Chloe's Reviews > Midnight Mass

Midnight Mass by F. Paul Wilson
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Jun 07, 2009

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bookshelves: horror, not-owned, blood-suckers
Read in June, 2009

So a rabbi, a priest, a psychotic nun and a militant lesbian atheist walk into a bar... Sounds like the beginning of a truly awful joke, doesn't it? That's exactly what I thought when a friend of mine was describing it to me. I'd never read any F. Paul Wilson before and have to admit to not a few ounces of trepidation, yet I am always interested in tales of fiendish bloodsuckers crushing mortals under their heels so figured I'd give it a shot.

Wilson writes in the forward to this quick action read that he wanted to write a book that returned vampires to their crypts and sewers rather than the romantic aesthetes that Anne Rice and Stephanie Meyer have turned these horrors into. The premise is simple: tired of hiding in the shadows, vampires have come out of their coffins and made their existence known to the world. Yet, whereas Charlaine Harris' vampires are interested in co-existing with humankind, Wilson's hordes sweep first across the former Soviet bloc nations and then the rest of the world, bringing humanity to heel and now beginning to begin their incursion in the New World.

Wonderful premise, right? Who doesn't want to hear tales of humankind's war against the cognizant undead (as opposed to the mindless shuffling of zombie hordes)? Sadly, Wilson decides to portray the human resistance as being solely in the hands of disaffected priest, wily rabbi and traumatized nun. Are we really to believe that the rest of the world is so paralyzed by an inability to wrap their head around the fact that vampires actually exist that they just lie back with their throats exposed? No one thought to resist before these three people in New Jersey? Also, once the revolution begins are these ancient creatures so inept that they can't even muster an adequate defense? A lot of characters do a lot of stupid illogical things.

Yet that's the world that Wilson chooses to work in so, I guess, as readers we just have to go with it. His vamps are definitely not the emo poseurs of Anne Rice, but true monsters who care not a lick for the fleshbags that make up their meals. Midnight Mass is a fun read that I didn't want to put down and served as a nice distraction from the lengthy tome that has been my primary reading material of late. It definitely makes me interested in reading F. Paul Wilson's highly regarded Repairman Jack books.
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06/04 page 238
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