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Midnight Mass PDF, ePub eBook Vampires have always lived in Eastern Europe. But with the fall of the Soviet Union, they began to spread across the continent, then the world, turning whole populations into vampires--or human cattle. Having overrun India, the far East, and the great cities of North and South America, the forces of Night are now spreading into the countryside to consolidate their conquest Vampires have always lived in Eastern Europe. But with the fall of the Soviet Union, they began to spread across the continent, then the world, turning whole populations into vampires--or human cattle. Having overrun India, the far East, and the great cities of North and South America, the forces of Night are now spreading into the countryside to consolidate their conquest. In a town on the New Jersey shore, the vampires have just arrived, along with their human henchmen, the cowboys, who round up human cattle for the overlords in return for the promise of eternal life---later. For the vampires wish only a few of their own kind to rule, and feed. The rest of humanity are to be helpless herds, the source of the blood of life. Falsely accused of abuse, Father Joe is drunk in a basement waiting for the end. His superior has betrayed the local Catholic congregation and become a vampire. Sister Carole has become a formidable killer of cowboys and vampires. Dan's niece, escaped from the conquest of New York, has made her way south to find him. Brought together by Rabbi Zev Wolpin, who is shaken by the vampires' fear of the cross and holy water, they plan their resistance. Against all odds, they discover that there just might be a way for humanity to really fight back. But first they will have to kill the vampire king of New York.

30 review for Midnight Mass

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mike (the Paladin)

    I sat up late and finished this book last night. It's not a "bad book" I didn't hate it, but I had some gripes and it really didn't hold my interest. I like Wilson's "Repairman Jack" books, at least I've liked most of them so far. So when I read the synopsis of this one and it sounded interesting, I picked it up. I am sort of a "vampire purist" if you are referring to the vampires we all know from Bram Stoker, that is the Eastern European variety (as opposed to say the Asian vampires which are ba I sat up late and finished this book last night. It's not a "bad book" I didn't hate it, but I had some gripes and it really didn't hold my interest. I like Wilson's "Repairman Jack" books, at least I've liked most of them so far. So when I read the synopsis of this one and it sounded interesting, I picked it up. I am sort of a "vampire purist" if you are referring to the vampires we all know from Bram Stoker, that is the Eastern European variety (as opposed to say the Asian vampires which are based on a totally different mythology). I'm always a bit annoyed by the modern romantic, lonely, "safe", "friendly", "why don't we date", vampires. If you like vampire protagonists, that's fine...I don't. Wilson expressed the same sentiments here so that interested me a bit over and above the plot. Unfortunately Mr. Wilson's view of blood-suckers seems to have been influenced more by movies than by Bram Stoker (though Stoker's classic vamps have been pretty badly used in the last few years to). He admits that the "folklore vampires" didn't die in the sunlight, but he chooses to use the device...okay fine. I'm not fond of it, but okay. The big change was his use of the "everyone who gets bit becomes a vamp" motif. Again it's his book and that's fine...but it bugs me as vampires from Stoker on had to purposefully "make" another vamp. (Of course in folklore there was some disagreement as to how one became a vamp, suicides and others were thought to change also. Oh well). As I said I've read the Repairman Jack books, but a good many years ago I ran across a Wilson book "The Keep" which I found, much like this one...okay but not great. The way I felt about that book was why it took me so long to try Repairman Jack. Wilson calls The Keep a pseudo-vampire book, I suppose that's a good definition, but he ends up dealing with the same "issues" here that he tried to deal with there. Wilson described himself in the intro to this book as a "recovering Catholic" I don't know (I'm not a Roman Catholic)if that's the same as what other Catholics would call a "failed Catholic" or not...but Wilson certainly has issues with belief. Most "traditional" vampire stories use Christian symbology...this has just been part of the story. Wilson apparently struggles with this. One of his characters describes herself as a "confirmed agnostic". I suppose that to be Mr. Wilson's stance also based on the book's plot and story. (By the way, as "agnostic" means "I don't know" how can one be a "confirmed I don't know"? Just my weird brain asking the question I guess) In The Keep the "semi-cross" (it turns out not to be a cross) that drives back the pseudo-vampire (or proto-vampire) causes a sort of crisis of faith for an old Jewish man. In this book he incorporates a Rabi into his protagonists...however this guy seems to be handling things a lot better (like maybe he regards Jesus as a nice Jewish boy or something). I wonder why we didn't have a Buddhist, an Islamic, maybe a Taoist...the possible list is endless. He writes some miraculous scenes but seems (to me) a little uncomfortable with it and makes it a sort of...we don't get this but look it works, sort of thing. It's a readable book and some will undoubtedly like it far more than I did. I didn't hate it. I give it 3 stars but don't plan to reread, recommend, or keep it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Chloe

    So a rabbi, a priest, a psychotic nun and a militant lesbian atheist walk into a bar... Sounds like the beginning of a truly awful joke, doesn't it? That's exactly what I thought when a friend of mine was describing it to me. I'd never read any F. Paul Wilson before and have to admit to not a few ounces of trepidation, yet I am always interested in tales of fiendish bloodsuckers crushing mortals under their heels so figured I'd give it a shot. Wilson writes in the forward to this quick action rea So a rabbi, a priest, a psychotic nun and a militant lesbian atheist walk into a bar... Sounds like the beginning of a truly awful joke, doesn't it? That's exactly what I thought when a friend of mine was describing it to me. I'd never read any F. Paul Wilson before and have to admit to not a few ounces of trepidation, yet I am always interested in tales of fiendish bloodsuckers crushing mortals under their heels so figured I'd give it a shot. Wilson writes in the forward to this quick action read that he wanted to write a book that returned vampires to their crypts and sewers rather than the romantic aesthetes that Anne Rice and Stephanie Meyer have turned these horrors into. The premise is simple: tired of hiding in the shadows, vampires have come out of their coffins and made their existence known to the world. Yet, whereas Charlaine Harris' vampires are interested in co-existing with humankind, Wilson's hordes sweep first across the former Soviet bloc nations and then the rest of the world, bringing humanity to heel and now beginning to begin their incursion in the New World. Wonderful premise, right? Who doesn't want to hear tales of humankind's war against the cognizant undead (as opposed to the mindless shuffling of zombie hordes)? Sadly, Wilson decides to portray the human resistance as being solely in the hands of disaffected priest, wily rabbi and traumatized nun. Are we really to believe that the rest of the world is so paralyzed by an inability to wrap their head around the fact that vampires actually exist that they just lie back with their throats exposed? No one thought to resist before these three people in New Jersey? Also, once the revolution begins are these ancient creatures so inept that they can't even muster an adequate defense? A lot of characters do a lot of stupid illogical things. Yet that's the world that Wilson chooses to work in so, I guess, as readers we just have to go with it. His vamps are definitely not the emo poseurs of Anne Rice, but true monsters who care not a lick for the fleshbags that make up their meals. Midnight Mass is a fun read that I didn't want to put down and served as a nice distraction from the lengthy tome that has been my primary reading material of late. It definitely makes me interested in reading F. Paul Wilson's highly regarded Repairman Jack books.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jane Stewart

    The book kept my interest. There were some neat ideas, but the ending was bad. I wanted to give this 4 stars, but I went with 3 because of the ending. It was good concerning a battle and there was hope for the future. But I was annoyed because two good guys died at different times in the book. The vampires are taking over the world. It’s apocalyptic. A few individuals make some cool wins against the vampires. I liked the intelligence and thoughtfulness. I liked the group of four main characters and The book kept my interest. There were some neat ideas, but the ending was bad. I wanted to give this 4 stars, but I went with 3 because of the ending. It was good concerning a battle and there was hope for the future. But I was annoyed because two good guys died at different times in the book. The vampires are taking over the world. It’s apocalyptic. A few individuals make some cool wins against the vampires. I liked the intelligence and thoughtfulness. I liked the group of four main characters and how they interacted. I loved the way a nun became a great guerilla fighter who killed humans and vampires, yet she had angst over what she had become. We see the beginning of a love relationship between two characters but it’s not developed. I wish more had been done with that. Some ideas I liked: (p 267-268) A lesbian was gang raped by a group of men who helped the vampires. The following are her thoughts. “In the old civilized world I would have been thinking, ‘How could this happen? And Why me?’ I would have felt like some sort of pariah or loser, that the world and society had let me down, that some throwbacks had smashed through all the rules and targeted me. And I would have felt somehow to blame. I know I’d have wanted to dig myself a hole and pull the ground over me. ...It’s a different world now, a world without any rules, except maybe those of the jungle. There’s no law, no order, and because of that, I don’t seem to have that pariah-loser-victim feeling. And I don’t feel ashamed. I feel disgusted and sickened and violated, but I don’t feel ashamed. I feel hate and I want revenge, but I don’t feel a need to hide. A year ago I’d have felt scarred for life. Now I feel... as if I’ve been splattered with mud -- rotten, nasty mud – but nothing I can’t wash off and then move on.” When vampires plan to take over the world, the first places they go are Jewish and Muslim communities where there are no crosses. Now a rabbi carries a cross around his neck for protection. A cross is like a blinding light to a vampire. Touching a cross burns their skin. (p 144) The Rabbi is thinking about kosher foods and how he had to change to survive. “If he hadn’t changed, he couldn’t sit here and sup with these two men and this young woman. He’d have to be elsewhere, eating special classes of ritually prepared foods off separate sets of dishes. But really, hadn’t division been the main thrust of holding to the dietary laws in modern times? They served a purpose beyond mere observance of tradition. They placed another wall between observant Jews and outsiders, keeping them separate even from fellow Jews who didn’t observe. ... Time to break down all the walls between people... while there was still enough time and people left alive to make it matter.” (p 188) “A steady stream of newcomers, anxious to join the fight, had been flowing to the church all morning. Many of them were not even Catholic. Jews, Protestants, even Muslims were showing up, wanting to know how they could be part of what was happening. ... The arbitrary walls that had separated people in the past had to be knocked down. There could be only one belief system now: the living versus the undead and those who sided with them.” There was also something about the Catholic church. I don’t know if this is true, but the author wrote that priests used to be allowed to marry and have children. But as a result priests would give their accumulated wealth to their families when they died instead of to the church. Therefore the church changed the rules not allowing priests to marry. DATA: Narrative mode: 3rd person. Story length: 403 pages. Swearing language: strong including religious swear words. Sexual content: no specific scenes, but reference to a rape happening. Setting: near future east coast U.S. Copyright: 2004. Genre: apocalyptic paranormal fiction.

  4. 4 out of 5

    William Malmborg

    If vampires are real, and their bite spreads the infection, then how come they haven’t taken over the world? I used to hear this question all the time when I was younger, my little brother always tossing it my way whenever I tried to talk to him about a possible vampire novel or series that I wanted to write (still want to write). It is a legitimate question, yet one that I never had a satisfactory answer for at the time, and rather than trying to reason it out with him, I usually just switched If vampires are real, and their bite spreads the infection, then how come they haven’t taken over the world? I used to hear this question all the time when I was younger, my little brother always tossing it my way whenever I tried to talk to him about a possible vampire novel or series that I wanted to write (still want to write). It is a legitimate question, yet one that I never had a satisfactory answer for at the time, and rather than trying to reason it out with him, I usually just switched topics to something more easily discussed -- something like UFOs or Bigfoot. Later I realized my brother wasn’t the only one asking this question and that it has actually been a topic of debate in the horror community for decades, one that is often ‘explained’ to us time and time again through the visions of horror writers and filmmakers. Sometimes these visions are pretty good and the reasons given for the lack of a vampire ruled world seems legit, other times it is just silly (vampires are just troubled humans who don’t really want to hurt anyone and therefore keep their desires in check until the need for blood is unbearable -- come on, they are ‘creatures’ of the night, not ‘delicate troubled youths’ of the night!). And then sometimes an explanation is not needed because the vision presented gives us a world ruled by vampires. F. Paul Wilson gives us just such a vision in his novel Midnight Mass, a semi-apocalyptic tale that pits the last remnants of humanity against the vampires who, realizing an opportunity for world domination after the fall of the Soviet Union, have taken over all of Europe and Asia, their spread rapid due to the ability to create vampires with each kill. Now, however, wanting to keep the spread of vampires in check so that they don’t become too many for the limited human blood supply, the vampires move slowly in conquering North America, the goal being to round up all the humans into ‘cattle camps’ while taking over the major cities. Using human counterparts known as ‘cowboys’ to do most of the dirty work, the vampires are well on their way to accomplishing their goal of ruling the world. In New Jersey, however, a small group of humans have decided they would rather fight to the death than give in to being cattle, and have barricaded themselves inside a church. Hunting down and killing cowboys by day, and then hunkering down and protecting themselves against the vampires at night, these humans have pretty much accepted the idea that they will eventually be destroyed and just want to cause as much trouble for the vampires as they can. While doing this they make a chance discovery, one which just might give humanity an opportunity for survival. At the same time their continual destruction has caught the eye of New York’s Vampire King, one who views these humans as a thorn that must be plucked free. Will the small band of humans be able to survive the Vampire King, and spread hope for humanity, or will they too succumb to the overwhelming power of the vampire threat? Originally intended as a novella for a vampire themed publication in the early nineties, one which was then added to over the years as opportunities arose to revisit the compelling vampire landscape by publishers looking for new stories, F. Paul Wilson slowly but surely managed to create a vampire novel that is considered by many to be one of the best of the genera -- something which I won’t argue against because I believe it to be true as well. A big part of this success was due to F. Paul Wilson’s desire to use the well known basic vampire myths in creating this novel rather than twisting them around or creating his own like so writers have done over the years (Stephen King made this decision when writing ‘Salem’s Lot, which in turn created a ‘best of the vampire genera’ book as well, something which Wilson praises in his introduction to Midnight Mass). Another important factor was the writing talent used to produce this story, talent that many readers have discovered over the years and desperately crave. One doesn’t have to be a vampire fan to enjoy Midnight Mass, but, like the infectious bite of the vampire, one may be turned into a fan of such tales once this book grabs hold. If nothing else it will make one a F. Paul Wilson fan, assuming of course that one isn’t already a fan of this author’s wonderful story telling abilities.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Midnight Mass was interesting enough, but only just enough to keep me reading. The vampires are awful creatures and not lovey-doveys; that alone makes it star-worthy. The other characters...well, let me roll my eyes and say that another reviewer hit the nail on the head when he joked about a priest, a rabbi, a nun, and a militant lesbian walking into a bar. The pacing of the story was good and there was plenty of build-up and action. I just can't point to the reason why I found it only just good Midnight Mass was interesting enough, but only just enough to keep me reading. The vampires are awful creatures and not lovey-doveys; that alone makes it star-worthy. The other characters...well, let me roll my eyes and say that another reviewer hit the nail on the head when he joked about a priest, a rabbi, a nun, and a militant lesbian walking into a bar. The pacing of the story was good and there was plenty of build-up and action. I just can't point to the reason why I found it only just good enough, but perhaps it is because this book falls more into the urban fantasy genre than horror.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kaisersoze

    Okay, this is awkward, but I somehow managed to read an abridged version of this book as part of a collection of novellas. I know this because it features only two of the characters discussed in the synopsis. Sadly, I can only assume they were the two least exciting characters as their plight did little to move me, and given the end of this novella, it cannot be a prequel. Anyway, yes, vampires. They're the threat in Midnight Mass, and at least they're of the nasty type. No sparkly ones to be fo Okay, this is awkward, but I somehow managed to read an abridged version of this book as part of a collection of novellas. I know this because it features only two of the characters discussed in the synopsis. Sadly, I can only assume they were the two least exciting characters as their plight did little to move me, and given the end of this novella, it cannot be a prequel. Anyway, yes, vampires. They're the threat in Midnight Mass, and at least they're of the nasty type. No sparkly ones to be found here. Unfortunately, other than this admirable fact, there's little to recommend this one over the hundreds of other such reads out there. 2 Men of God in it Together for Midnight Mass.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Robjr73

    This is the SECOND time I was let down down a bit by a Wilson vampire novel. The first time was with The Keep. That book's first half is vampire perfection and the second half of the book takes a total different turn. Well Midnight Mass is much the same. The book is divided into Parts 1 & 2. Part 1 is solid. The first fifty pages or so are genuinely scary. Then near the end of part 1 the author kills off my favorite character. Not cool. Then part two begins and the whole feel of the book cha This is the SECOND time I was let down down a bit by a Wilson vampire novel. The first time was with The Keep. That book's first half is vampire perfection and the second half of the book takes a total different turn. Well Midnight Mass is much the same. The book is divided into Parts 1 & 2. Part 1 is solid. The first fifty pages or so are genuinely scary. Then near the end of part 1 the author kills off my favorite character. Not cool. Then part two begins and the whole feel of the book changes. It suddenly feels like a bad sci fi channel movie with horrible dialogue. I simply lost interest in the second half and unfortunately this won't fall in my top five vampire novels. My top four in case you're wondering would probably comprise of: Salems Lot They Thirst Dracula Interview With A Vampire Granted there are some classics I have yet to read so this list could change over time. My recommendation is if you want good F. Paul Wilson stick to his Repairman Jack series.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Becca Charlier-Matthews

    I ended up putting this one down 30 pages from the ending b/c i got busy with other shit, but then 29 days out from my last update, I realized i don't actually give a damn what happens in the end. Wilson writes in the introduction that he wanted to get back to vampires that were actually scary and predatory instead of brooding and mysteriously sexy. I agree with the goal but he missed by a mile with this book. The bad guys are one note and only frightening in an 80's high-on-coke-&-power Wal I ended up putting this one down 30 pages from the ending b/c i got busy with other shit, but then 29 days out from my last update, I realized i don't actually give a damn what happens in the end. Wilson writes in the introduction that he wanted to get back to vampires that were actually scary and predatory instead of brooding and mysteriously sexy. I agree with the goal but he missed by a mile with this book. The bad guys are one note and only frightening in an 80's high-on-coke-&-power Wall Street executive way and the good guys, a down and out drunk priest and a nun that's turned to playing killer prostitute are too busy being guilty about their wavering faith and growing sin tally to be interesting. If you want a scary vampire tale I say stick with the old standby's Bram and Salem's Lot.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jim

    If you're as sick of floppy-haired vampire heartthrobs as I, read this book. Wilson's vampires are the repellent, bloodsucking bastards we've come to lovingly loathe. These vampires are more Dracula and Salem's Lot than Team Edward. When the teenage girls of the world (and some of their moms) were dividing into Team Jason or Team Edward, I had already declared for Team Buffy. First of all, it's BUFFY. Second, I've always been more interested in the vampire hunters. Too often, the vampire geeks of If you're as sick of floppy-haired vampire heartthrobs as I, read this book. Wilson's vampires are the repellent, bloodsucking bastards we've come to lovingly loathe. These vampires are more Dracula and Salem's Lot than Team Edward. When the teenage girls of the world (and some of their moms) were dividing into Team Jason or Team Edward, I had already declared for Team Buffy. First of all, it's BUFFY. Second, I've always been more interested in the vampire hunters. Too often, the vampire geeks of the world seem like sad types with low self-esteem, the kind who, in more extreme cases, become serial killer groupies. Wilson takes some shots at Anne Rice novels and goth-type vampire-wannabes who find that getting what you want isn't always so great. (Not every victim gets turned; some just die horribly.) Also, Wilson has a lot of former investment bankers, politicians, and lawyers becoming vampires or the human weasels who help them, a touch that I liked. In this book, the hunters have their work cut out. The vampires have taken over the entire eastern hemisphere and are well into their assault on the New World. The mortal world needs a savior, and he is Father Joe, a priest with a past. He is helped by his niece an atheist lesbian martial artist, a killer nun, and Zev the cross-wearing rabbi. There is an uncomfortable subtext involving Jewish-Christian relations, what with the efficacy of the cross against vampires and the mass death of Jews who refused the pragmatic step of wearing a cross. Wilson is careful to say that the power of the cross symbol might pre-date Christianity. He also has a Jewish hero and Christian villians (One of the main vampires is a pedophile priest.), and Wilson's main villians, religion-wise, are people who break ethical rules as opposed to theological ones. If there's a theological standpoint in the novel, it's that religious divisions and intolerance are dangerous. In terms of the undead, Wilson doesn't break any new ground; his vampires are in the classic mode. They can't take sunlight or crosses. They're killed with the old-fashioned methods, sunlight, stakes, beheading, etc. In a lot of ways, this is a very retro vampire novel, but it's all the better for that. The strength of this book is in the quality of the writing, its stark atmosphere, and its kickassedness.

  10. 4 out of 5

    The Flooze

    (Firstly, why is the book description wrong? It's Father Joe and Sister Carole. Who the heck are Dan and Carolyn?) Thrilling and horrific, with a dose humorous irony. Wilson's Midnight Mass is a return to the grisly, purely evil side of vampiric lore. And it's a welcome addition to a genre inundated with romanticized depictions. Reminiscent of Stephen King's The Stand, Midnight Mass flashes back and forth between several groups, allowing us to see events unfold through everyone's perspective: the (Firstly, why is the book description wrong? It's Father Joe and Sister Carole. Who the heck are Dan and Carolyn?) Thrilling and horrific, with a dose humorous irony. Wilson's Midnight Mass is a return to the grisly, purely evil side of vampiric lore. And it's a welcome addition to a genre inundated with romanticized depictions. Reminiscent of Stephen King's The Stand, Midnight Mass flashes back and forth between several groups, allowing us to see events unfold through everyone's perspective: the hopeful Rabbi Zev, the towering Irishman Father Joe, the nun turned vigilante, the jaded and determined feminist, the cowboys who rustle up humans, and finally the vampires who've brought chaos to the east coast. The pace is fast and furious, with heart-stopping moments of insanity that clutch at your throat. The characterizations here are great, though a tad clichéd, and the different perspectives give each personality greater meaning. You'll root for the ragtag rebellion, and laugh and cry along with them as they struggle to regain humanity's hold on the world. The ending comes a little suddenly, and while not a cliffhanger, it does leave the door wide open for a follow-up. I hope we get to see more of these characters in the future.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Keri

    The best vampire book EVAH! One day F. Paul I hope you will let us visit Father Dan and his niece and see how they are doing in the world of vampires. If you want to read a good romance book with no sparkly vampires, just pure true evil ones, this is the book. Re-read for Halloween 2010 and it was just as good! Scary and good! Father Dan has vampire issues. The vampires want to take over the world.....for a food supply that is. Evidently us humans are mighty tasty. Now Father Dan must come to te The best vampire book EVAH! One day F. Paul I hope you will let us visit Father Dan and his niece and see how they are doing in the world of vampires. If you want to read a good romance book with no sparkly vampires, just pure true evil ones, this is the book. Re-read for Halloween 2010 and it was just as good! Scary and good! Father Dan has vampire issues. The vampires want to take over the world.....for a food supply that is. Evidently us humans are mighty tasty. Now Father Dan must come to terms with his faith as he battles these evil fanged baddies. He has a ragtag band of helpers that battle by his side. Will faith and goodness triumph over evil? You will have to read to find out! BOO!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nora

    YES!

  13. 4 out of 5

    David Agranoff

    When I was young there were three authors I could also count on, that I considered my three favorite authors whose books I enjoyed over every one else. Those three were Clive Barker, Richard Matheson and Stephen King. As an adult my tastes have changed, the amount of authors I have read have expanded and within the last year I put F.Paul Wilson into my current top three(Today he is with John Shirley and Robert McCammon). Midnight Mass is prime example of why Wilson is on my top three list. Comp When I was young there were three authors I could also count on, that I considered my three favorite authors whose books I enjoyed over every one else. Those three were Clive Barker, Richard Matheson and Stephen King. As an adult my tastes have changed, the amount of authors I have read have expanded and within the last year I put F.Paul Wilson into my current top three(Today he is with John Shirley and Robert McCammon). Midnight Mass is prime example of why Wilson is on my top three list. Compared to a lyrical artist like Barker - Wilson's no frills stripped down prose is perfect for me. Wilson is focused on the important stuff, story and characters. No one plots a novel or epic tale like Wilson, while this stand alone novel doesn't entirely showcase that strength as well as the Secret History of the World stories, this novel is perfectly plotted. The greatest strength of Midnight Mass is the excellent characters and anyone who has read a Wilson novel knows none of those characters are safe. Wilson has knack for plot misdirection, often he will convince you a character is protagonist who you are prepared to join on this journey when they up a die, leaving you shocked 1/3 of the way through the book. That happened to me reading Midnight Mass, when a character I assumed was the hero gave up his life to save a friend. Wilson is tough on characters, and rarely is anyone safe. It adds tension to his books for sure. Midnight Mass is a vampire apocalypse story, Wilson's long awaited take on the creatures (he tricked us in the Keep, making that novel seem like a vampire novel when it was something much darker) and it was worth the wait. This is not a rehash of I Am Legend but the water comes from the same well. In this novel Vampires have taken over Europe, India and the middle east. China and the U.S. Are fighting the rising tide. The east coast is under vampire control at night, human blood farms are growing along with a human resistance. The two main characters are a disgraced priest who was falsely accused of child molestation just before the end times, a nun who secretly loved him and his best friend a rabbi. Add in the priest's militant vegan feminist niece and it sounds like you have a set up for a joke. No punch line here, just fantastic and interesting characters. Wilson develops them well, and tests their various faiths as the world ends around them. This is far from my favorite Wilson novel, but that has more to do with the strength of his various other works. It is a great well thought out take on the Vampire mythos and a must read for fans of serious vampire novels.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

    This was a frustratingly bad book. If it had continued more in the post-apocalyptic vein, like the first 10 pages, I might have given it another star. As it was, the second half has been a slog. Seriously, bad characterization and plot development here. The dialogue was embarrassing to read. The vampires have to explain in terrible, cheesy, monologues how truly evil they really are (!). The main character seems like a hopeless self-insertion. He is the manliest man who ever was, and has no flaws This was a frustratingly bad book. If it had continued more in the post-apocalyptic vein, like the first 10 pages, I might have given it another star. As it was, the second half has been a slog. Seriously, bad characterization and plot development here. The dialogue was embarrassing to read. The vampires have to explain in terrible, cheesy, monologues how truly evil they really are (!). The main character seems like a hopeless self-insertion. He is the manliest man who ever was, and has no flaws. The other characters have to keep repeating how great and admirable he is, because otherwise the reader wouldn't get it. I felt like the whole book is Wilson trying to put in the most shocking and gruesome things he can think of in the hopes of seeming "edgey" or even "scary". He misses the mark, widely. We have everything from cannibalism to killing babies, but it's not scary. It seems very cliche, and mainistream. There was plenty of action in this book. it was slow in the middle, but never got overly wordy. Popcorn, ok. Bad dialogue - not ok.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Michael

    A Vampire-genre novel, written by one of my favorite authors. Not part of a serial, a stand-alone work. What I term a "Vampire Apocalypse" has occurred, turning large portions of our global population into vampires. Humans not turned either exist in fear in small areas, or are raised as cattle. The vampires behave as vampires in the traditional sense; they do not get to venture out of doors, they cringe at the sight of a cross, burn in sunlight, and are scarred by the cross. Midnight Mass is an ac A Vampire-genre novel, written by one of my favorite authors. Not part of a serial, a stand-alone work. What I term a "Vampire Apocalypse" has occurred, turning large portions of our global population into vampires. Humans not turned either exist in fear in small areas, or are raised as cattle. The vampires behave as vampires in the traditional sense; they do not get to venture out of doors, they cringe at the sight of a cross, burn in sunlight, and are scarred by the cross. Midnight Mass is an action novel; lots of biting, decapitations, and blood. A small group of hold-outs living in New Jersey try to take their community back from the vampires and the human wranglers that gather up their fellow humans - to be used as cattle or sacrifices. The prose reads fast, the pace is quick, and the novel is a good fast read. A good book to read on a plane, a long car trip, or if you want something different than the new vampire fare.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jon

    Lots of potential, but too many annoying factors slowly made me like this book less and less after a great start. The main characters were mostly unlikable, there were too many criticisms of faith/church for a plot that revolved around a priest protagonist and a nun that could combat vampires with spiritual objects, and the concept of devolution with a character turned by a 'feral' vampire was briefly hinted at but never developed. It wasn't a bad book, but I was expecting so much more from this Lots of potential, but too many annoying factors slowly made me like this book less and less after a great start. The main characters were mostly unlikable, there were too many criticisms of faith/church for a plot that revolved around a priest protagonist and a nun that could combat vampires with spiritual objects, and the concept of devolution with a character turned by a 'feral' vampire was briefly hinted at but never developed. It wasn't a bad book, but I was expecting so much more from this author after he mentioned that he was going back to the roots of vampires and not taking the romantic route.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    Admittedly, I'm a semi-novice reader of vampire books. Much of the world and our East Coast have being overtaken by vamps and their ilk. Three main characters take it upon themselves to save the remaining "normal" population by destroying the head honcho vamps in NYC.... As I get further into the plot, niggling thoughts keep asking: umm, why are there no defensive actions being taken by the rest of the "untouched" US??? Supposedly millions of citizens are too paralyzed with fright to act? The min Admittedly, I'm a semi-novice reader of vampire books. Much of the world and our East Coast have being overtaken by vamps and their ilk. Three main characters take it upon themselves to save the remaining "normal" population by destroying the head honcho vamps in NYC.... As I get further into the plot, niggling thoughts keep asking: umm, why are there no defensive actions being taken by the rest of the "untouched" US??? Supposedly millions of citizens are too paralyzed with fright to act? The mind niggles won, preventing appreciation of an otherwise well-written book.

  18. 4 out of 5

    William

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was about vampires as cunning vicious creatures not cute and cuddly school mates! Fast read. I was a little disappointed in the ending but overall it went well. I am a little fuzzy on the lineage concept in that initial offspring in the vampire family tree were intelligent but the further one got from the original progenitor the more beastly the vampires became. To me this seemed self destructive for continued vampire existence.

  19. 5 out of 5

    A.R.

    I had high hopes for this book, but I lost interest in the second half. The beginning, it gives one hope that real vampires, not the romantic variety, aren't dead, and Wilson really makes you believe in a world overtaken by Nosferatu. SPOILER ALERT. But the 2nd half never takes advantage of Father Joe being turned by a feral. He never becomes a mindless monster...slowly. The lack of risk and danger facing the protagonists really bored me. So much potential: wasted.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Al Datum

    Great vampire story. Disconnected from Wilson's larger "Adversary Cycle", focusing on a world where vampires are slowly taking over the planet (the East Coast is already theirs and they are moving through the rest of the world). Very creative, with some excellent characters, wonderfully creepy and desperate mood, and tremendous action. You can't get much better than Dr. Wilson's books!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Charles

    Some parts of this were really good while other parts seemed a bit rushed. I would have liked to have had some more background on how the vampires became dominant in the old world, because they certainly didn't seem all that competent in the new. Still, it was an enjoyable read and the characters were interesting. I enjoyed it.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jerry

    My first F Paul Wilson book and I liked it a lot. A return to the good old days of vampire lore but with a modern setting. This was a lot of fun to read, comparable to watching a solidly good B-movie. An enjoyable and clever diversion that doesn't require overthinking, but stay away from the movie (it's absolute dreck.)

  23. 4 out of 5

    K.D. McQuain

    Interesting concept. I usually enjoy the post apocalyptic, vampires have taken over the world, stories; and this one didn't disappoint. It was an interesting use of the typical religious conventions but I do think the Jews got the short end of the vampire apocalypse stick in this world.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lou

    Good story can't fault it a priest and rabbi want to battle out with vampires, short undead drama.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca McNutt

    Midnight Mass was well-written for the most part, but it really lost momentum towards the end and the characters were incredibly boring, nothing was creative or original about it.

  26. 5 out of 5

    H.G. Gravy

    "Midnight Mass" was a return to the "scary" vampires of the old world. Blinded by crosses, cannot stand the smell of garlic, don't sparkle, and sunlight makes them weak. Wilson even provides this information to the reader in the introduction of the book. Expecting to read something different than the romanticized vampire lore of being pushed around lately, mainly "Twilight" and Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles, I was disappointed with the lack of originality to the "twist" in the story. In Wilson's "Midnight Mass" was a return to the "scary" vampires of the old world. Blinded by crosses, cannot stand the smell of garlic, don't sparkle, and sunlight makes them weak. Wilson even provides this information to the reader in the introduction of the book. Expecting to read something different than the romanticized vampire lore of being pushed around lately, mainly "Twilight" and Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles, I was disappointed with the lack of originality to the "twist" in the story. In Wilson's world, the vampire menace has spread across the world taking down all of Europe and the eastern world. The invasion reaches the shores of the east coast of America and reaching further into the West. The only resistance to the vampires comes from a rabbi, a disgraced priest, a nun with a couple of screws loose, and a lesbian from New York City. Together, or maybe not so much together, these characters are the only thing standing between all-out victory and the enslavement of humanity. Being a former Jersey Shore resident, I can certainly say Wilson nails the geography of the area well. Knowing exactly where these locations are and getting into the details of the boardwalk, Lakewood, and other localities correct allowed me to picture the whole story in my mind's eye. Growing up in these places, it brought an extra layer of wonder and familiarity. The major problem with this book is that it felt like Wilson built up such a big world with larger than life characters and the stakes were so high only for them to fall flat in the end. Perhaps it was an editorial decision or maybe Wilson didn't feel like writing a series of books, but this shouldn't have been a single novel. There was enough material in this book to be stretched out into at least a trilogy of books. Because so much material is crammed into so few pages, a lot of the payoffs seem rushed, character development goes out the window, and what should have been an epic conclusion ends up falling flat with characters making stupid decisions to create dramatic tension. Wilson also divides the book into two parts, the first focusing on the local fight against the vampires and scummy human servants. There is plenty of action, character building, and overall a sense of fun to this half of the book. From organizing a resistance in a church, to rebuilding society, and bringing together the scared locals, this half of the book is excellent and I wish Wilson would have stuck with more of this. Then the second part of the book comes along and it feel more like Wilson was in a rush to close it out. The characters encounter little resistance in the plan to destroy the vampire leader in New York City when it should have been fortified. There should have been a sense of peril in their journey but nothing much happens aside from a car chase seen through the Lincoln Tunnel, which is admittedly pretty awesome. As the story comes to its conclusion, the climax doesn't involve the main baddie in any formidable state. Then after the climax, the conclusion doesn't have any sense of closure. It feels like there are chapters missing from the book or the epilogue was mistakenly left out. Overall, "Midnight Mass", despite its shortcomings and the lack of a payoff, was an entertaining read. The characters, when built up in the first half of the book are sympathetic and interesting, especially Sister Carole. While this wasn't the most original vampire story, it does goes into the territory of horror once more when it comes to vampires. I just wish it would have been better planned and better paced.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Max

    I first encountered the novella version of Midnight Mass in the pretty good Vampire Archives and again in the excellent Mammoth Book of Vampire Stories. The novella is excellent. It’s a horror story that explores Catholic theology and the church as well as the relationship between a Catholic priest and a rabbi. These two focal characters are quite well written and much of the tension comes from whether they can survive a world drowning beneath a sea of vampires. So when the note in The Vampire A I first encountered the novella version of Midnight Mass in the pretty good Vampire Archives and again in the excellent Mammoth Book of Vampire Stories. The novella is excellent. It’s a horror story that explores Catholic theology and the church as well as the relationship between a Catholic priest and a rabbi. These two focal characters are quite well written and much of the tension comes from whether they can survive a world drowning beneath a sea of vampires. So when the note in The Vampire Archives told me there was a novel length version I knew I had to read it. Unfortunately, the novel is just not as good as the original. On the plus side, it adds significant female characters in the form of a badass nun and Father Joe’s lesbian atheist niece. They don’t make much of an impact on the events of the novella (which is effectively reprinted with a little new material as the first half of the book) but they’re more or less fun characters. Plus in theory adding an atheist to the priest and rabbi dealing with a world where Catholic doctrine seems to be the unerring truth adds significantly to the potential for interesting theological stuff. Sadly, the novel falls down when it tries to shift beyond what happens in the original story. I’m not Catholic but I did enjoy seeing Father Joe reclaim his church from the vampires. It was a neat story of one man regaining his faith and using it to create a beacon of light in the darkness. And some of the events towards the end of part one make it seem like the story will be about Joe working to strengthen this stronghold and carve out a bastion of freedom that could lead to the vampires being overthrown. Basically a slightly more hopeful but still dangerous and dark story. Instead part two takes a swerve from straight horror into action horror. As Aliens and Terminator 2 prove, this is not impossible. But this book just can’t stick the landing. The interesting stuff with the church effectively disappears completely when Father Joe is semi-vampirized. It replaces the interesting struggle he has with alcoholism and his resentment over the community not standing up for him when he was kicked out of his church with a not very well done struggle with vampirism. And since somehow the evil parts of vampirism, other than the blood drinking, get burned out of Father Joe, the struggle isn’t that compelling. In essence this story decision takes away everything that made me enjoy the first part and replaces it with stuff I have no reason to be invested in. Plus the scale jumps much too quickly. The heroes go from protecting one church in New Jersey to assaulting vampire HQ in Manhattan and going toe-to-toe with multiple powerful vampires. Even the secret that killing a vampire kills that vampires spawn is one that shouldn’t be hard to figure out for anyone who’s read vampire fiction which still exists in this universe. And the ending doesn’t really feel very satisfying but instead just a launching point for more adventures that never came. (Plus the more details and scale added to the vampire invasion the less the logic of the story made sense to me. Why hasn’t anyone mounted a strong resistance before now? Why has there been no attempt to use nuclear weapons?) Over all, I still liked the first part of the book, even if I feel like the novella is better for being tighter and ending at a good place. This expansion shows that not every horror story needs a sequel, especially not one that tries to jump genres. I still enjoyed the whole experience a bit, but nowhere near as much as I had hoped. My advice is to stick to the novella and forget this exists - and I’m sure that goes for the film it’s tied to.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nick Milinazzo

    Re-read. Vampires have taken over the Earth: Asia, Africa, and Europe have all been wiped out. Now they are working on the East coast. In New Jersey, a nun, priest, and rabbi decide to take a stand against the onslaught, and stumble upon a way they might be able to save humanity. I first read this book in my early 20s and I can understand what drew me to it at the time. What Wilson excels at is action, schemes, and suspense: you are intrigued at the unique situations and want to know how they en Re-read. Vampires have taken over the Earth: Asia, Africa, and Europe have all been wiped out. Now they are working on the East coast. In New Jersey, a nun, priest, and rabbi decide to take a stand against the onslaught, and stumble upon a way they might be able to save humanity. I first read this book in my early 20s and I can understand what drew me to it at the time. What Wilson excels at is action, schemes, and suspense: you are intrigued at the unique situations and want to know how they end. His dialogue however leaves much to be desired. Often times it is trite and uninspired. A fun and engaging vampire novel, but not one destined to win any awards.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    My ex gave me this book to read around six years ago. Its been sitting in a box I rediscovered today. I forgot how much I enjoyed it, so I decided to finish it. Thank god I did! -Action packed novel with vampires. I loved the little references like Ren & Stimpy. -That ending!!!! (view spoiler)[But I really did love Franco's character. (hide spoiler)] I kind of fell in love with Lacey's character as well. -Spanish Inquisition/humanity section around p 340 definitely wasnt expecting that but it b My ex gave me this book to read around six years ago. Its been sitting in a box I rediscovered today. I forgot how much I enjoyed it, so I decided to finish it. Thank god I did! -Action packed novel with vampires. I loved the little references like Ren & Stimpy. -That ending!!!! (view spoiler)[But I really did love Franco's character. (hide spoiler)] I kind of fell in love with Lacey's character as well. -Spanish Inquisition/humanity section around p 340 definitely wasnt expecting that but it brings up interesting points.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Victoria

    Another surprise hit from the Dollar Tree, this paperback was in my winter reading pile, and I truly enjoyed the experience. I have not determined if there are sequels to this vampire romp, but the ending certainly left an opening for future adventures of the not quite undead priest once known as Father Joe. I've actually been avoiding vampire novels, but for $1, this was worth a chance. Hopefully, I'll have found another new horror author to follow.

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