Has Rachel Caine Reinvented The Vampire Novel?
There is something about the wonderful vampire novel series that Rachel Caine writes that takes the concepts of vampires and kind of turns them on their sides. It isn’t exactly a huge departure, but the basic concept behind her Morganville series is an interesting one to contemplate and actually has some similarities to the Southern Vampire Series that True Blood is based on.
Caine says that she came up with the idea for the vampire novel series when she was walking with a friend one day and they were talking about what she wanted to tackle next as a writer. She had been considering a Young Adult vampire series but wasn’t sure where to start. Her friend said to just look around her and say whatever popped into her head. She noticed that the street lamps were kinda far apart and wondered if vampires would design a town with lamp posts farther apart deliberately. That got her to wondering just what kind of town a group of vampires would design in they controlled it, and the rest is Morganville.
Morganville- the Vampire Novel for Today
If you have never read any of her Morganville vampire novels, let me give you the basics. Morganville is a small college town in Texas. The kids who go to the university seldom leave the campus, so they are not at all aware that the town is run by vampires. It isn’t creepy; in fact it is so organized in its own way that you can be creeped out by that element in the story. For instance, the vampires in town charge the citizens tax by requiring them to give regularly at the local blood bank. How very civilized!
In the same way that Bon Temps is seen through Sookie’s eyes, we see the town of Morganville through the eyes of a young college student named Claire. She decides one day that she is going to live off campus, in town. That is when she discovers the truth about Morganville and over the next twelve books we go along with Claire on a lot of adventures.
There is a love interest, her roommate Shane. But author Caine says that she was never really interested in creating a vampire romance tale as in Twilight. Her main interest was to see what would happen if she could create a series where the vampire novel’s main thrust was adventure and friendship, with a bit of romance in the background.
I would say that is exactly what she created in her Morganville series. The latest book is out, Black Dawn, and if you love a good well-told vampire novel I would suggest checking it out. No twinkly vampires here or a barmaid who turns out to be a fairy. But I do love the whole setup of the series and how the adventure flows from the characters. To me, that is always the sign of a great writer.