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Novels that combine horror and politics


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Initial post: Mar 13, 2013 11:48:45 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
I am always on the lookout for stories that combine horror and politics. The best I have found is Graham Masterton's The Hell Candidate (originally published under the nom de plume Thomas Luke), in which a presidential candidate is possessed.

I have also identified Sympathy for the Devil (Morris and Chastain Investigations) as a novel with a plot similar to THE HELL CANDIDATE, but I have not read this one.

I have also read Blood Oath (Nathaniel Cade), in which a vampire works for the U.S. government. This is more of a secret-agent novel, and the secret agent is a vampire. I didn't like it much.

I see that more books are coming out with presidents slaying monsters. Lincoln was a vampire slayer. Now apparently Teddy Roosevelt is going to be one, too. I'm not that interested in these.

Anyone know of others?

Posted on Mar 13, 2013 12:14:48 PM PDT
Well, how about The Wolf's Hour (Michael Gallatin) by Robert McCammon? A werewolf spy during WWII. It was excellent.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 13, 2013 1:17:01 PM PDT
KinksRock says:
That sounds like another spy/secret agent/monster novel. BLOOD OATH had an appearance by a president, and references to a few, but it was not really a political horror novel, and it doesn't sound like THE WOLF'S HOUR is either. Believe me, finding novels that fit this criteria is not easy.

Posted on Mar 13, 2013 5:55:58 PM PDT
Ron Green says:
Oh, you're talking to the right man!
I have two suggestions for you.

The first is God's Spy by Juan Gómez-Jurado. With the recent election of Pope Francis I, this would be a very topical read for you. The plot? Well, after the death of Pope John Paul II, the cardinals gather for their conclave to elect a new Pope.
However, whilst they are converging and deciding who will next lead the Church, a serial killer prowls the Vatican.
I purchased this book on impulse from my local branch of WH Smiths, when I read the blurb and realised that it was a serial killer novel set in Vatican City State, I HAD to buy it.
I was not disappointed, it moves at a snappy pace and keeps you hooked until the very end. The horror is psychological and like all good writers, Jurado realises that the worst monsters are usually normal humans beings just like us.
It comes highly recommended.

Are you a fan of historical fiction? Because my next recommendation for you is set in the Vipers nest of Victorian England.
It's called Anno Dracula and is written by Kim Newman.
Let me set the scene, in this alternate reality, Queen Victoria - still mourning her beloved Albert - is wooed by a swarthy foreigner, none other than Count Dracula himself! The Queen is restored to her youth and beauty and Dracula's plague spreads across the British Empire, soon everyone from street-walkers to the Prime Minister himself is a Vampire.
But in the midst of this gigantic social upheaval, a killer lurks in the shadows. First called Silver Knife, due to his propensity for Vampire slaying, he later dons a new nickname - 'Jack The Ripper'.
This book puts us on the ground floor of Dracula's England, showing his cronies terrorising the locals, the political pressure on people to 'turn' into Vampires and so move up the social ladder and generally presents an alternate England that is rapidly sliding towards barbarism.
Whilst Newman DOES portray Dracula as a two-dimensional, cardboard cut-out villain, this is by no means the norm and he goes to great lengths to show both Vampire and human characters as tragic, well rounded individuals trapped in a world which seemingly gets more barbaric by the day.
A horror novel in theme, if not in tone. Anno Dracula is Newman's love letter to the Golden Age of Victorian horror and the eagle-eyed reader will notice a few cameos from other famous monsters along the way...
This book is a stunning accomplishment and certain versions come with an in-depth character guide, as well as a partial script for an aborted screenplay.
If you are an aficionado of classic horror, I simply cannot recommend this enough.

Well, that's your lot from me.
I hope I've been of some use and have given you some good ideas for what to read next. Be sure to let me know if you like either of those titles :)

Posted on Mar 14, 2013 5:06:03 AM PDT
Oh yeah, I know Kinks is a big fan of Anno Dracula. As am I. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 6:24:40 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 19, 2013 11:39:54 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
ANNO DRACULA is awesome. (I could not get into the sequel following it and stopped reading it, but that does not detract from how awesome AD is.) I would not put it in the category of political horror, but perhaps historical horror.

GOD'S SPY sounds interesting, but does not sound like political horror.

Believe me, this is a tough and limited category. I know because I have looked.

Posted on Mar 14, 2013 6:32:32 AM PDT
The Dead Zone (Signet)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 6:33:29 AM PDT
I actually have the second and the third books in the Anno Dracula series. I'm looking forward to reading them. At some point. :)

Posted on Mar 14, 2013 6:41:22 AM PDT
D. A. Riley says:
The Dead Zone is a good suggestion. In fact a lot of King's horror novels have political undertones, including Under The Dome, even if much of it tends to be small town politics.

Posted on Mar 14, 2013 8:23:07 AM PDT
"Feed (Newsflesh, Book 1)" is a political novel masquerading as a zombie novel. (I haven't read the remainder of the series yet.)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:01:29 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
That one sounds promising!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:09:41 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
I'm asking my library to get this one for me through interlibrary loan. It may just be what I'm looking for.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:29:12 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 14, 2013 9:29:19 AM PDT
I would offer to loan it to you, but it's not loanable.
I've had this book for a while now and still haven't been able to get to it.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:33:57 AM PDT
Cool, I hope you enjoy it! :-)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:34:59 AM PDT
I don't understand why more publishers don't make their books loanable, especially considering how restricted the "loan" feature is to begin with ...

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 14, 2013 9:46:19 AM PDT
I know! Just a one time loan is chintzy to start with.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 7:27:59 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
I've got Feed (Newsflesh, Book 1), and am about 100 pages in.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 8:46:58 AM PDT
OutlawPoet says:
That's a fantastic series. One of my favorites!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 8:49:09 AM PDT
Do you like it so far? I thought it got better as it went along. I have to pick up the next book one of these days!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 9:05:55 AM PDT
OutlawPoet says:
I loved the first and the second. I did enjoy the third, but not quite as much. I don't want to put any spoilers here. I'll just say the series started to strain my sense of disbelief just a little too much, but again - still enjoyed it!

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 9:37:26 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
So far it's very readable. The focus seems to be on how great bloggers are, and I'm interested to see how the presidential campaign plays out.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 11, 2013 12:08:32 PM PDT
OutlawPoet says:
I think the political subplot becomes secondary to the rebel bloggers subplot. It tends to disappear completely in the second book.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 12, 2013 1:48:20 PM PDT
KinksRock says:
One criticism I have of FEED is that I don't like when the author has the sibling protagonists engage in what is supposed to be amusing banter. It's not all that funny or clever. This is not an unusual criticism for me when writers include banter. I think there's way too much of it in FEED.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 13, 2013 3:04:23 PM PDT
OutlawPoet says:
I get what you're saying there. It kind of becomes important in the second book. No spoilers, though. :-) Let's just say that without it, a major point of the second book wouldn't exist.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 15, 2013 11:42:25 AM PDT
KinksRock says:
Wow, that's quite a teaser. You should be in charge of publicity for the series. I was undecided on whether to continue to read the series, but now I am curious about how this banter could be so essential.
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Discussion in:  Horror forum
Participants:  8
Total posts:  55
Initial post:  Mar 13, 2013
Latest post:  Jul 17, 2013

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