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Search tags: The-Sea-of-Monsters
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review 2018-02-16 18:27
Am I a vampire or just super anemic?
The World of Lore: Monstrous Creatures - Aaron Mahnke

Only as I'm reviewing these books do I realize just how many 'scary' books I read at the end of last year (and how many more I've just now added to my TRL). That's how you know that I'm a 'whatever I feel like reading' reader/'I'm interested in this topic for the next 3 books and then I'm going to wildly change interests' reader. [A/N: I couldn't remember the term 'mood reader' to save my life when I was originally drafting this post. I chose to leave that crazy line in there because it cracks me up.] All of this is to set up today's book which is The World of Lore: Monstrous Creatures by Aaron Mahnke. I saw an ad for this in a subway station and it wasn't the title that caught my eye but the author. I had been an avid listener of his podcast (named Lore unsurprisingly) last year and then as is my way (especially with podcasts) I had totally forgotten about it. Once I started reading the book I realized that it was essentially composed of transcripts from his podcast episodes. (Guess it's a good thing I didn't listen to all of them.) The book is broken down into categories about different creatures from folklore. Two examples: vampires and zombies. Vampires could have been created because of a disease whereby people were pale, sensitive to sunlight, and craved blood. (And then there was Vlad the Impaler who is perhaps the most well-known nightwalker. (Quick note: Nightwalker is not a cool name for a vampire like I had originally thought but I'm gonna just pretend that it is cause it's better than repeating the word vampire ad nauseum.)) Zombies were most likely inspired by victims of tuberculosis (the living dead) and the large numbers of people who were pronounced dead then subsequently rose from their graves. (This is a real thing and will perhaps explain why more people choose cremation these days.) Mahnke also discusses the history of hauntings and the popularity of the spirtualist movement among many other topics of the supernatural. He has a way of simultaneously debunking these theories while giving the impression that we should still remain open-minded. It's an interesting read especially if you haven't really delved too deep into this subject area and you want to get the rundown. 8/10

 

Monstrous Creatures is the first in a planned trilogy and I think there's also a tv show in the works. I guess I'm not the only one interested in the supernatural. ;-)

 

What's Up Next: Soonish by Kelly Weinersmith

 

What I'm Currently Reading: Gorillas in the Mist by Dian Fossey

 

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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review 2018-02-16 17:36
Lucifer is having a complicated adventure
Lucifer Vol. 2: Children and Monsters - 'Dean Ormston', 'Ryan Kelly', 'Peter Gross','Mike Carey'

 

A new image of Lucifer from the mind of Neil Gaiman. This is a continuation of the series Sandman. 

 

The story began when Lucifer is in the void with nothing except his wit. He got no weapon and has no cloth.

 

Then he found the Windowless castle that hold his wings. 

 

He wants it back.

 

In the world, Lux being the center of strange attention because of the gate to the void.

 

Then there are monster who wants death because she was cursed. 

 

The story is rich and the last one about the committee of Angels want to come down to LA and fight Lucifer.

 

Interesting. 

 

Angels are assholes. 

 

It is better to be logical and interact with humans, instead of treating them like toys. 

 

That what the Christian bible god did, playing with humans like toys. So careless.

 

The re imagination of Lucifer is fun.

 

5 stars read. 

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text 2018-02-16 15:17
Reading progress update: I've read 113 out of 208 pages.
Lucifer Vol. 2: Children and Monsters - 'Dean Ormston', 'Ryan Kelly', 'Peter Gross','Mike Carey'

Lucifer is went to the void through the gate to find his wings. 

 

He faced some wicked gods and need to find the way to fight them with only his wit, as he is naked and has no weapon.

 

Of course he did it. 

 

The story is interesting and the illustration is fine. Lucky to find this at all on sale. 

 

 

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review 2018-02-07 17:33
What did the Frenchman ever do to you?
Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods: Twenty Chilling Tales from the Wilderness - Hal Johnson,Tom Mead

I think if I had a new copy of this book I would have had the benefit of seeing the illustrations in their original glow-in-the-dark awesomeness. As it is, I got this from the library and it had seen many days under the sun (and probably some under a flashlight to really get all the juice out of it).


Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods: 20 Chilling Tales from the Wilderness by Hal Johnson with illustrations by Tom Mead is a children's graphic novel that certainly delivered what it set out to with that supremely long title. This is definitely a middle grade title and I wouldn't recommend reading this to your elementary aged child before bedtime (unless they're tough as nails). It would however make a fantastic Halloween read aloud. ;-) The book consists of short stories depicting different monstrous creatures of lore and how they were discovered, captured (if they ever were), and killed their victims. Each story is accompanied by illustrations of the creatures overlaid with the glow-in-the-dark ink I mentioned at the beginning. The illustrations are FANTASTIC. I also felt like the stories were the perfect length if you were using them to read aloud to kids. Since there are 20 you could read one a day on the lead up to Halloween. However, in the spirit of full transparency, I need to point out that it seemed as if the author had something against Frenchman (they were abused quite a lot throughout) which did make me quite uncomfortable at several points. If not for that, this would have been a fully enjoyable little collection of monster stories. As it stands, I'll go with a 7/10.

 

An example of the illustrative style and writing. [Source: Barnes & Noble]

 

What's Up Next: The Unreal and the Real: Where on Earth by Ursula K. Le Guin

 

What I'm Currently (Re)Reading: The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

Source: readingfortheheckofit.blogspot.com
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review 2018-02-03 20:43
Face-stealing monsters, intergenerational drama, and squabbling witches
The King of Bones and Ashes (Witches of New Orleans) - J.D. Horn

Disclaimer: reviewing uncorrected digital proof via NetGalley

 

I'm not quite sure how to categorize this. There are pretty strong contemporary fiction leanings, what with the complicated, extraordinarily messy and interwoven multi-generational family dynamics. There's the paranormal/fantasy content, with witches, shapeshifters, and monsters lurking around the edges. Things skew from drama to thriller and right on into the realm of horror as the story progresses.

 

I found the first quarter really slow going. Like, I kept double checking to make sure this wasn't a companion series to an earlier series because there is so much worldbuilding detail and so many different points of view and webs of interrelational drama to wade through. Despite the deep, rich worldbuilding, or really, probably because of it, the book didn't draw me in at first. I felt like I just didn't care about the characters, the witchy goings-on, or the New Orleans southern setting. But by the end of the first third of the book, all that detail starts to settle in and the shape of the story emerges. Well worth the extra effort to get there.

 

The investment in backstory and getting to know so many different threads at the beginning starts to really pay off heading into the latter portions of the book. Various mysteries start to unravel and a race for the finish line tangles against late-in-the-game twists for an unexpectedly high stakes, surprising wrap up that provides some closure while setting up the series for further drama.

 

One caveat for squeamish readers; the family drama and dynamics get about as sordid as you can imagine. There's no explicit sexual content, and abuse isn't lingered over (though things get pretty violent in the paranormal/horror scenes), but there's plenty of cheating and backstabbing (and front stabbing), plus a little mixing of the generations that may turn off some.

 

Verdict: detailed, engaging start to what's sure to be an impressive new Urban Fantasy series. Good read for readers who enjoy a dense, richly imagined story world.

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