Suicide Surprise Book Report
Book by: Noel Lana Tavano
Main Characters: Elisa, Larry, Jennifer, Benedict, Charles
Magical Mystery Characters: Emilio, Edwin, Smith
Bad Characters: Hans, Dirk, Leo, Seren, Julian Augustine
35 year-old Elisa shoots herself in the head. She awakens in a gothic mansion with a mysterious library. She meets Larry, a vampire, who tells her that she is now a half-vampire. Elisa questions Larry, and learns about two more vampires; Hans, Dana, and Benedict. Then Larry takes Elisa out to share a voluntary kill and blood drinking.
Larry’s flashback begins at a library in France. He met Hans there, and begins his life as a vampire. The concept of “guardian testing” is introduced.
Elisa returns to the house after a few days to find a new half-vampire named Jennifer. Elisa and Jennifer chat, but Elisa becomes increasingly annoyed by Jennifer’s peppiness. Elisa ends up killing Jennifer, after Jennifer kills Larry.
Elisa accidentally conjures a demon named Smith from her mystery surprise pendant. Smith tells Elisa that he works for a mage named Emilio, who feels Elisa has potential. Smith leaves in a hurry.
Benedict arrives. He and Hans argue. Benedict and Elisa become instant friends. Benedict tells Elisa that vampires are killed by cutting out their hearts and burning them in the sun and that half-vampires are killed by staking them through the heart, cutting off their heads, and then burning them. Benedict tells Elisa that for her safety she should make her first kill.
Benedict and Elisa go out. Benedict tells Elisa that he is over 600 years old and used to be a bishop. He also tells Elisa about some other vampires that Larry didn’t mention. Benedict and Elisa wait outside a club for a victim. When a suitable victim emerges, Benedict shows Elisa how to kill her. Elisa experiences the full effect of consuming a person’s life-force.
Benedict uses magic to open a portal to another dimension, the demon dimension, through which he stashes the body of the victim. Benedict tells Elisa that when she uses her vampire abilities she is “tapping.” He also tells Elisa that vampires cannot kill guardians, which means that Hans’ efforts are futile. He also tells Elisa that sun will weaken but not kill her.
Elisa goes to a park and calls Smith. Elisa revels in her ability to see in the dark. Elisa meets the mage Emilio. Emilio tells Elisa that he is breaking mage law by speaking to and not killing a vampire. He also tells her that he is over 5000 years old and sees “potential” in her. Emilio gives Elisa a book he wrote for her. The book has the same handwriting as all the books in Hans’ library.
Elisa goes to the university library to read Emilio’s book. She learns that people are composed of three parts: body, soul, and soul connector. Vampires are the way they are because their bodies are destroyed, but due to magic their soul connectors are not destroyed with their bodies as they should be. So, the soul connector uses life-force to construct a new body for a vampire based on the soul’s astral body.
She also learns that vampires were created by a spell called the Godspell. Vampires who drink the Godspell directly are “original vampires.” Vampires who drink other vampires blood are “inherited vampires.”
Elisa meets Edwin who is a college professor and collector of old books. He recognizes the handwriting in Emilio’s book. Elisa is upset that she cannot read Edwin’s emotions like she can other humans.
Elisa realizes that Edwin is an old classmate of hers. Edwin asks Elisa if she is a vampire. Edwin said that his brother taught him how to recognize vampires. Elisa goes to the park and calls Smith. Smith says that Elisa can trust Benedict but not his friend Charles.
2000 years ago all dimensions were one. The Council of Mages was formed, headed by Zarek, to protect mages from demons. The Godspell is performed by Emilio, Astra (a high ranking mage), Seren (an ex-mage now vampire), and Julian Augustine (a rogue mage now vampire). Zarek fears that newly created vampires pose a threat to mages and finally gets support for the dimensional split, exiling demons to the demon dimension and vampires to the non-magical (techno) dimension.
Smith warns Elisa to stay away from the vampire Julian Augustine, who was once Emilio’s friend. Benedict tells her it would be safer for her if she came to stay with him and his friend Charles. Elisa agrees. She and Benedict go to their hotel. Elisa falls into instant lust with Charles. Benedict and Charles invite Elisa to go to Paris with them to escape Larry and Hans.
One night in his cathedral, Bishop Benedict meets and is attacked by Hans the Vampire. Benedict and Hans fight, and eventually Benedict thinks he killed Hans. Benedict has become a vampire himself. He meets Seren, Leo and Julian Augustine.
Elisa suspects Edwin is a guardian. Elisa speaks with Emilio. Emilio gives Elisa advice on controlling her impulses. Charles begins telling Elisa his story.
Charles was a 22 year old aristocrat living in Paris during the French Revolution. He joined an idealistic political group, was arrested, and sent to prison. Charles fights Dirk, and awakens in his own house. Charles finds a note inviting him to a midnight meeting at a cemetery. Charles finds dozens of zombie-like vampires performing some pagan ritual. Charles meets Benedict who is chained to a tombstone. Charles is captured.
Benedict names the three leaders as Leo, Seren, and Julian Augustine. As Charles and Benedict are forced to watch, Julian Augustine commits acts of necrophilia and cannibalism. Seren frees Charles and Benedict.
Charles seeks revenge. Benedict and Charles encounter a very much alive Hans, Dirk, and Dana. Dana explains how full vampires are really killed. Benedict and Charles go to America.
Secrets are revealed and passions flare even more towards the end of the book. Charles, Benedict, and Elisa agree not to go to Paris but to instead stay and see what happens. To be continued in Vampire Surprise…