Welcome to our interactive Nerds and Beyond book club series! This month, I wanted to share a supernatural LGBTQ+ love story. Our December book club pick is Carmilla: The Novel, written by Kim Turrisi. This book is based on one of my favorite web series and is a great read.
“Kim Turrisi’s adaptation of the award-winning queer feminist vampire web series, Carmilla, delivers equal parts suspense, humor, and bite.”
First, a little Carmilla history lesson. It was a Canadian web series that ran for three seasons from 2014 to 2016, then was a movie in 2017. It was loosely based on a gothic novella of the same name written by Sheridan Le Fanu in 1872 about a female vampire that preys on women. That 1872 novella even predates Bram Stoker’s Dracula that came out in 1897 by 26 years! So it has come back full circle: book, web series, movie, and book.
If I had to describe what Laura’s story is like, it is for sure a mix of Veronica Mars and Buffy. She is a first-year journalism student at Silas University located in Styria, Austria. She also vlogs her days through her computer in her dorm room that she shares with her new friend and party girl, Betty. Things are going great, but that never lasts, does it? Especially when people go missing and your new roommate turns out to be a vampire.
The book cover jacket of Carmilla synopsis is:
“Newly escaped from her stifling small town, Laura is all in for her freshman year at Silas University. But when her roommate Betty, vanishes, and a sarcastic, nocturnal philosophy student named Carmilla moves into Betty’s side of the room, Laure decides to play detective. It turns out Betty isn’t the first girl to go missing – she’s just the first girl not to come back.
As Laura looks for answers, her new roommate tries to shut her down. Does Carmilla know more than she’s letting on about the disappearances? What if she isn’t just selfish and insensitive, but completely inhuman? And what happens when Laura starts falling for her anyway?”
Author Kim Turrisi was born in Hawaii, grew up in a military family (Air Force), and graduated from Florida State University. When writing for a specific character, part of her process includes listening to a playlist she created for that character. Along with her debut novel Just a Normal Tuesday, she has won two Daytime Emmy Awards for Venice the Series, written an episode of Pretty Little Liars, and wrote the webisode series Pretty Dirty Secrets.
If you would like to watch the web series that started it all, you can watch it on YouTube.
To participate in our Nerds and Beyond Book Club, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with “Book Club” in the subject line. We’ll be emailing out discussion questions that will be posted in an article at the end of the month.