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Wanted Undead or Alive: Vampire Hunters and Other Kick-Ass Enemies of Evil Paperback – September 1, 2010
All Books, All the Time
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From Publishers Weekly
Maberry (Marvel Zombies Return) and thriller writer Bashman's closeup look at the inevitable battle between good and evil spans decades upon decades of rich monster history, beginning with the definition of evil itself. Illustrations and interviews with top publishing, film, and comic industry names, such as Stan Lee, Jason Aaron, John Carpenter, add depth and intellect to a gripping and informative work. Lists of top villains and horror genre movies serve as appendixes and added entertainment value. Encyclopedic chapter insets offer bits and pieces of information and history on subjects ranging from the "Necronomicon" (the Lovecraftian "ancient and evil book of sorcery") to ghosts and the definition of fear: "In modern speech the word ÿfear' refers to emotions; but in Old English ÿfaer' refers to the specific ÿperil or danger' and not the emotional reaction." With its presentation of the story of evil through straight history, factual tidbits, and pop culture, this book is the horror genre fan's best friend. No stone is left unturned in Maberry and Bashman's fantastic and inventive approach to the world's oldest war. 8 pages of color and 40 b&w images.
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Top customer reviews
This book is full of interesting information about the paranormal, fictional as well as real life monsters, and folklore among other things. Artwork from various sources is included throughout the book.
One chapter I enjoyed in particular was 'Legendary Heroes'. They discuss several different heroes from the fictional ones, James Bond to Rocky Balboa to Indiana Jones, to real life heroes like Mother Teresa and Rosa Parks.
'We all love a good hero-a champion who triumphs over obstacles, who perseveres when hope seems lost, and who manages, somehow, to emerge a better person on the other end of the struggle.'
Another interesting chapter was 'Who You Gonna Call?' which centered on ghosts and hauntings. Famous haunts such as the Bell Witch and Lizzie Borden's house are discussed as well as techniques and equipment used on ghost hunts.
There is a chapter devoted to demonic possession and exorcism and the different types of rituals different cultures and religions use to get rid of evil spirits. Another chapter discusses weapons used to fight evil, such as amulets and charms. There are a few chapters devoted to different kinds of vampires and vampire history as well as famous vamp slayers like Buffy and Van Helsing.
One chapter is about serial killers and how they are evil real life monsters. I was kind of reading this chapter with just one eye open since I was a bit squeamish about the topic. But the serial killer issue is one that is morbidly fascinating and I couldn't help but read on. They do list different serial killers and their crimes, and I was surprised to see some date back to as early as the 1700's.
I could really go on and on, this book is full of information about the paranormal, villains, heroes and monster folklore.
WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE: Vampire Hunters And Other Kick-Ass Enemies of Evil comes complete with a list of 100 top villains of all time. Who are the top three? 1. Darth Vader 2. Hannibal Lecter 3. Norman Bates.
I'd recommend this book to fans of horror and things that go bump in the night.
With chapter titles ranging from "It Didn't Start with Van Helsing" (covering vampire legends prior to Bram Stoker's famous creation) and "Who You Gonna Call?" (the ghost-hunting trade) to "The Roots of Good and Evil" (a brief overview of the nature of good and evil and why we are so fascinated by it) and "Spandex to the Rescue"(comic book heroes and villains), Maberry and Basham have managed to cover nearly ever "monster" of legend as well as the heroes (or superheroes) who try and defeat them.
And every chapter has commentary from such luminaries as director John Carpenter, actor Doug Jones, author Peter Straub and the legendary Stan Lee. The chapter covering "Real Evil" was particularly chilling with its Serial Killer Hall of Fame. There are also chapters covering "Skin Art" (former "Rue Morgue" editor-in-chief Jovanka Vuckovic's tattoos are prominently covered here), role-playing games, horror games that became films such as "Resident Evil" series, the "Bloodrayne" series and "Silent Hill". There are even appendices covering the Top 100 Villains of All Time (care to guess who is Number One), Spirit Superstitions and the Top 40 Genre Movies of All Time (with categories of Top Ten Vampire, Werewolf, Demon and Ghost Films).
This is a great reference for all horror-lovers. Maberry and Basham have done a commendable job trying, in 366 pages, to explain the eternal battle of good versus evil and in a way modern day readers can understand. The book also includes 40 illustrations and an 8-page color insert with art from, among others, David Leri, the covers of Marvel Horror Comics, Patrick Don Maitz and Peter Mihaichuk.
Definitely check this book out.