Sunday, October 18, 2015

Book Review: Kraken by M. Caspian

KrakenFrom the blurb:

Kraken: A gothic horror with tentacle non-con.
When boyfriend Parker gives him an ultimatum Will never dreams his heart is about to be ripped out: move to a remote off-shore island with him, or call it quits. But Will picks wrong, and now he’s heading into the unknown to fix his mistake. But why do the locals think they recognise him? And why can’t he seem to leave?
Reader advisory: This work of fiction contains explicit sexual activities between men that may offend some people. It also contains scenes of rape, extreme violence, tentacles, and reference to sexual abuse of children.

Rosa's rating:

Surprisingly, amazingly, I really liked it.

Well, maybe you're not surprised or amazed, but I am. I do not like horror. I've given drunken speeches at parties and sober speeches to friends on Goodreads about how I don't like horror. Horror as a genre actually pisses me off a little. Here's why--this is also known as my super sad story about what I like to call the Worst Halloween EVER, or, why I hate my ex and Sarah Michelle Gellar equally:

Because that ass (the ex) made me spend money I didn't have (I was unemployed at the time) on a "sexy" witch costume (someone please shoot me in the damn head) and go with his idiot friend and his idiot child bride to see Sarah Michelle Gellar in The Grudge at the Gateway Mall Cinema 17 in Springfield, OR on October 31st, 2004 .

That movie was stupid, okay? And the costume was massively uncomfortable, and I wasn't going to buy a strapless bra just for one bloody evening so my straps were showing, and I am not Erin Brockovich and yeah, I realize no one really made me be there, and I could've said no, but I was trying to be nice to the ex's idiot friends, which really did not work out well, and I do not get why it's so awesome to see a movie where everyone DIES. There has to a point, a reason, a person to root for who is not a FUCKING MORON and that person was not Sarah Michelle Gellar, let me tell you.

Like I said, a tragic tale. Anyway, it wasn't like that experience turned me off horror forever, it's just that I was always kind of meh over the genre as a whole. And after that night, anytime anyone says the word "horror" in relation to a book, movie or TV show all I hear is We should see The Grudge on Halloween! It'll be fun! and I feel pissed off and start wishing I had a handy screwdriver to gouge out my eyes. And by the way, Sarah Michelle Gellar, if we ever meet in person I WANT MY FUCKING MONEY BACK. *nods*

That is a really long introduction to why I liked this book, but hell with it, I needed to get that off my chesticles. Also, I do have a point and it's this: I think it's time to redefine my definition of "horror." Because apparently I not only enjoy vampires and werewolves and serial killers and will happily eat dinner while watching a zombie chew out the innards of an old man, but I also enjoy erotic horror with tentacle rape.

After all, the horror genre encapsulates Gothic fiction (or maybe that's the other way round--whatever), which I absolutely adore. From The Castle of Otranto to Jane Eyre to Dracula to Rebecca to the crappy paperback copies of Victoria Holt novels I found at my local library when I was a kid--I love that genre.

And this is it! Here is my point! Kraken is an awesome example of a modern Gothic romance. Or, really, modern Gothic fiction with some romance thrown in. (I even put in bold so we can all remember there is an actual purpose to this "review.") We have the naive young Will, off to visit his boyfriend on a mysterious island, which is filled with oddly friendly but mysterious and creepy locals who know things but refuse to share with our Will. There are plenty of warnings that maybe this trip isn't the best idea but does our Will pay any attention? Heck no! What fun would that be? By the way, Will goes out of his way to inform us that he's not only plain, but boring (and really, I can't find it in me to disagree with his self-assessment), and yet not one but two men (maybe three?) find him absolutely irresistible. And then more and more creepy shit happens, tension mounts, weird shit happens, Will over and over proves that he's a few noodles short of a full chow mein and did I mention the tentacle rape? 'Cause that was all kinds of awesome noncon disturbing as fuck goodness.

Okay, I think I've exhausted my word bank for today. Final verdict: whether you're in the mood for a horror novel, tentacle porn or a fantastic example of modern Gothic fiction--READ THIS.

Buy the book:

Thanks for reading my review!

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