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review 2017-10-12 16:03
Carmilla by J. Sheridan LeFanu
In a Glass Darkly - Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu

This novella was hard for me to rate - I am not really a fan of short works. Carmilla was good, but it could easily have been expanded into a full length novel. It makes more sense to me to put it in the context of the collection of which it was a part, which is why I've attached it to the full Oxford Classics edition of the collection.

 

The five stories in the collection are purported to be five studies from the casebook of Dr. Hesselius, an "occult detective." Shades of Dr. Van Helsing, perhaps? I can definitely see the influences that Carmilla had on Bram Stoker - there are a lot of analogs, from Laura (Lucy Westenra) to the location of story (the Austrian state of Styria, which has a very similar feel to the Carpathian mountains of Dracula). Both vampires have transformation abilities, with Dracula being capable of transformation into a large black dog, while Carmilla transforms into a large black cat.

 

The homoeroticism between Carmilla and Laura is overt, rather than subtle. It amuses me a little, honestly, to imagine how titillated and thrilling the repressed Victorians must've found the lesbian, erotic, languid relationship between Carmilla and her victims. Don't get me wrong, this is not a graphic by any stretch of the imagination, but the overtones are impossible to miss.

 

The weird name anagramming seemed really contrived to me and I didn't get it all. Carmilla. Millarca. Mircalla.

 

Anyway, I decided that I would go ahead & buy the full collection and read it before the end of Halloween bingo. At least, that's my plan!

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text 2017-10-11 21:31
Classic Horror Group Read

Do you need a wild card to help you fill your card?

 

Join us for:

 

 

Carmilla was originally published in 1872.

 

"Before Dracula, there was Carmilla—the first seductive vampire to haunt readers’ imaginations 

This classic of Gothic horror follows Laura, a woman haunted by a girlhood dream of a beautiful visitor to her bedroom. Now, a decade later, Laura finds Carmilla, who appears to be her own age, on the side of the road after a carriage accident. The two recognize each other from the same childhood dream and become fast friends. Soon after, Laura begins to experience mysterious feelings and is once again haunted by nightmares. She finds Carmilla strangely irresistible and longs to be with her.

But as the two friends grow closer, Laura’s health begins to fail. It becomes apparent that her enchanting companion is harboring a sinister secret. To free herself from Carmilla’s grasp, Laura and her family must fight for their lives."

 

A novella, Carmilla is under 100 pages long, and should be a relatively fast read! Because it is in the public domain, it's easily available through Project Gutenberg, or for free or near free download from Amazon.

 

Link to the thread in our discussion group: here.

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review 2017-10-09 04:39
Wild Card (Kindle Worlds: Wild Irish) by Katy Alexander
Wild Card - Katy Alexander

 

Wild Card is a completion of what I like best about reading.  Discovering new authors and reacquainting myself with old friends, while enjoying a great story.  Ms. Alexander added her voice to a series that includes many amazing authors and made it her own. Stacy and Ryan are a hoot.  He's clueless, she's fed up.  Sometimes it takes losing what we wanted to fully appreciate what we had.  It takes a while for these two people to get it right but it's a wildly fun and addictive ride along the way. 

 

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review 2017-10-01 00:00
Wild Card
Wild Card - Katy Alexander Wild Card - Katy Alexander
Wild Card is a completion of what I like best about reading. Discovering new authors and reacquainting myself with old friends, while enjoying a great story. Ms. Alexander added her voice to a series that includes many amazing authors and made it her own. Stacy and Ryan are a hoot. He's clueless, she's fed up. Sometimes it takes losing what we wanted to fully appreciate what we had. It takes a while for these two people to get it right but it's a wildly fun and addictive ride along the way.
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review 2017-10-01 00:00
Wild Card
Wild Card - Katy Alexander Wild Card - Katy Alexander
Wild Card is a completion of what I like best about reading. Discovering new authors and reacquainting myself with old friends, while enjoying a great story. Ms. Alexander added her voice to a series that includes many amazing authors and made it her own. Stacy and Ryan are a hoot. He's clueless, she's fed up. Sometimes it takes losing what we wanted to fully appreciate what we had. It takes a while for these two people to get it right but it's a wildly fun and addictive ride along the way.
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