This book offers a great overview to the history of the vampire, from folklore and the novels of the 19th century, through the films of each decade leading to television and the 21st Century.
The writer, Barb Karg, occasionally hints at the way the vampire is used as a metaphor for social and political issues in each era, but rarely does more than touch lightly on these. I would have loved to have read more about how the vampire’s role in stories reflects changing social attitudes as well. I also found the schtick of writing about vampires as ‘the sexy bad boys’ a bit overdone and seemed more a function of writing for the target audience than really necessary to the content. Still, the powerful female vampires, from Camilla to Selina, get good coverage as well.
Having said this – “The Girl’s Guide to Vampires” would be a terrific book to get for anyone who has only recently started reading vampire fiction and would like a guide to the genre’s history, and some suggestions of what other books to read/films to see to get a broader knowledge.