My Year in Reading: Cassie-la’s October 2015 Wrap Up

October 2015 Book Wrap Up

The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood

While not my favorite Atwood novel, her latest speculative fiction tale about a crumbling America was not my least favorite of her many works either. The despicable characters may make it a tough read, but Atwood’s touches of dark humor combined with her world building are the real stars of the story. [READ FULL REVIEW]

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Shirley Jackson writes superbly tense gothic horror and We Have Always Lived in the Castle is no exception. Unlike the much more well-known The Haunting of Hill House, her last novel revolving around a family murdered by poisoned sugar explores how houses can become haunted by their human occupants.

The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich

I was really excited to read this horror novel, which combines diary entries, interviews and transcripts to tell a story about two girls who share the same body. I go into this book way more in-depth in the first meeting of the Spines with Wines book club, but it didn’t exactly live up to my expectations. [WATCH BOOK CLUB DISCUSSION]

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I, Frankenstein…’s Monster: Cassie-la Watches ‘I, Frankenstein’ So You, Frankenstein Don’t Have To

I Frankenstein PosterBookFrankenstein by Mary Shelley
Movie: I, Frankenstein
Genre: Fiction, horror, science fiction, paranormal, supernatural, demons, the worst CGI to ever CGI
Rating: 1.8 out of 5 stars (movie), 3.8 out of 5 stars (book)

Summary: What happened to Frankenstein’s monster at the end of Mary Shelley’s classic tale of gothic horror? Did he kill himself as promised, or did he end up caught in the middle of a never-ending war between gargoyles and demons. Obviously it’s the latter, because of course it is. 200 years later the Creature must stop a demon prince from recreating Victor Frankenstein’s life-reanimating experiments and find out once and for all who the real Frankenstein is. Is it you Frankenstein? Is it me Frankenstein?

I have been wanting to watch the surely cinematic masterpiece that is I, Frankenstein for a while now. 1. Because why the fuck is it called I, Frankenstein and 2. Because how can something get a worse Rotten Tomatoes rating than both After Earth and The Last Airbender?

Sadly, I was not able to watch the Spanish language version Yo, Frankenstein which is the actual title and not a joke I just made up.

One thing becomes immediately apparent less than five minutes into the film: it’s really a shame Mary Shelley cut the entire Frankenstein’s monster versus demons versus gargoyles subplot from her gothic novel.

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The “Lizzie Bennet Diaries” Next Project is Going to Be Called “Frankenstein M.D.”

Frankenstein MD

Pemberley Digital, the team who brought us The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Emma Approved (not to mention whatever Welcome to Sanditon was) has announced their newest project Frankenstein M.D.

That’s right, Frankenstein M.D., a gender-swapped take on the classic story of Frankenstein.

It will produced with help from PBS Digital Studios. Moving on up!

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Master of Japanese Horror Manga: Cassie-la’s Author Spotlight on Junji Ito

Museum of Terror, Uzumaki, and Gyo by Junji Ito
Genre: Fiction, manga, gothic, horror, apocalyptic, not going to be able to sleep for weeks
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Summary: Suburban Japanese town has strange event that eventually pits its attractive main female character in the middle of a horrifying and unhappy conclusion. This could include being so beautiful that men can’t help but chop her up into little pieces, an overabundance of a spiral shape that has disastrous consequences, and being stricken with a horrible disease that involves sea creatures overtaking land.

Contrary to popular belief (specifically what 4chan teaches you) manga is not just about tentacle rape, effeminate boys kissing each other, endless quests- not necessarily for jewel shards, and girls with penises.

One author who does not perpetuate this stereotype is Junji Ito, who writes some of the most entertaining gothic stories I have ever read (Japanese or otherwise). If Poe and HP Lovecraft had a baby, and that baby was inundated with Japanese culture and kept in a small box for a large majority of its childhood, that baby would be Junji Ito. As evidenced from my summary, all three of the manga series I will be discussing have the same basic format, but the plots are so different and strange that the basic structure is anything but tiring and repetitive. Suffice it to say, they’re all fucked up in their own unique way.

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