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BOOK REVIEW: FTN reviews A Field Guide to Vampires: (And Other Creatures of Satan) by Gianna Sobol and Michael McMillian

November 11th, 2013 by Big Phil Comments

A Field Guide to Vampires: (And Other Creatures of Satan)
Authors: Gianna Sobol and Michael McMillian
144 pages
Chronicle Books (November 26, 2013)

Not everybody likes the vampires, werewolves, faeries and other supernatural creatures that call Bon Temps, Louisiana home. The sweet-talking, bible-thumping, vamp-hating Steve Newlin leads the charge. In this hilarious scrapbook, Steve records all he knows about these ‘Creatures of Satan.’ Through kidnapping and torturing ‘supes,’ Steve has figured out a lot – their strengths, their weaknesses, their bylaws and, of course, how to kill them. Sadly, Steve’s journal was stolen by Fangtasia vampires Pam and Eric who have defaced it in a most disrespectful (and snarky) manner. Recreated here for True Blood fans to savour, The Field Guide to Vampires is packed with untold insight into our favourite tv characters, along with cast photos, recreated letters, postcards, handwritten notes and Steve’s own idle doodles in a scrapbook that perfectly captures the tongue-in-cheek camp that makes True Blood such a widely watched show.

True Blood, the television show, is a tongue-in-cheek horror-esque show which is high on humour, gore and sex. A Field Guide to Vampires: (And Other Creatures of Satan) is equally high on humour and offers an insight to the horror side of the various creatures, though thankfully it leaves out much of the sexual side to the show.

Each character is devoted a page or so on their biography, which provides a polaroid size photograph of the character (and the actor portraying them), some insight into their past and a brief synopsis of where they are in the show, oh and more importantly, how to kill or dispose of them.

The book has been written by Steve Newlin, who fans of the show will instantly recognise; he was at one point the Bible thumping leader of the Fellowship of the Sun, a group who wanted to take direct action against the forces of Vampires.

Unlucky for Steve however, is that this manual of sorts, has been stolen by Eric and Pam. These two (wonderful vampire characters) have decided to have a little fun at Steve’s expense and have de-faced his manual on dealing death.

The book itself is quite funny and the hand-drawn and crude pictures do provide the humour in this otherwise insightful and interesting “manual” on how to kill creatures of the night. The authors have taken the great points that make the show so successful and worked them into this better than average tv tie-in.

The only problem I found was the age group that the book was aimed at. Its writing and humour make it a little boring for the mature adult fans who would prefer more insight into the show’s creative juices (so to speak), and yet, the book is quite firmly aimed at the teenager market, which is strange seeing at the show is strictly adults only.

A Field Guide to Vampires: (And Other Creatures of Satan) is certainly a fun read and will surely keep fans chuckling until the final season airs; just remember to have your stakes, garlic and silver chains with you at all times!


3 out of 5 Nerds

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I arrived on Earth in 1977 and have virtually devoted my entire existence to cult films, television programmes and cartoons. I am a very big fan of Star Wars and Star Trek; I may struggle with foreign languages but I can order live Gagh in Klingon! I’m the Nerd that knows the trivia but I’m hopeless at sport!

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