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Product Details

  • Paperback: 100 pages
  • Publisher: Eraserhead Press (September 18, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 097624988X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0976249887
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #214,532 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

In Carlton Mellick III's fourteenth bizarro novel, The Haunted Vagina, the reader is presented with another Mellickian mind-bending concept--what if your girlfriend's vagina was a gateway to another world? We are introduced to Steve and his girlfriend Stacy, whose "haunted" vagina is a problem for their sex life. When a skeleton-like creature emerges from Stacy's vagina, the two decide to explore what may be inside of her.

When Steve explores (and becomes trapped in) Stacy's vaginal world, he reflects upon his relationship with her. Mellick makes it obvious through clear dialogue and abstract imagery that their relationship is not healthy. Despite these strange occurrences and relationship problems, Steve remains hopelessly devoted to Stacy. This love is the basis for Mellick's return to a common theme: the power, figuratively and literally, a women's vagina can hold over a man.

The joys and terrors that Steve finds in the vagina reflect his relationship with Stacy. The power and trust struggles are seen from inside both characters--inside Steve, who is the narrator of the story, and from literally inside Stacy. This allows the reader a uniquely personal viewpoint of Steve and Stacy's downward spiral as lovers.

Mellick has made a name for himself by writing consistently engaging, strange, and downright weird stories. His characters can sometimes get lost in the weirdness. The Haunted Vagina is not really about the hallucinogenic world Steve finds inside Stacy; it is about the characters themselves. Their doubts and fears fuel the plot.

Fan's looking only for Mellick's hardcore gore and extremely bizarre imagery may be disappointed, as this book is more subtle than its predecessors. Don't be mistaken: this is still very much a horror book that explores the vagaries and dangers of lust, love and obsession. In this Bizarro novel, Mellick illustrates the human condition better than many authors of "realism."

Despite having dealt with similar themes before (e.g. Razor Wire Pubic Hair and The Steel Breakfast Era), this is Mellick's most mature and effective representation of men's sexual fears. His sparse style paints an intimate portrait of Steve and Stacy's relationship. The Haunted Vagina deserves attention; it's among Mellick's very best.

--The Magazine of Bizarro Fiction, Fall 2009

From the Back Cover

Praise for Carlton Mellick III

"Easily the craziest, weirdest, strangest, funniest, most obscene writer in America."
- GOTHIC MAGAZINE

"Carlton Mellick III has the craziest book titles... and the kinkiest fans!"
- CHRISTOPHER MOORE, author of The Stupidest Angel

"If you haven't read Mellick you're not nearly perverse enough for the twenty first century."
- JACK KETCHUM
, author of The Woman and The Girl Next Door

"Carlton Mellick III is one of bizarro fiction's most talented practitioners, a virtuoso of the surreal, science fictional tale."
- CORY DOCTOROW, author of Little Brother

"Bizarre, twisted, and emotionally raw--Carlton Mellick's fiction is the literary equivalent of putting your brain in a blender."
- BRIAN KEENE, author of The Rising and Dead Sea

"Carlton Mellick III exemplifies the intelligence and wit that lurks between its lurid covers. In a genre where crude titles are an art in themselves, Mellick is a true artist."
- THE GUARDIAN

"Just as Pop had Andy Warhol and Dada Tristan Tzara, the Bizarro movement has its very own P. T. Barnum-type practitioner. He's the mutton-chopped author of such books as Electric Jesus Corpse and The Menstruating Mall, the illustrator, editor, and instructor of all things Bizarro, and his name is Carlton Mellick III."
- DETAILS MAGAZINE

More About the Author

Like a real world Kilgore Trout, cult author CARLTON MELLICK III has been pumping out some of the weirdest, trashiest, most imaginative books that you'll never want to admit you secretly love.

His books are released on a quarterly basis (every January, April, July, and October).

Best known as one of the leading authors of the bizarro fiction movement in literature, he is also one of the most prolific authors of his generation with over 40 books in print since 2001. He won the Wonderland Book Award for his novel "Warrior Wolf Women of the Wasteland" and has had short stories make it into The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror and The Best Bizarro Fiction of the Decade.

Although many of his earliest works are on the surreal and experimental side, his current style is to take the most ridiculous concepts imaginable and approach them with complete sincerity, as if they are not intended to be ridiculous at all. Always full of tongue-in-cheek humor, social satire, and told in a simplistic straightforward prose style similar to that of children's literature or early pulp fiction, Carlton Mellick III's work is one of a kind, to say the least.

He lives in Portland, OR, the bizarro mecca.

Customer Reviews

It is well written and funny.
TheSugarRay
If you're new to bizarro, this is a perfect book to get your started and one that will surely bring you back for more Mellick as soon as you're done.
Gabino Iglesias
Now I hate it when people give all the details of a bool in a review, so let me just say Read This Book!!!!
John McDaniel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Burk on January 23, 2007
Format: Paperback
Wow, we have another mind-blowing book from Bizarro high priest, Father Mellick. What if your girlfriend's vagina was a gateway to another universe? What would you find there?

Thematically similiar to "Razor Wire Pubic Hair," "the Haunted Vagina" is an exploration of the female body and the power it can hold over men (figuratively and literally). The tale is dark, disturbing, and funny. But most importantly, it causes the reader to think. If you have ever been in love, this book will pose some unsettling questions.

I am also pleased to say that this book features some of Mellick's best characterization. Sometimes Mellick's characters become secondary to the strangeness of the story; not in this book. You will be consumed with and his relationships in the real world and in the vagina world.

Don't let the small size fool you. There is a lot to this book. Highly, Highly recommended.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Schtinky VINE VOICE on December 16, 2006
Format: Paperback
Steve falls madly in love with Stacy, but it isn't until they move in together that he hears voices coming from Stacy's southern junction. When a skeletal creature makes it's was through Stacy into their world, Stacy convinces Steve he must go exploring to find out where this mysterious passage leads. After his fist foray, Steve almost doesn't make it back from the alternate world, but the next time Stacy sets him up for a full spelunking.

This is by far one of Mellick's best books ever. The alternate world is rich and mysterious, and occasionally frightening. The sheer strangeness of the tale will keep you turning pages until the end. My only complaint is that the book is short; I could have stayed much longer in Stacy's southern hemisphere. I highly recommend this book for aficionados of horror, punk, cult, or outlandish fiction. Enjoy!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By johnny101 on October 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is only my 4th CM3 title, but it's definitely one of the best. From the opening line, I was hooked. (truth be told, the author's note is one of the best one-liners I've read this year) This book reads very quickly; in just a single sitting, but it leaves its mark in your head. It does a great job of defining characters, which is odd for something this short, that you want to read more about. In fact, the only bad thing I can say about this title is I wish it were longer. Yes, I'd like to spend more time in the Haunted Vagina, as weird as that sounds... it's completely appropriate for this author/title. The world inside this book(vagina) is vivid and bizzare. It is what you would expect from one of the genre-defining authors. I personally liked this title more than both Sea of Patchwork Cats and Punk Land; although Satan Burger remains my favorite.

You will not be disappointed, expand your imagination!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By smele on December 5, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is as fun as its title. It is a short read, and if you're the type of person that's intrigued by the idea of a haunted vagina, you'll probably enjoy it. I was genuinely immersed in the weirdness of Mellick's world. The writing isn't the best. Mellick is no Shakespeare. But let's face it -- nobody is reading this because they want Pulitzer quality literature.

Like other reviewers have lamented, it's expensive for what it is. $4 if you buy it used, then another $4.99 for shipping. Would I buy it again? Probably not. Would I read it again? You bet. It's a quick, enjoyable read that can be finished in an evening, even if all your pretentious literary friends will look down on you for it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Eric Mendez on October 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Insane. The writing feels a bit amateur at times but I think that is part of what gives it charm. I read it straight through not because it was short but because it was engaging. If you have the right attitude you will come to love this book. Punk writing in it's simplest form.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Natasha Δ. on July 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
I read a book about a secret world nestled betwixt a woman's thighs...and I loved it.

Stacy and Steve have a happy relationship until Steve discovers that Stacy's vagina is haunted. Steve is, of course, freaked out so he tries to just stay away from Stacy's nethers making for an unhappy Stacy. One day she's had enough of not "getting any" and persuades him to 69 with her by promising to keep her legs closed. Then something inside Stacy tries to escape...

I'd go on but I don't want to ruin it. If you're into the completely weird and aren't put off by detailed accounts of the interior of a vagina then you should totally read it. It's great, but don't take my word for it...

*rainbows*
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Format: Paperback
My first introduction to Mellick's writing was also among the first Bizarro pieces I read, a short story called "Candy-Coated," about a man with a lollipop head. Since reading this story I have been in love with his writing and the worlds he is able to create. I still have several to read, but this is by far my favorite of his books so far.

"The Haunted Vagina" begins as a strange, awkward tale of a man's journey into his girlfriend's haunted vagina. It journeys through the throes of blind, obsessive love. As the protagonist slowly wades out of worshipful obsession (and deeper into the world inside his girlfriend's vagina), it becomes a story about starting over. And in the end it is a whole universe, a better, more sensible universe that is quiet, happy, and magical.

Mellick's prose is simple, direct, and beautiful and the division of the book into acts paces it excellently. He is obviously a masterful writer, he has complete control over the universes he creates and knows exactly how to show them to the reader.
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