Review: The Caldecott Chronicles No.1 by R.G. Bullet (Short Story)

Sweet succulent brains, that is what the undead are looking for in The Caldecott Chronicles by RG Bullet. Though the word ‘zombie’ is never used in the short story it is clear, the 32nd Earl of Rothshire and his home are under siege…from the undead….the zombies are coming! BRAINS!

Since this is more of a short story, my review will not be as lengthy. The author was kind enough to give me an ARC of the short story, since he knows I am a huge Victorian/Gothic lit fan. I was really excited to start reading it when my e-copy of the story arrived.

This is only the first installment and I understand the entire chronicles will be available sometime this month (Nov) according to the author’s website. 

The gruesome siege is recounted by the Earl, who is often quirky and humorous…..there’s just something about a proper, old fashion, English gentleman recounting how to kill the undead with this trusty Purdey shotgun.

The Earl’s home (Caldecott Estates) is in the picturesque area of the English countryside known as the Cotswolds. Set in 1899, the late Victorian social ideals and culture are beautifully brought to life in the Earl’s narrative. 

One of the things I liked best about the first installment was the narrative voice of the Earl. Personally I like zombie stories that are heavy on the irony and humor (similar to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies)…eating brains is totally gross but at the same time, can be humorous if used with the right amount of dark humor and irony which both the Chronicles and P & P and Zombies did.  We get first hand look from the Earl’s voice on how the Victorian gentry deal with undead trespassers.

The Earl is rather jovial about dealing with his unwanted visitors, even if many of them are former friends and manor staff….one of my fav parts was when he describes how he dispatched his favorite family butler because he smelled ‘off” and he had to be ‘sure’ the purification hadn’t gotten to the manor staff :).

The Earl and his shot gun (and his last horse he has named Willow because she is so thin) are quickly joined by Saffy, a young girl who is extremely talented in dispatching the zombies to their afterlife. She sets traps and comes up with new innovative ways to protect the manor from the disease and the undead.

Normally I don’t really like a lot of horror books or gruesome books and because of that zombie books are always a little iffy for me but when I read the summary of the Chronicles it sounded more likeP & P and Zombies which I enjoyed. I loved the dry, witty humor  with all the sensibilities of 19th century rural gentry mixed with all the horror of a zombie classic.

While being a fun read, it is also an illustrated story which added to the fun and humor of the story. Over all I did enjoy the first installment, it wasn’t overly gruesome or horrific but it was descriptive about the ‘purification’….however the wit and comical illustrations helped distract from the gore.

I look forward to reading the next two installments of The Caldecott Chronicles….but until then, hold fast to your shot guns and be ready to dispatch the undead in a moments notice…..the zombies…..they’re coming….for your sweet succulent BRAINS!

Challenge/Book Summary:

Book: The Caldecott Chronicles No.1 by R.G. Bullet

  • ebook, 120 pages
  • Published 2011 by SilverHouse Books
  • ISBN 098293128X (ISBN13: 9780982931288)

This book counts toward: NA

  • Hosted by: NA
  • Books for Challenge Completed: NA

Recommendation: 4 out of 5 (good zombie story, wish that all 3 could be out so I could read the next one)

Genre: Zombie fiction, horror

Memorable lines/quotes: NA

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