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Suck It Up

Suck It Up

4.0 96
by Brian Meehl

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“A refreshing take on the vampire romance.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred

Are you up to your neck in bloodsucking vampire stories?

Tired of those tales about dentally enhanced dark lords?

Before I wrote this book I thought all vampires were night-stalking, fangpopping, bloodsucking fiends. Then I met Morning McCobb. He’


“A refreshing take on the vampire romance.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred

Are you up to your neck in bloodsucking vampire stories?

Tired of those tales about dentally enhanced dark lords?

Before I wrote this book I thought all vampires were night-stalking, fangpopping, bloodsucking fiends. Then I met Morning McCobb. He’s a vegan vampire who drinks a soy-blood substitute called Blood Lite. He believes staking should be a hate crime. And someday he hopes to march in a Vampire Pride Parade. He was also the first vampire to out himself and try to show people of mortality, like you and me, that vampires are just another minority with special needs. Trust me—this is like no other vampire book you’ll ever feed on.

So, as my buddy Morning says, “Pop the lid, and suck it up.”

“Appealing characters and an original vampire world. Delightful for those who like their romance vaguely paranormal, their adventure romantic and their vampires defanged.”—Kirkus Reviews

“A flawed and affable protagonist . . . snarky humor, outsider-looking-in perspective, and fresh new takes on the familiar.”—School Library Journal

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, April 28, 2008:
"A refreshing take on the brooding vampire romance, with a misfit vampire protagonist readers are certain to love."

From the Hardcover edition.

Publishers Weekly

Meehl's (Out of Patience) contribution to the growing subgenre of YA vampire novels is very, very funny—similar to M.T. Anderson's Thirsty, but less twisted and heavier on the humor. Morning McCobb, a recent graduate of the IV (International Vampire) League, is the vampire as superhero, geek and lonely boy all rolled into one. His first postgraduation assignment is to tell the world that yes, vampires do exist. Becoming the first out—and therefore most famous—vampire isn't easy (cue the media frenzy). Being around this unlikely heartbreaker is difficult, too, as Portia Dredful finds out when her PR agent mom's highest-profile client moves in with them. The author is especially clever with names (Penny Dredful, Merder Sink), his prose engaging, smart and fast-paced. Witty one-liners pile up while Meehl exploits every known vampire cliché to great comic effect (Morning not only refuses human blood, he's vegan, subsisting on a protein blood substitute called Blood Lite made from soy). A refreshing take on the brooding vampire romance, with a misfit vampire protagonist readers are certain to love. Ages 12—up. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
KLIATT - Paula Rohrlick
Sixteen-year-old Morning McCobb is an unlikely vampire. For one thing, he's a vegan who uses a soy blood substitute. He was "turned" by accident, and he's a gawky geek, not beautiful like the other vampires. So Morning is startled but flattered when he's chosen by the head of the International Vampire League to be the first vampire to out himself to humans, who the immortal vampires call "Lifers." He sees it as a chance to become the superhero he's always dreaming of becoming. A determined human publicist named Penny Dredful takes on the task of presenting Morning and his cause to the world; meanwhile, Morning finds himself falling hard for her teenage daughter Portia, a would-be documentary filmmaker. This fun romp, full of humor and details of modern vampire culture—they maintain a website, for example—is a pleasant change from the usual dark tales of bites in the night. The eye-catching cover (a happy face icon with fangs, sucking up blood-like letters through a straw) will help attract readers to this offbeat tale. Reviewer: Paula Rohrlick
VOYA - Debbie Clifford
Morning McCobb is an average, sixteen-year-old nerd with a secret fantasy to be a superhero. In addition, he is a vampire, although he has never tasted human blood, instead subsisting on a soy-based substitute called Blood Lite. Recently graduated from Leaguer Academy, Morning is now a member of the International Vampire League, vampires who have evolved beyond the need for human blood. Tapped for a special assignment, he is to be the first vampire to go public and show the world that Leaguer vampires are not monsters like the few remaining Loner vampires, the traditional blood-draining kind. Public relations maven, Penny Dredful along with her teenaged photojournalist daughter attempt to aid Morning with his assignment while a renegade Loner does his best to stop him. Naturally things do not go smoothly, and Morning is horrified to discover that a little blood lust lingers in every Leaguer when confronted with the right-or wrong-circumstances. Meehl crafts an entertaining story of adventure and romance with more than a little humor. Morning is so sympathetically drawn that the reader will at times forget that he is a vampire and easily relate to him. The plot's pace will keep teen readers engaged, and the characters have depth and personality. Most readers will find this tale a welcome addition to the growing list of vampire titles. Reviewer: Debbie Clifford
School Library Journal

Gr 8 Up

Morning McCobb is graduating from the IVLeague (International Vampire League) Academy, where students are schooled to be Leaguers (vampires who live peacefully though secretly among mortals and subsist on animal blood) instead of Loners (those who follow the old ways). A forever-16-year-old misfit among his perfect classmates-the slightly older "hunks and hotties" usually chosen to become vampires-Morning is a SangFU (blood flub up); he accidentally received the "virus" while being bled dry by a Loner. He's also a vegan who drinks only a soy blood substitute. When he's offered the opportunity to be the first Leaguer to come out of the closet to the world and show mortals that vampires are just another special-needs minority, he jumps at the chance to end his outcast status and perhaps fulfill his one-time dream of becoming a firefighter. Things are going well until he becomes attracted to Portia, his PR specialist's outspoken daughter, and begins to experience true bloodlust for the first time. Meanwhile, a menacing Loner is determined to stop Morning from succeeding. Not quite as dark as most vampire novels, Meehl's story is filled with humor, quirky characters, light romance, mild suspense, and a lot of fun. A strong addition to a very popular genre.-Sharon Senser McKellar, Oakland Public Library, CA

Kirkus Reviews
Another title in the growing category of such non-traditional vampire novels. Meehl's vampires (called Leaguers) walk in the sunlight after conquering "solar phobia," adhere to the motto, "Drink culture, not life," and seek recognition as a minority group. To test whether the world is ready for them to come out, they've chosen spokesvamp Morning McCobb, an accidental vampire who only drinks "BloodLite" (a soy substitute) and whose vampirism can't hide his inner geek. Under the guidance of the Leaguer leader, Morning joins forces with PR whiz Penny Dredful-but her filmmaker daughter awakens Morning's bloodlust. Meanwhile, a loner vamp tries to bring Morning down. After an exposition-heavy start, this settles into an enjoyable romp. Morning references comic-book heroes and wants to be a firefighter (inspired by 9/11); he also struggles with remaining himself in the face of fame. The text sometimes relies too much on wordplay but delivers with appealing characters and an original vampire world. Delightful for those who like their romance vaguely paranormal, their adventure romantic and their vampires defanged. (Fantasy/humor. 12 & up)

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Read an Excerpt

"In the end is beginning." Luther Birnam's deep voice rained down from the high platform, charging the air above a wide semicircle of cadets. "In the beginning is end." Standing in white graduation gowns, the handsome young men and beautiful young women blazed with pride. "Today, you end your life as a Loner, and begin your new life as a Leaguer!"
The cadets erupted in cheering applause.
The last student in the arcing line clapped with just enough enthusiasm not to be noticed. For the ten months Morning McCobb had attended Leaguer Academy, being invisible had been mission number one. It wasn't easy. It never is when you're the class freak.
At sixteen, Morning was younger and skinnier than his cookie-cutter classmates. While their gowns swelled over the bodies of hunks and hotties in their late teens and twenties, Morning's robe hung from his bony shoulders like it was still on the hanger. Even his hair was different. The male cadets had coifs that never moved from their last mirror check. The women had wavy manes that bounced to perfection. Morning's hair resembled a patch of wheatgrass small animals had recently bedded down in.
As the cadets continued to whistle and fist-pump, Morning's dark eyes scanned the line. They reminded him of dogs straining at their leashes. He wished he had the X-Men superpowers of Banshee. He would strafe the cadets with a sonic blast, stunning them into a hypnotic trance so Mr. Birnam could finish his speech.
Unfortunately, Birnam tossed them another bone. "Today ends your long night as prisoners of darkness, and begins your day as masters of light!"
The roar of approval was doubled by the throng of teachers and visitors jamming the grandstand. The sound bounced around the great cavern inside Leaguer Mountain like bottled thunder.
Adding his token applause, Morning realized the powers of Banshee weren't enough. He needed the skills of the supervillain Dr. Chronos. Wielding his powers of time-compression, he could fast-forward the commencement to over. It wasn't that Morning wasn't excited about graduating. He was. The sooner he got out of Leaguer Mountain, the sooner his classmates would stop rubbing his face in the dismal truth. While they looked like perfectly chiseled Abercrombie models, no amount of pumping iron would ever make Morning buff. No surge of hormones would ever change his face from boyish to manly. He was stuck with peach fuzz and a body that was more stick-of-gum than stud. And there was nothing he could do about it. Ever.
That's how it was with vampires. Shape-shifting allowed, aging not.
Of course, Leaguer vampires didn't call it "shape-shifting" anymore. In Vampire Vocabulary and Leaguer Lexicon class, Morning had learned that "shape-shifting" belonged to the dark ages of the twentieth century. All vampires who belonged to the IVL-the International Vampire League-had word-shifted to the more scientifically accurate "cell differentiation." CD, for short.
The crowd hushed as Birnam raised his hands. "To commemorate your journey from darkness to light, I will now present your diplomas. When you hear your name, demonstrate the mastery of your powers by ascending the platform in one of the Six Forms. After receiving your diploma, you will then descend in the only incarnation you will ever need again: a Leaguer among Leaguers."
Morning's stomach flopped like a landed fish. He dreaded this part of the ceremony. Yes, in CD 101, he had stumbled through the Six Forms of cell differentiation and managed to pass, but it was like being the worst kid in gym. He never knew how he was going to screw up; he only knew it would probably end in humiliation.
For Morning, this wasn't the worst part of being a vampire. The worst part was the irony of it all. As a kid, he had dreamed of an accident transforming him into a superhero. Like the spider bite that turned Peter Parker into Spider-Man. Or the lab accident that mutated Jon Osterman into Dr. Manhattan. Unfortunately, Morning's little snafu involved a vampire bite. And yeah, being a vampire came with a few superpowers, but it wasn't exactly a skill set you used for saving people.
Mr. Birnam called the first name. "Dieter Auerbach." A brawny young man jogged forward. After a few strides, his white gown billowed, and a sleek gray wolf darted from under the falling robe. The wolf trotted toward the tower.
"Our first graduate has chosen the Fifth Form: the Runner," Birnam announced.
The wolf broke into a lope, surged forward, and leaped onto the lowest platform protruding from the spiraling tower. With flawless grace, the animal sprang from platform to platform. When Dieter's wolf landed at the top next to Birnam, the crowd rewarded him with applause.
Birnam held up a long, rolled diploma. The wolf spun and CDed back into human form. Dieter was now sheathed in skintight, black underarmor. The glistening material accented every muscle in his flawless body.
The sight of underarmor gripped Morning in panic. He pulled at his gown, peeked underneath, and sighed with relief. Yes, he'd remembered to put on his black Epidex.
One of the things Morning was thankful for was that he had become a vampire after Leaguer scientists invented Epidex. Before Epidex, when a vampire CDed there was no way he, or she, could take their clothes with them. When they CDed back to human form they came back butt naked. Of course, there were still some vampires, known as Loners, who practiced all the old ways, and could care less if they ran around naked. Loner vampires streaked, Leaguers didn't.
In Leaguer Science, Morning had remembered enough about the history of Epidex to manage a C on his final. Epidex was invented when a vampire scientist asked, "If human skin is an external organ, could an artificial skin be invented that became both an external and internal organ?" After many failures, a Leaguer egghead invented Epidex. Somehow, Epidex combined a carbon-polymer blend with nanotechnology into a living tissue that fed off the electrical current that flowed through all bodies. And somehow, when vampires CDed, the big electrical surge it created transformed the Epidex into an internal organ. It stayed that way until the vampire switched back to human form and the Epidex re-externalized. While Morning knew his less-than stunning summary of Epidex wouldn't earn him an A, he thought he at least deserved a B because of his clever conclusion: "Epidex is the underwear of underwears."

From the Hardcover edition.

Meet the Author

Brian Meehl’s comedic “vampire lite” story is unlike any vampire tale ever told. He lives in Redding, Connecticut.

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Suck It Up 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 95 reviews.
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
At sixteen, Morning McCobb is a recent graduate of the IVL. No, Morning isn't a genius. He is a sixteen-year-old vampire just graduating from the International Vampire League. But this League of Vampires isn't what you would expect; their motto is to "drink culture, not life." They exist peacefully by blending in with humanity -- that is, until now.

Morning is going to be the first to "come out of the closet." He's the kind of vampire the League has been waiting for. Young, nonthreatening, the kid is a sangv! Sangv translation: blood virgin, meaning he's never drunk human blood. In fact, Morning has never drank blood belonging to a living organism, human or animal. He drinks Blood-lite, a soy-based blood substitute!

To help with his coming-out process, Morning is teamed up with Penny Dredful, the owner of PR Agency. It is her responsibility to turn Morning's fifteen-minutes of fame into 24/7 coverage. Credibility is the least of their worries; once Morning pulls a couple of CD's (cell differentiation) and turns from a boy into a dolphin, back into a boy, and then into a tree and back again, most people are believers. But not everyone is a Morning McCobb fan. There is a group of vampires called Loners who haven't conformed to the Leaguer way and still feed on humans. They want Morning eliminated before he reveals all of their secrets.

Is the world ready for Morning McCobb, a real vampire?

SUCK IT UP is another rendition of the growing array of young adult vampire novels. Meehl's take on the vampire lore is interesting, refreshing, and humorous! Debunking the myth of vampires and sun as "solar phobia," as well as their fear of garlic -- hello, bad breath! I also enjoyed the references to superheroes and comic characters, being a fan of the genre myself! Morning wants to be a superhero as well as a firefighter, after his experiences from 9/11. The characters are original, although I didn't hold a strong liking to any of them. Overall, SUCK IT UP was a funny and original. This is a book that I think boys as well as girls would like. I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy the vampire sub-genre!
Guest More than 1 year ago
the author was right. this is a very different vampire book. it had its hilarious moments as well as its dramatic ones. very well written and a great read for all vampire lovers.
yvescvancol More than 1 year ago
i thought this book was great and even tho pertained to vampires was really modern and can be related to real life- yves c. vancol
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was a clean book with very little profanity or sexuality, which is so hard to find, but it just didn't feel very exciting or draw you in. I expected it to at least be funny, but I didn't think it was the least bit humorous. I was pretty bored with it.
Conchobar More than 1 year ago
I really like that this book has made Vampires different than all other books (Twilight.) It's creative and the characters are real...well their emotions are realistic which makes it easy to imagine the story in your mind. If you'd like to read a good book, look no further. You'll like this book if you read it.
Danny_H More than 1 year ago
I kno wthis book may lok like another dumb vampire book, but it really packs a punch. There are momments I had to close the book and take a breath in to take in what happened, I hope for a series. The only reson I dont give this book a five is because the ending wasnt very satisfactory, but it was better than most. It a fun read and will get its charming vampire hook right in you.
Kira More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. I finished this book in two days, I just couldn't put it down until I finished it. I cant stop reading vampire books now! This book has a true love story that would survive through anything, adventure and funny moments. I hope there will be a sequal. I would definetly reccomend this book!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
i read this a while ago and it was amazing, unlike most vampire books ive read,it was different and i enjoyed very much(:
Guest More than 1 year ago
Seeing as I've been reading about vampires for most of my childhood and teenage life (oh SO long...ehem), I've seen the various ways authors tweak vampires to fit their personal vision. From Twilight to Dracula, I'm close to having 'seen it all', but I was pleasantly surprised with Suck It Up. It's rare to find a YA author that has this sort of twisted but still amusing sense of humor that captures what it's really like to be a teenager. I'm not dubbing this the most amazing vampire book ever written in YA history, but it's pretty darn decent, incredibly entertaining and certainly funny.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This story is very different from all of the rest of the vampire stories, it has it's shares of funny moments and some dramatic ones. But some parts of the book was a bit slow for me.
Guest More than 1 year ago
After reading the Twilight series, I was interested in vampire books. My friend recomended it I finished it in 2 days. This is a very good book about true love and vampires! I highly reccomend it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book, Suck it up is one of the most intersting books I've read. It's got so many themes all rolled into one such as action, humor, adventure, violence, and my favorite, romance. I loved all of the characters and the personalities that came with them. It looks at angles of different lives to make it even more addicting. This was a truly an astonishing book and I really hope it's turned into a movie because I would watch it over and over again! So read Suck It Up, it will suck you in.
KnightRider More than 1 year ago
This book was definitely different than the other gushy vampire romance books out there. For that reason I liked it. However, it seemed like there weren't enough characters in this book even though the main ones in it (which were really the only ones) still kept me intrigued and reading. I think it would have been a better book if there was more of an unexpected ending because it really was predictable. The writing, though, was excellent and I enjoyed the way the author/narrator expressed themself. It's not a book I would surely want to re-read, but it's not a waste of money either. I'm glad I bought it and got to read it to escape from the crazy vampire non-sense that plauges various books today.
jazzyfizzletm_ilovemyboo_ More than 1 year ago
i have only read a couple of chapters, but i am hooked. i would reread this book if i had to. as far as vampire books go its not your typical love story. there is romance but there is also suspence and mystery. if i had to chose between this and all the twilight books i woul ddefinatly choose this.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are tired of the serious vampire love stories, then this is a book for you. It is humorous, adventuresome, and has a great storyline. The hero is your average 16-year-old who is accidentally changed into a vampire. He then becomes the spokesperson for a group of vampires who want to live "normally" among mortals. Along the way, he meets a girl and gets caught up in a fight (good for both girls and guys!!). Readers will enjoy the puns and the suprise ending as well.
j-moonbeam More than 1 year ago
This book is a great, quick & excellent read! I found myself wanting more when it was over. I hope there will be more to come.... (:
life_of_li More than 1 year ago
omg. that was my reaction to this absoulutley Amazing with a capital A novel. this book deserves to stand among the best of vampire novels!!!! it was O-So realistic (except maybee the vampire bit.... :), it made me feel as though i WAS Morning and DeThanatos!And i WAS Portia and Penny!lemme give you one warning though....once you pick up this book you may never EVER be able to put this down until you have stumbled upon the end. and then read it again. and again. just to make sure that you actually have read a book this amazingly fabulously awsome. and it is real!!! but then just beacuse your sad its over,you will probably read it agian....soo im telling you that my reaction was omg and yours is probably going to be the same either that or you will burst into tears beacuse you have closed it. :) thanks for reading this and thanks again if you read 'suck it up'. cya!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm a big fan of the vampire writing genre and this was a real treat. The writing style was fun and refreshing with characters interesting enough to keep the story rolling. I love the main character's desire to be a hero and how the irony played out with his becoming a vampire. Overall this was an entertaining read that left me thirsy for more.
Celine-Jackson More than 1 year ago
If You Like Vampire Stories "Suck It Up" is another teenager-vampire book. Although it is not like the Twilight series, it does however contain some romance, just kissing. Morning McCobb is a 16 year old graduate of the IVL, or the International Vampire League, a sangfu (vampire that doesn’t drink blood from a living organism), and dreams of becoming a fireman. At his school, the vampires are driven to learn and take in the culture from people, not drink them, or in fact their blood. When he is asked by Mr. Birnam, a teacher at IVL, to represent the vampire-kind in the human world, so they know that vampires are not as horrible as they are thought to be, Morning could not say “no.” After he met and teamed up with Penny Dredful and her daughter, Portia Dredful, as his agent/representative, he has never been more famous. Becoming known as “The Famous Vampire”, there were more risks to it than Morning realized. From being swarmed every day by teenagers, mainly young women, to being staked in the middle of the night, there was no way for him to prepare this. But with the support and humor from his friend and director of his own movie, Portia Dredful gets Morning through his tough times; personal and public.  I somewhat enjoyed this book and I know that if you enjoy reading vampire-based books, or the Twilight series, you will definitely enjoy this book. Some parts within “Suck It Up”, I found it a bit too slow to my liking or too boring. I do not remember reading/seeing any profanity of any kind throughout the book. There was also no inappropriate content within this book. Knowing this, it surprised me because most books, T.V. shows, movies, or any type of entertainment hold inappropriate content, but not this book. The only intimate content is of Morning and Portia just kissing and nothing more. There is some humor in this book too. I, again, recommend this book to anyone who love vampire books, and anyone who is at or over the age of 13 years. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awsome book its so bloody good i just bit into this book with no mercy. Brian Meehl sucked it up and wrote a killer book.
Caitiee_Roee More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the the book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago