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Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies: Compendium Monstrum by Suzanne Schwalb and Margaret Rubiano

October 16, 2010

This fun pocket-sized field guide should be a part of any monster hunter’s or monster curious fan’s reference library. It is recommended to be included in any survival kit as it contains invaluable information on how to deal with the dreaded confrontation with Vampires, Werewolves and Zombies.

There is a section for each creature which includes the mythology and history, different types of creatures and the geographical location in which they are found. Also included are warning signs, tracking guides and surviving the threat.

I really enjoyed this book. It is a great little field guide that is chock full of information. It will provide you with everything you need to know when tracking these monsters or surviving an unexpected meeting. It also features a handy section to record evidence of sightings.

I was very pleased with the look and feel of the book. It measures about 4’x6’, has a hardcover, a ribbon marker and the paper is of a substantially weighted stock. It is the perfect size to slip in your pocket. The layout is pleasing to the eye, and the fold out maps and illustrations are stunning.

The book is lighthearted and fun but it also explores the history and mythology as well as first known literary references in each category. Some of my favorite sections were warning signs, helpful phrases and zombie indicators. I have included a brief example of each:

“Werewolf Warning Signs
Is the subject partial to donning floral nightgowns and caps? Does it turn around several times before lying down? Does the subject loathe vegetarians, except when paired with a fine Bordeaux?

Say it in Romanian; Helpful Phrases
I need a doctor quickly, “E nevoie de un doctor, repede”
Blood Transfusion, “Transfuzie de sange.”

Zombie Indicators
Limited vocabulary; groaning
Is the subject attracted to you for your (say it mit uns now) “Braiiinnnsss!”?”

Book Stats:

To purchase a print copy of Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies: Compendium Monstrum from Amazon click here.
To purchase a Kindle copy of Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies: Compendium Monstrum from Amazon click here.

To purchase a print copy of Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies: Compendium Monstrum from Barnes & Noble click here.

Review by Brit @ Bitten by Books 4 out of 5 Tombstones

Book Review: Happy Hour of the Damned by Mark Henry

April 4, 2008

Another day, another book read. Today’s review is about a new book by Mark Henry a fellow Seattleite. Amazingly enough the book is set in Seattle as well. Ok not amazing, but cool none the less! Happy Hour of the Damned is an urban fantasy about modern day and oh so hip celebrity ghoul (read zombie) Amanda Feral and her adventures as one of Seattle’s newly undead. You really have to admit Feral is a perfect last name for a zombie!

Let me start by saying that zombies are really not my thing, and more than once felt myself fighting back a dry heave, upon reading some of the flesh eating, putrefying commentary. There was a line about a guy munching on an ear like a potato chip that almost did me in LOL. Give me a vampire and a little blood sucking any day! Pus and exploding bowels…not so much. It gives the phrase “no it doesn’t taste like chicken” a whole new meaning. Thankfully there are also vampires, werewolves, and a few succubi involved in the storyline. Despite my initial squeamishness, I dug in and really got into this groovy tale.

I think none of you will be surprised that Starbuck’s is featured and is at the center of a plot for global destruction. I commented to Mark that I would never look at bucky’s the same after reading this great book. Our local Safeway barista really has an undead look to her gaze. <shudder>

Amanda is a hip and sassy undead fashionista with a skin care regimen to make Liz Taylor proud. Really, even I learned some things from her!

This book was a slower read for me than usual. for the most part I can knock out a book in just a few hours. One thing that is different that slowed me down were a lot of footnotes. Pretty much on every page. But these weren’t your regular footnotes denoting resources, but a running commentary on whatever was going on. So, you have to read them to get the deeper nuances of some of the humor Mark presents. Since my normal Ellen Woodhead Sped Redding course mode of reading so fast I barely see the pages move wasn’t working, I found myself forgetting the footnotes and then remembering and having to go back. It isn’t critical that you read them, but they definitely add another dimension.

The humor presented in this book is definitely scathing and razor sharp. I pride myself on being fairly quick witted (no commentary from the Peanut Gallery needed thank you very much), but even I missed a few things that were thrown in, only to realize later what I had missed. So, it was good for a fun read, during and after. I am still chuckling about a few things. Plus I have a few new cocktail recipes to boot!

All in all, I can say that is book gets a 4.8 star rating from this humble reviewer. While I won’t be going out and digging up (ha ha) any new sources of Zombie reading material, I cannot WAIT for the next installment in the Amanda Feral chronicles “Road Trip of the Living Dead”.

Book stats:

Purchase a copy by clicking this link: Happy Hour of the Damned