The Night Eternal is the third and final installment of Chuck Hogan and Guilermo del Toro's horror trilogy about vampires taking over the world. In alThe Night Eternal is the third and final installment of Chuck Hogan and Guilermo del Toro's horror trilogy about vampires taking over the world. In all honesty, I have about had my fill of paranormal/vampire stories. This trilogy, however, is worth the read. It's been described as "Bram Stoker meets Stephen King meets Michael Crichton" and I think that's pretty darned accurate.
A word of warning: these are NOT stand-alone books! You must read the trilogy in order....the first book is The Strain and that was followed by The Fall.
Okay, now that I've made that perfectly clear, I can tell you why I enjoyed these books. While there are elements of horror (who wouldn't be horrified by gross vampires?), it is presented in a scientific form. The authors' conception of vampires in this novel is creepy, realistic, and based in science....ewww....
When the vampires manage to take over the world, the post-apocalypse world is a dark and scary place. A few bands of survivors, including our protagonists, have decided to fight back. Each of these characters are fully developed...you understand their fears, their loves, and what it is they are fighting for.
Lots of action (hey, there are lots of vampires to kill), but also a lot of thinking as our heroes try to figure out where the vampires came from and how to best rid the world of them.
Difficult to explain, but I really liked these books, despite the fact that they don't fall within any of my normal genres. Very much recommended, even if your tastes in reading don't normally run in this direction....more
Yet another vampire tale....this one more horror than not. First in a trilogy, the author(s) keep a very tight plot and I enjoyed their "science" behiYet another vampire tale....this one more horror than not. First in a trilogy, the author(s) keep a very tight plot and I enjoyed their "science" behind what a vampire is and how the virus is unleashed on Manhattan. The characters are interesting and well developed, too.
My nitpick was to technical details that were completely messed up in the parts of the book dealing with commercial aviation. If it wasn't my field of work, I wouldn't have even noticed and it would have garnered another star in the rating. But I did notice it and the glaring errors were in the first 100 pages and it somewhat ruined a lot of the remainder of the book for me. Wish the author(s) would have consulted a real airline pilot and all of those errors could have been easily avoided....more
Arghhhhhh. I am the victim of those sly tricksters called the marketing department who ply their evil trade on unsuspecting bibliophiles such as myselArghhhhhh. I am the victim of those sly tricksters called the marketing department who ply their evil trade on unsuspecting bibliophiles such as myself. Why, oh why, do I not better guard against this?
The Short Synopsis A nasty little demon by the name of Jakabok Botch is fished out of the ninth circle of hell and brought up to our world by those who would sell him for profit. He promptly escapes and spends the next few hundred years wreaking havoc on humankind in all sorts of grotesque ways. On the way, he makes friends with another hideous demon called Quitoon and together they seek out important human inventions throughout the Middle Ages. Eventually ending up at the home of Johannes Gutenberg (yes, of printing press fame), Jakabok is witness to the negotiations between Heaven and Hell's representatives as they hammer out an agreement as to who will profit most from Gutenberg's historical invention. Ultimately, he ends up within the pages of this novel, telling you his own story.
The Literary Criticism This had the makings of a terrific tale. A demon caught in the pages of a book and revealing the secrets of Heaven and Hell? By any estimation, this is an inventive premise.
But somewhere between the premise and the telling of the story, opportunity was lost. Instead of following the trail of mankind's role in good and evil, Barker reverts to graphic descriptions of torture machines and the myriad of ways there are to disembowel a person. In some cases, less is more.
Every so often, I detected the rumblings of what could have been a much better novel. A phrase here, a philosophical underlining there, but nothing ever came of it. Instead, the author would revert back to pages upon pages (upon pages) of entreaties to burn the book and the terrible things that would happen to me if I did not heed the warnings. Perhaps I ought to have listened?
As to Jakabok himself, I never quite felt his anger or his pain (though perhaps this is a good thing). Barker tells us that Jakabok developed quite a close friendship with Quitoon, but the relationship was never fully convincing nor explored. Instead of examining the human-like qualities of the two demons, Barker chose to focus on describing what I am assuming were meant to be unspeakable horrors. Sadly, in this day and age of desensitization, the graphic descriptions only caused me to involuntarily roll my eyes.
There were quite a few grammatical errors, such as switching tenses in mid-sentence, but I can't blame the author for that business. Rather, that would be the purveyance of the editor, who dropped the ball here.
Are there any good points? Well the marketing team clearly did their job well. The clippings, the aging of the pages to resemble an old manuscript ... all exceptional work. If I wrote a book, I would want this team working for me. After all, they managed to trick a skeptical reader like myself here.
The Recommendation I cannot, in good conscious, encourage you to spend your hard-earned money on this novel. Don't take my word for it: ask Brian Baker who aptly titled his review Mister B. Gone, and he took my money with him. Mr. Barker has written many fine novels in the past and if you're interested in his work, you'd do better to try The Hellhound Heart: A Novel or even Abarat. Creepy stuff right there. Perhaps this book is best reserved for die-hard Barker fans if for no other reason than to complete a collection. (I feel your OCD...really, I do.) ...more