Book Review: The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires

At the end of the day, some rich white people lost their money. Some poor black people lost their homes. That’s just how it goes.

I really like when an author makes clever use of satire and engrosses readers in a whipsmart plotline. On the surface level, The Southern Book Club seems like a dark, yet fun, read about a couple of housewives slaying a vampire and saving the day. But, as you deep dive, profound problems in the very heart of the societal system are highlighted. We see various harrowing aspects of white privilege and racial injustice against African Americans.

The story begins as a dashing, hot vampire James Harris moves into a neighbourhood and mysterious murders of African American kids start taking place soon after. Patricia, a mother and member of the book club, realises Harris’ connection to these murders. She convinces the fellow ladies and together they begin attempting to take him down. Unfortunately, these efforts are shunned by their husbands and police who do not take action and stand by Harris.

As the story progresses, various themes about marriage, teenage children and the role of women are explored. It extremely sad how the fictionalised situations in the book are not far from the truth.

Every day, all the chaos and messiness of life happens and every day we clean it all up. Without us, they would just wallow in filth and disorder and nothing of any consequence would ever get done. Who taught you to sneer at that? I’ll tell you who. Someone who took their mother for granted.

Grady Hendrix also subtly trashes repulsive sexism which comes into play when a woman is a housewife and man a breadwinner. The effort our mothers put into taking care of the family is rarely acknowledged. On the other hand, they are the first one to be criticized when food on our plate isn’t hot enough.

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