_Night of the Living Dead_/_The Dead Next Door_ Double Take

Hello Dear Reader,

I’ve been busy these past few days, no, not busy doing the writing I’ve been trying to do all summer… I’ll get to that today… er… after I write this epistle to you.

Yesterday I spent most of the day trying to put together my reader materials for ENGL193: Detective Fiction, which I will begin teaching for Summer Session B in a few weeks here at UCSB.

After realizing a) that I was trying to do too much and b) completely revamping the course to be about gothic detection or outbreak narratives were out of the question at this point, I packed it up and came home to watch some good ol’ zombie movie-age and ease my troubled mind.

Having rewatched Night of the Living Dead two nights ago, last night I — and my girlfriend and frolleague co-spectators — settled on J.R. Bookwalter’s blood-fest, The Dead Next Door. I thought I’d take to the blog and give you some thoughts on them.

Reading Update/Mini-Review: _The History of Caliph Vathek_ by William Beckford

Dear Reader,

I’ve made my way through Vathek, which I had mixed feelings about. As a piece/parody of gothic literature, it was fairly interesting, but the characterization and plot were somewhat inconsistent — not that I was expecting gothic fiction to be the place for an unaporetic and well-sutured plot.

I found the oscillation between terror and intrigue throughout the text to be really interesting and fruitful, and the payoff at the end regarding hope was right up my (theoretical interest and research) alley.

It doesn’t hold a candle to Otranto in terms of tone or plot, but it was notably more adventurous and inspired.

I’ll probably alternate between mini-reviews like this, and the more developed format I used for Zone One. 

Expect reviews of Wyndham Lewis’s The Art of Being Ruled and Paul DeKruif’s legendary Microbe Hunters in the coming weeks.

PS don’t forget to do your own summer reading!