One of the things I could never figure out about Sue Dent's Never Ceese was whether Richard the Vampire was basically alive or dead.
Now, you're probably saying, "Sheesh! What part of 'undead' do you not understand?"
That would be the "undead" part. Or at least the "un-." You see, even an animated corpse is basically dead. If you have a taxidermist and an animatronic engineer get together, they could make any corpse move around a lot, but it would still be a corpse. On the other hand, if you're alive, you're "un-dead." So consider the data:
It's apparently unusual for Richard to breathe or have a pulse (pp 194-195). Yet his breath is described as "hot" (p 234). Also, even if he can breathe at will, the nicotine in his cigarettes will have nowhere to go: without normal cardiopulmonary function, it won't enter his bloodstream and affect him normally. He nonetheless considers smoking relaxing. How can that be?
As a related point, the whole idea of Richard's having plastic surgery (p 94) implies a lot of problems--anesthesia, reflective surfaces during surgery, and so on. And the operation probably wouldn't succeed: his healing powers would probably restore his original features.
Actually, solving this is child's play compared to figuring out a rationale for the curses, which I'll take on tomorrow. And although I don't like to say this, I can't justify my analysis without engaging in a major spoiler or two. (If you want a proper explanation, e-mail me.) But for the record: Richard is basically alive, not dead, and I can only suggest that the "dead" behavior (lack of breathing and pulse, for example) is a kind of illusion produced by the curse. His being alive makes the smoking and plastic surgery easier to accept, among other things. In other words, he probably does breathe and circulate blood, though presumably at a much-reduced rate, but it's masked by the curse--which makes the curse all the more difficult to explain. I'll try to do it tomorrow anyway.
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The Christian Fiction Review Blog
A Frank Review
Melissa Meeks @ Bibliophile's Retreat
Geralyn Beauchamp @ The Time Mistress
Cathi Hassan @ Cathi's Chatter
Caprice Hokstad @ Queen of Convolution
1 year ago