"Kevin of the Dead," by Eoin Colfer, in The Strand Magazine, Feb.-May 2020.
A page into this story I found myself hoping a crime would show up. It was by no means a sure thing that that would happen, and I only review crime stories. Fortunately, the story turned sufficiently criminous, as Ellery Queen used to say, to meet my standards.
So what is this about if not primarily crime?
It's a vampire story. But Kevin is not your classic suave gothic (or goth) undead master of minds. He's a whiny emo young man with a lot to complain about.
"In my opinion there's a real market for vampire counsellors. Someone to guide you through the process. It's very traumatic waking up dead, I can tell you. Not as traumatic as high school but pretty close."
Our boy had a hard time getting along with people when he was alive and things haven't improved since he snuffed it. Colfer offers us a more (dare I say?) realistic look at the undead lifestyle and it's hilarious. Kevin goes out each night looking for blood but he also hopes his victim has "Netflix on her phone so I can catch up on Stranger Things."