A Night in the Lonesome October

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A Night in the Lonesome October

I’m not huge into horror, but I have read a few of the Halloween classics, like Frankenstein and Dracula.

A couple of people from my extended writing tribe suggested I try a new book this year.

I had never heard of this book, and was excited to read it when I found out that it’s tradition to read it in October.

Here’s what Amazon has to say about it:

A Night in the Lonesome October is Roger Zelazny’s homage to gothic horror and early horror movies. It is at once delightful, humorous, poetic, and gleefully dark.

Whenever a full moon falls on All Hallow’s Eve the conditions are such that a gate may be opened to allow the Elder Gods to return from the Nether Regions to which they have been banished. Snuff, a preternatural guard dog, and his owner Jack the Ripper, are closers—that is, they and others of their persuasion arrive in the time and place where the gate might open, in order to prevent the Elder God’s return.

Each chapter encompasses a single day in the month of October. Many of Zelazny’s fans read a single chapter each night every October.

A couple of things…I listened to the book instead of reading it. The narrator was amazing and if you’re into audio books, I highly recommend it.

I didn’t keep to the schedule of reading just one chapter a day. Judge all you want, but I needed to know what happened!

This story is told from the point of view of Jack the Ripper’s familiar, a dog named Snuff. Jack isn’t quite the serial killer we’re used to. Snuff goes about conferring with the other player’s (who include Dracula, Rasputin, Dr. Frankenstein, among others) familiars. There’s a cat, a bat, a rat, an albino crow, and more.

It was fun to identify the other players as they came into the story by the way Snuff and the other animals described them and what they did. The tone of the narrative is simple, but also complex. It’s not too dark, but it is macabrae.

I knew nothing about this before I started listening to it. I hadn’t even read the synopsis, so the whole thing was a surprise. The whole thing was satisfying and fun.

I’ll probably listen to it again next year!

1 Comment

October Book Update – Jo Ann Schneider

November 1, 2023at 9:03 am

[…] to this one and sadly I’m not in love with the narrator. Light HorrorI wrote a whole blog post on this book. I pretty much loved it. Full of classic horror references and told from the point of […]

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