KISS, KISS. YOU’RE DEAD is a YA contemporary fantasy, complete at 63,000 words, which combines the suspense of WICKED FOX with the snark of UNDEAD GIRL GANG, and humor of BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER.
All Kenzie Collins wants is to kiss a boy without killing him. But as the youngest of three succubus sisters, killing runs in the family (just like the boobs that magically appear on your seventeenth birthday.) Being a succubus sucks. Sure, the Collins sisters only steal the worst the souls— guys that never learned the meaning of the word “no.” But Kenzie’s interests lean more towards planning for prom, finding cute shoes and yeah, notmurdering people.
When Kenzie’s date with an older frat boy ends with him left with a little less soul than he started, Kenzie realizes she’s gotta feed her inner beastie, or someone’s going to get hurt. So when students at her high school are poisoned playing a party game called “ricin roulette,” Kenzie sees the perfect opportunity to tame her hunger. If she can find the ricin chemist and consume his big juicy soul, she’ll be satisfied. Then, her only problem will be deciding between her now conscious frat boy, or her sorta dreamy, but also a bit of an asshole next-door neighbor (who occasionally helps her move a body). But as Kenzie searches for the chemist and leans into her succubus nature, she begins to see her succubism as something more. Maybe she can use her skills to help others? The world could use a few less creeps, lurking in dark alleyways, or fraternity parties, or maybe even next door…
KISS, KISS. YOU’RE DEAD. uses the succubus myth to explore the impossible societal expectations teenage girls face to be a “lady in the street” and still flaunt an ass like Kim Kardashian. It addresses issues including slut-shaming, the expectation of sex after a date and consent when alcohol is involved.
Of all the things that didn’t go as planned tonight, it was the taste of Greg London’s soul that surprised me the most. Like peach schnapps stolen from someone’s parent’s liquor cabinet. Sickeningly sweet and forbidden.
I thought I imagined every possible scenario on how things might play out once I got Greg alone. It’s not like I turned seventeen and all of sudden they sat me down to reveal some ancient prophecy. I’ve always known my fate. I was eleven when it happened to Rose and fifteen when it was Mae’s turn. So there was plenty of time to ask the important questions: Would it hurt the first time? Would there be blood? And what’s the best way to get rid of a body?
Still, the taste of my first soul threw me. Just like Greg threw me, onto his checkered blue sheets, pinning me down, completely unaware that the kiss he wanted so badly was about to get him killed.
The rush that came as I sucked the life-force from him was exactly as Mae described it: euphoric. Like taking a long drink of something hot, that leaves you feeling tingly and light-headed. Maybe it wasn’t so much the taste that shocked me, but the crushing realization that followed as soon as I consumed him: Gregory London, handsome track star, beloved son of Greg Sr. and Bunny London, was lying dead at my feet. And it was all my fault.
My sisters were right about the first thing. It didn’t hurt, the killing part at least. Although my cheek is sore from where he hit me, and I’ll have to wear my hair up for the next few weeks because of the chunk of my scalp he ripped from my head when he yanked me onto his bed. But the actual act of taking Gregory London’s life was as painless as they said. I only wish I paid more attention to their answer to the body disposal question, because I’m starting to panic. Greg Jr. is crumpled in a heap on his beer-stained carpet, and someone is banging on the other side of his door, and I’m sure everyone at the party below can hear it.
I’m fucked. I know, it’s not classy language for a lady. But there’s no better term to describe my predicament. Screwed comes close, but it doesn’t encompass the urgency that if I don’t get myself out of this room before the bedroom door opens, I’m probably going to jail for murder.
Maybe not murder. After the coroner finishes the autopsy, it’ll come back saying Greg died from something natural like a brain aneurysm or a heart attack. But if my sisters taught me anything, it’s that for our kind to survive, we need to be careful. And being careful means drawing as little attention to us as possible.