cover image Vampires of Blinsh

Vampires of Blinsh

Daniel Pinkwater, illus. by Aaron Renier. Abrams, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4197-4681-9

Welcome to Blinsh, in the nation of Pinksylvania. It’s a village where 51% of the population are vampires, “and every family has a least one.” People get bitten on a regular basis—such as the Pinkwater double and nominal protagonist Mr. Papooshnik—but that doesn’t seem to bother the residents nearly as much as the town’s odd gift for producing “the worst-tasting doughnuts anywhere on earth.” Ultimately, the bustling, convivial Blinsh, with its all-vampire fire department, is an object lesson in functioning community—and in this case, “the true friendship and tolerance between normal folk and the undead.” Pictures by Renier (the Unsinkable Walker Bean series), mostly set at night, are packed full of visual jokes and flying bats against spooky, luridly hued skies of blood red, Halloween orange, and Frankenstein green; the underground comics vibe is a good match for Pinkwater’s (Adventures of a Dwergish Girl) off-the-cuff, delightfully woolly narration. Come for the ghoulishness, stay for the literary equivalent of sitting between two expertly silly grown-ups as they devote their considerable talents to making readers giggle. Ages 4–8. [em]Author’s agent: Jennifer Laughran, Andrea Brown Literary. Illustrator’s agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Sept.) [/em]