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TWENTY YEARS GO BY FAST WHEN YOUR DEAD
The high rating, vampires and the mention of sex, drew me to this book. It started out great. I grew up in the 70's and fashion wise it was a strange period. I wore tighter than tight clothes, polyester, platform shoes (they were burnt orange and brown), bell bottoms and lots of pastels. The county was still reeling from going from conservative sexual values to free love. I went to the theatre seven times to see Saturday Night Fever. Of course their was Star Wars and Disco. So, a lot of this was like a class reunion for me. If your not from that time period, I got to wonder how much you will get out of this.
No Plot, short stories, boring
I was mainly hoping for something on the wrong side of the tracks of acceptable. The overblown reviews had me believing that was what I was to expect. I should have known when the author starts out by telling us how dark the book was that I was in for boring. A good looking girl does not have to tell you she is good looking, you know. A scary off the wall type book does not have to announce it. First two hours were great, but the story had no plot, was not scary (with the exception of the children Vampires) and seemed like a bunch of short stories.
Hard core horror fans should skip this.
77 of 95 people found this review helpful
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Let me preface this by saying, as a general rule, I don’t “do” contemporary vampire novels. To be honest, pop-culture has all-but ripped the fangs out of vampires. Few and far between are tales of these monstrous masters of the undead that are actually visceral and scary. I want my vampires to be frightening. I don’t want to fall in love with them. I want to be afraid of them, in those little cowering monkey-places that keep me scared of the dark. I picked this book up on a recommendation and I’m glad I did. Simply put, it is my favorite book of 2016 so far, and in the vein of “scary vampires” it’s a triumph that does not disappoint. Now, the rest of the story…
I picked up a copy of “The Lesser Dead” on Audible Audiobook and not only was it my favorite novel of 2016 to-date, it’s also one of the best audiobooks I’ve listened to in years. The book is narrated by the author Christopher Buehlman, and in my experience, authors generally give mediocre performances at best as narrators. Not so with Buehlman’s performance of The Lesser Dead. His characterization and dramatic performance is absolutely first rate. I’ll be comparing other audiobook performances to this one for a very long time to come.
The story itself hit two personal home-runs for me right out of the gate.
First, the vampires were scary. Dark, hungry, scary things that lived and hunted in the shadows of New York. And much to my joy, the only got scarier as the book went along. Which, frankly, was a hell of an accomplishment on the part of Buehlman. More than that though, the characters themselves, the people they’d been in life and the creatures they became in undeath, they were refreshingly, and even at times, upsettingly real. These weren’t all pampered little whitebread vampiric offspring of thoughtful doctors and upper middle class souls. Most of them had raw, dirty, and utterly believable origins. Buehlman did a phenomenal job of bringing the lives they had lived (while living) into their existence as vampires in the underworld ruins of New York City.
Second, it was a period piece, and a masterfully done one at that, set in one of my favorite, iconic settings – 1970s New York. Buehlman’s narrative of New York was alive with the sights, sounds, and smells of the city’s late Sodom and Gamora period. The dirty New York from the ’70s people prefer to talk about in the past-tense.
Remember when I said that Buehlman’s vampires only get scarier as the book goes along? I mean it. Follow the blood flowing in the cracks and gutters to the very end, and I promise you, your skin will crawl while the Rolling Stones “Sympathy For The Devil” echoes in your head. Don’t trust the children…
A solid-gold 5 out of 5 star read. A glorious, nasty reminder of why you fear the dark…
3 of 3 people found this review helpful