Tuesday, 2 October 2012

GUEST BLOG: Dave Zeltserman

Frankenstein and vampires by Dave Zeltserman

Whether it’s the recent animated film, Hotel Transylvania, the 1945 film House of Dracula, the TV series The Munsters, Jess Franco’s Dracula Prisoner of Frankenstein or many other movies, cartoons and TV shows, there has always seemed to be a strong cultural connection between vampires and Frankenstein’s creature. The obvious reason for this is Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1818) and Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1897) are two of the most well-known gothic horror novels, and both have become cultural icons.

In my revisionist Frankenstein retelling, MONSTER, vampyres also make appearances.

In the summer of 1816, Lord Byron, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Mary  Wolstonecraft  Godwin and Dr. John Polidori were staying at the Villa Diodati by Lake Geneva, and while being kept indoors due to rain, read German ghost stories, and then challenged each other to come up with their own ghost stories. Two works of fiction came out of this: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley and The Vampyre by Polidori. In MONSTER, I have my creature encounter inside of a highly exaggerated version of a London Hellsfire Sex Club a creature very similar to Polidari’s vampyre. Earlier in the book I also have my creature encounter how I envisioned forest versions of these vampyres—feral creatures that hunt the forest for wayward, lost travelers. So this was done partly to pay homage to the birth of Shelley’s Frankenstein, but even more so for the creepiness and horror that these vampyres are able to provide. These are certainly not sparkly-type vampires!

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How the critics rate it:

"A masterpiece of originality, beauty, ugliness, eloquence, wisdom and power. And it's one hell of a page-turner as well."   --Ed Gorman

"More impressively, Zeltserman's plot maps almost perfectly onto the plot of Shelley's novel — the key word being "almost." In its departures, the novel provides more than its cover price in entertainment. Vampyres abound, as do Satanic cults and the Marquis de Sade, preparing to enact the 120 Days of Sodom in a remote mountain castle. You don't get much more gothic bang for your buck."   --Los Angeles Times


"Zeltserman got a lot of acclaim for his horror novel The Caretaker of Lorne Field. Monster is a very different kind of book, but it's just as exciting. When awards season rolls around, this one's going to be a major contender."   --Bill Crider

:: Find out more about MONSTER at: http://www.hardluckstories.com/