Review: The Gilda Stories by Jewelle Gomez

First published in 1991 and re-released in 2016, The Gilda Stories by Jewelle Gomez is a vampire novel spanning 1850 to 2050 America. It centers on a woman escaping slavery and her journey in becoming a vampire for the next two hundred years while still trying to retain her sense of and connection to humanity.

The book has a distinct lack of background story for what Gilda, the main protagonist, has learned and is learning about what it means to be a vampire. Much of it is alluded to and is meant for the reader to intuit, perhaps allowing readers to fill in the blanks based on prior knowledge regarding vampire lore. However, this is such a different kind of vampire story that a little more exposition regarding this very important aspect would add a depth to the story that is needed.