“I beheld the wretch — the miserable monster whom I had created.’

Every Thursday I go a travelling with the Fantasy Review Barn and various other wanderlusting and most excellent bloggers around the tropes of fantasy as part of Tough Travelling.  This week is all about monsters – rather appropriately timed given Halloween!:

‘MONSTERS are likely to lie in waste areas, caves, and old ruined cities. You can usually detect their presence by smell.’

Firstly – honorary mentions.  LoTR – so many to choose from Uruk Hai, Balrog, Cave Trolls, Shelob!  And, Harry Potter – Basilisk, Aragog – not to mention Fluffy – the huge ass three headed dog!

Moving on:

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – the Sleer.  This is a very creepy monster, it lives under a grassy hill in the graveyard.  It was abandoned there a very long time ago and awaits the return of it’s master. 

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer – the Crawler that lives in the Tower (which actually isn’t a tower at all but a staircase that winds down into the earth.

City of Stairs by Robert Bennett – the multi tentacled monster that goes on a killing spree round Bulikov.  Also, American Elsewhere by Robert J Bennett – there are plenty of strange and monster like characters in this book.  Particularly one that lives in a cave surrounded by tiny rabbit skulls – be afraid.

The Copper Promise by Jen Williams – Dragons!  Well, this dragon/divinity escapes from the caverns beneath the Citadel and takes an army of strange lizard like females on a march of terror across the land.

The Serpent of Venice by Christopher Moore – I loved this book.  The clue to the monster is in the title – a huge serpent in the canals of Venice!

That’s it for me this week.  Tell me all about your little monsters!

24 Responses to ““I beheld the wretch — the miserable monster whom I had created.’”

  1. jessicabookworm

    Shelob from Lord of the Rings is the monster that first came to mind. And without giving too much away there is a spider like monster in Stephen King’s The Dark Tower series too.

    • lynnsbooks

      One day I will definitely get round to the Dark Tower! Shelob is a really good addition I think and Aragog too.
      Lynn 😀

  2. Nathan

    Reminds me to request Serpent of Venice, have not read a Moore book for a while. And I am starting Annihilation today!

    Seems everyone added City of Stairs this week, I was left out of the planning meeting again.

    • lynnsbooks

      Haha – you mean you missed the ‘memo’!
      The Serpent of Venice was so good – I’ve just been checking out his other books which I will definitely go back and read – do you recommend the Fool?
      Lynn 😀

  3. Lisa (@TenaciousReader)

    Harry Potter is the only mention here I have read. But City of Stairs and American Elsewhere and Copper Promise are all my list!!

    • lynnsbooks

      I think you would love Copper Promise – well, I pretty much think you’d love the others too. But, Copper Promise is sort of really good fun as well as good fantasy. They’re all such huge books though – I think I’m going to narrow my chunksters down to one or two a month – otherwise I get behind with everything. American Elsewhere is massive – almost like reading two or three books in one go!
      Lynn 😀

  4. Bookwraiths

    The Graveyard Book by Gaiman looks interesting. Sounds like a creepy monster there.

    • lynnsbooks

      I love the Graveyard book. It’s absolutely amazing. I held off reading it for ages, mainly because it’s really a childrens book but then I just loved it. The Sleer is definitely creepy – well, the whole book is set in a graveyard after all with a young boy being looked after by ghosts!
      Lynn 😀

  5. hlmorris85

    Yes to Shelob. Can’t believe I forgot the giant friggin spider! Seeing a lot of City of Stairs, looks like an interesting book.

    • lynnsbooks

      City of Stairs really is an excellent book. I’ve read all of Bennett’s books and I keep thinking each one is excellent – and yet with each successive novel they get better and better – which, how is that possible when the earlier books are so damned good! I don’t know how he does it!
      Lynn 😀

  6. Rabindranauth

    Oh, the Sleer. That thing was pretty cool. Great list!

    • lynnsbooks

      The Sleer was such a strange monster – I still couldn’t exactly tell you what it is!
      Lynn 😀

  7. Mogsy @ BiblioSanctum

    Oh I loved the dragon in Copper Promise! Definitely a monster because it wasn’t just a dragon but also a very angry and very vengeful god of sorts.

    • lynnsbooks

      I know – and the army of lizard-like women! I loved Copper Promise.
      Lynn 😀

  8. Genki Jason

    Xenomorph from Alien and Pyramid Head from Silent Hill 2:

    Stuff of nightmares!

    • lynnsbooks

      yes, thanks for that clip – I’ll be sleeping with the lights on! No, only kidding – not that big a wimp – but OMG what is that thing!
      Lynn 😀

      • Genki Jason

        Pyramid Head from Silent Hill 2. He’s a boss character and to talk about him further is to give away one of the most sophisticated video game plots and narratives and I cannot do that. Suffice it to say that every time he appears is shocking and frightening!

      • lynnsbooks

        Yep – I got that part! ‘run away’
        Lynn 😀

      • Genki Jason

        Sometimes that’s all you can do. It’s made harder because you’re in a confined space and he has a huge butcher’s knife, like WHAT? 0_o

        Silent Hill 2 is one scary game and it works on both a visceral and psychological level. It has multiple endings including a “dog ending” which you might love.

      • lynnsbooks

        I can’t play or watch scary games. I don’t think of myself as being particularly squeamish or wimpy but there’s something more real feeling when it’s a game – probably because you’re playing using a character so it seems as though you’re being chased of killed!
        Lynn 😀

  9. Tammy

    You reminded me that I need to read American Elsewhere. Also I’m reading Annihilation next month for sure….ahhhh! Can’t wait, so glad they both have monsters in them!

    • lynnsbooks

      Annihilation is really creepy – and American Elsewhere has PLENTY of monsters!
      Lynn 😀

  10. Danya @ Fine Print

    Once again, top notch title! I love Frankenstein, it’s one of my favourite books. Good call with The Graveyard Book, too. Neil Gaiman knows all about monsters, that’s for sure.

    • lynnsbooks

      I love The Graveyard Book. Neil Gaiman has a wonderful, and on occasion dark and twisted, imagination. I love his books.
      Lynn 😀

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