Pearl is a sixteen-year-old vampire... fond of blood, allergic to sunlight, and mostly evil... until the night a sparkly unicorn stabs her through the heart with his horn. Oops.
Her family thinks she was attacked by a vampire hunter (because, obviously, unicorns don't exist), and they're shocked she survived. They're even more shocked when Pearl discovers she can now withstand the sun. But they quickly find a way to make use of her new talent. The Vampire King of New England has chosen Pearl's family to host his feast. If Pearl enrolls in high school, she can make lots of human friends and lure them to the King's feast -- as the entrees.
The only problem? Pearl's starting to feel the twinges of a conscience. How can she serve up her new friends—especially the cute guy who makes her fangs ache—to be slaughtered? Then again, she's definitely dead if she lets down her family. What's a sunlight-loving vamp to do?(From GoodReads)
I had been dying to read Drink Slay Love since the moment I saw it. The cover which is one of my favorites, screamed "Read me!". And I thought the synopsis sounded very promising. I've read a lot of comments from people who are anti-unicorn, they didn't plan to read this book because of the unicorn aspect. Which, when I think about it, seems weird because I didn't know there was a "unicorn presence" in YA to begin with. But, that's a story for another day. Anyway, I'm neither "pro" nor "anti" unicorn, I consider myself "unicorn neutral", and so I jumped into Drink Slay Love with much anticipation.
The book starts off with so much promise. I love, LOVE that the story is told from a bad-girl's point of view. And Pearl is so, so bad. She is a vampire with no humanity, no remorse. She embraces her life, because it is the only one she's ever known. She's wild and reckless and sexy. As is her uber-hunky, fellow badass, boyfriend Jadriel. And oh boy, Jadriel is hot. I'm not sure that I was supposed to be as into his character as I was. He was dangerous, and selfish, and content to let Pearl be his superior. Together, the rule the night, sparring and seducing their time away. This small glimpse of Pearl's life was so much fun.
Enter the unicorn. As indicated in the synopsis, Pearl is stabbed by a unicorn. After her near-miss, the chase is on. Pearl is after the elusive unicorn, out to get it for nearly killing her. But soon after, Pearl starts noticing changes, like the ability to withstand the sun, and sympathy for her prey. At this point, I miss the old, ruthless Pearl, but she still has her snark and wit, so I'm still on board.
Pearl begins to make human friends, Bethany and Evan. Evan is lovely. He is handsome, and helpful, and maybe, just a bit too perfect. And it seems, he may have a huge secret of his own.
Anyway, long story short, Pearl goes to school, makes human friends, and is put to the ultimate test by her family. I'm still on board, for the most part.
Here's my problem. The last part of the book, things start to be explained; like the unicorn and Evan's big secret, Pearl's true nature is exposed, plans begin to unravel. And the problem is, everything felt too easily accepted. Teens just accept a vampire in their midst? No freaking out, no needing time to process? People just believe that the unicorn -------- (fill in the blank)? That's what bothered me about Drink Slay Love, the lack of reality in reactions. Which
I liked Drink Slay Love, I really did. Durst has a beautiful writing style. The characters, especially Pearl, had just the right amount of snark and sarcasm, and her take on the vampire lifestyle (think Mafia) was cool. Take away my few complaints from above, and it was still an enjoyable book.
" 'Just bite him. Suck a pint or two. Show me you're still you, that we're still us. Please, Pearl.' He
kissed her. 'Make someone bleed. For me.' "
Hardcover, 385 pages