THE THUMBTOWN TOAD by George Mendoza


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All the archetypes of evil under one cover. . . and would that they'd stay there: opening the book is like taking the lid off Pandora's Box, or perhaps more insidious for being less obvious -- but not much less. It's plainly laid out in black and white (and red); though why Mr. Mendoza goes on after the first exhortation is something to ponder. ""The thumbtown toad is a wicked woman/ oh, the tales that are told about her/ for you to hear them might freeze and kill you/ oooooo -- cover your ears! oooooooo -- cover your ears!"" In blithe sing-song, ""she spikes her fences with poison spears/ to catch juicy children and fat old men/ she'll boil you in stew! she'll boil you in stew!"" Egging you on: ""watch out, she's coming! watch out she's coming!// run, she's a terror! run, she's a terror!""; feverishly, orgiastically, ""she has nine devils she calls children/ with warts on their heads and hairs on their horns/ let's call them 'TOADIES!' let's call them 'TOADIES!'"" Finally she's hoist by her own petard -- burning up, and her buzzard, ""fowl bird, wouldn't spit at her!/ look at her laughing!/ look at her laughing!"" Reptiles and cobwebs and gorgons and blackness and skeletons. . . Caveat emptor, seriously.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1971
Publisher: Prentice-Hall