Dan Schwent's Reviews > A Pretty Mouth

A Pretty Mouth by Molly Tanzer
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Nov 30, 2016

really liked it
bookshelves: 2016-books, 2016

A Pretty Mouth contains the tales of multiple generations of the Calapash family.

My first exposure to Molly Tanzer was Vermilion. When I learned Colleen Danzig from I Am Providence was based on her, I figured I was due to give her another look.

A Pretty Mouth is really fucked up but in the best possible ways. I was hooked from the opening story. Speaking of which, Bertie Wooster loses a bet and Jeeves has to help one of Bertie's friends, Lord Calapash, with his bathtub-bound sister, who is addicted to the secretions of a bizarre octopus. From there, the weirdness train rolls backwards, exploring the various members of the Calapash clan throughout history, all the way back to the beginning of the line in ancient Rome.

Each story is written in a different style, from the Wodehousian language of the first story, to Bronte, on down the line. The stories all have a Lovecraftian undercurrent, with the Calapash's being known for their look, not unlike the Innsmouth look. There's sex, incest, twincest, murder, sorcery, Lovecraftian horror and lots of crazy ass shit.

The homages to various Lovecraft tales were well done and didn't feel like Lovecraft pastiches alone. Molly Tanzer put her personal touch on each tale, writing in a variety of styles, bringing a freshness to the Lovecraftian subgenre.

A Pretty Mouth hit the sweet spot for me. About the only negative thing I can say about it is that I wish it was twice as long. Four out of five stars.

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Reading Progress

November 28, 2016 – Shelved
November 28, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
November 29, 2016 – Started Reading
November 29, 2016 –
26.0%
December 1, 2016 –
35.0%
December 1, 2016 –
62.0%
December 1, 2016 –
91.0%
December 2, 2016 – Shelved as: 2016-books
December 2, 2016 – Shelved as: 2016
December 2, 2016 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-11 of 11) (11 new)

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Lauren My only real problem with this is that after that first story, I really wanted to read a whole book of Lovecraftian Wodehouse, and then I couldn't.


message 2: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Lauren wrote: "My only real problem with this is that after that first story, I really wanted to read a whole book of Lovecraftian Wodehouse, and then I couldn't."

The Lovecraft Papers is mostly Jeeves and Wooster going up against the Mythos.


Lauren Dan wrote: "Lauren wrote: "My only real problem with this is that after that first story, I really wanted to read a whole book of Lovecraftian Wodehouse, and then I couldn't."

[book:The Lovecraft Papers|17205..."


Well, that information just changed my life for the better.


message 4: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent My work for the day is done.


Kelly (and the Book Boar) I'm pretty sure my brain shut down right after "secretions of a bizarre octopus" . . . . . .




Kelly (and the Book Boar) And before Copy Dan or Jeff chimes in - YES I KNOW IT WAS A SLURM WORM AND NOT AN OCTOPUS.


message 7: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Wiggy wham wham wozzle!


message 8: by Ryan (new) - added it

Ryan Vaughan Great review!


message 9: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Thanks!


message 10: by Zoeytron (new)

Zoeytron Twincest - a new word! And just look at that cover!


message 11: by Dan (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dan Schwent Zoeytron wrote: "Twincest - a new word! And just look at that cover!"

I wish I made 'twincest' up. I saw it in one of karen's reviews.


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