Robert Henry Pearce is a man with a lot on his mind. Coming of age in New England, in the years prior to World War I, he begins to suspect that, beneath the veneer of his regular, everyday life, strange forces and cryptic beings are afoot. From the industrial towns and steep mountain forests he inhabits, to the dark corners of his own mind, Robert begins to sense an inhuman presence, a malevolent intelligence granting him bizarre insights, and tracking his movements.
Intuitively repulsed by modern industrial civilization, Robert is slowly overcome with atavistic, vampire-like, cravings. Surreptitiously drawn into a shadowy, dream-like, existence, he finds himself halfway between the mundane world of civilized humanity, and a world haunted by nightmare beings and apocalyptic foreshadowings. Robert’s monstrous appetite grows, and he is compelled to fatally draw sustenance from his fellow human beings. As a direct result of these indulgences, strange and terrifying superpowers begin to develop and expand within him. As the body count grows, Robert finds himself pursued by Pinkerton Detectives, lynch mobs, the New York State Police, military scientists, and squads of patriotic vigilantes. Thus, drawn into the role of a latter-day Count Dracula (but drawing class-conscious inspiration from the likes of Emma Goldman, Luigi Galleani, and Sacco and Vanzetti), Robert Henry Pearce embarks upon a journey to uncover the conspiracy behind his incredible transformation… a conspiracy which underlays modern industrial civilization itself.
Fleeing into the wilderness, retreating from a civilization which he finds increasingly repellent, Robert begins to encounter others like himself, living in the shadows… men, women, and animals, who are experiencing similar cravings and developing comparable superpowers. But, the more he researches his strange new abilities, and the mythological monsters who share them, the more he realizes the terrible truth behind the legends he’s been hearing his entire life… the unfathomable truth behind the advent of earthling life, itself.
More frightening still, in the lonely mountain forests of New England, Robert begins to encounter utterly incredible beings (wrongly believed to be mythical), and quickly finds himself intimately acquainted with ancient ghouls, prehistoric giants, cannibal monsters, vampires, extra-terrestrial blobs, and countless other terrifyingly familiar childhood bogeys, blood-suckers, and nursery rhyme monsters.
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