Nice Girls Don't Date Dead Men
Nice Girls Don’t Date Dead Men continues the adventures of Jane Jameson, former children’s librarian turned vampire. While I will admit to being tired of the undead, I will make an exception for Jane. This is one of the funniest books I have read this year and Jane is a delightful character.
In Nice Girls Don’t Have Fangs, Jane Jameson was accidentally killed by a drunken deer hunter, but her life was saved (in a manner of speaking) when she was turned into a vampire by Gabriel who is now her lover. Gabriel is hot, sexy and broody like all self-respecting male vampires, and he and Jane get together often to play happy naked games. But their relationship has its rough spots, the roughest of which is Gabriel’s secrecy. He has business dealings all over the Southeast and he’s always on the phone or flying out of town. When Jane asks here he’s going, he brushes her off. Yes, he can be attentive, courtly, and charming and the sex is more than good, but Jane can’t help but wonder why all the secret calls and frequent trips.
However, Jane can’t spend all her time wondering about Gabriel right now since she has a lot to do. Jane is the best maid at the wedding of Zeb, her BFF since they were children. Zeb is about to marry Jolene (who is a werewolf). Jolene is a sweetheart and she and Zeb adore each other – it’s their families who are causing trouble. Jolene’s family isn’t all that happy about her wedding a human, resulting in Zeb losing a little toe to one of their “pranks”, while Zeb’s mother Ginger is acting like Momzilla. Ginger had her heart set on Jane and Zeb marrying each other and nothing they say or do can persuade her otherwise. Most people faced with terminally crazy families would elope but Jolene is set on a Titanic theme for her big day complete with a 30 foot iceberg and nothing is going to stop her from having the wedding of her dreams. Since Jane is the only sensible person around, she has been roped into wedding planning hell, and to add insult to injury, she has to wear the ugliest bridesmaid dress evah!
As if that wasn’t enough, Jane’s Grandma Ruthie has lost her latest husband and, since she simply can’t be without a man in her life, she brings a date to the funeral and he looks like he may become Jane’s latest step-grandpa. Wilbur exudes bad vibes and a musty smell and his personality goes right along with his appearance. There is something fishy about him and it’s not just his bad breath. Jane’s sister Jennie still hates her for inheriting River Oaks, the family mansion, Jane’s mother is in deep denial about the whole vampire thing, and Grandma Ruthie thinks Jane has shamed the family by becoming a vampire. Only Jane’s father treats her like a normal person, but he’s overpowered by his wife. Jane’s great-aunt Jettie is wonderful and the one member of the family to whom Jane feels close, but she’s a ghost. Needless to say, Jane’s undead life is a complicated one.
Nice Girls Don’t Date Dead Men is told in the first person by Jane, and she is a dear. She’s funny, intelligent and, considering all the problems thrown at her, she’s remarkably unflappable. Molly Harper does a wonderful job of vampire society building and filling in the backstory, so first time readers will not be a bit lost. When the last book in the trilogy Nice Girls Don’t Live Forever comes out in January, I hope that we will get some kind of closure on Jane and Gabriel’s story since he remains a mystery to us (and Jane as well).
Nice Girls Don’t Date Dead Men is my favorite funny for this year. It’s not too often that I’ve read a book where I can say I laughed on almost every page, but I did at this book. A truly funny book with a great heroine adds up to a wonderful read.