It's not just Barack Obama's kids who love "Twilight" -- First Daughter-Elect Malie might bond with her dad over vampire lore, but so do the daughters of comics writers Neil Gaiman and Mike Mignola, and I have a feeling that those conversations might be slightly scarier.
"My daughter Katie is in love with the 'Twilight' books," Mignola told us.
"My daughter Maddie read the 'Twilight' series," Gaiman told us, "but she alternately loved it and got frustrated with it, so I would get alternate reports back from her: 'I love it!' to 'Oh, no, they're doing something wrong!' And then she'd come back triumphantly, 'I knew they were just werewolves! I knew they were a werewolf family!'"
Before "Twilight" came into their lives, 14-year-old Katie was already a "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" fan, and actually got to meet creator Joss Whedon at Comic-Con. "This year she was in the green room with Joss and Neil Patrick Harris [the star of Whedon's "Dr. Horrible" web series] and Seth Green walked in. He was very sweet with her, and she played in very cool, but when she got back to the booth, she was in heaven with the worlds colliding."
And before she read "Twilight," 14-year-old Maddie read Bram Stoker's "Dracula" -- which she was actually near Transylvania, visiting the Budapest film set for "Hellboy 2."
"She's reading it, and she's saying, 'But this is so slow, Dad,'" Gaiman recalled. "'We know he's a vampire!' All this stuff, it's like there's no surprises. And I'm saying, 'That's because this is where it all starts. They were surprises a long time ago.' Now, we are all so familiar with vampirism, with the idea of vampires, with the rules of vampires, that you can start to play with it."
(Which is one reason that in Gaiman's latest bestseller, "The Graveyard Book," the vampire Silas is never actually identified as a vampire. But you can deduce it. "If you spot it, it's there," he said. "But if you miss it, that's fine. You just get a slightly different book.")
"Twilight" plays with the rules, too -- after all, these vamps can go out in the sun and don't have fangs. But even so, Mignola's worried the forthcoming movie version of his daughter's beloved book series might be a disappointment to her.
"I've got to kind of brace her," he said. "She's super excited about it, and it might be great, but it might also be her first life experience where they did not read your mind or make the film you imagined."
Are you in any way worried that the film might not live up to your expectations? Are there any books you've loved that made horrible movies?