Varney the Vampyre, or The Feast of Blood by James Malcolm Rymer and Thomas Peckett Prest, 1845-1847

When I was a kid, I'd pick up books about the history of vampires in legend, print, and screen, and invariably I'd see this graphic somewhere near the beginning: Ever since those early days as a budding monster kid, I'd hear whispers of Varney the Vampyre and his influence.  But I'd go to the library … Continue reading Varney the Vampyre, or The Feast of Blood by James Malcolm Rymer and Thomas Peckett Prest, 1845-1847

How to Fight Presidents: Defending Yourself Against the Badasses Who Ran This Country by Daniel O’Brien

I classify this audiobook as both history and historical fiction.  I also classify it as both humor and horror.  And it's one of the best reads I've had so far this year. According to the introduction, the author Daniel O'Brien was told by a college professor that no one in his class would ever be … Continue reading How to Fight Presidents: Defending Yourself Against the Badasses Who Ran This Country by Daniel O’Brien

Theatre of Fear and Horror: The Grisly Spectacle of the Grand Guignol of Paris 1897-1962 by Mel Gordon

From its beginning, and before there was such a thing as horror films, the live performances of the Grand Guignol inspired everything we know about that genre.  Over 50 years after its final performance, it continues to inspire for much the same reasons.  The theater was built inside the remnants of a gutted convent and chapel, … Continue reading Theatre of Fear and Horror: The Grisly Spectacle of the Grand Guignol of Paris 1897-1962 by Mel Gordon

In the Shadow of Frankenstein, edited by Stephen Jones

This anthology is, according to its introduction, the revised and updated version of The Mammoth Book of Frankenstein.  Whatever you want to call it, it's a collection of stories about one of the all-time greatest of classic monsters, and therefore irresistible to an old school monster kid like myself.  There are some names on this author list that stand … Continue reading In the Shadow of Frankenstein, edited by Stephen Jones

The Phantom of the Opera: The Lost Chapter by Gaston Leroux, Caitlin G. Freeman (translator)

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, novels were first published in serialized formats in newspapers or magazines.  It wasn't uncommon for whole chapters to be rewritten, added, or otherwise removed before the story was finally collected as a complete finished novel.  Think of it as a means for an author to allow readers to beta read … Continue reading The Phantom of the Opera: The Lost Chapter by Gaston Leroux, Caitlin G. Freeman (translator)