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Krampus

Krampus

Written by Brom

Narrated by Kirby Heyborne


Krampus

Written by Brom

Narrated by Kirby Heyborne

ratings:
4/5 (219 ratings)
Length:
16 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Oct 30, 2012
ISBN:
9780062205247
Format:
Audiobook

Description

"Brom is that rare breed: a person who is skilled in more than one area of artistic expression. Here's hoping that he will continue to share his dark and often beautiful dreams with us for many years to come." Christopher Paolini, New York Times bestselling author of Eragon

Acclaimed author and artist Brom raised eyebrows and pulse rates with The Child Thief, his grim, brilliantly audacious, gorgeously illustrated reimagining of the Peter Pan legend. So what does this innovative fantasist do for an encore? He tinkers darkly with the beloved mythology of Santa Claus. Set in Appalachia, Krampus the Yule Lord is a twisted fairytale about a failed West Virginia songwriter who gets ensnared on Christmas Eve in an eternal war between a not-so-saintly Saint Nick and his dark enemy Krampus, aka Black Peter, an ancient trickster demon. Krampus the Yule Lord is Gregory Maguire (Wicked) meets Susanna Clarke (Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell) in the realm of Guillermo Del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth, as Clive Barker (Mr. B. Gone) works his dark sorcery from the shadows. Once again featuring Brom's chillingly beautiful artwork throughout, Krampus the Yule Lord is a feast of wonder straight from the kitchen of Sweeney Todd.

 

Publisher:
Released:
Oct 30, 2012
ISBN:
9780062205247
Format:
Audiobook

About the author

Over the past few decades, Brom has lent his distinctive vision to all facets of the creative industries, from novels and games to comics and film. He is the author of The Child Thief and the award-winning illustrated horror novels The Plucker and The Devil's Rose. Brom is currently kept in a dank cellar somewhere just outside of Seattle.


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Reviews

What people think about Krampus

3.8
219 ratings / 24 Reviews
What did you think?
Rating: 0 out of 5 stars

Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    Krampus: The Yule Lord Audio narration = 5 Kirby Heyborne did such a phenomenal job narrating this story that I would say that it was probably what I enjoyed most about the book. He brought these characters to life in such a way that I thought there were several different narrators and was surprised to find that this was not the case. I wasn't surprised to find that Heyborne also narrated parts of Cloud Atlas which was also done brilliantly. I look forward to enjoying more audio books with this narrator. I am almost sad to say that I didn't enjoy Krampus as much as I thought I would. I loved Brom's retelling of Peter Pan in The Child Thief so much that I was anticipating the same kind of dark and disturbing storytelling in this story about a Christmas demon. Don't get me wrong, this wasn't by any means a fun, happy story, it just didn't have that element of creepiness that I expect from this author or that I anticipated with this particular subject matter. How can a story about a Christmas demon known for dragging naughty children off to Hell be anything less than terrifying? Unfortunately, there is a way. The images of Krampus seem pretty terrifying but for some reason this story presented him as far less than intimidating, and even a little ridiculous at times with all too human-like flaws. Since Krampus is said to carry naughty children off to hell, I thought he would be a bit more imposing with less obvious weaknesses of character. There were definitely some bloody & violent moments involving The Yule Lord but I didn't find him believable as a God or descendant of Loki. Also, the background of the conflict between him and Santa was a little confusing at times, especially near the end. The way this story was resolved was even more baffling. However, an afterword explains a lot of the mythology that the author used to inspire parts of the book and does actually answer some questions.While several aspects of this book left me less than satisfied, many others I really enjoyed. For example, exploring the origins of the Santa Claus and Krampus mythology and their relationships to the Gods Odin and Loki. I am always fascinated by the way many pagan rituals have been absorbed into Christian celebrations and I enjoyed reading about how that applied to Santa and Krampus' legends. There was also some wicked humor interspersed throughout that I found genuinely entertaining. Those moments when Krampus was attempting to function in today's world was at times amusing and at other times just sad. I would have liked to have seen this explored a bit more. One of my favorite things about Krampus- The Yule Lord was the main character Jesse. I don't know how many of you watch the TV show "Breaking Bad" but there is also a character named Jesse in that show who consistently makes all the wrong decisions and isn't very likable but somehow has some endearing quality that makes you root for him all the same. Jesse in this novel was much the same and so, in my mind, this is who I saw playing this tale out. This and the incredible audio narration were, in my opinion, this books best qualities. But while I loved Jesse's character, sometimes I felt like what was going on with him overshadowed Krampus' story and I was left wanting more from both. Overall, Krampus is a story I would recommend, especially for the Christmas/Yule season. There is a lot going on in this story; violence, mayhem, mythology, gods, goats, magic, thugs, domestic violence, murder, and belsnickels. You definitely won't be bored. If you are thinking of reading this, I HIGHLY recommend the audio, it is one of the best narrations I've ever listened to.
  • (5/5)
    Jesse is a loser. He lives alone in a trailer playing his guitar for drunks on the weekends with $4 to his name. It's Christmas and he can't even buy his daughter presents. He was off to drink himself into a stupor or kill himself when he saw the weirdest thing he's ever witnessed in his life: little devil people fighting Santa Claus on his sleigh complete with flying reindeer. Jesse can't believe his eyes, but he doesn't hesitate to take the big red Santa sack that they left behind that produces any toy he can think of. He thinks he's found the solution to all of his problems, but both Santa Claus and the leader of these devils wants the sack back.Krampus has been awfully popular lately. Krampus festivals are gaining popularity and the recent years have had an explosion of films about him. This is the best Krampus story I've seen thus far. Krampus in this story is the Yule Lord, not a demon or devil. He descended from Loki and is one of the last of the old gods. Yule is the pagan celebration the rebirth of the sun and the beginning of winter. Krampus was widely worshiped by people in the past with revels and shoes full of treats. The wicked were put in sacks and beaten with switches. In the 1400s, a friend of Krampus' previously imprisoned in Hel decided to imprison him, dress as St. Nicholas, and hijack his holiday for a new age. Krampus' image with his horns and imposing figure along with his iconography was then repurposed to create Satan, a fitting villain for Santa and Christianity in general. Krampus finally frees himself after being imprisoned for centuries and seeks to take his holiday back as well as punish the man responsible who betrayed him and their family. I love how Brom interweaves Norse mythology, pagan practices, and the rise of Christianity to create his story. The pagan origins of some modern traditions like Christmas trees and mistletoe are also particularly interesting. Although Krampus is a mercurial and inhuman god, I felt for him and wanted him to take back his holiday.The other main plotline is Jesse and his whole sad situation. He brings a more human element to the fantastical story and gives us someone to identify with. His family is estranged and his wife wants a divorce, but he's convinced they can make it work somehow. This hopeless man without prospects or drive has a big load of crazy dropped right into his lap. Krampus enlists his help in exchange for revenge against a corrupt sheriff currently dating his wife and the crime boss who associates with him. Jesse truly grows over the course of the novel. Through his adlines and ventures and insights from Krampus and his Belsnickels, Jesse completes his hero's journey and comes out the other side stronger and with definite hope for the future. He also finds the drive to see if he can make something of a music career after years of stagnation. The ending isn't all roses and butterflies, but a little bittersweet.Krampus the Yule Lord offers a different perspective of this ancient figure than is usually seen in the media. It also offers explanations on why he fell out of favor, how his image was transformed into something evil, and why he's gaining popularity today. The story has momentum and goes unexpected places. I was invested in both stories and the ending was satisfying and complex. The book starts each chapter with a black and white illustration of a scene in the novel. Each of them is incredibly detailed and in Brom's signature style. My only disappointment is that they all weren't in color like the insides of the book cover and the drawings in the middle. I plan to read another Brom book The Child Thief, a retelling of Peter Pan, and I'm confident it will be just as amazing.
  • (3/5)
    Krampus: The Yule Lord Audio narration = 5 Kirby Heyborne did such a phenomenal job narrating this story that I would say that it was probably what I enjoyed most about the book. He brought these characters to life in such a way that I thought there were several different narrators and was surprised to find that this was not the case. I wasn't surprised to find that Heyborne also narrated parts of Cloud Atlas which was also done brilliantly. I look forward to enjoying more audio books with this narrator. I am almost sad to say that I didn't enjoy Krampus as much as I thought I would. I loved Brom's retelling of Peter Pan in The Child Thief so much that I was anticipating the same kind of dark and disturbing storytelling in this story about a Christmas demon. Don't get me wrong, this wasn't by any means a fun, happy story, it just didn't have that element of creepiness that I expect from this author or that I anticipated with this particular subject matter. How can a story about a Christmas demon known for dragging naughty children off to Hell be anything less than terrifying? Unfortunately, there is a way. The images of Krampus seem pretty terrifying but for some reason this story presented him as far less than intimidating, and even a little ridiculous at times with all too human-like flaws. Since Krampus is said to carry naughty children off to hell, I thought he would be a bit more imposing with less obvious weaknesses of character. There were definitely some bloody & violent moments involving The Yule Lord but I didn't find him believable as a God or descendant of Loki. Also, the background of the conflict between him and Santa was a little confusing at times, especially near the end. The way this story was resolved was even more baffling. However, an afterword explains a lot of the mythology that the author used to inspire parts of the book and does actually answer some questions.While several aspects of this book left me less than satisfied, many others I really enjoyed. For example, exploring the origins of the Santa Claus and Krampus mythology and their relationships to the Gods Odin and Loki. I am always fascinated by the way many pagan rituals have been absorbed into Christian celebrations and I enjoyed reading about how that applied to Santa and Krampus' legends. There was also some wicked humor interspersed throughout that I found genuinely entertaining. Those moments when Krampus was attempting to function in today's world was at times amusing and at other times just sad. I would have liked to have seen this explored a bit more. One of my favorite things about Krampus- The Yule Lord was the main character Jesse. I don't know how many of you watch the TV show "Breaking Bad" but there is also a character named Jesse in that show who consistently makes all the wrong decisions and isn't very likable but somehow has some endearing quality that makes you root for him all the same. Jesse in this novel was much the same and so, in my mind, this is who I saw playing this tale out. This and the incredible audio narration were, in my opinion, this books best qualities. But while I loved Jesse's character, sometimes I felt like what was going on with him overshadowed Krampus' story and I was left wanting more from both. Overall, Krampus is a story I would recommend, especially for the Christmas/Yule season. There is a lot going on in this story; violence, mayhem, mythology, gods, goats, magic, thugs, domestic violence, murder, and belsnickels. You definitely won't be bored. If you are thinking of reading this, I HIGHLY recommend the audio, it is one of the best narrations I've ever listened to.
  • (5/5)
    Love this book. Great writing, fun story. Totally celebrating yule tidings every year.
  • (5/5)
    His ability to take polar opposites (santa, krampus and Christians, demons) and give them a common ground worked well. I loved that he brought in back ground story of the Norse God's and had them in the modern world.
  • (5/5)
    Wow! What an adventure! This is a must read book for anyone who loves folklore and wild tales, especially around Yuletide! I had such a great time reading this book I didn't want it to end. Long live Krampus!
  • (5/5)
    Awesome in every way! Rest assured I'm going to be loving Krampus more than Santa from here onwards! Superb narration!
  • (4/5)
    Not the tale of terror I expected, but there’s still much to like about this book, not least of all the drawings by Brom, artist and author. I didn’t find the pace terribly fast, and I questioned Jesse’s patience/impatience, which seemed erratic, even though Krampus doesn’t give him much choice. In short, I would have liked the book to be a little more emotional, both in the feelings portrayed and what it invokes, but for anyone who likes the darker side of Christmas tales, this is easily deserving to be identified as classic.
  • (3/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    The narrator is awful. His accent is painful listening to. If you want to write a book set in West Virginia, get someone who can do the accent justice.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I Enjoyed it even though was written with simple vocabulary.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Brom delivers! Everything and more - his story telling is so captivating, you can pay attention to him even in a crowded noisy room

    1 person found this helpful

  • (1/5)
    Not in the mood for this right now. Santa as Odin and vicious just isn't working for me.
  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Well, the West Virginian's were as stprettyyo typical it was sad. But the fact the Krampus is from Norwiean Gods. True portrayal of WV, meth use.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I got a copy of this book from the publisher for review. I have loved Brom’s previous books and was excited to see what he would come up with next. This was a very adult story about what happens when Krampus the Yule Lord faces off with Santa Claus. It was an interesting story and well writtenJesse is a loser whose wife has left him; he wants to make it big as a music star but can seem to play in front of crowds. His life changes when he sees Santa’s sleigh attacked by horned beasts. When something crashes into his house he finds something that both Santa and Krampus want dearly; Loki’s magical bag. Jesse reluctantly agrees to help Krampus in exchange for Krampus helping Jesse save his family from the criminal low-lifes in the small town Jesse lives in.This was a very interesting re-imagining about Krampus the Yule Lord. Brom combines traditional folklore with Norse mythology to come up with a tale in which Santa Claus and Krampus throw down in a small town plagued by joblessness and meth. You can’t help by feel some sympathy for Jesse, I mean sure he is a loser...but he is also really in the wrong place at the wrong time. I love the twisted path Jesse’s life takes as he joins Krampus and seeks to save his family.Krampus and Santa are both fascinating characters. Krampus is a wonderful mix of hope, joviality, and naughtiness. Santa can kick some serious butt and is a complex character in his own right.All the characters in this story are very human and complex, this is one of those books where no one is really good or right. It makes for an interesting read.This was a well written tale that was entertaining and engaging. I received this as an eGalley and although some of Brom's artwork was present in the eGalley there wasn't a ton of it; I am curious to see what the final book looks like. This is definitely an adult only book and (as with Brom's other books) doesn't shy away from the darkness of humanity. There is swearing, torture, beatings, and abuse aplenty. If you are a Brom fan you already know he likes to explore the dark parts of humanity. Brom includes a very well done afterword on the work he did researching the legend of Saint Nicholas. He explains how he came up with the idea to tie Saint Nicholas to Krampus. It made for an interesting explanation and read.Overall this was a good read; although I didn’t enjoy it as much as The Child Thief. Definitely for adults only. This was an interesting blend of folklore and Norse mythology. It was an engaging, fast-paced, and intriguing read. Recommended to those who are interested in Santa/Yule Lord folklore and to those who are big Brom fans. If you like dark and somewhat disturbing urban fantasy I think you will enjoy this book as well.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    This was an extremely fun book!To start out, I have to admit that I was drawn to this novel initially by the bad-ass cover art. I saw it several times online and was enticed to read the description. From that point, I was hooked and knew that it was something that I had to at least give a shot. Luckily, I managed to get the book via Interlibrary Loan right before the holidays so I had a perfect backdrop for reading a book about the Yule Lord, Krampus, coming forth to destroy his nemesis, Santa Claus. I wasn't totally sure what to expect, but what I found was a fast-paced adventure with plenty of horror elements that reminded me quite a bit of Joe Hill's novels stylistically. The story mainly focuses on a guy, Jesse, who's life is falling apart who stumbles upon a battle between Santa and some demons. Without giving too much away, Jesse ends up with Santa's sack and finds out that it is truly magical and the forces of both evil and good are suddenly after him to get it back.Krampus himself is a great character and his dialogue almost begs to be read aloud. There is a lot of mythology and pagan legend included in here that I found fascinating and plenty of action and gore for those that don't care as much about the origins of the tale. I also greatly enjoyed all of the artwork and wish that more novels included illustrations (especially if they were as good as these.)Overall and great read, especially during the holiday season, that I would recommend to fans of horror and dark comedy.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    I am thoroughly surprised how much I loved this book. I was expecting Krampus to be dated in the pre-christian times and read like old timey folklore, but it's not that at all. In this story, Krampus has been in a cave in West Virginia for 500 years due to Baldr, aka Santa Claus, and he is getting out to bring back Yuletide. Jesse gets mixed up when he finds a sack that can produce any toy he can think of, he uses it to give his daughter from his estranged wife toys and to make a deal with a local gang leader that backfires. Santa's and Krampus' minions come after him and he ends up making a deal with Krampus to help them as long as Krampus helps Jessie protect his daughter and wife from the gang.

    Krampus is hilarious, he doesn't give a damn and will do what he pleases to remind people of Yuletide. The story pokes fun at Christians getting upset about how people leave christ out of Christmas and "steal" their time and traditions to celebrate the time of the year without it being religious. The story shows how Christians stole a lot from the pagans traditions for Yuletide. The plot does a good job at explaining where Krampus came from, but I would of liked to of read a little bit more about the history. The book keeps you interested through out and the pace is fast moving. Really a great Christmas read.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Well-written story which weaves the mythology of Krampus and Santa Claus into a story populated with unforgettable characters and thoughtful prose. The artwork (color pages in the middle and several black and whites throughout) is a bonus. I loved this book.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    3 stars for the writing, but 4 stars for the story itself. I loved learning the backstory of Krampus and his rivalry with Santa. His Belsnickels were amazing (and Belsnickel is fun to say.) Jesse and Isabel were great characters. Jesse's story was especially compelling. So many evil people in his town. Almost every character in the book kills at least one person. No one is completely good or completely evil. Everyone is shown in varying shades of gray.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Read this with my wife and that made it even more fun. We laughed a lot and learned a lot about Krampus and Yule, though there are obviously different versions. Loved Brom's interpretation of the legends and how he mixed in Norse mythology. Krampus was great as the old-fashioned-guy-who-doesn't-really-understand-modern-culture and people mistaking him for Satan was hilarious. Fun, fun, bloody graphic fun.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Great read with many surprises, more than a few horrific or gross out moments (I'm not too squeamish, but portions of this were a bit bloodier than I like), but a well-told tale with a fascinating spin on the Santa Claus & Krampus myths/stories.

    Highly recommended as a read in any fashion, though I'll confess I wish I now had a hard copy on my shelves, as Brom's art is gorgeous and my black/white Kindle Touch did not do his art pieces the justice they deserve. I'll have to hunt up a print copy as this may be a book to reread every few holiday seasons.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Reason for Reading: I loved "The Child Thief", a horror re-telling of the Peter Pan story and was anxiously awaiting reading the author's next book. I was quite excited to find this has a Christmas theme.Based on Viking mythology the book brings back the gods and backstory of that culture including Baldr and mythical beasts; with this he mixes the history and tradition of Santa Clause to create a pagan god vs modern fairy tale. Krampus is the real traditional Lord of Yuletide centuries before the arrival of Santa on the scene and he has come back to claim what belongs to him. These two are pitted against one another and the reader does not know which of them is bad or good. They both seem to have both qualities and while the story is told from an insider's view of Krampus' side we get a biased opinion of him and while we may not have wanted to at the beginning, it is easier to feel for him, rather than the strong Viking-like Santa who is out to destroy Krampus.I had a hard time getting into this book. I enjoy Viking mythology and that is what kept me reading otherwise I may not have made it past the first half of the book as I found it underwhelming and tedious to read. I would not call this story horror. Sure there is some violence, but Krampus keeps insisting he is not a devil and while there is some paranormal activity there are none of the classic horror elements to be found and it certainly wasn't scary in the least. I mentioned halfway through the book, this is where things picked up for me. The action picked up, the characters had become more fleshed out and we were delved further into the Viking mythos. It took me several days to read the first half and only two sittings to finish the second half. This book is nowhere near as good as "The Child Thief" which is a masterpiece of writing and illustration. The illustrations here show off Brom's talent but since each is of a devil of some sort, they become similar after a while and did not stimulate me like the gorgeous art in his previous book.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Great! Couldn't believe how great it was, I loved it! Lore and myth mixed with just the right amount of hillbilly hilarity!

    1 person found this helpful

  • (4/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    This was a fun audiobook. I recommend this to any Gaiman, King, or fantasy lover!

    1 person found this helpful

  • (3/5)
    Krampus: The Yule Lord Audio narration = 5 Kirby Heyborne did such a phenomenal job narrating this story that I would say that it was probably what I enjoyed most about the book. He brought these characters to life in such a way that I thought there were several different narrators and was surprised to find that this was not the case. I wasn't surprised to find that Heyborne also narrated parts of Cloud Atlas which was also done brilliantly. I look forward to enjoying more audio books with this narrator. I am almost sad to say that I didn't enjoy Krampus as much as I thought I would. I loved Brom's retelling of Peter Pan in The Child Thief so much that I was anticipating the same kind of dark and disturbing storytelling in this story about a Christmas demon. Don't get me wrong, this wasn't by any means a fun, happy story, it just didn't have that element of creepiness that I expect from this author or that I anticipated with this particular subject matter. How can a story about a Christmas demon known for dragging naughty children off to Hell be anything less than terrifying? Unfortunately, there is a way. The images of Krampus seem pretty terrifying but for some reason this story presented him as far less than intimidating, and even a little ridiculous at times with all too human-like flaws. Since Krampus is said to carry naughty children off to hell, I thought he would be a bit more imposing with less obvious weaknesses of character. There were definitely some bloody & violent moments involving The Yule Lord but I didn't find him believable as a God or descendant of Loki. Also, the background of the conflict between him and Santa was a little confusing at times, especially near the end. The way this story was resolved was even more baffling. However, an afterword explains a lot of the mythology that the author used to inspire parts of the book and does actually answer some questions.While several aspects of this book left me less than satisfied, many others I really enjoyed. For example, exploring the origins of the Santa Claus and Krampus mythology and their relationships to the Gods Odin and Loki. I am always fascinated by the way many pagan rituals have been absorbed into Christian celebrations and I enjoyed reading about how that applied to Santa and Krampus' legends. There was also some wicked humor interspersed throughout that I found genuinely entertaining. Those moments when Krampus was attempting to function in today's world was at times amusing and at other times just sad. I would have liked to have seen this explored a bit more. One of my favorite things about Krampus- The Yule Lord was the main character Jesse. I don't know how many of you watch the TV show "Breaking Bad" but there is also a character named Jesse in that show who consistently makes all the wrong decisions and isn't very likable but somehow has some endearing quality that makes you root for him all the same. Jesse in this novel was much the same and so, in my mind, this is who I saw playing this tale out. This and the incredible audio narration were, in my opinion, this books best qualities. But while I loved Jesse's character, sometimes I felt like what was going on with him overshadowed Krampus' story and I was left wanting more from both. Overall, Krampus is a story I would recommend, especially for the Christmas/Yule season. There is a lot going on in this story; violence, mayhem, mythology, gods, goats, magic, thugs, domestic violence, murder, and belsnickels. You definitely won't be bored. If you are thinking of reading this, I HIGHLY recommend the audio, it is one of the best narrations I've ever listened to.