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Vampyrrhic [Paperback]

Simon Clark
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Those Wacky Vampires Jan. 29 2010
By Jonathan Stover TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
An interesting vampire novel with a number of flaws, none of them fatal. Clark manages to work two of the main types of vampires -- the seductive and the disgusting -- into the same narrative, as part of the same species which ultimately has a magical and not a scientific rationale. And the magical rationale seems to be pretty much original to Clark, playing as it does with Norse mythology and not the more usual Eastern European, Greek or Chinese suspects.

A number of good setpieces are occasionally offset by sudden shifts into what I can only describe as Evil Dead 2 territory, the most glaringly offputting of which is a lengthy battle in a tunnel system beneath a small British town, a battle complete with chainsaw-wielding heroes and hordes of hungry vampires that resembles nothing so much as an Evil Dead battle waged in the steam tunnels of Doom 2.

But there are also a lot of pleasures here -- the opening chapter is a doozy, and is filmic in a good way, and many of Clark's ideas about vampires are a refreshing change from the Ann Rice school of sexy dead people. Clark's sexy vampires are nonetheless, objectively speaking, somewhat disgusting -- it's their powers that make them sexy, which isn't a far cry from the standard Eastern European vampire who avoided mirrors not because vampires didn't appear in them, but because a vampire's true, rotting, corpse-like form was revealed in those mirrors for all to see -- and fear.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An Army That Marches On Its Teeth May 16 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
A young doctor returns to the town where is family lived for a 1000 years, a young woman imagines evil that stalks the halls at night. An innkeeper struggles to keep dark secrets under lock and key. And a vicious killer discovers he has a purpose. Today is their last chance to end an ancient bargain or see the world overrun with endless death.
David Leppington is the doctor, returning to the town of the same name, where he learns of a bargain once made by Thor with his family in exchange for the destruction of Christendom at the hands of an undead army. Together with Bernice Mochardi, Electra Charnwood and Maximillian Hart he finds himself confronted with the remnants of that ancient bargain - vampire-like creatures that are even harder to kill than the creatures they are modeled on.
The story is told in the dark halls and cellars of the Station Hotel, and in the web of caves that underlay Leppington. It is a claustrophobic story, with no great arched rooms for ceremonies. Nor are the vampires noble creatures of the night. They only pause in their diet of animal blood from the town's slaughterhouses to vary their diet with human victims. Just a black hunger waiting to spread itself across the landscape.
Simon Clarke applies a great deal of imagination to the challenge of creating a 'different' vampire tale and almost succeeds completely. Norse vampires of any sort are a rarity, and the legends and reality that Leppington struggles with are a far cry from the foes of Buffy or Van Helsing. The plot moves a bit slowly, some repeated violence beyond what is needed, but is mechanically sound.
For some reason that is hard to pin down, it never achieves the magnetic quality of great horror.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A jolting read that's not for the faint of heart June 29 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Simon Clark's "Vampyrrhic" may be one of the better vampire novels of recent years! Clark (who has yet to write even a mediocre book, in my opinion) has put together a wonderful plot with interesting characters. The book revolves around the return of Dr. David Leppington to his birthplace, Leppington, England. As he begins to interact with some of the locals at the hotel of the mysterious Electra Charnwood and finds out more about his former hometown, he begins to recollect some long-buried memories about his past. Shortly after, David meets with his uncle George who fills him in on his family's dark past and most terrible secrets. Secrets that contain stories about their family's interaction with Norse gods and a hidden vampire army waiting to be led toward world domination by a direct descendant of the Leppington family. That family member, course, is David Leppington.
When David refuses to lead the vampire army, all hell literally breaks loose. Local townspeople begins to mysteriously disappear at night and soon the vampires turn their sights on eliminating David and new band of friends. One of these friends, Jack Black, is one of the more novel characters that I've seen in recent years. He is portrayed as a psychopath with a heart of gold. And, while it's a little more than confusing as to why he changes his "stripes" in mid-book to become a hero, he is nonetheless an interesting part of the novel.
A warning should be prominently displayed to the reader at this point in the review: If you are the squeamish-type, you may want to avoid this book!...Don't say that you haven't been warned.
I continue to be impressed with the writing of Simon Clark! He's created a memorable novel in "Vampyrrhic". And evidently, he liked the work as well because a sequel to this book is in the works. If you liked "Salem's Lot" then you'll love "Vampyrrhic". Just make sure that you've got a lot of garlic around when you read it!!
STRONGLY RECOMMENDED
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4.0 out of 5 stars 'England gave another horror writer!' Jan. 27 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The best vampire book is 'Dracula'. Peter Straub did not write any book on vampire or warewolf; not that he can not; he is one of the best there and he can WRITE but I think he does not want to write or put it this way' he wants to write horror without vampire and warewolves! and we all know he doing good. King wrote 'night flier'and salem's lot' and they were real good, fresh look at vampire. Now a days I see lots of books with vampire as a good guy! and they migt be good books. But If you want to read vampire book in old fashion way then read this. Clark is a damn good writer and if you read 'darkness demands' you will have to go out and take a walk to get yourself out of the scare, really that scary. For some reason there are more authors from England who writes good horror books; why? because London is foggy, more castle, more falklore. USA also have King,Straub who are real good. Well, This book has some graphic stuff and reads well. I will not give away plot or anything. Even if you dont like 'vampire horror' [ I dont like it because tooo many goody vampire are out there!], read this if you like horror. Welcome Clark.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars I love this book!
This book was stolen from me when I was younger and I had a hard time finding it locally. I was so happy I was able to purchase this book from Amazon.
Published 12 months ago by Sarah
5.0 out of 5 stars "They are night-seers and necromantic in their arts."
Simon Clark's spin on vampires is amazingly original, taking the monster that's been dumbed down to a sexual fetish and turning it back into the snarling, frightening beast it once... Read more
Published on June 24 2004 by Ryan Costantino
5.0 out of 5 stars Creepy, bloody, biting fun!
This is the first book I've read of Simon Clark's, and I was thirsty for more! What a fun and creepy read! It's an interesting take on the well-worn theme of vampires. Read more
Published on May 19 2004 by Minda Powers Douglas
4.0 out of 5 stars A solid effort
Vampyrrhic struck me as a little ponderous and wordy, but still a really good read. The book is clearly 'English' in style and tone, and lacks the relentless pulp drive of... Read more
Published on Nov. 25 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars A solid effort
Vampyrrhic struck me as a little ponderous and wordy, but still a really good read. The book is clearly 'English' in style and tone, and lacks the relentless pulp drive of... Read more
Published on Nov. 25 2002 by Reader/author
5.0 out of 5 stars Another gripping read by new master of horror
Now that Stephen King has announced his retirement, Clark is all set to take over as the new "grand-master of horror. Read more
Published on Nov. 25 2002 by Darren Jacks
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a run-of-the-mill vampire novel
I really enjoyed Vampyrrhic. It's one of those that it is probably best not to over-analyze, due to things like the insertion of Norse gods into the plot and the sociopath with a... Read more
Published on Oct. 26 2002 by ZombiKitty
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!
I finished reading this novel the other day. I'm American and I say American Horror writers should read this to get an idea of what the true horror reader likes. Read more
Published on Sept. 7 2002 by Snakeman
5.0 out of 5 stars British answer to Salem's Lot!
Simon Clark has written one of the most viscerally chilling vampire novels I've read in recent memory! Read more
Published on Aug. 12 2002 by Rodney Powell
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