Friday, December 25, 2009

The Werewolf Of London

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: Carl Dreadstone aka Ramsey Campbell
Genre: Movie Tie-In
Setting: London, England
Types of Werewolves: Wolf man
How Lycanthropy is Caused: By being bitten.

Synopsis: The search for a rare plant takes Wilfred Glendon on a expedition into the Himalayas, where he gets attacked by wolf like creatures. Back home he discovers that a bestial curse has followed him from the snows of Tibet to the fogs of London. Now he cowers in his laboratory, disgusted by his own weird transformation, yet unable to prevent it. The extract of the night blooming Mariphasa provides a passing relief on the nights of the full moon from the curse of the beast, but the plant is difficult to cultivate outside of its mountain home and in Wilfred Glendon grows the longing to just give in to the werewolf, aware that the creature instinctively seeks to kill what he loves best.

Review: The Werewolf of London is a movie tie-in adapted from a script written by John Colton after Robert Harris’s short story. Campbell avoids to simply follow the movie, instead he presents us the events from the perspective of Wilfred Glendon, and here actually lays a true strength of the book. He details the growing emotional desperation with which Glendon alternately searches for a cure, to prevent himself from slaughtering the one he loves best, and his longing to give in to the beast. Fans will note that Campbell took some liberties with the movie’s tale and we find only two fleshed out characters in his take: Glendon and Yogami. Some of the changes did make sense to me and provided for a more interesting read than if he had just retold the movie, others jarred too much against what I remembered from it. I did feel the end to be rather anti-climatic, but nonetheless enjoyed the rest of the story. Bottom line: At a short, fast written 160 pages the book offers a worthwhile diversion for a couple hours.

-Reviewed By Daninsky

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