Shakespeare V’s Lovecraft, By D.R. O’Brien

Well I suppose if you are going to do a genre mash up, you may as well go for broke.  It’s either a very brave man or a very stupid man who decides to do a mash up with two giants of their respective genres.  Shakespeare, and Lovecraft?  Are you crazy?

Luckily for us it seems that D R O’Brien is tainted with just enough craziness to pull this task of.  In this story some of Shakespeare’s best know characters, folk such as Macbeth, and King Henry V go head to head with the titans of  Lovecraftian horror.

Driven to madness, Prospero has made a deal with the great god himself Cthulhu, a deal that will see the destruction of our world.  It’s down to Prospero’s daughter Miranda and a rag tag group of Shakespearian heroes to save the day.

I was pleasantly surprised with this book, I’m generally not a fan of these sort of books, in my opinion for the most part they are a lazy way of telling a story.  However where this book differs to many of these books, is in the fact that this is more of a story featuring famous characters rather than a rehashing of  a story with supernatural elements forced into it.

I was never a fan of Shakespeare at school, I could never get my head around the flowery language, and initially I hard a hard time reading this book, The Shakespearian characters that inhabit this book speak, funnily enough in a  Shakespearian way.  However after the opening two chapters I started to get into the flow of the dialogue, and really started to thoroughly enjoy this rather splendid story.   O’Brien has breathed new life into these well known and well loved characters, my favourite is his take on the lecherous Romeo.  He has transformed Romeo into  more of a lounge lizard Lothario rather than a star crossed lover.

As for the story, O’Bien has crafted an entertaining romp, that manages to inject a wicked sense of humour into the narrative while at the same time still being respectful to the source material.  You will instantly recognise the characters here, but you will also love how they have been twisted ever so slightly.

The book manages to be thrilling, horrific, and funny at the same time which is no mean feat.  O’Brien is a talented writer, and I am very interested to see where he goes next.

Even if you are not a fan of horror mash ups I say give this book a go I think you will be pleasently surprised.


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