Peeps by Scott Westerfeld
Westerfeld, Scott. Peeps. Penguin Group, 2005. 320 pages. Tr. $16.99. ISBN 978-1-59514-031-9.
Annotation: Cal comes to New York City to start college but gets infected with the parasite that causes vampirism. Fortunately, he is partially immune to its effects and does not become an insane bloodthirsty cannibal but instead starts to track down other parasite positives, or peeps who are roaming the city looking for other victims.
Summary: Cal heads to New York City to start college but during a one-night stand gets infected with the parasite that causes vampirism. Fortunately, he is partially immune to its effects and does not become an insane cannibal but, instead, is given superhuman strength and night vision. In his attempt to track down the woman who infected him, he starts working for an organization that captures the maniacal parasite positives or “peeps” roaming the city that are spreading the disease. During his search, Cal falls in love with Lace, a fellow student and discovers there is something even more deadly than peeps inside the city.
Evaluation: This horror novel without the gore gives an inventive twist on the typical vampire novel. It is full of action, adventure, romance and science. There are alternating chapters that provide interesting essays on the disgusting nature of parasites. Cal’s narratives on the scientific reasoning behind vampires add body to the compelling novel. Recommended for ages 13 to 18.
Genre / Subject: Fiction, Horror, Vampires, Parasites, Science, Romance, Survival
Awards: 2006 ALA Best Books for Young Adults