Reviewing the Pages: Devil in the Countryside

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Devil in the Countryside is a story about the most famous werewolf investigation in history, brimming with intrigue and war, love and betrayal, and long-kept vendettas.

It’s 1588, the height of the Reformation, and a killer is terrorizing the German countryside. There are reports that the legendary Werewolf of Bedburg has returned to a once-peaceful land. Heinrich Franz, a cold and calculating investigator, is tasked with finding whomever — or whatever — the killer might be. He’ll need all the help he can get, including that of a strange hunter who’s recently stumbled into town. Though they’re after the same thing, their reasons are worlds apart. And through it all, a priest tries to keep the peace among his frightened townsfolk, while a young woman threatens his most basic beliefs.

In a time when life is cheap and secrets run rampant, these four divergent souls find themselves entwined in a treacherous mystery, navigating the volatile political and religious landscape of 16th century Germany, fighting to keep their sanity — and their lives.

Based on historical events, this book gives us a look into what may have been happening in Bedburg leading up to the events of the trial. I liked the four different points of view in this story, with each of them giving a slightly different point of view to look upon, even if Dieter and Sybil’s become kind of interchangeable towards the end of the book.

Mr. Barclay does a wonderful job of setting up the atmosphere and setting for this story. Keeping true to the religious and political turmoil of the times, he weaves them in wonderfully with the story of trying to catch the Werewolf. There are times where I forgot that it was the late 1500s, and I could see some of these conversations and scenes come up during a read in the modern day.

Be warned fellow reader, there are some heavy themes alluded to in here. While the details are not alluded to within the pages, one only has to read between the lines to figure out what is going on. I highly recommend diving into this read when you get a chance reader. Step back into the past, and chase down the Werewolf yourself.

Well, there’s a lot going on in this book.  Yes, most of this read is fictionalized.  But, the author had to do so with the lack of information on the subject.  It’s not like there is a surviving diary or journal from someone back then.  But, then that would have been too easy.  Cory Barclay does a wonderful job of weaving all of the known factors of the time period for that region into the fictional aspects that he had to create in order to tell this wonderful tale.

The biggest problem that I came across while reading this was at the end, where we got a merging of points of view of sorts between Dieter and Sybil.  I wish that they could have been separated out a bit, by keeping feelings of the event that was happening relegated to that character.  But that’s my only negative criticism of the book.  The characters that I hated, or mistrusted, were written that way for a reason.  Even the motivations of the characters were realistic, and something that wouldn’t be out of place in that time period.

As to the themes that I alluded to in my Goodreads post? They’re there.  While most of the violent acts are brought up after the fact or presented as they are happening, they are there in their gory detail.  There are also some more sensitive topics that get brought to light, including rape and abuse.  I do request that you heed my warning: do not go into this read lightly.  While I highly recommend it, know your limits fellow reader.  Yes, all of those are light, and most of the story is steeped in political and religious turmoil, the underlying darkness is there.  Don’t let the darkness sway you from reading this book, fellow reader.  Enjoy the read and let the mystery suck you in.

Forging a Bond

Our bond is unbreakable.

Believe me, I’ve tried.
Through pain, jealousy, anger,
or whatever else drove me,
I tried to shatter that
bond with a red-hot fury.

But you didn’t leave.
You stayed put.

Sure, you might have been
pissed off at me for a couple
of days, but you didn’t leave.

You didn’t tell me go fuck
myself and block me.
You didn’t go silent
and pretend to acknowledge me.

You stayed.

You saw right through everything,
and stared at something that
you only could see.

And I thank you.

We may not know what this
bond of our is going to forge.
It’s certainly something that
I know isn’t just going to break.

Long down the road, we won’t be talking
daily. But that’s just the
natural progression of life. We
get busy.  Plans change.
But we’ll still be here for
each other.

Our bond may be chipped,
cracked and bent, but
it hasn’t broken.

It’s growing stronger.

Copyright Bau “Baumeister” Johnson
February 23, 2017
Originally found on deviantart.com 

Hauling It In #1

Hello everyone! Welcome to a rare feature, which I’m calling “Hauling It In”. There are times where I feel like I should spoil myself. I know, I know. I shouldn’t spoil myself and work on getting a place of my own to live. And I’m working on that slowly. It’ll be better one I get my tags and plates for my vehicle taken care of this month. Anyway, on with the post!


Here be the boxes! Figure it’d be faster to send them as fast as possible.


Little package first!


The game I’ve been waiting to play since I saw it at E3 last year! So hyped!


Next box already opened!


One of my want-to-reads for a couple of months now! Boring black cover underneath the dust jacket though.


Last box opened!


I missed The Dark Tower series, and I’m looking forward to getting back into it after a while. And I’m adding to my squad of Funko figures.


All together now! Thanks for dropping by! Until next time, I am the Baumeister, and I have been, obediently yours.

Random Things #8

Hello everyone, and welcome to another edition of “Random Things”! Did you enjoy your Thanksgiving? Was yours filled with lots of good food and great interactions with your family? I hope so.  As for me? I worked.  Yeah, I really haven’t worked a job that allowed me to have holidays off since I was in college (and that’s only because I worked for the university, and they closed for the holidays).  Anyway, let’s dive into our weekly collection of clips and songs.

Let’s start off with another heavy hitter from the Doctor Who universe, shall we? This is, by far, one of the most MOVING episodes, and it answers an old question “what happens if we take someone from the past and show them their influence on our world today?” To see the emotion on Van Gogh’s face as our museum curator explains what he thinks about him is very touching, and makes me think someone is cutting an onion.  Cut it out guys.

Sooooo…every now and then I go into a bit of a Disney kick, and listen to some of my favorite songs produced by them from their movies.  And this is one of them.  Not only do I love Olaf and his innocent nature (and his obliviousness), but seriously, this song is awesome!

Speaking of Disney, this trailer is awesome! I love that they did the Disney open with Beast’s castle, and moved on from there.  I’m really excited for this movie, for there is a lot of potential here for some wonderful moments.  Question is: Will they sing?

I heard about this show, and to be honest, I was a little iffy on the premise.  But, then I saw The Rock’s performance…and laughed my butt off.  It’s the only one I’ve seen that I’ve liked, but go check it out.  There might be something you like there.

That’s it for now folks.  Thanks for tuning in and rocking out.  Until next time, I am the Baumeister, and I have been, obediently yours.

What I Find Weird About WCW

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Hello everyone! Wrestling has always been kind of an escape for me.  A way to take my mind off things and just chill.  Since the Mrs. and I are going through a divorce, I’ve dived head first into wrestling.  Specifically, World Championship Wrestling.  It’s been one of my goals to watch through all of the classic wrestling content on the WWE Network.  And so, naturally, I dived right on into WCW Nitro.  Now, as of this writing, I’m only up through World War 3 1995.  But, there are some interesting things that I’ve noticed about the wrestling in WCW.  So, let’s dive right on in shall we?

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This is one of the oddest topics on this list.  The referees seem a lot more…hands on in the pinning sequence than the referees in WWE.  Now, I’m not an expert on being a referee.  Nor do I remember what the WWE referees do during a near fall during this time period.  But, it takes away from the realism for me when I see Nick Patrick counting for a pin, and after the count of 2, he see his hand snake underneath the down shoulder to help start the kickout.  Again, it’s maybe just me watching more of the current day product, but it just bothers me.

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Now, the WCW Cruiserweight Division had a slightly heavier weight classification than WWE’s upcoming division.  However, in my opinion at least, the matches between the Cruiserweights on Nitro are usually the best matches of the night.  Eddie Guerrero, Chris Benoit and Dean Malenko are the pioneers of the WCW Cruiserweight division, and we should be thankful that without these three exceptional athletes, we may not have had the Cruiserweight division.

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This bugs me.  Now, I’ve been watching Nitro on the WWE Network, so other than the PPVs and Clash of the Champions, Nitro is the only weekly show we have available.  So, when it came to Halloween Havoc, up until the last Nitro before the PPV, the only matches that I knew about were The Giant vs Hulk Hogan in a Monster Truck, and in the ring.  But, we also got a brief mentioning about a possibility of Luger vs Savage if they won their matches at Halloween Havoc.  Now, I get that there is a second, hour-long program that WCW was airing on Saturday Nights at 6:05 EST, but even still, there should have been at least more than a quick mention of these matches rather a minimum of three promos a Nitro devoted to Hogan vs The Giant.

Well, that’s about all I’ve got for Nitro.  There are some good things, and there are some bad things.  But, the product, at least for right now, is enjoyable.  Until next time, I am The Baumeister, and I have been obediently yours.

Time of the Fall: RAW #1180

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Live Version:

  • Kevin Owens defeated Neville (9:13)
  • Titus O’Neil defeated Stardust (4:15)
  • Becky Lynch defeated Charlotte with Ric Flair (10:46)
  • Big Show vs Ryback went to a No Contest (1:10)
  • The League of Nations (Alberto Del Rio and Rusev) defeated The Usos (Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso) (13:23)
  • Heath Slater with Bo Dallas, Adam Rose and Curtis Axel defeated Dolph Ziggler (4:37)
  • The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods) defeated Kalisto and The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley) (16:38)
  • WWE World Heavyweight Champion Roman Reigns defeated Sheamus with Vince McMahon as Special Guest Referee (18:16)

Time of the Fall: RAW #1169

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Live Version:

  • The New Day (Big E, Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston) defeated John Cena and The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray Dudley and D-Von Dudley) (8:35)
  • Team Bella (Nikki Bella and Alicia Fox) with Brie Bella defeated Team B.A.D. (Sasha Banks and Naomi) with Tamina Snuka (8:48)
  • Seth Rollins defeated Ryback (4:06)
  • King Barrett, Sheamus and Rusev defeated Dolph Ziggler, Cesaro and Neville (12:54)
  • Charlotte with Becky Lynch defeated Brie Bella with Nikki Bella and Alicia Fox (5:31)
  • Kevin Owens defeated Mark Henry (3:39)
  • The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Erick Rowan and Braun Strowman) defeated Dean Ambrose, Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins by Disqualification (14:04)