Happy Hour at Casa Dracula by Marta Acosta
Reading level: Adult
Trade paperback: 313 pages
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Chicklit
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Release date: July 4th, 2006
Series: Casa Dracula #1
Reviewed by: Stéphanie
Source: Personal shelf
Latina Ivy League grad Milagro de Los Santos can’t find her place in the world or a man to go with it. Then one night, at a book party for her pretentious ex-boyfriend, she meets an oddly attractive man. After she is bitten while kissing him, she falls ill and is squirreled away to his family’s estate to recover. Vampires don’t exist in this day and age — or do they? As Milagro falls for a fabulously inappropriate man, she finds herself caught between a family who has accepted her as one of their own and a shady organization that refuses to let the undead live and love in peace.
You have to admit, with a title like HAPPY HOUR AT CASA DRACULA, you can’t blame me for buying this book on a whim. It was on my shelf for quite a while before I decided to pick it up, and now I’m really glad I did. There’s just something different and original about this book because the vampires aren’t what you might expect. And really, they’re not exactly vampires—they’re something totally different. Don’t expect your typical vampire when you delve into this book since that’s not what you’re going to get.
The author’s humor reminds me a lot of Janet Evanovich’s humor, from her Stephanie Plum series. It’s sarcastic, witty, over the top and definitively entertaining. Marta Acosta succeeded in writing a book about a young woman that has a hard time fitting into the life she wants and ultimately about a young woman who learns to accept who she really is. With her main character, Milagro de Los Santos, Acosta has given us a great role model despite all her character flaws and nuttiness.
When Milagro stumbles upon a gorgeous and mysterious guy (really, she had no clue his name was Oswald at the time), her life literally flips upside down after an unpredicted blood exchange incident. Not that her life was all that great but at least before she knew what was what, and she didn’t feel inclined to eat raw beef. Now, living a new life she barely understands where people sip blood out of wineglasses (can you say happy hour!?!) and people have a genetic disorder that more or less has them acting like vampires, she’s adapting to everything as well as one might expect. Especially since she’s falling for Oswald, despite him already having a fiancé. The fact that Oswald is not available in a romantic capacity is beneficial to the story because it makes it so much more complicated and the possibility of a relationship is so much more tempting and steamy.
There are so many laugh out loud moment in this book that I recommend it just because of those hilarious situations. Obviously, there’s an actually story being told, with bad guys and awful exes, but I wont go into details. Milagro is definitively a character you want to keep reading about. She’s the star of the book and her Latina personality makes her that much more quirky. Despite her being such a dominant character, the rest of the cast is also noteworthy. You can’t help liking Oswald’s family despite their eccentricities. Expect a lot of laughs with these character at Casa Dracula because the book is full of odd and crazy situations.