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Jesse Bullington

Jesse BullingtonJesse Bullington spent the bulk of his formative years in rural Pennsylvania, the Netherlands, and Tallahassee, Florida. He is a folklore enthusiast who holds a bachelor’s degree in History and English Literature from Florida State University. He currently resides in Colorado. Learn more at Jesse Bullington’s website.

The Folly of the World: Bullington’s best work to date

The Folly of the World by Jesse Bullington

In a flooded 15th century Holland there are very few opportunities available. Jan may have an amazing opportunity at a life full of riches, but it's hidden somewhere at the bottom of a flooded town. To reach his greedy goal in the dark moldy depths, Jan enlists the help of a wild young girl with a knack for swimming. Add Jan's slightly psychotic but ever-faithful partner Sander to the mix and you have yourself a watery adventure with a cast to remember.

In both of his previous books, The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart and The Enterprise of Death, Jesse Bullington went to great lengths to defy our expectations in every way. His characters were immoral, his language was foul, his violence was graphic, and his subject matter was often nauseating.

His fans will be pleased to know that The Folly of the World Read More

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart: Foul, Graphic, Sadistic, Nasty, Rewarding

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington

FORMAT/INFO: ARC stands at 453 pages divided over thirty-one titled chapters, a Preface and a Bibliography. Extras include an interview with the author Jesse Bullington and an excerpt from K.J. Parker’s The Company. Narration is in the third person, mainly via the Grossbart twins Hegel and Manfried, but the cast of characters also includes Heinrich, Captain Alexius Barousse, the Arab Al-Gassur, Rodrigo, Ennio, Father Martyn, Nicolete, etc. The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart is self-contained.

November 5, 2009/November 16, 2009 marks the UK/North American Trade Paperback publication of The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart via Orbit B... Read More

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart: Every oozing boil is lovingly described

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington

Jesse Bullington's debut novel is a difficult one to review, not because of plot or character, but because of the general style in which it is written. Plainly speaking; it's pretty gross. Full of pus, vomit, blood, urine, gore, snot and other bodily fluids, The Brothers Grossbart isn't short on content that will make you screw up your nose in disgust. Yet dismissing this novel for its ability to make you cringe is a bit like going to a Quentin Tarantino movie and complaining about the violence. That's the whole point.

Set in the fourteenth century, Hegel and Manfried are brothers that take over the family business of grave robbing, with plans to travel to Gyptland to seek their fortunes there. They traverse the countryside from the mountains of Europe to the deserts of the Middle East at a time in which life was short... Read More

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart: Best book I never finished

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart is probably one of the best written books I never finished.

It’s a historical fantasy taking place during the dark ages. Two brothers whose chosen profession is grave-robbing do not limit their criminal activities to just stealing from the dead. Their own demented morals justify any undertaking for even the slightest gain, and rationalize their most despicable acts. Revenge-seeking enemies, demons, and witches, hound their journey to the lands of the Moors where they hope to raid the tombs of ancient kings. To sum it up; the Grossbarts could be the evil cousins of the Brothers Grimm.

Jesse Bullington has crafted a unique story. I didn’t note any of the mistakes that most new authors make and his sarcastic wit is hilarious — the Grossbarts have two pages of dialog defining... Read More

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart: On audio

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington

I was rather excited about The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart coming out on audio. After all, Robert and Rebecca rated the book so highly, though Greg reported that he couldn’t finish it (read their reviews above). I usually tend to agree with Greg’s assessment of books we’ve both read, but since Robert and Rebecca reported that the writing quality was so high, I thought I could muster up the stomach to stick this one out… Not so.

It’s true that The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart is excellently written and the audiobook is excellently performed by Christopher Lane who was given ample opportunities to show off his skills. But the only parts of The Sad Tale I liked were those in which no action occurred — when the brothers were sitting around arguing with each other about philos... Read More

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart: Oprah, pick this one!

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart by Jesse Bullington

The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart follows the twin brothers Hegel and Manfried Grossbart. They live in a world full of demons and disease. The woods are full of spirits, and dark magic lurks in the shadowy places where men dare not go. Fortunately for the brothers, they are just as bad as or worse than any of the lot which lurks about the darkness of this world. They murder, steal, and generally wreak havoc wherever they go. Their sad tale is a tale of treachery, violence, stupidity, and a lot of vomit. They completely destroy the lives of everyone they come in contact with. The brothers have set their grave-robbing sights on the tombs of Egypt, and the reader is being brought along for the ride.

The Sad Tale is not a book I would recommend to many people. I would be too afraid that whoever I asked to read it may no ... Read More

The Enterprise of Death: Pushes vileness to a whole new level

The Enterprise of Death by Jesse Bullington

CLASSIFICATION: Like The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart, The Enterprise of Death is a hard-to-classify fusion of folklore, historical fiction, fantasy, horror and black comedy in the vein of the Brothers Grimm, Clive Barker, Chuck Palahniuk, Warren Ellis and a bit of Joe Abercrombie. In this case, the historical-influenced setting is centered on the Spanish Inquisition, the Italian Wars and the Protestant Reformation during the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Actual historical figures, items and events woven into the novel include Boabdi... Read More

Schemers: Stories of complex plans and gut wrenching betrayals

Schemers by Robin D. Laws (editor)

Schemers is a collection of short stories by an excellent list of authors: Jesse Bullington, Tobias Buckell, Ekaterina Sedia, Jonathan L. Howard, Nick Mamatas, Elizabeth A. Vaughan, Tania Hershman, Kyla Lee Ward, Robyn Seale, Laura Lush, Molly Tanzer, John Helfers, Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan, and Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer.  These are stories of complex plans and gut wrenching betrayals. It is a great theme for a collection of short stories.... Read More

Horrible Monday: The New Gothic edited by Beth K. Lewis

The New Gothic edited by Beth K. Lewis

The New Gothic, an anthology of twelve stories, is edited by Beth K. Lewis and published by Stone Skin Press. It’s a good collection, worth reading.

Gothic horror usually counts on a mounting sense of dread and/or disgust to carry the reader, rather than shock or terror. The fear comes on more slowly, with that faint tickle at the back of your neck, and at its best, a gothic tale creates a sense of otherworldliness, where the characters, and the readers, begin to doubt their own senses. A gothic tale is more likely to rely on a dilapidated house or a dark stretch of forest than gore, dismemberment or mayhem to pack its emotional punch.

The word “New” in the title is a bit of false advertising. None of these stories moves too far from the familiar conventions of the sub-genre. On one hand, it would be difficult to write a... Read More

Magazine Monday: Adventure Fantasy and Literary Fantasy

Beneath Ceaseless Skies is a bi-weekly online magazine that publishes literary adventure fantasy. Each issue contains two stories. Each issue is available for free online, or can be downloaded to an e-reader for a mere $.99. I read the two issues published in February 2011 for this column, but there are already two March issues available. Fortunately, past issues are available in all formats. In addition, Beneath Ceaseless Skies has published two “best of” anthologies.

Issue #63, published on February 24, 2011, contains “The Ghost of Shinoda Forest” by Richard Parks. Its first-person narrator, Lord Yamada, meets Kenji, a “reprobate priest,” in the forest of the title, near the remains of Enfusa Temple. Oddly enough, Lord Yamada has not been drinking sake, and doesn’t even want to, which Kenji finds somewhat frightening. But apparently something in Yamada is keeping him off the sauce and ha... Read More

Justin has a talk with Jesse Bullington

Joining me today is the highly acclaimed author, Jesse Bullington. Jesse's first book, The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart was a critical success, and you would be hard-pressed to find a book with a more divisive response from reviewers. Personally, I adored the book, so I've been itching to talk with Jesse for quite some time. His new book, The Enterprise of Death was released last week and it was the perfect time to catch up with him. Jesse also plans to stop by to answer any questions you may have, so be sure to make a comment or two. Orbit has also been nice enough to offer a copy of the new b... Read More

FanLit Asks: October 9, 2012

Some of your favorite authors take some time to answer our questions:
Got any news to share?
Gail Carriger: I'll be at the Nimrod Conference for Readers & Writers in Tulsa, OK October 26-27. And the National Council of Teachers of English convention in Las Vegas, NV November 17-18.

Alex Bledsoe: I'll be a guest of honor at HalCon in Halifax, Nova Scotia this October 26-28. My third FIREFLY WITCH three-story chapbook, Back Atcha, is now available. My short story "Sprig" will be in an upcoming issue of Apex. I'll have a Christmas collection of three stories, including a TU... Read More

FanLit Asks: November 13, 2012

We recently asked a few of your favorite authors to recommend some books they've recently enjoyed.

Gail Carriger: I grew up reading Mercedes Lackey's VALDEMAR books but I only recently discovered that she's been editing and producing an ongoing series of anthologies set in the same universe. I've been slowly making my way through all 7 of these books. Since I've limited time, it's nice to read something that isn't a major commitment. It's snack-size reading, just one short story whenever I'm able. Many of them feature on-going characters and I'm a particular fan of Sarah A. Hoyt and Kate Paulk's Ree & Jem whose journey starts in the third anthology, Crossroads.

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FanLit Asks: November 6, 2012

Some of your favorite authors take some time to answer our questions:
Got any news to share?
Jesse Bullington: My third novel, The Folly of the World, will be released by Orbit on December 18th. I'm really excited about this one, which is more of a late medieval crime novel with some weird flourishes than a straight-up fantasy along the lines of my first two projects.

Rachel Aaron: My final ELI MONPRESS novel, Spirit's End, comes out November 20! This the conclusion to the series, and I think readers are really going to like it. At least, I hope readers are going to like it, otherwise December is going to be a rough month of angry emails!




What are you working on these days?

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Thoughtful Thursday: Jesse Bullington’s Problematic Protagonists

I'm briefly coming out of retirement today to introduce Jesse Bullington, one of my favorite "new" authors. I like  classic Fantasy, a lot. However, I like it more when a writer takes Fantasy to places where it doesn’t belong. Jesse takes Fantasy into those Dark places. He writes stories  filled with macabre humor, twisted characters, and uninhibited violence. Jesse’s writing is disturbing, comedic, and most certainly brilliant. The mixed feelings that The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart brought out amongst our staff is a testament to his qualifications for writing questionable characters. I cannot think of anyone better suited to lead our discussion of today’s topic: problematic protagonists. If you join the conversation, you'll have a chance to win a copy of his newest... Read More

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