• Undead and Unwed

  • Queen Betsy, Book 1
  • By: MaryJanice Davidson
  • Narrated by: Nancy Wu
  • Length: 9 hrs and 10 mins
  • 4.0 out of 5 stars (2,778 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

MaryJanice Davidson's cult hit Undead and

Unwed is a delightful mixture of Sex and the City and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Waking up in a tacky coffin and wearing off-brand shoes, Betsy Taylor can't believe the horrible turn her life has taken; then she discovers she's a vampire. Soon, Betsy becomes a participant in a power struggle between the forces of darkness. With only her friend Jessica and the hunky vampire Sinclair to help her, this new "Queen of Vampires" will have a tough time getting her afterlife straight.

Dying for more? Don't miss the other titles in the Undead series.
©2004 MaryJanice Davidson (P)2006 Recorded Books

Critic Reviews

"Sexy, steamy, and laugh-out-loud funny, Davidson's chick-lit foray into the paranormal is delightful." (Booklist)

What listeners say about Undead and Unwed

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Great Concept / Annoying Character

I've read the Twilight and Sookie Stackhouse series and I was very eager to start on the Undead series. This book was entertaining with a great plot but is it just me or does Betsy get to be extremely annoying and brainless. I know she is supposed to be a woman in her late 20's/early 30's who ran a hectic office with complicated bosses and colleagues. A blonde bombshell heroine but she comes across as a blonde bimbo who is extremely emotional, lacks common sense, and acts more like she's a pre-teen going through puberty and made to share a bedroom with her little brother. She's not just tempermental, she's ridiculously rude, illogical, and whiny. She's commonly displayed as a self righteous, pouting, stomping, confidence-starved 14 yr old that says things like "ick", "yuck", "blach", and "gross". It's definitely "Sex in the City" meets "Twilight" meets "Austin Powers" meets "Rugrats". Of all the amazing things she can do and ample power she has, she spends most of her time mudslinging, name calling, and staging "biotch" fights. Listen/Read this for the sheer mindless entertainment. Overthink the storyline and you'll regret it..even if you do subscribe to Vogue and own a pair of Manolo Blahniks.

28 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Such a fun book!

I actually despise what most people call "chick lit" and lots of people have described the Undead series by MaryJanice Davidson as chick lit meets vampires.

I suppose that is an accurate description, but the reason I hate chick lit (in general) and the reason I find this book so hilarious is basically the same: a really shallow-seeming heroine. Here the shallowness isn't complete (Betsy has her moments and you can see that she has some deeper feelings, if you search really hard for them), but the very shallowness is part of the reason these books are so funny.

The Queen of the Vampires is obsessed with shoes? Designer names? What anyone and everyone is wearing? Too funny!

Nancy Wu, who gives voice to Betsy in this first person novel, is letter perfect. She sounds just like Betsy did in my head when I read "Undead and Unwed" for the first time.

Give this book a chance,even if you aren't a chick lit fan. You won't regret it.

21 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Lighthearted Dark Fantasy

I have to admit I really loved the lighthearted sillyness of a shoe loving queen of the vampires. I'm personally not a big fan of dark brooding vampires, so this was really a lot of fun.

My only gripe is that it's a little more sexual than I would have liked, not that I mind a little bit but the author can be very explicit which is a little wierd for me since I like to listen to my books at work (with headphones but still...).

Otherwise I'm really enjoying the series and I can't help spending all my credits so I can read the rest of them.

16 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • AC
  • 11-21-06

Dead and obnoxious

I just can't recommend this book. I found Betsy to be one of the most annoying characters I've ever come across in a book. She's ignorant, shallow, whiny and SHE'S the heroine! The rest of the characters were two dimensional stereotypes and the author apparently thinks that no one will know the difference between sarcasm and wit. She's probably right about that.

12 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Irritating Lead Character and Narrator

I was looking for some fun reading after finishing the Sookie Stackhouse books. I had read some very good reviews of this series and decided to try it. The narrator is really horrible, some of her voices sound like cartoon characters. The heroine is very childish and irritating.

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Taken for what it is

I normally download the classics and intellectual selections. I was looking for something light, and I found it. The interesting thing is I found myself gripped. This book surprisingly delivered what I was looking for. If you don't mind a loose plot with basic, surface characterization yet enough continuity to carry the story, this is a good choice. I can't believe our heroine is a Republican, and the sex scenes are...interesting (ahem). Otherwise, this is a good escape from reality. For the same reasons I may watch sitcom reruns on a weekend after a hard week, this is a refreshing listen to kick back with after work. I found myself picking up the sequels to find out what happens next. Oh, yes, just don't tell anyone how much I enjoyed this as I dive back into my physics lectures.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

You can't just listen to one...

Light, funny, road-trip entertainment. Wu does a great job with female characters and adds flavor to the series. Don't start in the middle... listen from start to finish for the best experience. I'll keep this set in my I-Pod to listen to again and again and buy the next installment for my collection.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

really like this series.

Great series. loved it. Mary janice Davidson is a great writer and in this series she answers all the questions people normally have about vamps. I listened to all the availible undead Books and cant wait for the next book in july. In the mean time i am listening to Molly harpers werewolf books and also here vamp books. She is also a great writer.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Betsy rocks!

Although in Holland 'Betsy' is a common name for a cow, and yes, I had to get over that, this Elizabeth is really really cool. When she thinks she's a zombie she tries to kill herself, several times, and when that doesn't work, she gets wicked.

'What are you gonna do? Kill me?'

Its like the devil wears Prada. Literally. I was laughing out loud every 10 minutes or so becuase she's so adorable. When other vampires want her to help destroi another she doesn't want to go with them. But then it appeares they have bought 10 pairs of very nice shoes and she's all over them. "I can't believe we are bribing our future queen with designershoes" sights an old-but-younglooking vampire girl. But hey, it works!

This book is perfect for fashionistas who love romance and comedy, and don't mind the paranormal surroundings. If you do- Betsy will talk you through it, this book is great.

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Cute paranormal fantasy

Betsy Taylor is having a rough week. First she gets fired, then she gets hit by a car, and then she wakes up in a coffin lined with plush pink satin (yuck!) wearing an unfashionable dress, cheap shoes, and the wrong color make-up. How embarrassing! After piecing together the clues and visiting a minister, Betsy realizes that she???s a very unusual vampire ??? she???s not affected by crosses, holy water, or sunlight. She does, however, need to drink blood.

Betsy is determined to make the most of her death by getting back to her normal life, but she soon discovers that the other vampires in town have expectations of her. Though she tries to stay clear of them, they will not let her rest in peace, and she ends up in the middle of a vampire clan war.

I thought that Undead and Unwed was totally not my kind of book. I don???t like sarcastic female protagonists and I don???t like vampires. I only picked up Undead and Unwed because it was cheap at Audible during one of their big sales and somebody needed to review it for the SFF review site I'm involved in. I was completely surprised, therefore, at how well it entertained me.

MaryJanice Davidson managed to make Betsy???s shallowness and over-concern about fashion amusing rather than annoying (???Being dead was no excuse to get sloppy???) and, though Betsy can be rather sarcastic, it???s mostly directed at the villains and it???s not the defining feature of her personality. The villainous vampire and his minions are completely over-the-top ???the men in black tuxedoes, and the women in red lipstick and nail polish. Their leader sits on a gold-plated throne. This works so well here because the novel is aware of its campiness and Betsy is constantly commentating on their bad sense of drama and fashion. She has no respect for the vampire scene and its clich??s and wants no part of their ???little undead covens.??? I found her to be genuinely funny.

Betsy has a couple of likeable friends who are eager to be her new sidekicks. There???s Jessica, the rich black heiress, and Mark, the gay doctor who is less disgusted with Betsy being a blood-sucking vampire than that she used to donate money to PETA. There are not many characters, but two are homosexual (one male and one female) and I can???t help but think that this is an easy way for the author to make some characters sexually off-limits. Maybe I???m wrong, and it doesn???t really matter anyway since Undead and Unwed isn???t asking us to take it seriously. Speaking of sex: it???s rather steamy.

I listened to Recorded Books??? audio version of Undead and Unwed, narrated by Nancy Wu. I didn???t like her at first because her reading started off choppy and I could hear her breathing after every sentence, but after the first chapter, she really did a great job. She doesn???t have the best male voices, but her performance for Betsy was brilliant, especially each time Betsy???s fangs started erupting.

Undead and Unwed is a cute and entertaining paranormal romance and I will pick up the next installment when I see it on sale at Audible.

4 people found this helpful

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  • P
  • 06-03-14

Narrator is terrible

Would you try another book written by MaryJanice Davidson or narrated by Nancy Wu?

The narrator is so bad that I couldn't finish listening to this book. everything is said in a sarcastic tone, with far too many raising inflections. so no I wouldn't listen to this narrator again

What could MaryJanice Davidson have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

chose a different narrator

What didn’t you like about Nancy Wu’s performance?

everything is said in a sarcastic tone, with far too many raising inflections. so no I wouldn't listen to this narrator again

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Jessica Wolfe
  • 10-23-18

Trying too Hard

I was looking for a funny paranormal romance when I found this (recommended by a Good Reads thread). It's a light read with a decent narrator about a fairly shallow girl becoming undead. It has some interesting angles on the common vampire theme. However, this book is trying too hard to be both flippant and funny. Try hard funny always fall flat. The heroine is deliberately unlikable, but her "witty" point of view doesn't quite make up for this. It always gives me hives when anyone, let alone a main character, states "I know what is and isn't racist" especially if their reasoning is because they have a black friend - yikes. The shoe obsession is a think meant to be cute, but it's pretty labored and this book seems to be setting up for longer series (which I will not be reading) so doesn't feel like it has a whole story.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Blondie
  • 09-10-22

Brings back memories

So I read this series years ago and have the paper copies as I'd laugh out loud everytime. Ok so I don't get the same effect when listening to the audio book (I must just be a funnier narrator in my head) but I love Betsy and SinkLair.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs. REP
  • 12-24-07

Very funny and entertaining.

Apart from the narrator's terrible English accent for one character, this was an excellent listen.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Pensive
  • 04-15-21

surprising

a good time read. lots of fun, snappy prose and fast pace writing. I like the narrator but not sure about the editing. some odd pauses and just when you think there's something wrong with your phone or your battery's dead the narrator shudders back on all in a gasping rush and then boom..another random pause. but I ignored it because the story is very interesting and protagonist is so likeable; she's unapologetically vapid and a little vain but down to earth, takes no prisoners and has a heart of gold. darn she's so cute I wish she was my Vampire bestie!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Liss & Pen
  • 04-07-21

Good Fun Read, Struggled With Narration.

I enjoyed the light chick-flick nature of this book. Initially I thought I would not be able to continue because Wu's accent is so American, for an Aussie it was a bit of a struggle. I got used to it though, and thought she did a fair job at different voices, etc.
Looking forward to continuing with the series.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mundayk
  • 03-27-21

Great hilarious vampire story let down by editing

I love this story, it was the first ever book of this genre I ever read and its still one I re-read often. The main character is vain, snobby and dumb but she does (sorta) get better as the series goes on... yeah that's probably being kind... anyway, the narrator does a great job sounding just how I'd heard Betsy in my head.

Now for the downside. The editing / background noises. The "chapters" aren't the actual book chapters, they are quite literally just broken into 30-40min sections which has several of the book chapters in one. Sometimes you luck out and the "chapter" starts at the beginning of an actual chapter but mostly you'll find yourself listening and watching a chapter tick over mid-sentence. Then there's the background sounds, it literally sounds like she's reading the book to you since you can hear pages turn, you can also hear when she drops the book or bumps the mic. She also breathes heavily throughout, that strangely doesn't bother me as much as it does with other books it just seems to add to the narration... even though technically Betsy doesn't breathe...

Overall, not sure I'll be in a hurry to buy the other books in the series, will probably just stick to the actual book for now...

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Megs
  • 03-10-20

Easy reader

For easy reading, perfect for listening to while driving in the car. I would not sit and read this book if i werent driving as not much beneath the surface however enjoyed it all the same