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paulgoatallen
Posts: 7,327
Registered: ‎08-16-2007

MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

[ Edited ]

Road Trip of the Living Dead 

 

 

Mark Henry. Novelist. Reluctant Adult.  All around great guy. Last year, we featured his debut Happy Hour of the Damned, a laugh-out-loud, action-packed paranormal fantasy replete with werewolves, vampires, and a lead heroine who, well, was a zombie.

 

In the sequel, Seattle party girl (and undead) protagonist Amanda Feral and her crew go on a road trip – and it's not to Wally World Water Park! Cue the neo-Nazi skinheads!!!

 

Happy Hour of the Damned 

 

 

And if any of you want to read through the old thread that we started last March about Happy Hour of the Damned, here it is.

 

Also, be aware that Mark Henry is most definitely lurking around here somewhere.... "Hi Mark!"

Paul 

Message Edited by paulgoatallen on 03-01-2009 12:07 PM
"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
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Nelsmom
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Loved the book and it was fun reading.  I didn't think I could laugh harder than I did with  Amanda's first adventure but I did.  I enjoyed getting to know more about Mr. Kim and meet his sister but I liked that we learned more about Amanda and all the twists and turns with her mother/daughter relationship.

 

Toni

Toni L. Chapman
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synde
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

can't wait for Mark to bring his brand of irrevrance here again. It's always a good time!
eenie meanie chili beanie the spirits are about to speak
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markhenry
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Aw yeah!  It's on!

 

Hey y'all.  Paul just nudged me out of a release week coma to tell me to get my sorry butt over here for a polite greeting.  So I'm here and you're alread chatting.  Wow.  Feel free to ask me anything, but know that I might just ask you something in return.  Think of it as a deal with the devil, only my scalp tattoo reads 665, so...

 

Cheers!  I'm here all month! 

 

 

________________________________________________

Zombie smut for the massesROAD TRIP OF THE LIVING DEAD, in stores now from Kensington Books. Visit the author at his horribly inappropriate website.
________________________________________________
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paulgoatallen
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Mark:

Thanks for stopping by and visiting with us – I'm sure you'll have more than your fair share of raves, fantastic reviews and overall ego-enlarging here in March. Your newest is on deck so I'll throw in my two cents sometime during the week!

Paul 

"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
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PhyllisJ
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Can't wait to read this book, I really enjoyed the first book.  I will be back with comments along the way.
Phyllis
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Guerneymember12
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Thanks so much, Paul, for adding the link to the old discussion for the Happy Hour of the Damned.  As usual, I'm reading that one quickly before i read the new one.  I've browsed through it and it doesn't look like it will be a chore at all!!!

 

I love being new to this genre, for 36 years I never read paranormal and it turns out its my favorite!?  It obviously was out there, but the couple of books i picked out were so poorly written that I didn't try again. so I was drawn to them, I needed a friend to put Sookie in my hands and I fell in love with vampires, which naturally led me to Stephanie Meyer  and melissa de la Cruz, but i did not find the best paranormal until I found this group. It's so awesome. this will be my first Zombie experience. I've shied away until I've seen the right one to start with! 

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markhenry
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

You guys say such complimentary things.  But you're awful quiet this time around.  Don't y'all know we can get freaky up in here?
________________________________________________

Zombie smut for the massesROAD TRIP OF THE LIVING DEAD, in stores now from Kensington Books. Visit the author at his horribly inappropriate website.
________________________________________________
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PhyllisJ
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Hi Mark, Just making some noise.  I am trying to read Road Trip and White Witch at the same time.  :smileyvery-happy:

Phyllis
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markhenry
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry


PhyllisJ wrote:

Hi Mark, Just making some noise.  I am trying to read Road Trip and White Witch at the same time.  :smileyvery-happy:


 

Hey Phyllis,

 

I do that all the time.  I have books for certain areas in the house.  Night stand, toilet tank, and one for the gym.  Though that last one is usually a loose manuscript, because I can't get a book to stay open and propped up on the little elliptical ledge.

 

Do people have a problem juggling books?

 

Mark


 

 

________________________________________________

Zombie smut for the massesROAD TRIP OF THE LIVING DEAD, in stores now from Kensington Books. Visit the author at his horribly inappropriate website.
________________________________________________
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Guerneymember12
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

People are so surprised that i do that.  In fact none of my friends can do it, but i have one I read during coffee, one to fit in my purse for waiting in line places or just getting stuck somewhere ( so I never have a cute little purse), one (Usually club)for during day - it moves fastest, and one for evening.  I read so much that if I don't alternate like that i get tired of reading the same book.  Sometimes i get caught up on a book and it carries over from day to my night time reading, expecially when I'm almost through.  but my husband calls me a bibliofreak (He even bought me a book for help, but he found out it was full of jokes and said he has enabled me)  because there are piles of books by my bed, all over our dining room table, and i carry a handful to the living room each night with me while he is watching TV even though I usually only read one of them.  I've been like this since second grade.  Seeing this, I do think I have a problem!!  I tried on my elliptical, but I kept almost falling off!!

 

I know - get a life.

I am.  I've started writing a couple hours each day.  and I do chores.  It's a heavy inner life, I admit.

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PhyllisJ
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

I don't have a problem reading more than one book at a time, but I do prefer to read only one at a time.  But I have been guilty of reading 3 or more at a time.  :smileyvery-happy:
Phyllis
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paulgoatallen
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Mark:

I would guess that in a few days, this place will be as freaky as a 2 Live Crew concert back in 1989.  (God, did I just make that reference?) I think a lot of the regs are trying to read Kim Harrison's newest this week because she's in Center Stage.

Paul

  

"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
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BendTheDark
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Never fear! I am making my way through these exquisite books! I'll be back soon to post my many compliments! :smileyhappy:

 

 

-Lilith Grimm


Death is peaceful, easy. Life is harder.
"Space tells matter how to move, matter tells space how to curve."
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paulgoatallen
Posts: 7,327
Registered: ‎08-16-2007

Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

[ Edited ]

Well, I just ripped through Mark's latest and here are my thoughts, in no particular order...

* Road Trip of the Living Dead is definitely better than Happy Hour of the Damned. Mark has dramatically improved narrative elements like story structure, pacing, character development, etc. but I think this one was waaaaay funnier. Mark is really finding his "inner comedian" and I think the sense of humor is more "clean," if you can understand that. 

*  Paranormal fantasy, to me, is a sprawling spectrum of a vast variety of "shades" – there's the erotic fantasy, the romantic suspense, the paranormal mystery, the chic lit paranormal comedy, the hard-boiled paranormal whodunit, etc. Mark, in my mind, is the funniest paranormal fantasy writer out there. He has definitely created a niche for his Amanda Feral saga and there is really nothing out there that is comparable. Mario Acevedo comes close but he too has his own thing going on... 

*This series has tons of potential, and by that I mean in terms of future installments. I can easily see four, five, or six Amanda Feral novels. The core of main characters is strong and the number of possible storylines are virtually limitless. 

*I understand that much of the appeal of these novels is the irreverence but I think at times it crosses the line and could seem to some readers offensive. There were numerous references in Road Trip of the Living Dead that – even to me – seemed insensitive. Page 7, for example: it's implied that because Amanda's mother was not a nice person she somehow brought cancer on herself. ("Now, tell me she didn't buy herself some cancer on that day." ) My mother recently passed away from cancer and I have a close friend courageously battling cancer right now and

reading that line was like someone stabbing me in the heart. Also, there were degrading references to Spinabifida (the Musical: "a celebration of deformities...and song" ), Bell's palsy, and retardation. I realize that these remarks come from the narrator, Amanda, but I couldn't help but be bothered by them. I wish Mark had drawn the line at genetic disabilities people have no control over.... If these few references were removed, it wouldn't have altered the book's flow at all and the book would've been just as funny. I guess the challenge of writing irreverent comedy is that you're damned if you do and damned if you don't – if you worry about who you're going to offend, you won't be able to write what you want to write....so I am not criticizing Mark. I just wish those references weren't included because they seemed hurtful to me, not funny.

Paul 

Message Edited by paulgoatallen on 03-06-2009 08:33 PM
"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
Author
markhenry
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Thanks for all the great feedback Paul!  I'm thrilled you found this one funnier and yeah, I worked my butt off to reign in my tendency to disregard story structure. Here's hoping Kensington is on board for a few more after Battle of the Network Zombies is delivered next month.

 

I totally need to respond to the issue of insensitivity (and yeah, I totally get that you're critique is of a fictional character).  I subscribe to the idea that my job as a writer is not to create likeable characters but rather interesting characters.  Amanda is no heroine in the typical sense, she's borderline villainous and intentionally so.  I need her to be harsh, fithy and sometimes vile to carry this kind of story.  She doesn't censor herself and everything is fair game.  It has to be.  If only a few things were the focus of her most daring barbs then she'd actually be less identifiable (if that's possible).  At least with Amanda, you know you're not getting special treatment.  She won't shy away from anything.

 

Scary thing.  I know people like her.  And I still like them. Probably why I loved Absolutely Fabulous, too.

 

I've had a very close friend die of uterine cancer, we were with her throughout the course of the treatment from diagnosis to funeral, I know she didn't deserve it.  No one does.  My Grandmother died of cancer.  My mother battled breast cancer and won, thankfully. So it's definitely had an effect on me personally.  The resolution of the Ethel storyline is intended to be empowering.  We'll see if it comes across that way. 

 

I'd definitely like to hear people's thoughts on it. 

 

Lastly, and this is probably the weirdest thing.  Spinabifida: The Musical is based on a real production here in Seattle.  Its focus was, in fact, deformities. I didn't see it.  And now I don't recall the real name.  Hmm.  

 

 

________________________________________________

Zombie smut for the massesROAD TRIP OF THE LIVING DEAD, in stores now from Kensington Books. Visit the author at his horribly inappropriate website.
________________________________________________
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paulgoatallen
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Mark:

Yeah, I guessed you would respond with something like that – and I totally get it. Those comments are absolutely on par with Amanda's character. I guess I felt compelled to say something because it really did negatively affect my reading experience and, aside from those references, I really loved this book. But, yes, I do understand. I just figured from a writer's perspective, you'd like the unadulterated feedback...

 

Also, I forgot to add – I absolutely loved the line: "Body. It does a zombie good." That sums up your writing style perfectly –sarcastic and brimming with pop culture humor. 

"There never can be a man so lost as one who is lost in the vast and intricate corridors of his own lonely mind, where none may reach and none may save..." – Isaac Asimov, Pebble in the Sky
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markhenry
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

My favorite line from the book, and somewhat prophetic, if I may be so bold, is this...

 

"It's a vagina not a clown car!"

 

Apropos, considering Octomom!

________________________________________________

Zombie smut for the massesROAD TRIP OF THE LIVING DEAD, in stores now from Kensington Books. Visit the author at his horribly inappropriate website.
________________________________________________
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ReaderGal74
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry


markhenry wrote:

My favorite line from the book, and somewhat prophetic, if I may be so bold, is this...

 

"It's a vagina not a clown car!"

 

Apropos, considering Octomom!


The pop I was drinking shot out of my nose when I read that line...luckily I had moved my book out of the line of fire.

Books...Never leave home without them
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ReaderGal74
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Re: MARCH FEATURE #3: Road Trip of the Living Dead by Mark Henry

Well Paul has done it again.  This is the second book that I probably wouldn't have noticed if I was browsing on my own in B&N. But, thankfully for Paul I did and I am glad he did. 

 

All of a sudden, Mark Henry was everywhere!!  He was here and then I was able to go on a hilarious treasure hunt of his favorite thing at Bitten by Books.  I have to say that reading all of his comments it makes me understand a bit more of the sense of humor he has to write this type of zombie book.  Or rather maybe reading the book allowed me to understand his humor from a different way.

 

Not having read his first book, (B&N did not have it in stock and I am impatiently waiting for my order to get here) I wasn't too sure what I thought when I started reading Road Trip.  With all of the  inset lists, interludes and shall I say the snarky repartee of the footnotes, I wasn't sure I was going to get through this with good feelings.  But as the adventure continued I found myself laughing out loud and enjoying it more and more!

 

I look forward to reading the first book and also to meeting Mr. Henry himself!  He is going to be here in San Diego next week. 

 

Happy Eating...

 

Jess

Books...Never leave home without them