Sunday, September 27, 2015

Gillian's Marsh

     Michael Faun - Gillian's Marsh 5/5
                                 
                                               


        http://www.amazon.com/Gillians-Marsh-Michael-Faun-ebook/dp/B00XIHLSNU


 
  Michael Faun's newest novella may be short but sometimes the shortest books pack the biggest punch. If you've ever read Michael's work you know that he often mixes in a variety of genres to create something unique, but this time he's written a straight up horror novel that holds back just a little and the results are quite stunning. Taking the idea of the occult and the hysteria of the Salem Witch Trials and blending them together you get Gillian Marsh. This is by far the best novel that Faun has written. This is a writer who has attempted to stretch beyond his comfort zone and it works.

     Gillian's Marsh has a classic horror feel to it while keeping just a hint of splatterpunk. As a writer Faun knows how to create a readable story, and the detail presented brings these characters to life. Throughout history we have always been taught to that witches are evil, but what if there is something far darker and far more sinister just beyond our realm of understanding? This is a novel that embraces the dark and it hinges on paranoia. While most horror novels tend to dwell on the silliness factor, Faun plays it straight and never ventures into the overly cheesy to hook his readers.

     The fact is that Faun has created something unique and reminds us why darker fiction is so good. You don't need cheap scares to grab a readers attention. Gillian's Marsh is a damn good horror novella that is dark and often disturbing. Horror fans are always looking for something different and this time a writer has delivered. If you like your horror dark and a little disturbing do yourself a favor and pick this one up.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Cine

Cine - Stuart Keane 5/5

                                                   

     

     I started Cine after reading another novel knowing that I should have just gone to bed. I knew better, yet I started at about 12 A.M. early Monday and finally finished at about two. I was late to work and it's all Stuart's fault. See, Stuart is the kind of writer that writes stuff that is highly addicting. You want to stop reading yet you just can't tear your eyes away. Cine is probably the best book that Keane has written. It takes it's influence from guys like Barker, and yes even Laymon and presents a story that flows like blood from a freshly severed vein. This is a guy that loves horror and it shows.

     If you've read the blurb you know what the story is about and I can tell you that the next time you're in a movie theater and the lights go down you're going to get a little nervous.  Cine is about greed, and desire. At it's core the ugliness that society has become is what propels this story. The quest to achieve greatness through film. Cine is the ultimate film and as it reaches its stunning climax you may want to turn away but you won't. Keane is the kind of writer that moves his stories at a steady gallop. You don't get a chance to breath very often. This is a book that fans of gore will love while the story itself is what makes this such a good book.One thing that I've always found interesting about Keane's work is that the violence is interwoven throughout the story. In a way he's like Laymon. He gives us human monsters, and their depravity is an integral part of the book. These are people with one goal and will stop at nothing to achieve it.

     As a writer he's starting to hit his stride and Cine is a horror novel is dark and disturbing, but it's also a book that reminds us that horror isn't as dead as people would have you believe. This is a book that presents us with something we haven't seen before and as Cine evolves we see just what Whispers Cinema has in store for the unsuspecting residents of Lake Whisper. As a horror fan I highly recommend Cine as well as all of Stuart's work. This is a writer who is constantly evolving and giving us something we haven't seen before. Keane is a horror writer that shouldn't be missed.



http://www.amazon.com/Cine-Stuart-Keane-ebook/dp/B015BZEAKY

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Andy Peloquin interview

    The Andy Peloquin interview: 

     I was supposed to post this earlier this month and totally forgot. It's been a busy month, You can find links to his J. Ellington Ashton Press release at the bottom. I also have a review here as well. I urge everyone to check it out. 

. Q: Blades Of The Destroyer is your latest release from JEA. How did you come up with the Hunter?

I've always loved "bad guys". Villains usually prove to be the more interesting characters in classic (often clich├ęd) fantasy novels, so the idea of telling the story from the perspective of the "bad guy" was totally intriguing. Trying to find a way to make my readers identify/relate to this dark, cynical, cold, murderous character was a huge challenge, and one I'm thrilled to take on.



 Q: How long have you been writing?

Off and on, since the age of 15. I have been a professional copywriter for almost five years, but I only started writing fiction two years ago. Making the decision to pen my first story (this was the second thing I wrote) was the best decision of my life.



 Q: When did you realize that you wanted to be writer and who were your biggest influences?

I've always needed a creative outlet, but being a poor artist, I've never had one. When I discovered writing, it was like a light switch turned on. I suddenly had a way to share all the crazy, twisted things in my head with others.

My biggest influences when it comes to writing are Scott Lynch and Brandon Sanderson. I try to write the kind of characters Scott Lynch would write, and emulate the writing style of Brandon Sanderson. That's not to say that my work is a rip-off of these two authors, but I do my best to be worthy of the high opinion I have of their works.



. Q: Aside from The Last Bucelarii series are there any other projects coming up?



I'm going to be working hard to put out The Last Bucelarii series over the next four or five years. My goal is to put out a new book every 6 to 9 months, (Book 2 coming March 2016--fingers crossed!). However, when the book has reached its end (in five or six books), I will be publishing a separate SECRET side series, one set in the same world, but with completely different characters. There will be a few callbacks to The Last Bucelarii, but the series will focus on another aspect of the "darker side" of life on Einan.



 Q: How difficult is it to write fantasy? Are there any guidelines that you follow?

Fantasy is a lot harder to write than you might expect. You can't just slap a story together and hope that it works, but you have to make it realistic. If you're going to use a magic system, you need to know how that system works and explain it to the readers enough that they can understand. Characters are much more important in fantasy worlds, as that is the only thing people can relate to.




. Q: What advice would you give to writers?

Be prepared for A LOT of hard work. I've discovered that writing a good, professionally-produced novel is about 20% fun and 80% boring editing, polishing, rewriting, and trying to make it better. If writers go into it understanding this, it can save them a lot of frustration and impatience. 


You can buy Blade Of The Destroyer in paperback and Kindle 




   Andy Peloquin: Lover of All Things Dark and Mysterious 





Andy Peloquin--a third culture kid to the core--has loved to read since before he could remember. Sherlock Holmes, the Phantom of the Opera, and Father Brown are just a few of the books that ensnared his imagination as a child.

When he discovered science fiction and fantasy through the pages of writers like Edgar Rice Burroughs, J.R.R Tolkien, and Orson Scott Card, he was immediately hooked and hasn't looked back since.




Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Stealing Propeller Hats From The Dead

     Stealing Propeller Hats From The Dead - David James Keaton 3/5

                                                       



   I received Propeller Hats from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review and I felt at times that this was exactly what the zombie genre needed. Keaton takes a dark sense of humor and injects it right into his new book. No matter what you call it, be it spoof, or homage to the zombie genre it's a pretty decent book. Keaton is a talented writer that knows that zombie genre is the perfect genre to make fun of. Each of these stories take the genre in a new and interesting direction. These zombies aren't what you're expecting and that's why this book is so good.

   Keaton is obviously a fan and that's why this works as well as it does. We all watch whatever zombie film we can get our hands on because nothing excites us more than the undead. Keaton shows us that it's okay to take the piss to the genre because it's an easy target. We know the various scenarios and we all have a zombie plan in our heads just in case a zombie outbreak occurs. We love zombies even when we're laughing at them or cheering them on as they attack a lost group of survivors.

     Some of the best stories here are Greenhorns which is not only a zombie spoof but a pretty demented version of World's Deadliest Catch, Three Days Without Water, and my favorite the novella Zee Bee And Bee which you just have to read because a synopsis just doesn't do it justice. There are some that are just okay, but as a collection it isn't terrible. I like Keaton's writing style as well as his attempt to inject something new into the bloated zombie genre. If you're a fan of horror comedy you should give this a chance because it does at times make you feel as if your watching a really cheesy B-horror movie. It's funny as hell and entertaining to boot.

    The link to Amazon only shows that the book is out of stock, but fear not this bad boy will be released on the 1st of October so hold onto this link and grab this sucker the second it comes out.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1943720002/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=1943720002&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2

Friday, September 18, 2015

A God Of Hungry Walls

A God Of Hungry Walls   5/5

                                                                     
   


        I received an advance copy of Walls from Deadite Press in exchange for an honest review. The book isn't available until October First and I don't believe it's up for pre-order either. I don't even know if I'm supposed to be reviewing this early but after seeing the cover and reading the blurb I couldn't wait to dive into this. This is Garret's first horror release and of course with Deadite Press being the publisher this has all the makings of a classic. Think of this as not only a review but a glimpse of hell and Cook is your Fedora wearing tour guide. I'm just a guy strapped into the seat wondering what the hell I''ve got myself into.

     Garrett takes everything you thought you knew about ghosts and haunted houses and gives the genre a new, and much needed spin. This is a story told by the ghost himself or as he likes to call himself God. This isn't Casper either. This is an evil entity that calls himself God and he wants nothing more than to trap you within his walls. A God Of Hungry Walls is an assault on all of your senses, and leaves you mentally exhausted. This is perverse, sick, and strips away all sense of dignity. This is a classic splatterpunk novel that doesn't just tell you a story it shows it you in shocking detail. Garrett never lets you breath. He keeps whittling away at your senses until you reach the end of the book. You will either love this or you will hate it. There is no middle ground.

     It's the pacing that I loved about Houses. You would think that because it's a ghost story there would be some ghostly activity like you see on Ghost Hunters, but here it's all about brutality and exposing weakness. When you take a second to look at the entity himself you see that he explores the weaknesses in people, and exposes it until he claims them. Garrett's ghost is all about ownership and making sure that he remains God, He takes what he wants and there's just no escape. There has never been a book like this and I have a feeling that soon we will see tons of these.

     Cook has written something that redefines a genre. It's a dark, and vile work that most horror fans won't understand, and may in fact run away from. A God Of Hungry Walls is almost as perverse as Edward Lee's The Pig/House, and reminds us just how great splatterpunk can be. When this is released do yourself a favor and pick this up.
   

Monday, September 14, 2015

      Salem Kapsaski - Nazi Sniper 5/5









     I received Salem's debut novella in exchange for an honest review and it's unfortunate this will get a lot of one star reviews on Amazon with simple one word descriptions. Ugg, Ewww!, and too violent. Those people are exactly the kind of reviews that really bother me because these people fail to read the blurb that's on the back of the book. These are the kinds of people that get butt hurt when they see or read anything that they find offensive. They then post meaningless drivel that does nothing for the author. The fact is that Nazi Sniper is a dark, often violent novella, but, the thing is that we need this kind of horror. Is it senseless? Is it written to shock you so much that you curl up in a ball and recite the Lord's Prayer? Dig a little deeper and you'll see that Salem has a message here. It's quite simple really and it has a variety of meanings that others will more than likely tap into.



    Salem is a film maker and a writer and it shows. He has a great eye for detail and as a writer he has created a dark and shocking novella that grabs you by the throat and pulls you in kicking and screaming. He pulls no punches and as I read Nazi Sniper I almost identified with Ludwig. This is a guy who is a former Nazi that never let go of his mission. It's no different that anyone who clings tightly onto their beliefs and shows no quarter in upholding them. This is a man that has murdered countless innocents and in the process has warped his son's view of the world and even himself. Ludwig wasn't born evil, and sometimes evil is a product of our environment.



    As the novella progresses we see Ludwig begin to unravel and here we see Salem hitting his stride. He guides toward the novella's conclusion effortlessly and for a debut this is doesn't feel like a debut It moves quickly and without the usual clunkiness that we often see in debuts. As a horror novel it gives us something that we haven't seen before. Sometimes the monsters we fear are flesh and blood and Salem creates the ultimate monster in Ludwig. The fact is that this isn't one for the squeamish or the easily offended. I love novellas that invade the senses and make you think a little. The dark is a scary place but it seems as if Salem has found a home there and if you have the guts you'll venture down there with him.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

The Jason Wayne Allen Interview

            The Jason Wayne Allen Interview 

      Jason Wayne Allen has written stories for quite a few anthologies. Strange Vs. Lovecraft, Zombie! Zombie! Brain Bang! and he also edited his own anthology 50 Secret Tales of the Whispering Gash: A Queefrotica in 2014. He's just released his own novella through Morbid Books entitled Ichthyic in the Afterglow. http://www.amazon.com/Ichthyic-Afterglow-Jason-Allen-ebook/dp/B01549CFZY/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1442201410&sr=1-1&keywords=Ichthyic+in+the+Afterglow


     Ichthyic in the Afterglow was released by Morbid Books. This is a publisher that's known for its harder edge. It's like the ECW of publishing. How has that affected your writing style?


    A: I’ve always written dark and violent horror stories, but have had more success with the Bizarro genre, so far. My fear with publishing with Morbidbooks was I didn’t think Ichthyic was dark or violent enough! Morbid’s roster has some hardcore guys and girls, I mean Jonathan Moon, Dani Brown, Michael Noe, you guys are maniacs! But I think the dark and violent elements balanced out pretty well.  (Thanks man, I often feel that I'm not violent enough so it's cool to be labeled a maniac)
      
    Where did the idea for Afterglow come from? I remember you saying it was more of comedic piece but after reading it I can't see it.

    A: The idea came from the short story The Repairer of Reputations by Robert W. Chambers, then snowballed from there. The original draft was more comedy-driven, but I revamped it for Morbidbooks. It was more cartoony, and for Morbid I wrote it to be more real, and added like 30 more pages from the original draft doing that

    Any other Morbid releases coming out?

    A: Not currently, but I have some stuff for other presses coming. I co-wrote an absurd erotica book called Pounded by a Pound Sign with my buddy Don Noble coming out soon and I can’t wait to announce the publisher, and I have a Bizarro collection called The Meat Parade coming from Riot Forge Books.
    For awhile you just pulled the plug on Facebook. What happened and where did you go?

    A: Nowhere really. I needed to get some writing done, and Facebook was just becoming to compulsory so I stopped for a couple months.

        Has married life affected your writing at all? I know that when I got into a relationship I was scared to death that I would lose my edge. I was this hard core splatterpunk guy and I was seriously afraid that I would get soft.

       A: Not really. My wife encourages me a lot, and as far as content nothing’s really changed.

      Aside from Lovecraft who are are some of your biggest influences?

       A:  Henry Miller, Joseph S. Pulver, William Burroughs, Carlton Mellick, Edward Lee, Bradley Sands, Stephen King, Douglas Hackle, W.H. Pugmire…Jesus, I could be here all day.

      You have mentioned that there a lot of politics being played in the publishing industry how has that affected your writing? Was there ever a moment where you thought fuck it, that's it I'm not writing anymore?

      A:  Not really. I love writing, and if worse comes to worse anyone could just self-publish.

     Rotgut County Blues is one of my favorite books. Any chance of it being rereleased? Will there ever be a sequel?

     A:  There may be a follow-up, and I appreciate the kind words, but as of right now I don’t have a lot of interest in doing that kind of writing. To be honest, I’d like to retcon that book out of my history. The publishing process of it was just a very negative experience.

     What projects are you currently working on? Will there be a sequel to Afterglow? Lots of short stories, and finishing my collection, The Meat Parade. I’ve been wanting to do a sleazy Chuck Tingle-style erotica book, too. So that may happen.

     What advice would you give writers? 
    
    A: Just sit down and write! Also, be honest and don’t pull punches.

   This is your chance to plug as much shit as you can think of. And I also wanted to thank you for agreeing to do this.

   Please check out Ichthyic in the Afterglow from MorbidbookS and watch out for Punded by a Pound Sign and The Meat Parade! Thanks so much, Michael!

You're welcome and also check Amazon for other anthologies that Jason's been included in  http://www.amazon.com/Jason-Wayne-Allen/e/B009ZMN9ZM/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1442201907&sr=1-2-ent











Saturday, September 12, 2015

Ichthyic In The Afterglow - Jason Wayne Allen

    


Jason Wayne Allen - Ichthyic in the Afterglow 5/5

                                                       




      JWA was gracious enough to give me a copy of Afterglow in exchange for an honest review. This is a surreal novella that blends in a variety of influences while staying original and bizarre. Allen has a knack for creating a world that you would only see in nightmares, and while you would expect the story itself to ramble incoherently it makes a great of deal of sense. This is where Allen thrives. He looks beyond the normal themes that lie scattered around the bizarro genre and creates something that you would only see while you're tripping on acid It's a nod to Lovecraft and while it has elements of violence it isn't over done and fits in with the theme of the novella.

      There isn't a lot mentioned in Afterglow about the cults or their origin. That doesn't matter though and while at times I felt as if I were only getting pieces of the story as they unfolded it made for an interesting read. I think there could be a prequel here that goes into the importance of Cassie and even Clem's role as the sacrifice that allows her to go to Carcosa. Carcosa is essentially paradise and the novella itself is about the destruction of one world to usher in another. At least that's what it felt like to me. This is one of those novellas that is open to interpretation and there really are no wrong answers. You don't just read Ichthyic in the Afterglow you're thrust into it and that's what a good book does.


      Allen has created a jarring vision that distorts all rules of fiction and writes something original. There's a lot of potential here for another book and I hope that at some point we get that. For what we have now it's a book that talks about the end of the world. The two cults are opposing religions and the end result is paradise. In order to achieve that there has to be sacrifice and war. That is how organized religion tells it and so does Ichthyic In The Afterglow. It's a novella that I've waited a long time to read and now that I have I can't wait to see what JWA comes up with next. 


Thursday, September 10, 2015

Bret Hart : Man Whore

Bret Hart -  Hitman: My Real Life In The Cartoon World Of Wrestling  3/5

 


                                         


       I totally forgot that I had read this about three or four years ago. The digital edition sports a different cover so it threw me off a little. I should also warn you that I'm a huge pro-wrestling fan. I have a ton of wrestling books lined up so be prepared. In terms of how many of these books I've already read this one isn't exactly the worst. Bret isn't publishing this with the WWE's backing so you can breath easy and be prepared for some serious dirt. That's why we read these isn't it? We want to know which wrestlers are assholes, You know the guys that refuse to put anyone over and think that their shit doesn't stink even though they suck. Bret pulls no punches and he doesn't allow you to forget that he was the best wrestler that ever graced a WWE/F ring. He's the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be damn it!

     In terms of honesty there are times where you wonder and even begin to see that Bret is full of shit. He has an ego and who can blame the guy. He's the motherfuckin' Hitman. The guy who was never once faithful to his wife, but to his credit he only used steroids a few times, but being a man whore is acceptable. This is a guy that busted his ass to get where he was and in his defense he was lonely. Why not fuck everything that moves.

                                                     Wwe Bret Hart animated GIF 

  The Harts family is given a lot of print here including his early years as he worked for his father in Stampede wrestling and there's also a lot of heart break and yes even death, Your heart will break at his memories of his brother Owen and even if you haven't read the book you know the story of Owen's death, You also get the details on the Montreal Screw Job which was as real as you can get. Vince comes off a bit slimy but you can see why. Vince is a smooth talker but fails to deliver on a lot of his promises. Kind of like any boss in any job any of us have ever worked at. The book does give you an inside look at wrestling which a lot of wrestling bios attempt but because they're pushed by a wrestling company everyone looks good and everyone's happy.

    Bret's book is a decent read but at times his ego drags it down a bit and as much ass as he talks about getting you start to feel as if he should get tested for some diseases. This is a warts and all book that pulls no punches. You wanted Bret's story, here it is in all of its man whore glory. Even if you aren't a fan of wrestling this is worth checking out