The horror of it
October 27, 2009
It’s Halloween week, and I just finished reading the first chapter of The Zombie Survival Guide: Recorded Attacks by Max Brooks. Yes, I put down a literary novel to read about the undead fighting the Romans in A.D. 121 Caledonia.
Then I turned to The Werewolf’s Guide to Life: A Manual for the Newly Bitten by Ritch Duncan & Bob Powers.
Should I be bitten by a werewolf, I needn’t worry. According to the guide’s press release, “…for the first time ever, there’s a book to help you through this hectic adjustment period, providing step-by-step instructions for a smooth transition into your new existence as a dangerous, flesh-hungry shape-shifter.”
And here I was worried about H1N1.
I’m not a horror genre reader, and this rubbish is the last I’d ever read, driven to it on an island where there are no other books. I realize this is humor. Tongue-in-cheek. But I might suggest these books are a case in point for the bloated book industry’s problem with gout, racing to publish books not of quality but based on popular ideas. The junk food of reading.
Imagine the editors had spent their time working on scary books along the lines of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Robert Louis Stevenson’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Edgar Allan Poe’s Complete Tales and Poems, Ira Levin’s Rosemary’s Baby, Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, or Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Perhaps I’m being too harpish. One could read the The Werewolf’s Guide and make the ever useful excuse: “I just read this book and I think I’m a werewolf. I must stay home.” Also, one could take The Zombie Survival Guide to the office and place it obviously on the desk for that subtle message. It comes with handy Zombie Survival Mini Note Pads.