Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “What are you planning to do next, Miss Marple?”
“I’ve promoted you from Nancy Drew.”
Fortitude Scott is not having a good life. At 26 years old, his degree in film theory hasn’t done much to advance his placement in life. He can barely afford his apartment, he works a dead end job as a coffee barista, and his girlfriend has decided to take a time out from their relationship so she can find herself aka to sleep with other people.
Oh, and he’s a vampire.
As the baby of the family, Fort has not made his transition to full vampirism so he retains a majority of his humanity and prefers to keep it that way. He eats regular food, enjoys the sun, and avoids his family at all costs. When a new vampire enters his family’s territory and young girls suddenly goes missing, Fort finds himself embracing his heritage.With no help from his nonchalant family who can’t imagine why he even cares about these girls, Fort begins investigating the missing girls with the help of a sexy and insane kitsune shapeshifter, Suzume Hollis. Fort knows he isn’t ready to take on this dangerous and deadly vampire and with the possibility that Suzume will split when things get too dicey, this mission may very well grant his fondest wish. To die a human.
Generation V is the first book in a quirky humorous new Urban Fantasy series by M.L. Brennan. Ripe with mystery, suspense, and a cast of eccentric characters that will have you laughing and rolling your eyes at their antics. A clever mix of dark humor and seriousness, you get an intimate front row seat as our hero, Fortitude Scott, tries very hard to retain his humanity and do what he feels is the right things to do in life. Fort is an interesting mixture of bravado and self deprecation. While he is not comfortable with being a vampire and has no real defensive skills, he is more than willing to go up against those stronger than himself to save a life. His internal dialogue will leave you rolling at his running commentary of his family, friends, and his life in general.
“If Chivalry looked like the guy who could put on pancake make up and play a vampire in a movie, I looked like the guy who would fetch that guy coffee.”
Brennan offers us a new and refreshing outlook on vampire lore and legend. In here, vampires aren’t made, they are born through interesting and somewhat horrifying means. Immortality is a myth; vampires age and die though they do have an extremely long life cycles. The normal advantages and restrictions granted vampires in most books is addressed but with a subtle twist that makes sense. It’s all very modern. Family is important and I like the way Brennan manages to convey that even while acknowledging that vampires will always be uncaring narcissistic beings. Brennan also avoids the whole different species conflicts by using the playful kitsune rather than the normal alpha “pack comes first” werewolves. I liked the exploration and explanation of Japanese culture and the legends behind the kitsune and how they came to America.
Heavily character driven, I enjoyed meeting the highly individualized slew of characters that inhabit this world. Well developed, personable, and filled with so much life; I found myself in awe of how easily they slipped under my skin. Plenty of dark humor infiltrates the conversations and dialogue, much at the expense of Fort. Though this is Urban Fantasy, there is a strong New Adult tone to it as this is definitely Fort’s coming of age story. Fort’s interactions with his family have a “human” feel to them that further differentiates this story from other vampire stories on the market. His mother, a centuries old vampire, looks like Barbara Bush and insists on monthly family dinners. While her age almost guarantees her humanity is gone, she does show signs of caring for Fort.
“I am sorry this hurts you so much, my darling. I don’t understand what it feels like to care for the lives or suffering of people you’ve never met. I will not break our oldest laws for you. But I am sorry for your pain.”
His older brother, Chivalry, is an enigma. While he was born during the Civil War, his love for the normality of life and Fort shows itself in some odd but well meaning ways. Fort’s older sister, Prudence, hates him with a passion for reasons not yet revealed. I find it hilarious for some reason that she’s a stockbroker and is attached to her Blackberry. Suzume, Fort’s shapeshifting bodyguard, is an amusing somewhat obnoxious handful and makes it her mission to shake Fort’s life up while guarding it. The villain, whom Fort is disgusted to see is nothing more the Euro trash, plays his part well.
While there is no romance in here, you get the feeling that somewhere in the future, Fort may find someone. The plot executes brilliantly with plenty of action that does not instantly grant Fort amazing supernatural powers in order for him to prevail. Multiple sub plots circle around, giving us background into Fort’s childhood and clues to future storylines.
I recommend this series to everyone who enjoys dark humorous non romantic urban fantasy and is looking for something new and fresh in an over-saturated genre. Word of caution though. As I mentioned before, this has a strong NA (New Adult) feel to it due to the age and attitude of hero and his sidekick.
Overall Rating: B