Mónica BQ's Reviews > The Lesser Dead

The Lesser Dead by Christopher Buehlman
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it was amazing
bookshelves: fav-dun-dun-duuuuun, fav-otherwordlyish, favourites-forever-and-ever
Recommended to Mónica by: José
Recommended for: Everyone

First and foremost, gracias a José por la recomendación.

If I had to describe this book, I'd say it's crass. It's blunt and regularly offensive and sometimes morbid. But it's also entertaining as hell. I'd even sometimes call it funny. This is vampires in all their gory glory.

I’m going to take you someplace dark and damp where good people don’t go. I’m going to introduce you to monsters. Real ones. I’m going to tell you stories about hurting people, and if you like those stories, it means you’re bad.
Shall we go on?
Good. I hate people who pretend they’re something they’re not.


The Lesser Dead opens with a truly strong chapter. It's meant to hook you to the story and it totally does. And what's more: the story doesn't disappoint. I want to say that the best features of the book are the first and last chapter- which are simply brilliant- but that would diminish the incredibly fantastic story contained within those chapters.

The book is narrated by Joey, a fifty-something vampire that was turned at the age of 14. And the whole book is peppered with the dichotomy of a teen protagonist making teen assumptions and committing teen errors, while at the same time showing us wisdom only age can provide. Without spoiling anything, I think that if you pay precise attention to details you'll find this dual- personality feeling specially hilarious once you get the full picture. Joey tells the story of his conversion to vampirism and that of his "clan" all through the decades between 1930 and 1970.He provides the necessary background to tell the reader the particularly troubling story of what transpired in 1978 and dares you to believe him.

I’m stealing from you what is most truly yours and I’m not sorry.


There's several unethical and/or amoral actions that take place during the course of the story and in this case I appreciated how up-front the author is about them. There's no redeeming qualities here. NONE. The book features some twisted decision-making that backs you into a corner all the time because it calls you a hypocrite for judging it, and also makes you question what would you have done instead. And let's be serious, unless you are a fucking saint, you probably would have done the same as the vampires in the book. Like it augurs at the beginning, the book isn't for nice people and don't expect a nice story. Even the sex portrayed here, while never quite explicit or violent, it could only be called semi-consensual at best, totally dub-con the majority of the times, but truly when you think about it is mostly non-con.

Either way, the suffering of others is easy enough to endure when it happens in the rearview mirror.


I loved how absorbing the book was, but if I had to point out specifics I'd say the most compelling things about it were the hidden treasures of political statements. The book makes a show of telling us- the readers- how utterly ignorant we can be. The story is littered with clues as to what is to happen but if you don't know much about world history, art, political diplomacy and general culture you won't understand how hilarious and unexpected the last chapter is. Like they say, the devil is in the details. I loved the dig it quite explicitly makes to how uncultured gringos can be and how utterly unknowledgeable they are when it comes to how the rest of the world works ( "If you are an American, with your limited awareness of events outside your own nation..." ). The book also provides some really insightful points of view in regards to power and the acquisition of power that I don't necessarily agree with, but that I definitely respect for how the author delivers those opinions.

“The application of justice is a by-product of power. We look to leaders to protect us. We organize for collective defense. Or collective acquisition. Why do we submit to Margaret’s governance?”


Finally, I want to say that after how marvellous this book was, I'm buying everything Buehlman. The book was horrifyingly fun.
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Reading Progress

February 3, 2017 – Shelved
February 3, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
February 15, 2017 – Started Reading
February 15, 2017 –
1.0% "One page in and I'm already liking this.

"I’m going to introduce you to monsters. Real ones. I’m going to tell you stories about hurting people, and if you like those stories, it means you’re bad.
Shall we go on?
Good. I hate people who pretend they’re something they’re not.""
February 20, 2017 – Shelved as: fav-otherwordlyish
February 20, 2017 – Shelved as: fav-dun-dun-duuuuun
February 20, 2017 – Shelved as: favourites-forever-and-ever
February 20, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-12 of 12 (12 new)

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message 1: by Bucletina (new) - added it

Bucletina Qué genialidad. Los buenos libros de vampiros son formidables, lamentablemente vapuleado por referentes mediocres. Me fascina la idea de que trabaje con elementos políticos, aunque con esto me compraste:
"I loved the dig it quite explicitly makes to how uncultured gringos can be and how utterly unknowledgeable they are when it comes to how the rest of the world works ( "If you are an American, with your limited awareness of events outside your own nation..." )"

<3 <3


José ¡Excelente reseña, Mónica! Me alegro mucho de que te haya gustado :)

A mí me encantó la forma en la que Joey relata la historia y ese final (view spoiler)

Between Two Fires es buenísimo también si querés seguir leyendo a este autor, todos los libros que leí de él son muy diferentes y originales.


Mónica BQ Bucletina wrote: "Qué genialidad. Los buenos libros de vampiros son formidables, lamentablemente vapuleado por referentes mediocres. Me fascina la idea de que trabaje con elementos políticos, aunque con esto me comp..."

Me gusto bastante Miki. Totalmente recomendado. Vampiros que son humanamente monstruos. Y la verdad, lo principal es que te picas con la historia, el libro es mega entretenido. Lo demás, es un gran plus xD El final es magnífico.


Mónica BQ José wrote: "¡Excelente reseña, Mónica! Me alegro mucho de que te haya gustado :)

A mí me encantó la forma en la que Joey relata la historia y ese final [spoilers removed]

Between Two Fires es..."


El final es una bomba genial. Hasta risa me dio. Fue algo así como: bueno, pues tómala pendejo, esto te pasa por crédulo xD

Acabo de comprar Between Two Fires y The Necromancer's House. Quedé muy acomedida al autor, Leeré el que recomiendas primero! :)


message 5: by Flavia (new) - added it

Flavia Oooh, lo tengo que leer si o si. Ya el título me encanta y con tu reseña MÁS lo debo leer. Viva todo lo vampiro!!


message 6: by Fenriz (new) - added it

Fenriz Angelo Me encantan los vampiros *-* por lo que dices es como un american psycho...so my jam. Lo apunto.


Mónica BQ Flavia wrote: "Oooh, lo tengo que leer si o si. Ya el título me encanta y con tu reseña MÁS lo debo leer. Viva todo lo vampiro!! "

Léelo! Los vampiros de este libro me encantaron :D


Mónica BQ Fenriz wrote: "Me encantan los vampiros *-* por lo que dices es como un american psycho...so my jam. Lo apunto."

Creo que sobre todo, lo que más me gustó del libro es que me divirtió bastante. Es entretenido y te picas con la historia. El protagonista te cae re-bien, a pesar de que es re-mala persona jajajajajaja. Y yo que soy fan de los finales bien construidos, aquí le doy un premio doble.


Christopher Buehlman !Muchísimas gracias! Muy amable.


QuietlyKat I added this book to my TBR back in February when I first read your fantastic review. I just finished the audiobook, it was amazing! Thanks so much for inspiring me to check this one out! ❤️


Mónica BQ QuietlyKat wrote: "I added this book to my TBR back in February when I first read your fantastic review. I just finished the audiobook, it was amazing! Thanks so much for inspiring me to check this one out! ❤️"

Yeeesss!!! It's a definite 2017 top favourite!!!


QuietlyKat Mónica wrote: "Yeeesss!!! It's a definite 2017 top favourite!!!"

I listened to the end (like the last hour) again today. Knowing everything you know by that point, made me NEED to listen again. And now I feel like I want to start all the way from the beginning.

Plus I recommended it to my dad. I feel like he’d really appreciate the way it’s told and a lot of the characters, especially Cvetko.

Even though I really want to listen again, I started another Buehlman audiobook, Between Two Fires. I’ve listened to the first hour and am hooked so far. I’ll come back to The Lesser Dead sooner or later though :)


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