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The Brothers Cabal

(Johannes Cabal #4)

4.36  ·  Rating details ·  3,371 ratings  ·  278 reviews
Horst Cabal has risen from the dead. Again. Horst, the most affable vampire one is ever likely to meet, is resurrected by an occult conspiracy that wants him as a general in a monstrous army. Their plan: to create a country of horrors, a supernatural homeland. As Horst sees the lengths to which they are prepared to go and the evil they cultivate, he realizes that he cannot ...more
Hardcover, 339 pages
Published September 30th 2014 by Thomas Dunne Books
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 ·  3,371 ratings  ·  278 reviews

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Jul 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I feel a kinship with Howard and his sense of humor, a frequently subtle type of reference-filled playfulness that works best if one is paying attention or shares some of the same cultural references. I'm thinking of this particularly as my review for John Dies at the End has been popping up in my feed, a book that was more slapstick-gross than implied humor, and contrasting it with this one which has a cute Princess Bride reference hidden in the text. One of my favorite things about the Cabal ...more
Sean Gibson
Dec 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing
You know how sometimes an athlete or an actor seems to suddenly have something just click into place and they just seem to get it in a way they didn’t before? Maybe they get traded to a different team or get a new coach, or connect with material in a way they haven’t previously…but, in one fell swoop, they go from good to transcendent.

That was Jonathan Howard in this book (specifically, the second half). The Cabal books have always grooved along as very entertaining reads, teeming with
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
One Big Not So Happy Cabal Family Buddy Read (OBNSHCFBR) with my fellow Cabalettes Elena and Margaux
Cabal paused in the doorway, a battle axe liberated from a wall display over his shoulder, a knotted tablecloth from a small occasional table dangling from the base of the axehead. The blade was smeared with blood, and more was soaking through the cloth, dripping slowly onto the stone floor. The overall effect was of a gentleman of the road who was not used to taking ‘no’ as an answer.”
Oct 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I will not say this topped my enjoyment of book 2 in this series, but it came really close. It was definitely an improvement upon the workmanlike world-saving adventure of book 3.

Horst! The most affable of vampires sat down to tell a long tale to his convalescing brother, Johannes. :) What could go wrong? I mean, it's not like both brothers should have been dead. Several times over. Or that Horst had burned to death in the first novel. Or that Johannes was brought back to health after saving the
One of the funniest books I read. I loved first book at the time but series has come long way in these few books and Howard's writing is so delightfully dark and witty. There is no wasted effort, every sentence is funny or at least amusing . More than half of this book is from Horst's PoV and Johannes enters fully in later parts of the book and when he does it's glorious. They are great duo being polar opposites but in complementary rather than opposing way.
K.J. Charles
Every bit as good as I hoped. The only thing that makes Johannes Cabal better is Horst Cabal. I may have to reread the whole series now just because.
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
‘Well, look at us. The necromancer and the vampire against the forces of elemental evil. The Brothers Cabal ride again!’ ‘Yeehaw,’ said Cabal evenly.'
I'm certain that nobody will be surprised to see I liked this book. A lot. I would suggest reading these books in order even if each book has its own story and can, if you wish, be read out of order.

The Brothers Cabal has its own surprises and peculiarities you won't find in other books. The ending of the third book brought Horst back. Not
I was eagerly anticipating the release of this book -- I've read all of the Cabal books, as well as the shorter stories, and absolutely love them.

Sadly, this one missed the mark for me.

The first half to three quarters of the book is told in flashback, narrated by Cabal's brother, the vampire Horst Cabal. We see only brief glimpses of Johannes (the necromancer) during this part of the story, and I just didn't enjoy it as much without J. Cabal being the primary focus.

The author actually addresses
Dec 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Marvelous fun! The last third especially, once we finally have both the Cabal brothers active in the story at the same time. After introducing the marvelous Johannes-Horst team in the first of this series, the author shows us in the two subsequent books that no one is as satisfactory a foil for the cryptic and single-minded Johannes as his tender-hearted brother. Having observed over the course of the last two books Johannes's glacial development of compassion and sympathy (in very modest ...more
Wendy Wagner
Jul 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lovecraftian, comedy
I got an advance release copy of this book from the publisher and was happy to have it in my purse while I sat in the orthodontist's waiting room. I *might* have frightened the receptionist a bit with my giggling and snorting. That's right: this book is snorting-out-loud-even-in-public-places funny.

Why should you read this volume of the Johannes Cabal series? Well, it's got:
a) a lovable vampire
b) lots of zombies
c) lycanthropes of all variety and shape
d) a badass female spy with a knack for
Nov 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Laura by: Karl Smith
Cabal, having survived Lovecraftian horrors and forged some sort of special relationship with Nyarlothotep, is carried to safety through a garden of horrors by a loving brother vampire. Our man may have his soul back (though he is markedly less human than his brother, the aforementioned vampire). His brother then cajoles him into fighting zombies, demons, and financiers. Somehow they acquire air power. And witches.

Nicely constructed and often laugh out loud funny. Cabal is not a lovable scamp.
Oct 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, fantasy
The fourth Johannes Cabal novel sees the return of his brother Horst, a vampire who would rather not be. Horst takes a major role too, especially in the first half of the book and he's a fun character to tag along with. Mr. Howard has a definite way with words and often made me snicker at his droll wordplay. And The Brothers Cabal is in top form. (I may have to re-read the first two someday. The third not so much.) Anyway, I won't spoil the story for you. Suffice it to say that this outing ...more
colleen the convivial curmudgeon
I think I love this series more with every book.

That said, I'm glad I like the character of Horst so much, because the first, like, 2/3 of this book primarily focuses on him and his regaling his bother with the story of his second resurrection and the events which have befallen him, which brought him to his brother in the first place. But how can you not enjoy spending time with the dapper vampire who is more concerned with getting trousers upon resurrection than in feeding?

My only real
Jul 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I mean, I might be biased: I love autumn, I love adventure, I love British humor - and I love a smart hand on the tiller of a story. Sure, it could be argued that there are a couple of moments that feel a bit rushed and the end is nearly an anti-climax (although really it's just more of a semi-cliffhanger) - but who cares? Who cares about that when you've got characters who you just want to spend time with? Johannes and Horst together do something I never quite imagined: they make Johannes Cabal ...more
Dec 12, 2016 added it
Another fun, kinetic, and wry Cabal novel!
Oct 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have been negligent in reviewing this series. At first, I thought this was because it was throwaway fluff - just a summer popcorn book to read for fun that would have no impact on me.

That may have been the case, but..

This is why I really wish there was a review series option in goodreads. This is one of those series where the sum of the whole is greater than each individual book separately. And this, is the best book of them all (at least so far).

Characters: 5*
Plot: 4.5*
Universe: 4.5*
 Linda (Miss Greedybooks)
loved it! I can't wait for the next one!
Sep 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, paranormal
What a difference from book #3. Much better pacing, storyline and action.
This book is a story about the resurrection and adventures of Horst, older bro of dear Johannes and is a constant adventure with some pretty well rounded characters, a plot twist or two and the inevitable supply of words that shows JLH is a walking Thesaurus.
The last book had me thinking that the story had run it's course and that the author really had run out of ideas what to do with the character, but this cleverly puts
‘Horst, you are a good man. You have always been so, and your soul is an untrammelled thing indeed. [...] I’ve seen evil. By many metrics, I am evil. I know what it looks like. You are not even similar. Remember that, brother. Let that be your bulwark against the impulses your condition imposes upon you.’

[muffled chanting] HORST! HORST! HORST! HORST! Ok but seriously, I have been missing Horst for the past few books and even in the first book he was around but not really focused on very much.
Grace Troxel
Jul 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This review originally appeared on my blog, Books Without Any Pictures:

The Brothers Cabal by Jonathan L. Howard is the fourth book in the Johannes Cabal series. Even though it’s not the first in the series, it can function relatively well as a standalone. I haven’t read the earlier books, but was able to jump into this one quite easily.

Johannes Cabal is a necromancer. He’s got a reputation for being abrasive and dangerous, but deep down, he does have a
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
"What kind of vampire's never killed anyone? I don't understand why he was chosen. There must be others musn't there? Even if they are dust, we can still raise them. Vlad Tepes. Lord Varney. And we end up getting Count Form-an-Orderly-Queue."

Horst Cabal has been raised from the undead by a mysterious secret society. The members of the society treat him with respect bordering on servility, and they keep calling him the Lord of the Dead. After all, according to their plans Horst is supposed to
Mar 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
A very entertaining read. A very different book with respect to the earlier Johannes Cabal books since it is actually from the perspective of two characters. Johannes and his brother Horst. They could not be more different in their outlook towards the world. While Horst is a thorough gentleman with moral qualms and even worries about propriety !! The most polite vampire possible. While Johannes is well... Johannes... cold,rational, able to transmute anything as a means to the ultimate end he ...more
Jan 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I've never read any of the Cabal books but I can tell you I'm ready to run right out and pick up the rest of the series forthwith.

I was hooked by the opening chapter title: "Which We Are Reintroduced To A Pair Of Individuals With Unconventional Interpretations Of The Term 'Dead'" In this book we are introduced to Horst Cabal, a thoroughly dead Vampire who bemusedly finds himself resurrected by plotters of an evil nature for a scheme he suspects is strongly up to no good. But being of a good and
James Adams
Feb 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Alexandra Hunter
I just can't.

Review to come.

Dec 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own-audio
5th book comes out in September! I can't wait!
M. Benesh
An excellent read. I think this installment in the series nailed everything I enjoyed about the first book, and added some elements that really made the entire book a pleasure. Playing Cabal off of a character who balances his less-than-hero-like qualities seems to be the key to a great Cabal novel. After all, Cabal is so socially inept that his cluelessness and predictably self-centered nature can make him, well, predictable and boring.
This book reclaimed the gothic stylings and mystical
Anna J. Shelby ☕
DNF at 48%. I tried, I really did. But the POV of Horst isn't working for me. I tried skimming paragraphs but with Howards writing style it becomes a heavier task than actually reading it properly.

I'll leave it be for the moment. I may pick it up again.
Alex Zagorac

I just missed my bb Johannes for most of this book. It really picked up when he joined the narrative though.
Nov 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
almost 5 stars, a very enjoyable read
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So that ending.... 3 33 Jan 28, 2015 10:08AM  

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Jonathan L Howard is a game designer, scriptwriter, and a veteran of the computer games industry since the early 1990s, with titles such as the 'Broken Sword' series to his credit.

After publishing two short stories featuring Johannes Cabal (Johannes Cabal and the Blustery Day and Exeunt Demon King) in H. P. Lovecraft's Magazine of Horror, Johannes Cabal the Necromancer was published in 2009 as his

Other books in the series

Johannes Cabal (5 books)
  • Johannes Cabal the Necromancer (Johannes Cabal, #1)
  • Johannes Cabal the Detective (Johannes Cabal, #2)
  • The Fear Institute (Johannes Cabal, #3)
  • The Fall of the House of Cabal (Johannes Cabal, #5)
“Horst…’ He lowered his voice, ashamed. ‘I’ve done things since then. Things you don’t know about.’ The confession almost choked him, but somehow he forced the words out. ‘I’ve done good things.” 14 likes
“Now, let us consider the life of Johannes Cabal, if briefly. He is closing on his thirtieth year and is ageing better than most, although this is a product of a lifestyle where sunlight is shunned rather than the assiduous use of moisturiser. He stands a little over six feet tall. He is blond, blue eyed, and, perforce, pale. These are not unusual characteristics; those are coming.” 6 likes
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