A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny

(No Series)

Loyally accompanying a mysterious knife-wielding gentleman named Jack on his midnight rounds through the murky streets of London, good dog Snuff is busy helping his master collect the grisly ingredients needed for an unearthly rite that will take place not long after the death of the moon. But Snuff and his master are not alone. All manner of participants, both human and not, are gathering with their ancient tools and their animal familiars in preparation for the dread night. It is brave, devoted Snuff who must calculate the patterns of the Game and keep track of the Players—the witch, the mad monk, the vengeful vicar, the Count who sleeps by day, the Good Doctor and the hulking Experiment Man he fashioned from human body parts, and a wild-card American named Larry Talbot—all the while keeping Things at bay and staying a leap ahead of the Great Detective, who knows quite a bit more than he lets on.

I'm a Universal Monster nut. I have the stuffed animal collection, the silver screen box, key chains, artwork for the poster of The Creature from the Black Lagoon signed by the artist (and autographs from Ricou Browning and Julie Adams from a convention on it years later), a few other collectables, the collector box set with statues of Dracula, Frankenstein and The Wolf Man...I'd have much more but, you know, I'm poor.

This book gets brownie points just for including some of these characters. My heart went aflutter seeing the names Count and Larry Talbot. Being told through the points of views of the animals was just another cherry on top of the sundae.

It's a quick read with odd artwork. It's not a children's tale because of the language and content but parts of it reads like one. I think it's because it's capturing the magic of youth and adulthood all in one, something we never really outgrow.

Despite how much I loved about the book, my enjoyment comes to a 3.5 star rating. Not to sound dense, but a lot of the story confused me to tears. There were some parts that dragged a bit as well. I did dig the twist at the end with the count and also loved Jack and his scenes of saving his faithful hound.

Recommended for everyone - Halloween or any time of the year, young or old.

   Book Quotes:

“I took Jack his slippers this evening and lay at his feet before a roaring fire while he smoked his pipe, sipped sherry, and read the newspaper. He read aloud everything involving killings, arsons, mutilations, grave robberies, church desecrations, and unusual thefts. It is very pleasant just being domestic sometimes.”