Folklore

Folklore: The Manananggal

Today I want to talk to you about the Manananggal.

The Manananggal is another creature from the Phillipines. They are a sort of vampire witch crossover. Though they do have an odd habit of tearing themselves in half in the stomach then flying off into the night to search for sleeping pregnant women to feed upon.

When I was reading up on these creatures they reminded me strongly of the Aswang which you may remember I wrote about back in January.

Like the Aswang these creatures could have been created to explain the dangers faced by pregnant women. Death in pregnancy is a real risk, especially before the advances made in medical science that we benefit from today and these creatures could have easily been created as a way for people to explain the unreasonable deaths women suffered when pregnant.

The ways to defend against these creatures you can use daggers, sunlight, or a buntot pagi (a whip that is made from the tail of a stingray). Or if you manage to get hold of the upper torso after they’ve torn themselves in half then you should smear it with garlic, salt, or ash, then it will be unable to re-join with its lower half and will be vanquished by the sunrise.

Reviews, Reviews - Books

Review: Ghost Story by Peter Straub

Today I want to talk to you about Ghost Story, a novel by Peter Straub. The book was published in 1979 by Coward, McCann and Geoghegan and was turned into a film in 1981. Today we will be talking about the novel, not the film.

I’ve been struggling to write this blog for a while as I find it tricky to express what it is I liked about this story. I also think its one of those ones that is best experienced first hand rather than second hand after having everything spoiled by me in a review. So, with that in mind, this will be brief.

Summary

As I said above this is a difficult story to summarise as I really don’t want to spoil it, so I will be brief.

The story is told by five men, all of whom are lifelong friends, Frederick “Ricky” Hawthorne, Sears James, Lawrence Benedikt, John Jaffrey, and Edward Wanderley, who has been dead for one year. They have dubbed their little group the Chowder Society and meet every so often to tell ghost stories.

However, since Edward’s death they have all been suffering from nightmares and fear that their own sordid past is coming to get them. They write to Edwards nephew, Donald, for aid. Donald arrives and tells his own story of a broken relationship and a suspected murder which he cannot prove.

The chowder society reveal their past, a story of Eva Galli, a beautiful woman, who met an untimely fate. Don suspects that she was a shapeshifter and has returned for revenge.

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