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Philadelphia, the late 1870s. A city of gas lamps, cobblestone streets, and horse-drawn carriages—and home to the controversial surgeon Dr. Spencer Black. The son of a grave robber, young Dr. Black studies at Philadelphia’s esteemed Academy of Medicine, where he develops an unconventional hypothesis: What if the world’s most celebrated mythological beasts—mermaids, minotaurs, and satyrs—were in fact the evolutionary ancestors of humankind?
The Resurrectionist offers two extraordinary books in one. The first is a fictional biography of Dr. Spencer Black, from a childhood spent exhuming corpses through his medical training, his travels with carnivals, and the mysterious disappearance at the end of his life. The second book is Black’s magnum opus: The Codex Extinct Animalia, a Gray’s Anatomy for mythological beasts—dragons, centaurs, Pegasus, Cerberus—all rendered in meticulously detailed anatomical illustrations. You need only look at these images to realize they are the work of a madman. The Resurrectionist tells his story.
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The vivid imagery unveiled becomes the dark fantasy response to Gray's Anatomy...--Filter Magazine--The book is a welcome addition to any library of dark fantasy, with its beautiful portraiture and gripping description of a man's descent into perversity.--Publishers Weekly,April, 2013 Pick of the Week Disturbingly lovely . . . 'The Resurrectionist' is itself a cabinet of curiosities, stitching history and mythology and sideshow into an altogether different creature. Deliciously macabre and beautifully grotesque.--Erin Morgenstern, author of 'The Night Circus' --A masterful mash-up of Edgar Allan Poe and Jorge Luis Borges, with the added allure of gorgeous, demonically detailed drawings. I've never seen anything quite like 'The Resurrectionist', and I doubt that I will ever forget it." --Chase Novak, author of Breed
...is a book of two halves. The first half is a biography of Dr Spencer Black:anthropologist, taxidermist and latterly madman. The second half of the book is an anatomical study of a variety of mythological beings taken from Dr Black's notes. The fictional biography is an engrossing read that describes Dr Black's descent into madness as he becomes engrossed in his theories on alternate evolution. While Hudspeth is certainly not the first writer to tackle the subject of crypto-zoology, her take on the subject matter is refreshing and brings to mind the works of H. P Lovecraft and Edgar Allen Poe.....The anatomical study is beautifully macabre. The introductory notes for each entry contain details pf wher the specimins were found alongside Dr Black's theories of why the creature evolved as it did. These notes are followed by lavishly detailed renderings of the skeletal structure and musculuture which are the equal of any academic textbook. The book is a grotesque sideshow that you just can't stop looking at. highly recommended for fans of the mabacabre and anyone with an interest in gothic artwork and fiction. --Fever Dreams, May, 2013
This strange and intriguing tome is part biography of a fictional 19th century grave-robber-cum-surgical genius, Dr Spencer Black. He spent his life touring with freakshows and exploring the idea that mankind evolved from mythological beings. The second half of the book is a result of his anatomical drawings of these various extinct curiosities, such as mermaids, minotaurs and satyrs. It's a beautiful book, and entertainingly written, a kind of carnivalesque mix of Darwinism, Latin class and early macabre novelist Arthur Machen - perhaps even with a smidgen of Frankenstein for the medical stuff...Maybe someone would like to turn Dr Black's story into a film? It'd be damn good, you know.... --Bizarre magazine, July, 2013
I guarantee that 'The Resurrectionist' will be unlike any book you've ever read before. Two books in one - the first a Gothic Frankenstein-esque narrative about the brilliant scientist Dr. Spencer Black; the second an anatomical sketchbook of fantastical creatures - this macabre production will stay with you long after you read it. The story is flawless; the imagery is at home with so many other wonderful curiosities such as the work of Walter Potter, the show Carnivale, the blog Morbid Anatomy... while the tale itself is perfectly pitched Victorian Gothic. The anatomical sketches are haunting and strangely beautiful; illustrations that are hard to tear your eyes away from.... --OutrightBarbarious blog, June, 2013
E. B. HUDSPETH is an artist and author living in New Jersey. This is his first book.
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