Short Synopsis (Goodreads): While Dr. Warthrop is attempting to disprove that Homo vampiris, the vampire, could exist, his former fiancÉe asks him to rescue her husband, who has been captured by a Wendigo—a creature that starves even as it gorges itself on human flesh. Although Dr. Warthrop considers the Wendigo to be fictitious, he relents and performs the rescue—and then sees the man transform into a Wendigo. Can the doctor and Will Henry hunt down the ultimate predator, who, like the legendary vampire, is neither living nor dead, and whose hunger for human flesh is never satisfied? This second book in The Monstrumologist series explores the line between myth and reality, love and hate, genius and madness.
My Review: The Curse of the Wendigo is an engrossing read... pun intended. This series is not for the faint of heart (I'm a little afraid of the dark again now) but it's characterization is worth it, and truly, it is fantastic storytelling.
We are first introduced to the contentious pair of Doctor Pellinor Warthrop and his young assistant William James Henry, or just Will Henry for short, in The Monstrumologist. I didn't really much like the Doctor then, though I did warm up to him towards the end, but Will Henry I loved from the start and love even more after reading this book.
He is such a young boy, but he tries, and he is truly one of the most long suffering characters I have ever read. I sometimes forget his youth with the things that he has to face, and then when I remember it, I am surprised (well, not really, when you know the character of Will Henry) that he doesn't go mad. Grown men break sooner than he does and he has to put up with a lot more. He is just amazing.
Part of the monstrumologists power I think, is that he is so hard to convince sometimes of the reality of something. Where others might give into their fears, even before they have actual proof, he is almost madeningly obtuse. He is able to walk, sometimes bound, into the darkness not because he is naieve, but because he knows so much and can do so much. I am always impressed with how physical the doctor can be. He is who I would want by my side if I had to go through a dangerous part of the woods because he is both knowledgable and capable. Though intensely frustrating at times as well.
And the relationship between Will Henry and the Monstrumologist is an onion if I ever did see one! There is so much depth and hidden currents and tension there. They need each other, and yet cannot stand each other sometimes. Very well written, very very well written.
It's one of those types of books that you want to read quickly so that the scary things are resolved, but at the same time, it's one of those books that CAN be read quickly because it is so engrossing and so well written that it draws you in, and even though you're nervous of what you'll find, you can't help but go forward.
It is horrifying and yet makes you think as well. Not necessarily about the depravity of the human condition, though there is that as well, but about relationships. How we accept or push away those around us, what we choose to do to those we love and those we hate. This is a very deep book. It had its humorous times as well, but wow, just wow.
I was browsing suvudu and came across this post about a new project that Neil Gaiman is working on called A Calendar of Tales. I wish I had known about it sooner, but am glad I found out about it when I did. I think that Neil Gaiman is a very interesting and a creative writer and think it's fantastic the way he is opening up this creative process to include all of us.
What he says about it is so inspiring, too. Things like:
"There are lots of artists in the world. But there is only one you."
"If you decide not to make things, all you've done is deprive the world of all the stuff only you could have brought to it."
Doesn't that just make you want to go out and write and create and be awesome?
I've only just discovered this and so am still learning about all that this project encompasses, but it is going on now, so YOU can be a part of it as well!