? Thats a twist I wasn't expecting on a classic fairy tale. However, when I realized it was one of those "choose your own adventure" books, I almost put it down! I hated those as a child because they never came out the way I wanted them too, even after I cheated and went back. I'm glad I didn't put this one down, though. While the story was a little trite in some instances, overall, it was very enjoyable.
Lucinda, or Sleeping Beauty, was cursed at her christening by the evil Vampire Queen. If she were to prick her finger, she would be doomed to walk the earth at night, while others slept, and sleep during the day while others were awake. The only way this could be removed was if Lucy found true love (kind of hard to do when everyone was asleep). The good fairies were able to hold the curse off until she was 16, but it made her parents, her father especially, very protective.
Lucy was excited to attend vampire slayer school (at her mother's behest, but behind her father's back), but was dismayed to realize that girls just were the pretty sidekick instead of the real buttkickers. She is determined to be trained as a slayer and eventually, Tristan, helps her. She develops a crush on him, but since she's only 13, he doesn't return the feelings.
Years later, Lucy does prick her finger and falls prey to the curse. However, she is kept company by Alex, who turns out to be the vampire prince, and Tristan, who doesn't fall asleep because he is from a neighboring kingdom.
I'll admit, I was rooting for Lucy and Alex to fall in love (until I realized he was the son of the vampire queen). Tristan's love seemed too trite, almost smarmy, and it kind of gave me the creeps. But, I can see how a middle grader reading this would think that it was a truely magical love.
The ending felt a little rushed to me, but the problem was resolved without leaving me wonder.
All in all, I thought it was a cute book. I would have it in my classroom for my students to read.
I received this book as a digital copy via Netgalley, for free, in exchange for a fair review.