Flesh and Blood

If you are looking for a good horror read, Graham Masterton is always the way to go for me…now I hear you say…wait I thought he wrote sex instructional manuals.  Well you would be correct.  He has indeed written “How to drive your man wild in bed” and “Wild sex for new lovers” and his highly sexual writing does penetrate through his horror writing too.

I picked this book up at a boot sale when I was in my early 20s, the book was battered and obviously well read and in all honesty I was just looking for something what wasn’t Stephen King to read while I was on holiday.  At the high price of 20p I thought I would give it a go.

From the outset the book is gripping.  The writing is really easy to read and it starts you right in the middle of the action.  There are multiple story lines in this book, which all come together in an amazing peak in a style that twists and turns the reader.  There is not one chapter in this book that I got bored in and I think I managed to read the book within about a day and a half, which didn’t bode well for the people I was on holiday with or for the rest of my holiday reading, but it was such a page turner.

Since that first reading (and a good many years) I have read this book several times, each time I find a different angle in the characterisations which I hadn’t previously considered.  The plots are fairly complicated and at points you wonder how he is ever going to bring the seemingly disparate things together, yet they are brought together and tied up so as not to leave you guessing.

Now if you have read any of my other posts, you may have realised that I like the more bizarre side of life, being drawn to darker films and books, so the premise of a Czech folk story about a green traveller really drew me in to this book.  This folk story seems to be part made up and part based on different stories from different cultures, but I loved in none the less.  The green man is a little bit like the leader of the 4 horse man of the apocalypse, he’s got a cape (of sorts) made of sage leaves and an entourage made up of the leper, the witness, the swordsman, the doctor, knife and naked…and man alive you do not want a visit from these guys.  If they come knocking at your door, they really want to eat the guts of your first born to then bless you with a good harvest…

The book throws you in at a mid point, which is Terrance (a seemingly obsessed man with this story as he believes he is a decendant of the green traveller) and the opening scene of the book is where his insanity has peaked and he is trying to kill all his children and himself to “save them”.

Mean while in a lab not too far away, scientist are working on a breed of super hog (I can never remember why).

In a bedroom somewhere the resident animal activist is having some crazy sex with the senator in an effort to get her dreams of animal laws out in to action….oh and did I mention she was raised by hogs…? 

The children do not survive and die in a horrendous fashion (if you like gore, you really won’t be disappointed by Masterton’s writing), and the brain of the youngest is whisked over to the hog lab so it can be spliced in to the brain of their biggest prize hog (yes I can feel disaster coming). They really wanted a child’s brain so that they could teach the hog different things, little did they realise that it was a traumatised brain AND the off spring of a decendant of a mythical gut eating entity.

This outlines of some of the story but doesn’t really scratch the surface, and all I can do is hope I have inspired anyone reading this to pick up the book and give it a go.

I am sure if this was made in to a film, it would be a pretty bad B movie, none the less it’s a great, gory, easy read.

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