Prior to reading this, my experience with Gaiman’s work was limited to Good Omens, Stardust, and The Graveyard Book, so I had no idea what to expect when it came to his take on Norse mythology. It turns out his take is pretty straightforward myth retelling with some of his humor thrown in here and there. Great for bedtime stories, if murder, kidnapping, dismemberment, disembowelment, creative use of discarded body parts/bodily fluid, and occasional scatological humor make you sleepy. I personally wasn’t impressed with the potty jokes, but if Gaiman saw fit to do another volume of Norse myths, I’d still be all over it.
I read this for the Halloween Bingo 2018 Relics and Curiosities square.
I got exactly what I expected from this book: A quick, easy read with plenty of humor and an inventive story. It’s full of famous fictional mystery and horror characters, from “the Great Detective” to “the Count”, with Jack the Ripper as the main protagonist. But the fun comes from the book's POV, which is not of the famous characters themselves, but of their animal familiars. Jack’s companion Snuff makes his daily guard dog rounds, ensuring that the Things (in the mirror, in the attic, in the Circle, etc) don’t escape, spying on the other players, and developing cooperative relationships with their animal familiars. The chapters are short, the battles are fun to read, and the ending was satisfying.
Paperback, found in a secondhand bookstore. This was my first Zelazny, but probably won’t be my last.
I read this for the 2018 Halloween Bingo square Supernatural: mystery, suspense or horror books which include elements that defy current understanding of the natural world, including magic, witchcraft and/or crypto-zoological aspects.
The vicar stood before the altar - which I noted to be draped in black - and was reading to his congregation. He squinted through his square spectacles, as the flickering light was not very good, all of it coming from a few black candles. Larry pointed out that the cross was upside down, which I'd already noticed myself.
"Do you know what that means?" he asked softly.
"Religious distress signal?"
I'm really just getting started with this one, but I already love how this story is told from the watchdog's POV.
Made the circuits. The Thing in the Circle changed shapes, finally making itself look like a lady dog of attractive person and very friendly disposition. But I was not fooled into breaking the Circle. It didn't have the smell part down yet.
"Nice try," I told it.
"You'll get yours, mutt," it said.