Archive for Reviews

The Clan Novel Saga: Gangrel


Clan Novel: Gangrel covers events that happen between July 7 and July 26, 1999. It is Book 3 in the original clan novel saga and was published in June 1999. It was written by Gherbod Fleming, who provided five of the thirteen novels in the set.

Some odd choices were made in the crafting of this book. The first was to focus most of the book on a pack of Gangrel who are only vaguely aware they are vampires, let alone cognizant of how to integrate into vampire society. This book nearly stands alone, as it barely involves any major players and doesn’t follow any major events. It mostly focuses on the existential dread of immortality and what it means to be a vampire. (Continue Reading…)

The Clan Novel Saga: Setite


Clan Novel: Setite covers events that happen between June 21 and July 31, 1999. It is Book 4 in the original clan novel saga (but third chronologically that ties up its events) and was published in July 1999. It was written by Kathleen Ryan, who also wrote the Ravnos book.

While this novel interacts with the events of the previous books, it practically stands alone. It is structured in three acts and follows a cohesive plot. The events in this book do not rely on knowing the events happening elsewhere in the world, yet they still build on them. Hesha seems unperturbed by most of the upheaval in the vampire world in the eastern United States. The events are inconveniences that require adjustments, but there are no major changes to what he does. (Continue Reading…)

The Clan Novel Saga: Tzimisce


Clan Novel: Tzimisce covers events that happen on and around the attack on Atlanta on the evenings of June 19 through July 7, 1999. I read Part 1: The War Council (6/19-21) before the TOREADOR book, the Part 2: The Firedance (6/22) and Part 3: The Deception (6/22-7/2) after TOREADOR. After TZIMISCE, I went to Part 1 of SETITE. TZIMISCE is Book 2 in the original clan novel saga and was published in May 1999. It was written by Eric Griffin, who also wrote the Tremere novel.

Let’s take a moment to appreciate the lush cover art. The vampire depicted is monstrous in countenance and action, enjoying a meal in debauched hedonism. Surrounding the primary figure are leering faces born of nightmare with just enough detail to suggest the worst in the shadows. (Continue Reading…)

The Clan Novel Saga: Toreador


Clan Novel: Toreador covers events that happen on and around the attack on Atlanta on the evenings of June 20-22, 1999. It is Book 1 in the original clan novel saga, and was published in February 1999. It was written by Stewart Wieck, who also wrote the Malkavian novel (please let that one be stronger).

This story is divided into three parts. Part 1: Leopold primarily follows a very young Toreador vampire, and events related to the planning of a big Summer Solstice party at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. Part 2: Victoria spends more time with the leading Toreador vampire in the city, and the early political machinations of this Summer Solstice party. Part 3: The Eye focuses on the unfriendly Sabbat vampires attacking the party, along with a subplot related to an artifact of great power, The Eye of Hazimel.

I started my read-through with the first section of the Nosferatu book, followed by the first section of the Tzimisce book, which brought me to the Toreador novel. There must have been something in the water in 1999. Because clearly what we wanted in a Star Wars film that opens a multi-part epic was a plotline about trade negotiations. Just like the opener to a Vampire series about the end of the world should be about party preparation and existential ennui. Practically nothing happens until section 3. It’s good that I didn’t start here, because Leopold is more annoying than peak whining-Louis. I know that he is the neonate vampire mechanism for us to be introduced to the World of Darkness, but if I started here, I would not have the fortitude to continue. I cannot wait until the soft and squishy angsty vampire Leopold dies horrifically. Please let it be sooner rather than later. (Continue Reading…)

The Clan Novel Saga: A Revisitation


In 1999, White Wolf embarked on their most ambitious fiction project to tie in to their Vampire: the Masquerade game line. Over the course of a year, they released thirteen novels – each focusing on a different clan – that presented the events of a major war between the two primary vampire factions. The events coincided with the awakening of a great old vampire, for whom the stars had aligned. These 13 books in the Clan Novel Saga were followed by an anthology to help tie up some loose ends. All of this was repackaged in 2003 as a set of four chunkier books that followed the events in chronological order. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 307: That Ol’ Dagon Dark


That Ol’ Dagon Dark

by Robert MacAnthony


OL’ DAGON DARK

He’s never heard of such a thing. Still, the aroma is enticing. He checks the box and the shelf, but there is no price.

The shopkeeper is still in back, and all is silent within the store. Iverson contemplates the tobacco, then pulls a small plastic bag from behind a basket of pipes atop the shelves. He quickly loads what he deems to be two ounces of the blend into the bag, and makes his way out of the humidor. He leaves an adequate amount of money on the counter – more than adequate really, quite generous for a place like this – and pushes back out into the rain.

He doesn’t see the shopkeeper sitting just behind the curtain, doesn’t see the man slide into a crouch, back against the wall, and bury his face in his hands.

Pseudopod 182: The Dreaming Way

Show Notes

For further Coyote Tales, please check out:

Reservation Monsters

“Love Like Thunder”

and “The Shooting Way” in “The Trio Of Terror”


The Dreaming Way

by Jim Bihyeh


Her teachers never asked her to remove the headphones. What was the point? The girl earned a 100% on every quiz and exam, and when they called on her, Lynnette spat the answer back like a rifle ejecting a shell.

“The girl just has a way with tests,” her teachers repeated. “She knows how to prepare.”

But Lynette caught a lot of shit for her test grades. Part of the Navajo culture said that you weren’t supposed to stand out from the group. But Lynette already stood out.

“Lynette, Lyn-Ette! Teacher’s Pet!” went the usual recess refrain. “Lynette, Lyn-Ette! Teacher’s Pet! About as tall as a jumbo jet!”

And Lynette was tall. She towered past six feet by the time she reached eighth grade. And her long black hair that she rarely brushed only made her seem taller when it fell down over her wide shoulders; she was heavy-set, truly big-boned, more muscle than fat. And she put that muscle to use during the “Lynette Incidents,” as they came to be called.

The Pseudopod Autopsy: Eight-Legged Freaks


Small towns have the worst luck. For fifty years they’ve been beseiged by martians, carniverous slugs, tunnelling prehistoric worms, vampires and most terrifying of all, B-movies. So if you live in a small town with a storied past and eccentric inhabitants beware. Because your town may be about to fall victim to…the Eight! Legged! Freaks!