First, I should let you know that I bought this book before I read the synopsis. It was not because of the cover, but because of the author. Scott Westerfeld showed me the joy of traveling to a new world, not in a physical sense but in a mental one. The first author that I ever read and enjoyed was Lurlene McDaniel, which is amazing if your into the books about girls dyeing. I was, but Scott Westerfeld showed me a new world. An exciting world, one that I want to live in. A world where people get turned into Pretties when they turn 16, but a world where one or two people stood up and said "enough". Uglies, Pretties, and Specials were the first sci-fi, young adult book series that I read, and I was hooked (review for Uglies, Pretties, Specials, and Extras coming soon). I bought Peeps (and the spinoff which I will post later) during black Friday this year because I wanted to be reminded of why I started reading. It worked.
Synopsis - "Last year as college freshman, narrator Cal was infected by exotic goth Morgan with a parasite that caused following girlfriends to become vampire-like ghouls he calls parasite-positives "Peeps". A carrier without symptoms, he hunts his progeny for the centuries old bureaucratic Night Watch. But victims are showing more sanity, pretty human Lacey is pushing his buttons, and her apartment building basement houses fierce hordes of ravening rats, red-eyed cats, and monstrous worms that threaten all. Morgan has the secret to a centuries-old conspiracy and upcoming battle to save the human race."
Out of all the Scott Westerfeld books on the shelf, I chose Peeps. Peeps is about vampires, but they are called Peeps. You become a Peep by deep kisses, or having sex with someone. It is like an STD, but it makes you crazy. This book freaked me out in more than one ways, and here is why!
1. The talk of parasites. Parasites freak me out. Majorly. In between each chapter, Scott would put in little facts about parasites. At the beginning, I thought that it was for the cause of the book. It was meant to freak me out. The last few pages, however, is him explaining that the parasites talked about are REAL. That's right...REAL. Here is an excerpt from one of those pages: "Flip a coin. Tails? Relax. Heads? You've got parasites in your brain. That's right. Half of us carry the Toxoplasma Gondii parasite. But don't reach for the power drill just yet. Toxoplasma is microscopic....Toxoplasma would much rater live in your cat's digestive system, eating cat food and laying eggs. Then, when kitty takes a crap, these eggs wind up on the ground waiting for other scurrying creates. Like, say, rats....When toxoplasma gets into a rat, the parasite starts to make changes to its host's brain. If a normal rat bumps into something that smells like a cat, it freaks out and runs away. But toxoplasma-infected rats make them curious. They'll explore for hours trying to find the source. Which is a cat. Which eats them. And that makes a toxoplasma happy, because toxoplasma really, really wants to live in the stomach of a cat."
2. It is just freaky. Really, it is. Listen to this part: "Between my blazing flashlight and the squeaks and scrambling feet echoing off the sides of the pool, I was almost blind and practically deafened. But the weird smell of death was fading, and just as the last rats were finally clearing out, I caught the slightest whiff of something new in the air. Something close. A sharp hiss sounded behind me, someone sucking in air. As I spun around, the flashlight slipped from my sweaty fingers. It cracked on the swimming pool floor, and everything went dark. I was completely blind, but before the flashlight had died I'd glimpsed a human form at the edge of the pool. Following the bright image burned into my retinas, I ran the few steps up the slope and leaped from the pool, raising the camera like a club." It is exciting, and freaky!
The beginning just throws you right into the middle of it. Like you should know what is going on. But you don't. It grabs hold of you, and does not let go. There are a few little mistakes with grammar and word usage, but OH MY GOSHNESS! This is definitely a top book for me!