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The Midnight Tour Hardcover – Deluxe Edition, August, 1998

3.7 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews

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Hardcover, Deluxe Edition, August, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

One of the authors most affected by the domestic turndown in the horror market in the 1990s is Laymon, who published many novels, mostly mass market, here in the '80s. He remains popular in the U.K. and Australia, with new books appearing there regularly, but his fiction has for the most part gone out of print in the U.S. So kudos to Cemetery Dance for bringing his new novel, a sequel to The Cellar and The Beast House, to American readers. It's classic Laymon, which means that it's full of titillating sex and violence aimed at the teenager in us all, but also that it's constructed in stripped-down prose that spits across the page and is rife with strong characters traced in deft strokes. Laymon expertly seeds the backstory?of the notorious house in a small California town, site of numerous savagings by an unknown species of sexually ravenous, humanoid "beasts"?throughout the narrative, which follows the liaisons and perils of a woman raped decades ago by a beast, and of several guides and tourists around the house, now a tourist attraction. A copulating couple is buried alive; Peeping Toms spy on three bathing beauties; a woman is raped, then handcuffed in a cellar tunnel?and so on in Laymon's lurid tale, which speeds steadily toward a bloody climax, the eponymous tour of the Beast House, and a merciless conclusion. It's a nightmare ride but plenty of fun for those who like their horror no-frills and nasty.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Beast House has a notorious history. Starting in 1903, this quaint Victorian in Malcasa, CA, has been the scene of repeated gruesome rapes and murders by "beasts"?a sort of mutated missing link, hairless like humans but powerful like apes with rending claws and fangs among their unique features. But the beasts are all dead now, or are they? Take "the midnight tour" of the house and find out. Laymon's characters are well drawn, and the first three-fourths of the novel effectively builds up suspense to the electrifying conclusion. Laymon writes humor well and uses it to relieve the tension. Reminiscent of Stephen King's "monster" stories, this novel does not rely upon horror cliches. It is not a story for young people, though, as there is a great deal of sex and gory violence. Still, horror fans will find some genuine surprises at the end. Recommended for all adult horror collections.?Alicia Graybill, Lincoln City Libs., NE
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 600 pages
  • Publisher: Cemetery Dance Publications; Limited edition (August 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1881475409
  • ISBN-13: 978-1881475408
  • Product Dimensions: 1.8 x 6.5 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,598,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Matthew King on January 28, 2006
Format: Paperback
Richard Laymon is easily one of the most prolific authors in horror fiction with over 50 titles published under his name. It's a bit surprising then that he has only written one series, the 3-volume Beast House chronicles, and given how good these beast house books are I certainly wish he had written other series. But hey, at least we have Beast House. This is the series that kicked off with 1980's cult classic "The Cellar", which also happens to be Richard's first-ever novel. He followed up that classic with 1985's "The Beast House" an atmospheric but ultimately rather disappointing sequel. The third novel, "The Midnight Tour" undoes the wrongs of the second novel to give us a vastly superior sequel. It's also the biggest beast house book, clocking in at over 530 pages in length which is roughly the size of the two previous installments combined. Despite the length, I can guarantee you that the pages will fly by to no end should you give this one a try.

"The Midnight Tour" takes place in 1997, roughly twenty years after the events in "The Cellar". By now, the beast house is a national attraction, drawing in tourists from all over the united states. Novels have been written about beast house, a string of cheesy horror films have been made based loosely on Beast House. And the Beast House has changed a lot from its humble beginnings as a tacky tourist trap. It's still tacky of course but now on a much bigger scale. You can visit the Beast House museum, buy Beast House t-shirts or savour some Bacon Beastburgers or Red-Hot Beastie Weenies at the Beast House snack stand. The day tours have also become more sophisticated, as you can now get an audio guided tour on earphones. But there is one Beast House tour to end all Beast House tours: The Midnight Tour.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Kindle edition is a topaz file that has been made by scanning pages from the book. The letters look more like blobs than text. For some reason the sample looks nice and crisp, which could be considered false advertising, as the text of the actual ebook looks nothing like it. This is a substandard product. More care should have been taken when converting this title.
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"The Midnight Tour" is the third book in Richard Laymon's infamous Beast House saga, following "The Cellar" and "The Beast House". The narrative cuts between two points in time: in 1980, with Sandy, the brainwashed young lady from the first two books, who is now raising the infant son of one of her Beast lovers; and 1997, where the Beast House has become a tourist attraction run by Janice (the daughter of the motel owners from the previous books). In the 1980 storyline, Sandy flees Malcasa Point after killing a film director who attempts to rape her, and struggles to live a normal life while taking care of Eric, her Beast baby. In the 1997 storyline, the character Dana is recently hired to work as a guide at the Beast House, and is staying with Tuck, the stepdaughter of Janice. At the same time, Owen is visiting the Beast House with his despised girlfriend Monica, and soon becomes obsessed with Dana. Dana, however, falls for Warren, who works at the Beast House's diner. Strange occurrences start to happen at the Beast House, and Dana and Tuck begin to suspect a prowler around their home.

As I began reading, I figured this would be an entertaining entry to the series, just like the previous two books were. As I continued reading, the book started to become testing. Then it became annoying. Then it became a chore to read. Finally I was rolling my eyes at literally every chapter. My wife could see my reactions, and asked why I was still reading. By that point, I was almost done, so I decided to wade through and just finish it.

Part of the problem is the plethora of storylines, some of which are more interesting than others. You have Dana and Tuck's friendship. Then you have Owen and Monica. Then you have Owen and Dana.
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I am always entertained when I read one of Laymon's books and I am a HUGE fan of the Beast House series. BUT, first of all this Kindle edition is so full of typos that it became difficult to decipher at times. I'm talking about 5 typos on about every page!
My biggest complaint was the ending. The book is well over 550 pages and the ending is so rushed? Why? (SPOILER!!!!!) Also, I'm confused about the beast: if Dana gutted and killed Eric at the Beast House- who kidnaps and rapes her at the end? Has to be Eric because we get a few pages from his POV as he is lurking around the pool, right? So who did she kill and was Sandy/Eve crying bc she was happy he was dead or because she was glad it wasn't Eric? I reread the end twice and still don't know...but maybe that's the point? With Laymon, you just never know.
Anyway, I love this series and still recommend it but not my fave installment.
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Why wasn't this whole crazy family arrested and the house knocked down after book 2? I mean...they're known for kidnapping and rape and why didn't Janice recognize Sandy from book 2? This is just like asking for trouble to have these people still around when they're known for breeding monsters.

It's just the unbelievability of the book is too much for me. I couldn't swallow it.
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