Review: The Vanquishers by Kalynn Bayron

The Vanquishers by Kalynn Bayron

The Vanquishers
Kalynn Bayron
Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Published September 20, 2022

Amazon | Bookshop | Goodreads

About The Vanquishers

In the world of the Vanquishers, vampires were history . . . until now.

Malika “Boog” Wilson and her best friends have grown up idolizing The Vanquishers, a group of heroic vampire hunters who wiped out the last horde of the undead decades ago. Nowadays, most people don’t take even the most basic vampire precautions–the days of garlic wreaths and early curfews long gone–but Boog’s parents still follow the old rules, much to her embarrassment.

When a friend goes missing, Boog isn’t sure what to think. Could it be the school counselor, Mr. Rupert, who definitely seems to be hiding something? Or could it be something more dangerous? Boog is determined to save her friend, but is she ready to admit vampires might not be vanquished after all?

No one ever expected the Vanquishers to return, but if their town needs protection from the undead, Boog knows who to call.

Inspired by Buffy the Vampire Slayer and The Watchmen, this adventure launches readers into an exciting new series.

The Vanquishers on Goodreads

My Review

I had a lot of fun reading this book. It hit all the notes I was hoping for. It had unforgettable friendships, silly antics, spooky shadowy things, and super hero vibes.

The history of the community with vampires had a great setup. Vampires used to be a real threat, so people adjusted by vampire-proofing their properties and learning social rules, such as not ever inviting a stranger into your home. Though Boog and her friends roll their eyes and barely tolerate their parents sticking to their anti-vampire habits, it made for a great way to introduce all that history and setup into the story without it feeling bulky or weird.

I really liked Boog and her friends, Jules, Cedric, and Aaron. They made a great team, and they were a lot of fun together. I also loved their families and the way they had regular get-togethers and stuff. It added to that post-pandemic feel, too, because it made me think of how we kind of settled into seeing a few “safe” families during the pandemic. We had our bubble, and Boog and her family had theirs.

The only thing I felt was a little bit heavy-handed was in the way the story dealt with one of the characters. It felt like there was an awful lot of emphasis on how creepy the guy was. I wish that had been a little bit more subtle. It was kind of a minor thing in terms of the whole story, though, and once everything came together, I didn’t really care about the way that character was handled.

THE VANQUISHERS is a fun, spooky story packed with fantastic friendships. I think readers who enjoyed THE DARKDEEP by Ally Condie and Brendan Reichs should check this one out for sure.

The Vanquishers on Bookshop

Content Notes

Recommended for Ages 8 to 12.

Representation
Boog, Cedric and Aaron are Black. Jules is Latine and nonbinary.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
None.

Romance/Sexual Content
None.

Spiritual Content
Vampires exist but haven’t been seen since a team called The Vanquishers destroyed the last known group of them.

Violent Content
Situations of peril. A couple tense, spooky moments.

Drug Content
None.

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of THE VANQUISHERS in exchange for my honest review.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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