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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Tear Collector

The Tear Collector by Patrick Jones (September 1st 2009—Walker Books)

Grade: 2.5 stars out of 5

Summary: “Between hookups, makeups, and breakups, there isn’t a day at Lapeer High School without drama turning to trauma turning to tears.

And tears are just essential as air for Cassandra Grey. She and her family are vampires who thirst for human sorrow, and the energy that they soak in from a good crying jag can keep them fueled for days.

Anytime a friend needs a shoulder to cry on, Cass is there. Anytime a boyfriend gets too secure, she breaks his heart. Cass’s work as a school peer counselor and hospital volunteer also provides the perfect cover and access to her family’s energy source. But she is getting tired of all the lies and manipulation—especially now that she’s actually fallen in love with a human. Can she bear to betry her family for a chance at happiness and a life lived with joy?”

Review: I think there is a misconception for the Tear Collector. So far I’ve seen many call this book a new twist to an old vampire lore. “…she’s just like me now—not human, but not a classic horror movie vampire either. I’m more of a succubus that maintains a human form to get along in the world but is void of so much of what makes a person human—such as the ability to love.” This is where things throw me off track. I’m not sure if I can call this a vampire novel or not. There are certain attributes that make a vampire just as being able to transform into a wolf makes a werewolf. I’m grasping at thin straws right now; I guess it’s up to the reader to decide. Anyway that’s the least of my worries.

While I do think that The Tear Collector is unique within its idea and premise, the execution faltered. There seemed to be a lot of high school drama, redundant scenes, and many missing details.

I found the whole scenario of high school a bore actually. Jones starts a great idea then stops short from anything really excited. We have the generic mean girls, the popular but still nice cheerleader, the why-do-you-keep-mentioning-that-Cassandra-gives-blow-jobs-often-to jocks, the weird but deep Goth/Emo girl, and finally the not-the-best-looking-but-so-sweet guy. It’s a battle between which environment is dominate—high school or Cassandra’s family. There are times when they both intermingle but other times it’s more of a Monopoly game—pass Go and collect $200.

Cassandra hangs out in high school, comforts people, collects their tears, gives them to her great godmother, goes back to high school and collects tears again. This is where the redundancy comes into play. You can throw in random hissy cat fights but that doesn’t make it any better. I did, however, like the friendship with Samantha and Cassandra. We follow them when they were enemies to being something special. I thought her story was touching but had missing details to make it even more of a pow.

I couldn’t fully connect with many of the characters. I wasn’t as empathic to Cassandra as I would have liked, I didn’t like Scott as much as I hoped, and I couldn’t get the full intimate details of why they like each so darn much. I mean there were scenes that I thought “wow” but the conversations they had were very similar to other conversations she had.

Then there’s Alexei, her cousin whom she was promised to. A third of the novel was a build-up to this point and even then it fell short and anticlimactic. Again it showed promise, the chapter articles of children kidnappings, the suspense, and the anticipation but in the end all I could say was “that’s it”?

And the ending! Oh goodness. *no comment* I just wish we can get the inside scoop who her cousin killed….

Overall: It’s frustrating because it had so much potential not because it was horrid! I craved for something more.

Cover C+


  1. Oh man! Ugh! I have read now 2 reviews in 1 day of how not so good this book is! Ah! Its killing me! I really want to read it still though. Great review! Sorry you were frustrated with it!


  2. Yup. This one is on my DNF pile. I believe I only made it to page 10 and couldn't read any more because of the main girl. Hated her. :(

  3. I agree with you Jessica. I think I made it to the second chapter before I sat it down and let it get buried underneath a bunch of other books. Then it had to go back to the library and I haven't bothered getting it again to finish it.

  4. Thanks for the honest review :) I just don't like the fact that they are called vampires when they feed off people's sorrow. o-o Why not make a new species altogether?

  5. Yes! I agree soo much. There was definitely something missing from this book. Loved the concept but like you said, I think it could have been executed better.

  6. I don't know about reading this. Great Review! very honest

  7. Oh man! This book looked so good! I`m definitely not reading it now.

  8. I am 99% sure there will be at least a sequel to this book if no more- and I am pretty sure the author left things like that for a reason for things to be unanswered but still give you a lot of detail about the world that he has set up and stuff. Don't quote me for sure on that but I am pretty sure of it. =) Also, I liked your review- honest but not harsh. Personally, I liked the book although I had similar thoughts as you on some things but overall, I really liked it. But, that's just me but it is really nice to see reviews that aren't just all out mean. That is all. =P

  9. Oh no, it should be good! I'm a little upset now. But thanks for the honest review Yan :D