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March 29, 2010 / schulerbooks

A Couple of Quick Hits – Recommended Reads!

Queen Victoria: Demon Hunter by A.E. Morrat

Following on the very successful heels of last year’s Quirk Classic release Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (graphic novel version due out on May 4. while the prequel PP&Z: Dawn of the Dreadfuls came out last week), this is one of a slew of revisionist horror/humor books recently released and yet to come. In this particular instance, the focus is Queen Victoria at the outset of her reign, but titles from a variety of the publishers include Android Karenina (the next Quirk Classic due on  June 8), Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Zombie Jim, and Mansfield Park and Mummies. The trend has just begun to be tapped.

Luckily, Q. V.: Demon Hunter doesn’t at all come off as some slapped-together attempt to cash in, but rather as an entertaining, fast-paced chapter of history with a wickedly fun demon conspiracy underlying the known facts. What you end up with is a kick-ass heroine embroiled in a sweet romance that isn’t exactly what she thinks. It just so happens that British politics, and the politics of marriage, become a lot more complicated when the forces of darkness become involved. Who knew?

The Blue Tattoo by Margot Mifflin

This fascinating bio is an attempt to sift through the legend of one of the most notorious women of the 1800s. Olive Oatman was a Mormon pioneer girl of 14 travelling West when her family was slaughtered and she was enslaved by the Yavapai Indians. After a year of slavery she was traded to a Mohave tribe, who accepted her as their own, imbuing her with a ritual chin tattoo that  forever marked her as being between the two worlds of the North American continent, neither fully white nor fully native, even after she was traded back to military authorities a few years later.

As the first known tattooed white woman in the United States, Oatman reached a legendary status from the 1850s on, yet in true legendary fashion, there is little consensus on the details of her life. Mifflin’s biography seeks to sift through the various tales and tease out what has made Oatman’s story ring so strongly throughout the years for everyone from history buffs to novelists, film makers and modern-day feminist theorists.



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