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Found 16 results

  1. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09JYVNCHK/ref=cm_sw_r_awdo_navT_a_TS3E65ZT1SM5JBMBDXSF
  2. The Hay Bale is written by Priscilla Bettis, who is a huge supporter of many booktube channels including mine. The Hay Bale is 42 pages, but reads like 20. I flew through this story. Because it's very short, I can't give too many details without ruining the story but I found a lot of meaning in the choices made here. Our main character's history hit close to home for me. The objects in the story and the memories the main character experiences represented emotional and physical scars. What I thought would be a folk horror story (it is) delivered on that promise and much more. For such a short story it definitely is loaded with emotion, loss, horror, history with physical and emotional trauma. While it can be enjoyed as a quick horror story, there's much more to be explored if you look under the surface. The Hay Bale can be found on Amazon and is available via Kindle Unlimited
  3. GhostCityGirl is part cyberpunk and part horror, mixing them together seamlessly. In a relatively short book, Simon Paul Wilson manages to do quite a bit of world building. Now I know what some people think when they hear world building. Oh no, here come the info dumps! Not here. The information we do get is sprinkled throughout the book and in a way that keeps you wondering what the hell is going on but still answering enough questions to keep you hooked. The bits and pieces we do get are horrifying and unexpected. Humor is tough to pull off in text. I admit I can be hard to please when it comes to humor, not just in books but in general. I'm more of a fan of the droll and dry humor, and in that GhostCityGirl excels. There were moments during the story I had to put the book down to let out a laugh. During the second half of the book the horror factor gets cranked up pretty high. There were scenes that had my heart pumping and palms sweating, others that I wanted to turn away and not find out what happens. I genuinely didn't know what would happen next, and the conclusion caught me by surprise. It's not easy to write a book that has the reader laughing and being scared out of their wits on the same page. GhostCityGirl is horrifying, funny, immersive, touching, thought provoking and wonderful. Great characters, world building and storytelling. I have no complaints other than I can't read the second book now. I read this book faster than I've ever read a book before, it's one of those I can't put this down reads. Clear out your schedule and enjoy. Favorite line, no spoilers: Click here to buy GhostCityGirl on Amazon, also available on Kindle Unlimited My author conversation with Simon Paul Wilson:
  4. If you're a fan of extreme horror, you should be reading Brian's work. In most books (or movies) there's a build up before something awful happens. You'll almost get a warning. "And this was the last time she saw Michael alive." or something like that. Brian doesn't screw around, he doesn't spend time warning you. Shit happens. And it happens in really horrific ways. We follow a group of teenagers that form a band together and a serial killer called the Lobotomizer with L.A. as a backdrop. Are one of them the killer? Will the killer kill them? Will they kill the Lobotomizer? And who the hell are these drug dealers living inside a mountain? It's a wild ride. Extreme horror isn't for everyone, and I'm fairly new to the genre but I'm hooked on Brian's work. He doesn't waste any time, there no fluff. The characters and story move on at a pace that doesn't waste any time, especially your time. Short chapters are my thing, but it's almost bad in Flesh Rehearsal because you go from one chapter to another and you don't want to put it down. "One more chapter... one more chapter" becomes your mantra. I had so many theories of what happened in this story after reading it, but after talking to Brian he explained the characters take him along for the ride and he doesn't even have all the answers. At first I was a little bummed to hear that because I wanted answers, but then I came to the realization that those are the types of stories these are - unforgiving, hopeless and not everything is going to be answered. That being said, there are so many rich characters here that I hope we get a prequel or sequel with some of them. So many ideas explored that I was wanting more. Parallel universes? Yes, please. This book could have been 600 pages and I would have flown through it. And what exactly does "Flesh Rehearsal" mean? When you get the explanation it's fucking fantastic. I'm hooked on Brian's writing and story telling, thankfully he's a machine pumping out new books because I'm going to devour them all. Favorite line, no spoilers: "Let me hit that whiskey." FLESH REHEARSAL can be found here on Amazon For a discussion with Brian Bowyer and @Lezlie with some spoiler chat:
  5. Fear Farm No Trespassers is a quick and addictive read. I'm not the fastest reader but I devoured this book in about two hours over two days. Each story is a piece of a larger story being told. The points of view are very immersive. The writing is clean and crisp and the stories are exactly what you'd hear around a campfire. There are some gruesome and terrifying moments without it being graphic or gratuitous. A story or two felt like you're reading a 80's slasher flick. I've seen this book labeled as young adult, it does a good job with scares and frights while still being accessible to a younger audience. Fear Farm No Trespassers can be found on Amazon
  6. Read the title and undoubtedly one word stands out. Cannibal. Your mind probably goes to dark places immediately. It's easy to see the title and think it's a just story about cannibals that's aim is to shock and disturb. It's much more than that. There's a lot of themes at play and I always appreciate when an author throws them at you in a subtle way, just enough for them to peek out at you but not shoving them down your throat. I love when stories like this don't waste any time, they don't let you get comfortable. When the danger presents itself it doesn't hold back or pull any punches. It's constant. Nature vs. Nurture. Scientific ethics. Family dynamics. Parenthood. Loyalty. Resilience. Survival. Is Cannibal Creator disturbing? Yes. Is it thought provoking? Very much so. Throwing normal people into a survival situation presents questions that most of us don't consider until we have no choice. How far would you be willing to go to survive? Find Cannibal Creator on Amazon Listen to my conversation with Chad here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1793148/9864678
  7. Nocturne was written by H.B. Diaz it's a collection of short stories and was published in December of 2020 A synopsis from Amazon: Because this is a collection of short stories, this review won't be in my usual format (What I liked, didn't like, rating ect.). I picked this book up on a whim when I saw a Twitter thread a few weeks ago where authors were promoting their independent books. I grabbed a handful of books and intended to get to them when I could squeeze them in. Thankfully, yesterday I finished a book and before I started Neuromancer (for our group read) I picked this one off the shelf. Being 107 pages I figured it would be a quick read and something to cleanse the palate. Kicked my feet up and started reading. A few minutes later my wife walked into the room and asked what I was reading. I turned the book to her and she asked if it was scary, and if so why do I have a big smile on my face. So here I am reading a horror book, the hairs on the back of my neck sticking up, that uncomfortable feeling you get when you read good horror and I'm smiling because I love the writing. Lately I've had bad luck with horror books. This book broke my bad luck streak in a big way. Some people may think writing a short story is easy... because it's shorter. Writing a short story effectively is an art form, it takes skill and craft. To squeeze in a plot, characters with enough to leave the reader satisfied and wanting more at the same time is difficult. Years and years ago I fell in love with short stories. I spent a fair amount of time studying them and reading as many as I could get my hands on. I even made a few feeble attempts at writing my own. As the years passed other things came up and I stopped reading them. This book revived my love of short stories. The stories are all great, some of them read almost as poetry. The metaphors that are used and the writing is wonderful. I was scared, uncomfortable and smiling all at the same time. If you love horror and or short stories, give this book a try. It's free with a Kindle Unlimited subscription I enjoyed all of the stories, there were no low points but my standouts were: The Malady of Mrs. Monroe The Pocket Watch The Ruins It's a short book, but one that I'll read again. Something tells me there are little details I missed in most of the stories that will reshape the way I read them the first and second time. My rating: 5 Yellow Pills in a Tiny Paper Cup out of 5
  8. This book is hard to describe. It's part horror, vampire tale, paranormal, drama, with some romance sprinkled in. It's one of those books you can't dive into much detail without spoiling the story. I went into this one blind (as I normally do) and had fun with the story unraveling and learning about the characters. It's the story about a vampire and his life, the good and the bad. There's plenty of vampire lore here for vampire and horror lovers but heart and passion to satisfy those who love drama and love stories. There's something here for everyone. I almost didn't believe this was Nicole Eigener's first novel, it doesn't read like a first time novel. We had a group read for this book and were lucky to spend time with Nicole to talk about the book and her creative process, it was a wonderful time. I'm looking forward to anything Nicole Eigener does in the future. Beguiled by Night can be found on Amazon Nicole Eigener's website My author conversation with Nicole Eigener:
  9. Guttural is a great way to describe the feeling you get reading Crossroads and long after you finish. I haven't had a book get to me the way Crossroads did. There are no wasted words or sentences, smoothly flows from beginning to end. Lots to unpack here with grief, parenthood, sacrifice and loss. It's not easy to convey loss and grief in text, but Laurel Hightower does it perfectly. I'm not pretending to know how it's done, I just know when it's done right. It was like crawling into darkness while reading but in a good way. How far are we willing to go for people we love? For our children? What emotional scars that we have do we pass on unknowing or unwillingly to our kids? Months after reading Crossroads I still think about it. One of my favorites of the year. Crossroads can be found on Amazon
  10. I knew there was a reason I never trusted cats. There were a few portions of this book that contained gruesome scenes that I found myself laughing out loud. Then I stopped laughing because I wondered if I should be laughing. It was one of those moments you look around to see if anyone else can read what you're reading and start to wonder if you can be trusted. There were also some scary and horrifying portions with some great descriptions of gore and violence but the humor comes in at just the right times. It reminded me of an 80's B movie that jumps from humor to gore in a moments notice but in a good way. The Thirteen Black Cats of Edith Penn is a page turning horror book with humor, gore and witchcraft. After laughing out loud a few times I began to wonder if there was something wrong with me finding it hilarious or if I found my people. The Thirteen Black Cats of Edith Penn can be found here on Amazon If you'd like to watch my author conversation with Sean McDonough:
  11. The banquet is a short novella that feels like a novel. I don't say that because it's a slog to read, but because the world and characters are so rich and full. There are so many potential stories to be told in this world. For those who aren't familiar with this one, it's basically revenge porn at it's finest. The prose is clean and easy to read and it flows nicely from start to finish. After reading Nocturnal Blood by Villimey I can really see her writing flourishing, and that's not say to say Nocturnal Blood is poorly written. It's well written, but The Banquet is cleaner and tighter. If you're feeling down or wanted to see that awful person from stories get theirs, reading The Banquet will be a satisfying experience.
  12. Cold Comforts was recommended to me by H.B. Diaz. So you know I had to give it a try. Cold Comforts is described as 'quiet horror' or 'literary horror'. What does that mean? Here's a portion of an article from mobidlybeautiful.com After reading Cold Comforts, quiet horror is my favorite horror sub genre. In this collection the stories creep up on you. You get bits of pieces of a mystery that slowly unfolds and before you know it what started as something creeping up you're filled with dread. Dread is actually a pretty good way of describing these stories, not blood, guts or death necessarily. Don't get me wrong, there is plenty of death and blood, but it's done subtly. They will keep you thinking long after you've finished reading them and that's not easy to do - especially with all of the distractions we have now. Some of the stories are ambiguous, leaving you to wonder what the hell just happened. There was a story or two that was a little too ambiguous that it left me feeling confused. So many highlights from this book, but my top 3 stories, including my all-time favorite short story: When Betsy Whispers 'Neath Fallow Ground Hey, Karen Cold Comforts can be found here on Amazon To watch a discussion with Marianne Halbert and booktuber @LadyJaneBooks for each story, check out the video below
  13. First we have to start with talking about the cover. Looking at that cover I expected this to be an unrelenting, brutal and terrifying read. And it was at some points, but it also had lots of dark humor. The Virus is a fast paced zombie horror book that surprises you with humor. I like information about what is turning people into flesh eating zombies as much as the next guy, but it doesn't get bogged down in details. It's a fun zombie story with some really great action scenes, and they aren't easy to write when a zombie is chasing one of our characters your heart will start beating fast. One of our characters is an escaped prisoner, and no it wasn't the one armed man who committed the murder. He's a murderer. If you're running from zombies trying to survive are you going to attach yourself to a convicted murderer to help you? The humor is what surprised me the most. Most of the characters are unlikable and some are even terrible people, in most cases you'd be rooting for the zombies to eat them alive but the banter cuts through the tension and smooths out the story. You can't have something like a zombie book and not have at least a little bit of humor in it. It did have a couple of low points, but overall kept me invested throughout. The Virus is a fast paced, funny and fun zombie story. Perfect for a palate cleanser or change of pace. The Virus can be found on Amazon and is available via Kindle Unlimited
  14. The Wild Dark is quite a ride, it's hard to describe to someone in a few sentences. It's part horror, mystery, drama and suspense - but does everything well. The first line caught my attention and didn't let me go. "Dreams cocooned me, wrapping me in their silky embrace like a thousand scarves" There are time jumps in the story but it's done in a way that will keep you wanting more from chapter to chapter. It gives you enough of the past or present to connect with what you just read in a way that flows seamlessly. The mystery of what the hell is happening unravels and you begin to wonder what's real and what's not real. When we live in the present, there are existing regrets and trauma's that exist but we aren't sure what caused them until later in the book. Katherine Silva has a way of keeping you guessing but not in an aggravating way. It makes sense with for the story and everything has a purpose. Liz and the other characters all have their imperfections. They all make mistakes and we see the collateral damage from their mistakes. Everyone feels like a real person trying to live their life or make sense of what's happening to them. My favorite part of this book was the way the mystery unraveled. We get bits and pieces here and there to keep us guessing but not be frustrating, it's done really well. There were no boring portions of the book, the story and characters are always evolving and developing. The weather feels like a character itself in this book, it's a perfect winter read. When I look back on the journey from the WILD DARK, my takeaways are how we deal with past experiences and how it shapes who we are, in both good and bad ways. What would we do to stay close to someone we love? Who else would we hurt? THE WILD DARK can be found here on Amazon For a SPOILER FILLED discussion with Katherine Silva, watch below
  15. If you are familiar with my reviews you know I try really hard to not spoil anything other than the very basics that you'd get from a cover. I even try to avoid stuff in the synopsis most times. So this one will be tough to give my thoughts without spoiling any surprises. The setting for this book is in the 1820's, the time period is perfect for this type of horror story. Our main character is Hester, a young woman living in a small village. A stranger arrives one day and people in the village start getting sick and dying. From there Hester and the townsfolk have to deal with keeping their loved ones alive, unravel the mystery of where the stranger came from, what he's done and what to do about the illness. When our characters want to find what happened in another village or town, they have to send someone on a journey to find out. This means sending this person potentially into danger or death. And they wait for a response. Days and weeks go by without hearing anything. The waiting is torture. The isolation and unknown creeps up on you. Fear spreads quickly in places like this, ripping them apart. In the smaller villages where everyone knows everyone and they have their practices, people often do things they wouldn't normally do when panic sets in. Even with a vast amount of open land around them to explore they feel trapped. That panic makes people do the craziest stuff you can think of, all in the hopes of normalcy. We spend a lot of time getting to know the Hester, her family and the village. I feel closer to Hester than I do almost any other horror story I've read. I feel like I know everything about her and how she thinks. Hester is the readers eyes into this world, making sense of the strange customs and traditions. It's a bit of a slow burn, but by the end the end of the book you can walk around this village and waive to the people in it. It took a turn I didn't see coming, although I really should have and the traditions are historically accurate. Even with the slower pace, I was never bored or wondering where the story was going, I was hoping it wouldn't end so I could learn more about Hester and the illness. Towards the end of the third act things really pick up and there are some paragraphs you want to turn away from but you can't stop reading. Hearts Strange and Dreadful is a wonderful historical horror story that leaves you thinking well after you turn over the last page. Favorite line from the book, no spoilers: "A callus world carries on as we suffer." Hearts Strange and Dreadful can be found here on Amazon Watch my Author Conversation with Tim here:
  16. House of Leaves isn't a book. It's an experience. Before starting House of Leaves I read that some people skip the footnotes and just read the story. Don't skip the footnotes. You'll cheat yourself out of the experience. It's tough to describe House of Leaves to someone who hasn't read it yet, or attempted to read it. It took me a little while to get into a rhythm with this book because you don't read this book like any other book that I know of. It's almost 700 pages long, but from page 529 - 704 it's Exhibits and an appendix. While reading you'll find footnotes that point you to the back of the book. Sometimes it's an article, a photograph or letters. Sounds simple, right? Well you can spend hours examining, decoding and reading this portion of the back of the book. The amount of time that must have been spent compiling all of this information is pretty astounding. It's very detailed. Some of the articles and information can be very dry. It almost feels like you're reading a textbook instead of a horror novel. While sometimes it goes overboard with information that isn't really necessary, it's still relevant to the story and sometimes gets referenced later. If you flip through the book you'll notice some pages have very little text or upside down text, weird formatting or scientific articles. It sounds like a gimmick, but when you're reading the story this formatting comes into play and is very effective in making you feel a certain way or immersing you into the story. Speaking of the story, there are two that we follow and they are connected. In a nutshell House of Leaves is about a house that strange things are happening in. Sounds like every haunted house story you've ever read, right? Nope. The less you know about this story the better. It's scary, heartbreaking, funny and disturbing. Reading this book was frustrating at times, but when I finished and had a minute to think back on the experience I had to smile. It's so ambitious and detailed that you can't help but appreciate the fact this book even exists. This is a book you really have to take your time with. Don't rush through it, enjoy the ride. You can read this book over and over and still find details you missed. It's not for everyone, but it's worth giving it a try. The video below is our discussion for House of Leaves with @Ashley/ReadNowSleepLtr & @Lauren ~ Paperback Empire. The spoiler section is noted on the video, but we do have a non-spoiler section at the beginning. We talked for almost 2 hours but could have talked for a lot longer. House of Leaves can be found on Amazon
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