VILLAREAL, Raymond A.: A People's History of the Vampire Uprising
Booklist Reviews 2018 June #1
Vampire civil rights? Villareal's fast-paced debut blends the supernatural and questions revolving around the right-to-work, offering a satirical indictment of how a system favoring haves over have-nots can be detrimental to all humanity. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assigns a young, inexperienced virologist to investigate a minor incident in an Arizona border town. Her research leads to the discovery of the Nogales organic blood illness (NOBI), a virus that changes humans into vampires. The afflicted can choose to simply feed or to create another vampire, but that process is also selective—some die during transition. Nevertheless, a successful re-creation offers health, physical strength, and an extended life span, and many are tempted. Even though they are secretive and manipulative, the hangers-on become addictively attracted to and willing partners in any vampire endeavor. This leads to ever-increasing challenges to existing economic, legal, governmental, and religious systems. Can humanity stand against this powerful uprising? Using an oral history format, as in Max Collins' World War Z (2006), the story builds momentum to a surprise-ending revelation. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.
LJ Reviews 2018 April #2
This first novel is told through alternating perspectives of those who witness and survive a vampire epidemic caused by the newly discovered NOBI virus. These vampires, or Gloamings, quickly advocate for equal rights within human society, mirroring many of the immigration conversations occurring in America today. The Gloamings are also searching for their origin story, a constant red-blood food source, and a solution to the sun's destructive light. The Centers for Disease Control is the first to discover the NOBI virus, launching the agency into a national debate on whether "curing" it is on par with genocide. There's media coverage, famous people "recreating" as Gloamings, and additional plot points about the discovery of a secret blood bank, a ploy to purchase uranium, and pharmaceutical company sabotage.
PW Reviews 2018 April #3
At the start of Villareal's enjoyable if derivative first novel, CDC virologist Lauren Scott travels to Nogales, Ariz., where she visits the city morgue to examine a body "exhibiting unusual hemophilia bruising and intradermal contusions." To her annoyance, the body has apparently been stolen, but another has since arrived at the morgue bearing the identical pattern of bruising. Lauren notices two puncture marks on this new body near the carotid artery. Sure enough, the evidence suggests that vampires—who prefer to be known as gloamings—have invaded the U.S. Lauren eventually joins Hugo Zumthor, the FBI agent in charge of the Gloaming Crimes Unit, and John Reilly, a Catholic priest, in contending with the gloamings, who are struggling for their political rights. Genre fans may have fun recognizing the influence of such notable predecessors as Charlaine Harris's Southern Vampire series, Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan's