Dr. Spencer Black spent his childhood grave robbing with his father to help supply the local med school with specimen to practice on. Naturally, he went on to medical school himself when he grew up. He became a great doctor who specialized in the mutated growth of human beings. Sometime during his practice he began to suspect that they weren’t mutations after all but residual genes from animals we all thought were mythical. To prove his theory, he started on a dark path of secret surgeries, manipulation, and insanity.
The last half of the book are Dr. Black’s anatomical drawings – amazingly detailed – of the creatures he is convinced are not mythical, including harpies, minotaurs, dragons, etc.
While reading this book, I kept thinking that it would make a great History Channel documentary. Tom Waits would be the perfect guy to create a soundtrack for it.
The first time I read this book I was probably about 12 and it was one of the first fantasy books I had ever read. I can’t say that this was THE book that got me hooked on the fantasy genre – I’m not sure if there was just one – but it was definitely one that stayed in my memory for all these years. It was well worth the re-read.
The asteroid is coming. It’s getting closer. Only a few more months before it hits. Humanity is changing…
You know the end of the world disaster stories where everyone is living normally one day but then the next it’s a race to survive… Or the post-apocalyptic stories where the race to survive moment is over and communities and laws have already formed and a new normal becomes the way of life… well, this book tells a completely different story.
It’s not a race to survive. There is no rebuilding or planning for the future – everyone knows they will more than likely die when the asteroid hits – or soon after. There is no hope, for most.
Former Detective Hank Palace stays sane by creating his own hope. Even though he was fired from the police department – times have changed, nobody needs a detective any more – he decides to take on a missing person case. His old babysitter is frantically trying to find her husband who she claims just disappeared one day. He tries to convince her that he probably went bucket list along with thousands of other people, but she insists that’s not true. The further he investigates, the more he believes her and starts looking in earnest.
This is a great story that shows strength of character and perseverance even though most of humanity has lost hope. I give Countdown City by Ben Winters 5 out of 5 stars.
I received two bits of great news today and I’m not sure which makes me happier.
One: My Federal income tax refund is on it’s way to my bank!
Two: A copy of the The Resurrectionist is on it’s way to my mail box!
If I could, I would be doing back flips right now. Here is a photo of an octopus. It’s obvious that he shares my joy.
Book 2 in the Tales from Lovecraft Middle School series was just as fun as the first.
Robert and his friends find out more behind the mystery and magic of Tillinghast Manor. One of the Slither Sisters is running for class president – will she lead all her classmates to their doom if she is elected? Will Robert and his friends find a way to stop her?
I can’t wait for book 3 to come out!