The Backlot Gay Book Forum discussion

Paranormal Discussions > Bite Club, by Hal Bodner

Comments Showing 1-3 of 3 (3 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Ulysses (new)

Ulysses Dietz | 1714 comments Bite Club
By Hal Bodner
Crossroad Press, 2014 (originally published 2005, written in 1995)
Four stars

“The effect was horrifying, yet comic.”

That about sums up this whole book, which was a pleasant revelation to me. Having written my first gay vampire novel in the late 1980s, getting it published in the late 1990s, I felt a strong empathy for Mr. Bodner and his novel, which was written in the 1990s and first published in 2005.

Set in West Hollywood in a vaguely recent past (the author edited for this digital edition, to make it slightly less dated in terms of technology), “Bite Club” is replete with burlesque characters and a horrifyingly evil villain. Into the famously “gay city” between Los Angeles and Beverly Hills, the author inserts a murderer as chilling as any I’ve ever encountered. The madcap scrabble of the powers-that-be to find the killer (and save the Hallowe’en celebration in their normally low-crime city) is intermixed with visceral descriptions of the killer and his methods. The two very different tones are jarring at times, but Bodner’s writing is consistent, witty, and literate, and he manages to pull the reader through.

I particularly liked Bodner’s take on the vampire—the mix of myth and modern reimagining of this legendary monster. He made some different choices than I did with my characters, and I must say I think he deserves credit for his deft handling of the legend to suit a more rational modern world. I won’t say more, because there is plenty of fun discovery in these pages as the plot and the characters are revealed.

The book has a strong undertone of camp, which makes sense, given that Mr. Bodner, like myself, is of a certain age and thus reflects a gay America that is now more historical than current. To put it in contemporary media terms—this feels like it could be adapted easily to a Netflix series, poised between sitcom and horror movie. I’d watch it, anyway.

I’ve purchased “The Trouble With Hairy,” the sequel to “Bite Club,” which deals with werewolves. If the brief presence of the vulpine race in this book is any indication, it’s going to be strange. Can’t wait.

message 2: by Hal (new)

Hal Bodner (halbodner) | 1 comments "Mr. Bodner.... is of a certain age"????!!!!????!!!!???

I'm only seventeen, you horrid beast!


message 3: by Ulysses (new)

Ulysses Dietz | 1714 comments Of course you are. (I'm a month shy of 63)

back to top