Compendium Monstrum – Review

Compendium Monstrum – Review

Vampires, Werewolves and Zombies (oh my!) Three of the most famous monstrosities in history make up the meat of the Compendium Monstrum (CM). Alas, considerable focus is given over to vampires (about half the book) with the remainder being 60/40 split werewovles and zombies, respectively. Given that this is Zombie Command however, means we will focus on the zombies (they’re more interesting anyhow.)

The book is small, about the size of a tiny address book. which makes it perfect for carrying around as a quick reference in case you bump into the undead and need to brush up. A great amount of detail was put into the look of the CM. It has the appearance and feel of an old-time journal, with spots for notes and fold out maps. The illustrations look as though they were pulled from someone sketching in the field.

Compendium Monstrum page example

The CM content is written as a reference manual on zombies, basically commentary on the history of the undead and cultural takes regarding dealing with them along with zombie indicators and identifiers, funerary customs and the like. It is very easy to read, as it’s laid out much like the “For Dummies” series of books, with information given in brief chunks for easy digestion. The information is definitely interesting (I really enjoyed the section on Haitian voodoo zombie history), but the writing style was a bit jumpy. It would switch between being written in a style of a serious source on the unead to making random comical asides.

I’m a fan of humor, but it didn’t seem to work with the way the book was being presented. The writing style and the look/feel of the book as a whole didn’t seem to jive. It would have been better to have maybe one bit of humor, but make an effort to sell the book as an authentic monster journal to be taken seriously.

I enjoyed the book as a quick read, although it was a little too quick of a read. Because of its size, both physical and content length, I would not have purchased this for myself unless it was on sale. That’s not to say it isn’t entertaining and doesn’t have its place. I think it would make a great stocking stuffer or a gift for one of the early days of Hannukah. It’s a good quick gift for someone that you know likes horror or monsters and you’re just not sure what to get them.

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I'm a southern belle from Atlanta, Georgia with a taste for the dark, strange and macabre. Co-author of The Bloody Blondes' Blog, I love to discuss horror movies with anyone willing to join me. KGLucas can be found over on Twitter.

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Comments (1)

 

  1. Livi says:

    Hi – we’ve recently created a zombie website http://www.zombiesdefined.com – it’s still early days and a lot of sections are still under construction, but we’d really appreciate it if you could check it out an let us know what you think. Also would it be possible for you to link our site ? We would of course return the favour and link your own !
    Hope to hear from you,
    Livi
    (ZombiesDefined)

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