You Suck, a Love Story

by on October 18th, 2010
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When asked to define love, I could not find my tongue. I wished to expound on its nature. To praise a woman whose beauty has launched a thousand ships, and men have fought, and bled, and gotten sepsis and scurvy over. Perhaps Ovid said it best: “Love, it is a kind of warfare.” Yes, just like a man to compare love with battle, but within the minds of men it is. We struggle with our pride, pay homage to our honor, and seek an answer in our hearts. But love isn’t an action movie. We don’t get to blow anything up or have car chases, and the only thing a man risks breaking is his heart.

You meet the girl of your dreams and she’s dead. No, make that undead, and, now surprise! You are a vampire too. Yes, love sucks, and Christopher Moore knows it. You Suck, A Love Story, is Moore’s tenth novel and sequel to Blood Sucking Fiends, his third novel.

Christopher Moore is an American writer of absurdist fiction. His novels typically involve an ordinary guy thrust into supernatural or extraordinary circumstances, and often touch on political, environmental, or social concerns. Think John Steinbeck mixed with Kurt Vonnegut. Nope, You Suck is not your typical vampire story.

Jody, a single, red-headed woman living in San Francisco, is attacked by a vampire and soon realizes that she has become one herself. She never asked to be a vampire, but when she wakes up with a sore neck, superhuman strength, and a Nosferatuan thirst-well, it looks like her decision has been made for her. While trying to adjust to her new found powers and nocturnal lifestyle, she is aided by C. Thomas Flood, better know as “Tommy”. The “C” doesn’t stand for anything, but it looks so much better as a byline.

Yes, Tommy is an aspiring writer, fresh and naive from the heartland of America, who throws stock nights at a local grocery store, not to mention being a champion “frozen turkey” bowler. So, Jody and Tommy begin their life together as master and minion. One thing leads to another, and put it this way:vampirism has its perks. You live forever(barring unfortunate incidents with wooden stakes and Italian food), can turn to mist(no more locking yourself out of your car), and then there’s vampire sex. But it has its downsides too. It’s not all blood and roses-sunlight is death and blood lust makes you do some pretty foul things,not to mention how vampirism complicates love.

Making the relationship work, however, is the least of Tommy’s and Jody’s problems. The vampire who nibbled on Jody wasn’t supposed to be recruiting any new members into the club. Even worse, Tommy’s former, partying-hard, turkey-bowling, co-working pals are out to get him, at the urging of a blue-dyed Las Vegas prostitute named Blue, and that really “sucks”.

Moore’s writing is certainly fun and funny, ranking with other modern humorists like Douglas Adams, Tom Robbins and Terry Pratchett. His book titles alone merit a Pulitzer-such as The Island of the Sequined Love Nun, the Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove, Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal, and Practical Demonkeeping. Yet, like most humor, there’s more than meets the eye. Moore has a certain way of writing about flawed people with great affection and forgiveness and isn’t that something we could all use a little more of?

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