"Hide Me Among the Graves, the newest installation in the Tim Powers literary legacy, is a wildly creative and imaginative supernatural narrative. It’s also a vampire story. Yes, can we beat a dead Anne Rice fan any longer? However, Powers has successfully expanded upon the archaic clichés of the undead genre and infused radiant life into this oldest of supernatural lore. Not since Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight (joke!) has there been such a thoughtfully detailed rebirth of the vampire genus. Plus – it’s funny. The wit in question commences with the 19th century Pre-Raphaelite poets of the Rosetti family being haunted by their dead uncle, John Polidori, a historical figure and doctor. Funny, right? No? Well, the humor comes from the fact that Polidori, the relentless and omnipotent villain of the novel, was the man who created one of the very first vampire tales, which, coincidentally, led Mary Shelley to imagine "Frankenstein". You’re welcome, Mel Brooks. Further amusement can be gleaned the fact that these undead beings are akin to muses, and for the blood they extract, provide their victims with both physical vigor (ahh, a True Blood parallel) and the ability to write prose of a class that far surpasses the mediocre talents these individuals demonstrate when left to their own devices.
Powers resilience doesn’t end there – another interesting plot twist is the way he picks and chooses which of the many vampire legends he utilizes and embellishes upon: 1. Our vamps in question drink blood, yet aren’t repelled by garlic and wooden stakes; 2. Vampires must be invited in by their victims; 3. Powers’ characters can be trapped within minutiae pieces of statuary, and 4. Are restrained by convoluted rules regarding their movement in our world. Tricky, Mr. Powers...very tricky.
Hide Me Among the Graves is among one of the most complicated narratives on shelves today, full of plenty of gore and paranormal fun. Who doesn’t like séances, exhumation of long-dead relatives, living dead fetuses, and mournful deceased relatives who live in the bodies of amphibians? A feeling of deep melancholy sets the tone of the entire tome, but will instantly become one of your most satisfying reads this season. Bottom line: A-