Revamped is, like its predecessor Staked, a fantasy thriller very much in the mode of Hamilton’s Anita Blake series: jockeying for dominance between various supernatural entities is the prime mover of the plot, which features a lot of sex and violence, the latter even more copious and explicit than the former.
Lewis continues to exploit the devices that distinguished his first novel: twin first-person vampire anti-hero narrators: Eric and his sometime-girlfriend Tabitha. Eric is a reluctantly unreliable narrator to boot; he has a capricious memory. (I like this notion; it seems very logical that storing centuries of memories in a human-like brain would get problematic — although Eric isn’t actually particularly old.)
On the plus side, Lewis (and Eric) don’t seem to take themselves as seriously as Hamilton (and Blake) do. Eric introduces himself by explaining that
In ice cream terms, vampires come in three flavors: chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. I’m grape sherbet — hard to come by and much more likely to give you brain freeze.
and utters lines like:
“My magic ice sword! I left it in the closet. If some damn fireman stole my magic sword, I’m going to be so fucking pissed off!”
And those aren’t the silliest things in Revamped.
If I’m comparing Revamped to Hamilton’s Blake novels, it’s only fair to specify that it resembles the earlier books, where the plot is more substantial than thin connective tissue between fight and/or sex scenes.
On the minus side, the the entrenched sexism of Revamped was hard for me to overlook. Somehow it’s a little easier for me to swallow female characters who act like players in a stereotypical male fantasy when the author is female. I suppose it also might help to envision most of the characters in the book as participants on a VH1 reality show.
needs more demons? just not my cup of tea