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Holy shit, guys. Holy. Shit.

(All grammatical discrepancies and deviations from the mechanics of standard English have been preserved in their original form for maximum lulz.)

Audience members familiar with MacFarlane's will no doubt realize that the cover is a photograph of a detail of the Erzsebet Bathory action figure. Immediately we can see the dedication of the artist. (I hope to god there was no art director for this book.) With this powerhouse of talent, shivers of anticipation writhe tantalizingly upon my spine for the dark symphony of words that lies ahead. Let's check the MySpaced-out author's picture and compelling bio on the recto.

(Shitty cell phone pic, slightly edited for readability)

Is it woman's?!? Is it women's?!? Is it I Can't Believe It's Not Butter?!?!
Whatever he/she/it is, we're clearly dealing with some very srs bsns here. Multiple (aka, two) positive reviews follow this passage (note the allusion to ENLIGHTENMENT), obviously written by the author's mother and spiritual sisters. Everybody step the fuck back, because these Womyn (it's plural this time, by the way) have fapped to The Craft too hard too many times, and if you have anything to say about this outpouring of Lady Gia Bathory Al Babel's heart and soul, you're gonna have to answer to The Coven (another proper noun).

Well, before we get too judgmental, let's skim the introduction.

The Trouble with the Pears comes from a place in the minds of all who are mad. Those of us who see life from a completely different of paranoia, sorrow, suffering and rage. For those of you who have never gone mad...let me explain what talons hold us in their grip, as best as possible. Unfortunately, one will havew better luck describing the color Red to a blind man, than to break down insanity to the supposedly sane.

Eh, it has potential. Maybe this won't be so bad after all.

That being said, we move on to the black star that this novella is dedicated to...Erzsebet Bathory-Nadasdy, High Countess of Hungary in the sixteenth century.

Oh my god. Whoever comments first receives the pet appellation of my black star from here to eternity.

A pagan who hid beneath the skirts of reverent Protestantism, while at the same time, learned the ancient lores and ways of the Sisterhood. Wytch, Vampyre, Murderer, so many titles have been given to her. Most commonly, she is unjustly known as Die Bluttergraffen...The Blood Countess.

Well, guten fucking Tag, Die Bluttergraffen. It has been Shitty Google Translations For Torpid Fuckers, Inc.'s pleasure to assist you; have a nice day and come back soon. Tell your friends about us. The pseudo proper nouns, make it stop. But I'd best step off, lest The Sisterhood flay my ass.

Keep an open mind as you read. Let the imagery flow through your head and allow the flow of madness to enter. The story makes much more sense when you look through the eyes of the mad...which is why it has little time, date or reference to documentation.

When in doubt of your shaky nonextant talents, simply throw out a thinly-veiled pretentious validation of truly godawful writing. Now, if anyone insults your work, you can sniff that they're just plebeians who don't understand ~art~. Man, it's tough being a Womyn.

This is not the elegant, twisting flow of madness. This is the flow of I write better than this when drunk.

Ah, but we've dwelt too long in the mere introduction. Let's sample some choice passages. After all, Lady Gia reminds us, give Erzsebet a piece of your psyche, and you will be surprised at what she can give you in return. Like a waste of $20. Wait, it's time for my Mountain Dew break.

She stopped to catch her breath for a moment, she was in a hurry, but breathing was a necessary function of the body, in order for it to work properly, one must breathe. So she did. Maryana stopped, for only a moment, to breathe. (27)

Phew, thanks for reminding me of the importance of breathing for an entire paragraph. I was getting worried there.

Down the steps she went, past throngs of people and groups of women that curtseyed and men that would bow as she neared them. Then, out of a group of men that were standing near the doorway, a single being appeared that stood out like a siren in a world full of manatees. (105)

This may be the first time I've laughed out loud during a book since Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, and under entirely different circumstances. I want to start a 'Save the Noble Manatees of the Black Sea' campaign now.

I was however, turned into a lesbian at some point in time and then became an idol to hundreds of pathetic little girls who think that they are "Elizabeth Bathory" because they read Anne Rice books and wear black nail varnish, preposterous! (155)

On behalf of Lady Gia Bathory, we apologize for her temporary fugue state concerning her identity. The dissociation will continue; please proceed with your business as usual.

Often, pulling rank with people I knew worked quite well, being as I was the Czarina there was nothing they could say or do. (173)

Tsar. Used intermittently in Russia, Serbia, and Bulgaria until 1921. Smederevo fell to the Turks in like...the 1440s, and although Mehmed II was totally fucking George Brankovic`'s kids and consequently lending Serbia some puppet autonomy, THERE AIN'T NO FUCKING TSARS IN YOUR NON-HABSBURG EMPIRE. /my obsession. Case-in-point, no one in Hungary ever took the title of tsar. Wait, this gets better.

"The Former Countess Erzebet Tudor Bathory-Nadasdy, you have been sentenced to death by imprisonment within the walls of your own estate". (239)

...Tudor? TUDOR?!? Contemporaries, yes; blood relations, hell fucking no.
I can't find the passage alluding to Suleiman the Magnificent, so you all have been spared my rant about how Vienna was besieged in 1586 and wtf we're in Hungary and Francis Rakoczy held them off instead of the goddamn Bathorys. I've literally been facepalming for the last two minutes. Mountain Dew Code Red tastes like shit when it gets warm.

While sojourning from the exhausting task of writing the final third of the novel, Lady Gia embarked on her weekly pilgrimage to Hot Topic and put the moves on some sixteen-year-old in a Nymphetamine shirt, who later proved his mild (and I do stress, mild) evolutionary superiourity and lent her his copy of Cruelty and the Beast. After absorbing Dani Filth's spirit via osmosis and painstakingly memorizing every lyric (DON'T JUDGE ME), Lady Gia began blatantly ripping memorable phrases from the album and incorporating them into her own ~art~. We know that Lady Gia is a plagiarizing whore because a. the book was published in 2006, and Cruelty came out in like...'96 or '98, and b. this was before Cradle sucked hardcore and I will forever be completely and utterly gay for their old material. Fhtagn. Haha, everybody check out


Then one day in the deep winter, so many years later...I returned to the crumbling walls of Cachtice, near the Czech border it meets Hungary near the mountains. (257)

The Czech Republic hasn't shared a border with Hungary since 1987. You has won lottery; pls come to Unholy Crypt to claim yur prize.

The novel (again, a loosely applied term) ends with an abrupt switch of perspective, in which the author hikes up the side of the mountain where Csejthe is situated, climbs into the tower (there can only be one), and spends the night half-dead of hypothermia in the room where Erzsebet was imprisoned and died (this is verified by loathesome clairvoyant vibrations, the blood-pot in the corner, which was probably a fucking chamber pot and the author was too cracked out to notice, and the magick of being a WOMYN). How this stunt is pulled off, who the fuck knows, as I assume there's some kitschy cardboard tourist village (or at least some security, as European governments are generally more reticent and respectful of their history, and Hungary may have just elected to let this particular piece of history lay silent) surrounding the castle, like virtually every other one. Anyway, in a spellbinding climax of soul-shattering proportions, Lady Gia discovers that she and Erzsebet are ONE WOMYN, FOREVER.
But why try to explain it to you when the Lady does it so much more beautifully?

Then it came to me...the epiphany that changed me for all time. goddess...I have returned home at last. With all fear having fled me now, I crawled to the edge of the tower, where the ancient wooden remains beaconed where a bed once stood. I curled up with my own madness, as I had done those six hundred years prior...I let it envelope me. With the serenity of questions finally answered and home being found...I resigned to my old bed, in my old room in the Tower. I had found who I was, and in doing so...realized what my fate meant. With the last semblance of consciousness, I whispered the words: "...To peace...or Hell, for company..." (261-262)

*Dani Filth and Ingrid Pitt voice-overs fade out*
I'm telling you guys, this one's a tearjerker.
Wait...six hundred years? Are we still counting back to the sixteenth century? I barely passed geometry (probably because it wasn't non-Euclidean enough for my tastes); yet even I can sense some vague disturbance in the force here. God, this is powerful stuff. Can you imagine knowing that kind of enlightenment, that inner peace with oneself, the merging of the past and present in one climactic instant? I feel like I just douched with Summer's Eve.

Oh, and the Countess apparently has a copy of the Necronomicon in her private salon. If I had known the Mediterranean was that much of an, ahem, universal trade hub, I might have paid more attention in sixth grade social studies class.

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