mordicai caeli (mordicai) wrote,
mordicai caeli

  • Mood:
  • Music:

The Questing Beast. (87)

The Curse of the Wendigo

Jaundiced yellow eyes,
like a cracked marble, shattered,
bloodshot with bright red.

This is the second book in the Monstrumologist series, & it really exaggerates the successes & the failures of the previous book. I'm torn! I liked it a lot, but it has some pretty fundamental problems. Well, on problem, really-- women, or the lack thereof. Women are only around to be horribly murdered, it seems. Oh hey, a textbook Women in Refrigerators, even, greeaat! Lilly Bates has a hint of promise, but the whole "violence against women!" thing is a prime motivator, & sort of distaste around that undercuts the novel. On the reverse, it is some of the better horror I've read. Because it is a Young Adult book, there is a degree of restraint-- though not much, I'll admit-- that makes the impact of the gruesome much more stark. Rick Yancey does not kid around when push comes to shove. & wendigo! Radarless' character Bedwin was possessed by a wendigo named Hermóðr in the last campaign I ran; Radarless ought to read this, he'd like it. This book is chock full of even more name dropping than the first-- Algernon Blackwood, Brahm Stoker, even Jacob Riis, & so forth. I don't mind it one way or the other-- the frame sequence actually makes good use of it, I think. The Curse of the Wendigo plays with the nature of monstrosity-- man's inhumanity, the possibility of the supernatural-- in a way that is very difficult to do, & it pulls it off. In a world where headless monsters with mouths in their chests exist, it is hard to say "stop with this superstitious nonsense!" with a straight face. It is something Jenny has been talking about lately-- can a monster even be real? Once you discover that it is real, doesn't it become just a dangerous animal? Yancey solves the conundrum by rooting the division in the possibility of a divide between the physical & the spiritual, & he backs it up by not caving in with an answer. Instead he peppers red herrings & plausible deniability through out, &...well, you know how I like an unreliable narrator.
Tags: books, haiku, monstrumologist

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.