As a child of the 1970s I grew up on reruns of The Munsters and The Addams Family, as well as those classic horror movies – Boris Karloff in Frankenstein and Bela Lugosi in Dracula. As I got older my love of cinematic horror only grew, and my geek-girl tendencies meant that even though I’m older than the target demographic I embraced everything from The Monster Squad (1987) to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and fell in love with Being Human.
What could be better, then, than to help introduce a new series aimed at tweens that is from the monsters’ point of view?
About the Series, Upir and the Monster Gang, by Sharron & Raymond Thornton:
Coming from a long line of highly respected vampires, Upir knew that going to Neewollah, the Monster Mausoleum, would help him live up to his family’s reputation, but he never anticipated the terrifying turn his stay there would take. Upon entering, Upir befriends several strange creatures and their nights soon become treacherous when they have to dodge flying skulls whose hollow eye sockets shimmer with bright blue lights, avoid huge plants with tongue-like tentacles that devour young monsters, and run from a mad scientist who loves to use the monster students in his experiments. Most of all, they try to stay away from Muriel, an ill-tempered, nasty gorgon girl with slithering snakes for hair. She is the leader of three cantankerous monsters that follow her every command. Her group is bent on destroying Upir and his gang.
Without warning the young monsters find themselves entangled in a plot to destroy the Monster race. Will they escape the clutches of this horrifying villain and alert the Monster world, or will they become his loyal soldiers?
Watch the book trailer:
If you liked that, here are some other short clips:
Upir and the Monster Gang – The Sea Serpent
Upir and the Monster Gang – Monster Lives
Upir and the Monster Gang – Screaming Skulls
Upir and the Monster Gang – The Monster Garden
About the Authors, Sharron & Raymond Thornton:
Sharron Thornton taught elementary school for 35 ½ years. She felt it was important that her students developed a love for reading. One of the special times of each school day was right after lunch recess when she read a novel to her children. It didn’t take the kids long to get quiet and settle down for they were anxious to hear where the next chapter would take them. Sharron soon realized that books were doors to imagination for all children at all levels of learning.
When she retired, Sharron missed all of those young faces. She missed their emotional involvement with the characters and story lines from the books she read to them. So, she decided to work on an illustrated novel with her son Raymond who is an artist. Thus, Upir and the Monster Gang was born, a world of monsters, mad scientists, zombies, ghosts, vampires and all things that live in the night. Sharron has been writing for almost a decade. Besides the Upir series, she is working on several other children’s novels.
Raymond Thornton is an artist from Northwest Indiana. At the age of fifteen he started his fine art training at the Drisi Studio Academy of Fine Art. For five years he studied the finer points of painting and drawing. He then continued his studies at Columbia College and the American Academy of Art in Chicago where he received a degree in fine art.
Raymond’s oil paintings have been exhibited across the country. He has received many awards including the gold medal at the 96th annual Allied Artists of America Exhibition and an award of excellence at the 2012 Oil Painters of America Eastern Exhibition. He has illustrated many national ad campaigns. Most recently he illustrated and co-created with author Sharron Thornton, his mother, Upir and the Monster Gang. It is an illustrated novel about a young vampire and his monster friends which features over 60 full colored illustrations.