Lamians. That's what vampires are called now. They have rights just like regular people under the Stoker Treaty, so you'd better get used to it. This is part of the premise of Kelli Owen's TEETH, and it sucked me right in! (See what I did there? Perhaps I should move on...)
As we already know, just because laws are there doesn't mean they'll be followed. We only have to look at the civil rights movement to see that. Once coming of age is reached and the new, Lamian teeth come out, they're as difficult to hide as skin color. Unlike skin color though, those new teeth signify a lot of differences-we are NOT all the same. Lamians have special powers-they may be able to read our thoughts for one, and who's comfortable with that? TEETH does a terrific job of addressing the types of sociopolitical issues of today under the guise of vampirism.
Set in a small town, bigotry, ignorance and prejudice play a large role here. Lamians are hated as well as admired. They are ousted from popular social circles and in others they may be worshipped. A young woman just getting her teeth and worrying about being expelled from her social clique at school has feelings just as valid as the young man who wants to pay the dentist for implants because he needs to be accepted into a Lamian group. Looking at issues from all sides, Owen does a great job of slipping in current political commentary and I enjoyed that. Oh, and she also slips in a serial killer, but I'll leave you to discover that on your own!
Another aspect of this story that I enjoyed was the Lamplight Foundation. This is a Lamian organization designed to help Lamians learn more about their history, their future, their abilities and many other things. I found myself wanting to know more about them, how they came about and especially more about the leader of their local branch, Maximillian. Perhaps we will get that in a future book? I certainly hope so.
Just when I think I'm sick to death of vampires, an author comes along and puts their own spin on the old myths. So... relax-there's no sparkling here. There's no whiny regrets here as there is with Lestat and Louis, either. What we DO have is a clever way to address fear, bigotry and prejudice, and how they are used in our current political climate. And that way is all dressed up and disguised in the bloody gore of torn out throats and other body parts. Come on, how much fun is that? It's a LOT of fun! Trust me on this.
Recommended! You can get your copy here: TEETH
*I was given an e-ARC of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This is it.*