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The Monster Librarian Presents:
Happy Holidays from all of us at MonsterLibrarian.com! This Holiday season we wanted to bring to you reviews of holiday themed horror and bizarro titles to keep you reading.
For all ages:
The book's premise is simple, Christmas carols rewritten as zombie Christmas carols. The book includes such favorites as “Zombie the Snowman”, “I Saw Mommy Chewing Santa Claus”, “We Three Spleens” and “Good King Wenceslas Tastes Great”. There are familiar songs that tweens will find hilarious, and more obscure ones that adults will love as well. This is an excellent gift book, and could be fun for sing-alongs at horror-themed library holiday parties for older kids or adults as well. The illustrations are somewhat gory (rotting bodies, zombies decorating Christmas trees with entrails and bare brains). Being black and white blunts them, but kids under ten or so might be bothered. Still, it's a great community or group interaction type book that will make people laugh and get new holiday songs stuck in their heads. Recommended for gifts, collections for zombie lovers and older kids/adults.
Contains: Mildly disturbing art, humorous/cartoonish descriptions of violence
Review by Michele Lee
Steps Out by Robert Devereaux
Santa Claus spends every Christmas Eve delivering presents to boys and girls and spreading Christmas joy, but have you ever wondered what else goes on at the North Pole with good ol' Santa? Robert Devereaux tells us just that with his tales of wonderment in Santa Steps Out. We learn about the trials and tribulations that Mr. and Mrs. Claus suffer within their marriage and how Santa turns to the seductive Tooth Fairy, yes, I did say the Tooth Fairy, in order to get his jollies off. And lurking not far from all the sexual adventures, is the voyeuristic Easter Bunny. What? You didn't know that about the Easter Bunny? Well... now you do! That poor bunny though... he's a bit jealous, and when he runs off and tattles on dear old Santa, you should see what happens when the missus finds out...
Robert Devereaux has created the ultimate fairy tale for adults with Santa Steps Out. I never would have thought ever such a book could have existed before this landed in my hands. Every chapter I was amazed at what naughty things he had my old "fairy tale friends" doing. Deveraux stretches the limits as far as possible with this book and I commend him for that, as some authors wouldn't go to such extremes. This novel is one-of-a-kind and couldn't have been written by anyone else half as good as Devereaux. Some people re-read A Christmas Carol every holiday season, me... I think I'll be reading Santa Steps Out! Highly Recommended!
Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations,
Graphic Sex, Violence, Rape
Review by Rhonda Wilson
Conquers the Homophobes by Robert Devereaux
Available: New and Used
Book two of the Santa Claus Chronicles by Robert Devereaux starts off where Santa Steps Out leaves off. Santa's new stepdaughter, Wendy, has a mission every Christmas Eve alongside of Santa where she visits one hundred children. Upon each visitation she shows the children a glimpse into their future. One particular visit, to a boy named Jamie Stratton, leaves her disturbed when she glimpses suicide in his future due to torment he has dealt with because he is gay. She discusses this with Santa and asks for his help in order to save Jamie's life. Together, Santa and Wendy go on a special journey to "fix" all the people that affect Jamie's life and make them less prone to homophobia. Of course, the Tooth Fairy isn't going to make this task easy for them and intervenes where she can. But when all is said and done... if they can expunge the homophobia of just a few people... will that be enough to appease Santa and Wendy or will they want to do even bigger and better things?
Santa Claus strikes again in this second round of adventures from Robert Devereaux. This novel is a lot different from the first release, as it's lacking all of the sex that was included in the first. Instead, it focuses heavily on bigotry and religion. I had hoped to read more about the Tooth Fairy in this book, but after the way Santa Steps Out ended I knew that was not something to expect. I did enjoy the addition of some of the new characters though (in particular, the imps), and also the fact that the elves got a bit more time in this book than the previous release. I am curious to see what Devereaux will have up his sleeve for a third release down the road! Highly Recommended!
Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations, Minor Sex, Violence
Review by Rhonda Wilson
Sausagey Santa by Carlton Mellick III
Eraserhead Press, 2006
Available: New and Used
Sausagey Santa is the story of what happens to the Fry family one Christmas season. The Fry family includes Matthew Fry, with "the sly guy" hairstyle, his wife Decapitron, who thinks she is a Transformer, and their four children. Matthew would love to not be married to Decapitron, but he knows that anything he does against her wishes will cause her to annihilate him, so he is stuck where he is. On Christmas Eve Decapitron sits around telling the kids Santa stories. One in particular is about Sausagey Santa, and Matthew doesn't approve of his children hearing the story. The tale describes Santa as being made out of meat goo and linked together in order to form the shape of a man. However, this particular Christmas, Santa makes quite a ruckus showing up at the Fry household and when Matthew and Decapitron go downstairs to investigate, Matthew is shocked to find that it is Sausagey Santa rather than Santa Claus that is in their house and instead of drinking milk he prefers beer. Santa enjoys a short visit with the Frys and is about to head off when he hears a lot of noise stirring up outside. He informs the Fry family that they are all in danger. They later discover that it is an anti-Christmas spirit that is after Santa and trying to ruin Christmas. Now, with the help of the Fry family and his elves, Sausagey Santa is attempting to salvage Christmas this year!
Readers like to get in the spirit of the season by reading a holiday novel or two, but some don't like those feel good, mushy, happy-go-lucky romance books and such that are easy to find on the shelves during the holiday season. Sausagey Santa is the answer for that are looking for those hard to find books! Also, if not familiar with Carlton Mellick III and/or the greatness of the horror sub-genre, bizarro, this is a great introduction to both! I can only imagine what possibly inspired the ideas for some of the scenes that are depicted in this novel. In particular, I would one day like discuss with Carlton Mellick III exactly where he came up with the idea for "Television Cake", and that's something you read about in just the first chapter of this treasure of a book. There is much more hidden within the pages of Sausagey Santa, and every chapter contains something to make your jaw drop and ask "What the f---?!?!" So buy up a copy, make some hot cocoa, and snuggle up in the blankets and read this book! And afterward, I guarantee you'll be hoping that it's the "Original Santa Claus" coming to visit you Christmas Eve rather than Sausagey Santa... unless, of course, you are REALLY twisted!
Contains: Adult Language, Adult Situations, Violence, Sex
Review by Rhonda Wilson
Silent Night by R. L. Stine
Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, 1997
R.L. Stine's omnibus
collection, Silent Night, contains all three of his Silent Night
stories about Reva Dalby. The trilogy is part of his successful teen
series, Fear Street, though the majority of the books take place
in surrounding areas of Fear Street.
Silent Night, the first story of the trilogy, starts the omnibus off and introduces us to Reva Dalby, whose daddy happens to own Dalby Department Store. It's Christmas season, and he needs extra help in the store, so he has asked Reva to recruit some of her friends to help out in the store. She, being a bit self-centered, decides that this is the perfect opportunity to gain the attention of one of the guys at school she has a crush on and also to play pranks on a few other people that she doesn't like. Once everyone is hired in, however, the pranks seem to start on Reva! It seems like someone is stalking her and it might be a bit more harmful than the pranks she had planned for her daddy's new employees. Whoever is stalking her seems to be out for... blood!
Silent Night 2 takes place the winter after the first book, and, obviously, Reva has survived the adventures of the first book. She's even promised to be a nicer person due to everything that happened to her, but everyone knows that it's hard for a person to change themselves that drastically, right? In this second installment of the Silent Night series, Stine has set-up a new challenge for Reva to face, kidnappers! Why, you ask, would anyone want to kidnap a bratty teenager like Reva? Don't forget... she is the rich daughter of the owner of the Dalby Department Store!
In the final installment of the Silent Night trilogy, Reva is home from college, and has brought her roommate to stay with her for the holidays. Her daddy has asked her to work in the store again for the season, but after the last two miserable Christmases she's hesitant, yet gives in. Reva's cousin, Pam, has a special request for Reva as well now that she's home. She and her friend have been making special scarves and would like to sell them at the department store and figure if Reva likes them, then she can convince her daddy to do it. Reva not only LOVES the scarves, she convinces her daddy to sell them at the store by telling them that she was the one that designed them! This infuriates Pam, but she doesn't speak up, as she figures it's the only way she will get to sell them at the store. Reva is excited because she also has conviced her daddy to let her have a fashion show at the store and whatever she wants, she gets. Only, at Dalby's Department Store... she tends to get a little more than she bargains for every time and this time it seems to be murder after murder, but who is doing it and why?
As a teenager I read the Fear Street series consistently. It was how I got my start reading horror. I love Stine's writing style and find his books suspenseful. Even reading the Silent Night series today, I still feel that his writing style is superior to many of the teen horror authors out there. I had guesses throughout the books as to what was going to happen at the end, but I was never quite sure. These books, along with the rest of the Fear Street books are great books for all pre-teen and younger teenagers to read if they are wanting to start into the horror genre. They have just enough "scare factor" in them that the kids will enjoy, without all the gore and adult themes that parents would not want them reading yet. (Of course, us "young at heart" also enjoy these quite a lot still as well) This trilogy in particular is a great one to read around the holidays since it's based around Christmastime and also has a lot of Christmas elements going on within the story. Highly Recommended.
Note: The books reviewed in this collection are also available as individual books titled Silent Night, Silent Night 2, and Silent Night 3
Contains: Some Death Scenes, Some Alcohol Use
Review by Rhonda Wilson
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