WORTH THEIR WEIGHT IN BLOOD by Carole Jahme
The author, who holds a Master’s Degree in Evolutionary Psychology (in addition to being a journalist, broadcaster, film actor and program producer), has put a scientific spin on the hoary and venerable vampire trope in her novel, WORTH THEIR WEIGHT IN BLOOD. Scarlet Fox is woman of her times: the year is 1990, which finds Scarlet a lonely, unemployed young woman who is desperate for job and some kind of stability. She takes the first job she can get—a night-shift worker at a new laboratory that specializes in blood disease research where she is put to work studying a chimpanzee with a rare blood disorder. It’s not long before love-starved Scarlet begins a sexual relationship with a co-worker, but Scarlet has other concerns as well—she is preoccupied by the memory of a family found burned to death within a circle of standing Neolithic stones reminiscent of Stonehenge. What could it mean? As her job at the blood lab proceeds, Scarlet is horrified to discover that her fellow employees are actually vampires. Scarlet is forced join their species, a species that has evolved as a result of natural selection. Fascinating discussions as to whether or not vampires have souls, and whether their species is superior to humans ensue, but there is plenty of action as well, because the vampires have split ranks and are at war with one another. A troubled young boy whom Scarlet has taken under her wing and a renegade vampire provide thrills and scares when they begin to unravel the society of vampires who have made Radfield their home. Ms Jahme’s novel is shot through with interesting ideas and concepts far removed from typical vampire fare. For more about the author, please visit http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/carole-jahme.