It's difficult to love a woman whose vagina is a gateway to the world of the dead...
Steve is madly in love with his eccentric girlfriend, Stacy. Unfortunately, their sex life has been suffering as of late, because Steve is worried about the odd noises that have been coming from Stacy's pubic region. She says that her vagina is haunted. She doesn't think it's that big of a deal. Steve, on the other hand, completely disagrees.
When a living corpse climbs out of her during an awkward night of sex, Stacy learns that her vagina is actually a doorway to another world. She persuades Steve to climb inside of her to explore this strange new place. But once inside, Steve finds it difficult to return... especially once he meets an oddly attractive woman named Fig, who lives within the lonely haunted world between Stacy's legs.
"A very strange and surprisingly touching love story, despite the deliberately asinine premise. With subtle humor, surreal erotica, and some genuinely creepy moments, The Haunted Vagina is a completely unique reading experience."
"Easily the craziest, weirdest, strangest, funniest, most obscene writer in America." - GOTHIC MAGAZINE
"Bizarre, twisted, and emotionally raw--Carlton Mellick's fiction is the literary equivalent of putting your brain in a blender." - BRIAN KEENE, author of The Rising and Dead Sea
"Carlton Mellick III has the craziest book titles... and the kinkiest fans!" - CHRISTOPHER MOORE, author of The Stupidest Angel
"Carlton Mellick III is one of bizarro fiction's most talented practitioners, a virtuoso of the surreal, science fictional tale." - CORY DOCTOROW, author of Little Brother
"Carlton Melick III exemplifies the intelligence and wit that lurks between its lurid covers. In a genre where crude titles are an art in themselves, Mellick is a true artist." - THE GUARDIAN
"Just as Pop had Andy Warhol and Dada Tristan Tzara, the Bizarro movement has its very own P. T. Barnum-type practitioner. He's the mutton-chopped author of such books as Electric Jesus Corpse and The Menstruating Mall, the illustrator, editor, and instructor of all things Bizarro, and his name is Carlton Mellick III." - DETAILS MAGAZINE
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Praise for Carlton Mellick III
"Easily the craziest, weirdest, strangest, funniest, most obscene writer in America." -- GOTHIC MAGAZINE
"Carlton is an acquired taste, but he hooks you like a drug." --HUNTER SHEA, author of Forest of Shadows
"The most original novelist working today? The most outrageous? The most unpredictable? These aren't easy superlatives to make; however, Carlton Mellick may well be all of those things, behind a canon of books that all irreverently depart from the form and concepts of traditional novels, and adventure the reader into a howling, dark fantasyland of the most bizarre, over-the-top, and mind-warping inventiveness." --EDWARD LEE, author of Header
"Carlton Mellick III is a genius with an insanely beautiful imagination." --JOE AUGUSTYN, writer of Night of the Demons
"Carlton Mellick III has the craziest book titles... and the kinkiest fans!" --CHRISTOPHER MOORE, author of The Stupidest Angel
"If you haven't read Mellick you're not nearly perverse enough for the twenty first century." --JACK KETCHUM, author of The Woman and The Girl Next Door
"Carlton Mellick III is one of bizarro fiction's most talented practitioners, a virtuoso of the surreal, science fictional tale." --CORY DOCTOROW, author of Little Brother
"Mellick's career is impressive because, despite the fact that he puts out a few books a year, he has managed to bring something new to the table every time... Every Mellick novel is packed with more wildly original concepts than you could find in the current top ten New York Times bestsellers put together." --VERBICIDE
"Mellick's guerrilla incursions combine total geekboy fandom and love with genuine, unbridled outsider madness. As such, it borders on genius, in the way only true outsider art can." --FANGORIA
"Bizarre, twisted, and emotionally raw--Carlton Mellick's fiction is the literary equivalent of putting your brain in a blender." --BRIAN KEENE, author of The Rising and Dead Sea
"I'm a huuuuge Bizarro fan. This new strain of cheerfully transgressive weird fiction is to me the most vibrant, exciting, genre-mangling scene in all of strange literature today. And no one holds dominion over this blossoming underground phenomenon like the godfather of Bizarro, Carlton Mellick III. With the most impressive sideburns in imaginative lit since Isaac Asimov, and a brain that squirts out more shamelessly playful originality in any given chapter than most artists will accomplish in their entire lives, he's the poster boy. The Elvis. As well he should be." --JOHN SKIPP, co-author of The Bridge
"It's not unusual to blow through a Mellick book in one sitting. They're fast-paced with an endless number of surprises, making it tough not to keep turning pages. When the end comes, I'm left with that done-too-soon feeling that I always love experiencing." --RAZORCAKE
"A wormhole of disturbing surrealism and absurd satire." --VICE MAGAZINE
"Carlton Mellick III exemplifies the intelligence and wit that lurks between its lurid covers. In a genre where crude titles are an art in themselves, Mellick is a true artist." --THE GUARDIAN
"His fiction blends bizarre scenarios mixed with horror, action, and even more bizarre actions to create fiction that toes the line between the absurd and the dark places of the mind... Shocking yet entertaining" --THE EXAMINER
"I imagine Mellick as a Willy Wonka-type character, someone with personal access to another world, a world of his own creation, but due to its mind-bending energy, he's lost control of it, and it continues to thrive even without him there to pull the strings. And I like the idea of that." --BOOKIE MONSTER
"The imp of the perverse." --3AM MAGAZINE
"Just as Pop had Andy Warhol and Dada Tristan Tzara, the Bizarro movement has its very own P. T. Barnum-type practitioner. He's the mutton-chopped author of such books as Electric Jesus Corpse and The Menstruating Mall, the illustrator, editor, and instructor of all things Bizarro, and his name is Carlton Mellick III." --DETAILS MAGAZINE
"Discussing Bizarro literature without mentioning Mellick is like discussing weird-ass muttonchopped authors without mentioning Mellick." --CRACKED.COM
In Carlton Mellick III's fourteenth bizarro novel, The Haunted Vagina, the reader is presented with another Mellickian mind-bending concept--what if your girlfriend's vagina was a gateway to another world? We are introduced to Steve and his girlfriend Stacy, whose "haunted" vagina is a problem for their sex life. When a skeleton-like creature emerges from Stacy's vagina, the two decide to explore what may be inside of her.
When Steve explores (and becomes trapped in) Stacy's vaginal world, he reflects upon his relationship with her. Mellick makes it obvious through clear dialogue and abstract imagery that their relationship is not healthy. Despite these strange occurrences and relationship problems, Steve remains hopelessly devoted to Stacy. This love is the basis for Mellick's return to a common theme: the power, figuratively and literally, a women's vagina can hold over a man.
The joys and terrors that Steve finds in the vagina reflect his relationship with Stacy. The power and trust struggles are seen from inside both characters--inside Steve, who is the narrator of the story, and from literally inside Stacy. This allows the reader a uniquely personal viewpoint of Steve and Stacy's downward spiral as lovers.
Mellick has made a name for himself by writing consistently engaging, strange, and downright weird stories. His characters can sometimes get lost in the weirdness. The Haunted Vagina is not really about the hallucinogenic world Steve finds inside Stacy; it is about the characters themselves. Their doubts and fears fuel the plot.
Fan's looking only for Mellick's hardcore gore and extremely bizarre imagery may be disappointed, as this book is more subtle than its predecessors. Don't be mistaken: this is still very much a horror book that explores the vagaries and dangers of lust, love and obsession. In this Bizarro novel, Mellick illustrates the human condition better than many authors of "realism."
Despite having dealt with similar themes before (e.g. Razor Wire Pubic Hair and The Steel Breakfast Era), this is Mellick's most mature and effective representation of men's sexual fears. His sparse style paints an intimate portrait of Steve and Stacy's relationship. The Haunted Vagina deserves attention; it's among Mellick's very best.
--The Magazine of Bizarro Fiction, Fall 2009
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