Thursday, February 27, 2014

Book Review - The Bestiarum Vocabulum

Happy Thursday, everyone! Wow this week flew by, huh? Today, I bring you another book review. This one is a collection of beastly horror stories (from A-Z) and is titled The Bestiarum Vocabulum (TRES LIBRORUM PROHIBITORUM). There are a lot of authors on this book so I'll give you the full wrap cover rather than list them. It's yet another I'll be adding to the Indie Fever Reading Challenge 2014 page. You can join in the fun here.

As always, a little information about the book up for review today before the meat (get back in your cages):

Title: The Bestiarum Vocabulum (TRES LIBRORUM PROHIBITORUM)
Author: Many
Genre: Horror Short Stories
Length (Print): 398 pages
Links to Purchase: Amazon Kindle $3.99 Paperback $15.26

A catalog of mythic beasts and demons that were summoned by esoteric means. Once owned by Count Allesandro Di Cagliostro, it was thought forever lost in a fire at the Chateau de Versailles.

Two hundred years later, twenty-six modern day masters of the macabre bring The Bestiarum Vocabulum back from the ashes. 

**Not to appear in review elsewhere - As for the cover of this book, I think it could use an overhaul. I can't really make out what that is supposed to be on there; but it looks like some kind of beastly egg. It just doesn't mesh with the great stories inside.**

Now, on to the good stuff.

I picked this book up during the 12 Days of Christmas event on my blog, where I ask Indie authors to pitch me their books, I grab a sample, and then I choose and purchase the 12 books to be reviewed over the next year. This one was another stand-out in that crowd. After the sample, I was horrified there were no pages left and zipped over to Amazon to buy it. Enough about that, let's get to the review, eh?

From a Reader's Perspective:
This was an enjoyable collection of short stories. There were a couple that really stood out from the crowd and a few I wouldn't read again. I read one of them three times and still couldn't follow the story. It meandered around and jumped in time telling things that didn't seem to be pertinent. However, if you're a fan of horror, there are a ton of other really great stories in this collection. Some of them had me cringing, a couple had me doing an internet search to find out the history of the fantastical beast portrayed. I'd never heard of many, others were all too familiar. Description and world building was great for 9/10 of the tales. I do enjoy a good horror story. All in all, a very cool collection that was well worth the money and kept me entertained for long periods of time.

From an Editor's Perspective:
Most of these stories were very well edited. A couple could've used a hand in the punctuation and redundancy department. After all, it's a short story and every word matters. Having said that, I read a disclaimer in the front of the book that talked about keeping the author's voice intact (because they're from around the globe). Okay, I get it. Keeping the idioms makes sense. But it's a whole other beast to let blatant errors through. I've read books from every country, so I'm familiar with differences in writing. However, with so many authors, surely they could've shared the editing hand before going to print/publication. Those few that made little to no sense left me reeling and I don't feel like I enjoyed the other stories as much as I could have because my brain kept checking out to think about why I didn't get those that meandered.

+1 Star for a wonderfully creepy collection
+1 Star for descriptive writing
+1 Star for bringing me to the edge of my seat more than once
+1 Star for teaching me (I love books that do this)
-.5 Star for those meandering/unreadable stories (there were only about three out of twenty-six)
+.5 Star for the editing on the others

Overall, 4.5 Stars! We all know I round up, so you'll see a 5 star rating everywhere ratings are used. Highly recommended for lovers of Horror.

What do you think? Have you read this book?

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!


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