The Resurrectionist: The Lost Work of Dr. Spencer Black

( 20 )

Overview

Philadelphia, the late 1870s. A city of gas lamps, cobblestone streets, and horse-drawn carriages—and home to the controversial surgeon Dr. Spencer Black. The son of a grave robber, young Dr. Black studies at Philadelphia’s esteemed Academy of Medicine, where he develops an unconventional hypothesis: What if the world’s most celebrated mythological beasts—mermaids, minotaurs, and satyrs—were in fact the evolutionary ancestors of humankind?
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The Resurrectionist: The Lost Work of Dr. Spencer Black

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Overview

Philadelphia, the late 1870s. A city of gas lamps, cobblestone streets, and horse-drawn carriages—and home to the controversial surgeon Dr. Spencer Black. The son of a grave robber, young Dr. Black studies at Philadelphia’s esteemed Academy of Medicine, where he develops an unconventional hypothesis: What if the world’s most celebrated mythological beasts—mermaids, minotaurs, and satyrs—were in fact the evolutionary ancestors of humankind?
 
The Resurrectionist offers two extraordinary books in one. The first is a fictional biography of Dr. Spencer Black, from a childhood spent exhuming corpses through his medical training, his travels with carnivals, and the mysterious disappearance at the end of his life. The second book is Black’s magnum opus: The Codex Extinct Animalia, a Gray’s Anatomy for mythological beasts—dragons, centaurs, Pegasus, Cerberus—all rendered in meticulously detailed anatomical illustrations. You need only look at these images to realize they are the work of a madman. The Resurrectionist tells his story.
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  • The Resurrectionist
    The Resurrectionist  

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Dr. Spencer Black holds a degree from Philadelphia's prestigious Academy of Medicine, but there are darker things in his background. His father was a grave-robbing "resurrectionist" and he himself dwells unnaturally on creatures the rest of us think are merely imaginary. This book introduces you graphically into his strange world; first, in a biography that takes you from his strange childhood to his even stranger final disappearance; and then, in the book of illustrations that he himself kept to express his obsessions and theories.

Publishers Weekly
Hudspeth provides the biography of fictional 19th-century scientist and surgeon Spencer Black, whose work takes a dark turn when he develops a theory that birth defects are latent body memories—the body’s attempt to return to some earlier, more “perfect” form. Black’s attempts to recreate these genetic models are described through biographical writing and excerpts from his diary, creating an image of a dreadful human who is blinded by his own faulty theories. The majority of the work is taken up with Black’s magnum opus, The Codex Extinct Animalia, which contains brief descriptions of the creatures Black created, along with extensive drawings showing their appearance, skeletons, and musculature. While the textual portion of the work is horrific, the artistic portion is almost clinical in its detachment, making the interaction of the two all the more disturbing. The book is a welcome addition to any library of dark fantasy, with its beautiful portraiture and gripping description of a man’s descent into perversity. (May)
From the Publisher
“Color us captivated. This collection seems a treat for anatomy enthusiasts and creaturephiles alike."—io9

“E.B. Hudspeth’s The Resurrectionist is PFA (that’s pretty freaking amazing)”—ComicsBeat.com
 
“These detailed and fantastical drawings will intrigue any reader curious about the hypothetical anatomy of mythical creatures such as mermaids, minotaurs, and harpies. In the context of the story that precedes them, they prompt disquieting thoughts about the extreme lengths to which the fictional Dr. Black may have been willing to go to prove his assumptions, and what—or who—may have served as his models.”—ForeWord Reviews
 
“…a bit of Charles Darwin and a bit of P.T. Barnum.”—Inked Magazine
“Doctors Moreau and Frankenstein should make room for a new member of their league of extraordinarily grotesque gentlemen, for there is a new mad scientist in pop culture.”—Aaron Sagers, MTV Geek

“The vivid imagery unveiled becomes the dark fantasy response to Gray's Anatomy...”—Filter Magazine

“The book is a welcome addition to any library of dark fantasy, with its beautiful portraiture and gripping description of a man’s descent into perversity.”—Publishers Weekly, “Pick of the Week”

“Disturbingly lovely . . . The Resurrectionist is itself a cabinet of curiosities, stitching history and mythology and sideshow into an altogether different creature. Deliciously macabre and beautifully grotesque.”—Erin Morgenstern, author of The Night Circus

“A masterful mash-up of Edgar Allan Poe and Jorge Luis Borges, with the added allure of gorgeous, demonically detailed drawings.  I’ve never seen anything quite like The Resurrectionist, and I doubt that I will ever forget it.”—Chase Novak, author of Breed

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594746161
  • Publisher: Quirk Publishing
  • Publication date: 5/21/2013
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 98,285
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 10.60 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

E. B. HUDSPETH is an artist and author living in New Jersey. This is his first book.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3
( 20 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(4)

4 Star

(4)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(5)

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Sort by: Showing all of 20 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2013

    I bit and wish I had not.

    An interesting and unique concept that could have been developed into a wonderful fictional work. Instead it was presented as a documentary which was dry and exposed a main character slipping into insanity. If you like to look at a bunch of fictional anatomy sketches, go for it. If you want a good read, don't spend time with this. Waste of money. Not happy at all.

    26 out of 29 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2014

    What am I looking at?

    Illustrations do not translate well in the ebook format.

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2014

    Masterful

    Perfect coffee table book for the macabre. Presented as real-life fact, this fantastical notebook of anatomical scetches are exceptionally well done, as is the backstory of the fictional doctor that supposedly gathered them together in the first place.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2014

    Warning buy now next to cover may lead to hitting it

    These nook ploys are another in seedy selections. Warning

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 8, 2014

    Recommend

    I found this book to be very disturbing and thought provoking. I loved the writing and the illustrations, but I have to admit I was a bit taken aback with the imagination of the author for them.
    It was disturbing because the writer makes you believe in these animals.
    A book I will read again and again to get all the details that I probably missed.
    If you want an interesting and imaginative read buy this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2015

    I am a bit confused as to if this is complete fiction or not. An

    I am a bit confused as to if this is complete fiction or not. And I'm terrified it's not. It doesn't have the disclaimer at the beginning saying it's fiction, but it is described as a fictional biography. I'm rather freaked out, but I'll review this as a fictional biography.

    The amount of detail is incredible in this. Dates, names, and places all weave together to form a perfect biography of this man. He was interested in anatomy, later in "discovering" mythical creatures. He performed countless gruesome surgeries and created new creatures, such as Darwin's Beagle, a dog he sewed wings onto. This went throughout the entire story, and we got to see his life and relationships, which were just as gruesome as his work. I was upset with the turn-out of Alphonse, his son, only because I rather hoped he would grow up to be decent. I'm also sad about Spencer's brother's fate. Though both added to the story.

    I am curious as to the accuracy of the dissections/surgeries. In the case of the dog, Spencer attached wings, which moved by the dog's accord. I couldn't help but wonder how he connected the nerves and muscles, or if he did. But that added to the feel of the story for me, the suspicion and mystery.

    I LOVE the Codex at the end. It throws in some of Spencer's works and his studies. It adds some credibility and interest to the story. Again, the detail is fantastic. Every little bone, muscle, anatomical part was labeled and thorough descriptions were provided.

    This book delves into the mind of a once-sane man who descends into insanity. Spencer starts out just working in the medical field but through his works, we can see he goes mad. The Codex reinforces that, as do the many quotes from spectators and colleagues.

    There is a slight mislabeling on page 96, in the Codex. I think it was the pelvis or something, but the last two were wrongly labeled.

    4 stars

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  • Posted May 20, 2014

    The reviews that gives this book less than four stars are ridicu

    The reviews that gives this book less than four stars are ridiculous. The story is an interesting look into medical horror, the dissolution of sanity, and mythological sketches. It captures the writing style and mentality of the late 1800's, and leads to a fascinating and gripping read.  For those complaining about eBook transitions, they are correct, it doesn't transfer well to eBook. Answer? Be a man and get a real book in your hands. The content is original, the story macabre and  intriguing, and the character is both horrible and pitiable with the situations he is presented with, creating a more realistic and personable character. Overall, I've read the reviews and I have to say that the majority of the negative reviews seem to come from people who have petty complaints or don't like the fact that the story isn't sunshine and puppy-dog farts. This book is NOT an in depth novel, it is a short story that is entertaining for its glimpse into the darkness, followed by entrancing sketches of mythological entities. If you want a full novel, go get a full novel. If you want something at length, look elsewhere, but this is a book that will probably be picked up again and again and makes a great talking point for guests and friends.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2014

    Unfortunate

    I was hoping from the book description that the material would be vast and informative. The book is 100 pages but not all written. I think half the book is just pictures and they don't show well on a Nook.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 9, 2014

    Not worth either reading or rating

    Not worth reading or rating it

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted October 3, 2014

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    Posted October 19, 2013

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    Posted July 3, 2013

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    Posted March 6, 2014

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    Posted August 26, 2014

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    Posted March 26, 2014

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    Posted December 25, 2013

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    Posted March 20, 2014

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    Posted March 6, 2014

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    Posted June 16, 2013

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