In 2011 Rod Lurie released his remake of "Straw Dogs" but it was more an adaptation of the earlier film than the novel that originally inspired it.
Leave it to Hollywood to take a nice, neat novel and botch the big screen adaptation, not once, but twice.
First published in 1969, Gordon's book was a tight psychological thriller. The protagonist was an introverted American author, George Magruder, married to an English lady (far above his station) that longed for returning to her homeland. His passion for his work and her homesickness adversely affect their marriage and their 8-yr. old daughter, Karen. Together they agree to leave America and move to England
where they purchase a quaint British home known as Trencher's Farm.
This continental jump creates a chasm in the Magruder family that cannot be corrected. George and Louise begin to bicker more frequently and Karen withdraws from being party to her parents' poor problem-solving practices.
The country setting that they've settle in has an escaped mental patient, Henry Niles, on the prowl. He has been hospitalized for a history of murdering young girls. Needless to say the town is outraged that a psychotic killer is on the loose. How humans react when an alleged wild animal is on the hunt becomes the central theme. At what lengths will a man go to protect himself and his loved ones?
If one has seen either of these film adaptations and found them interesting, then reading this book will undoubtedly be more fulfilling.
In this book the plot continues the cute courtship of Peter and Ovsanna. It always is a serious affair, when on Christmas Eve, you bring home to meet Mama, a vampire queen. It doesn't help the relationship when one party of the couple is hiding the fact that a powerful Werewolf has already attempted to reconvert a member of the undead back to the dead-membership category.
Barbeau is no stranger to B-movie plots, having starred in several during her long Hollywood career. Co-starring on the TV show Maude with Bea Arthur must have inspired some of the character strengths inherent to Barbeau's Vampire maven femme fatale...Ovsanna.
This time around Barbeau did not join forces with a co-writer as she did in her novel and is credited as the sole author. Her biggest strength is that she does not take herself too seriously. The tone of her books is campy. She has created characters that are totally unbelievable; however, many have a place in Hollywood
Lookout Historical Fiction authors...there's a new player in town.