Posts Tagged ‘Alternative History’

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi

May 15, 2019 - 5:31 am 1 Comment

When I read the blurb “Years before either becomes a literary legend, Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde must overcome their disdain for one another to battle the Black Bishop, a madman wielding supernatural forces to bend the British Empire to his will” I knew I had to be on the blog tour for Stoker’s Wilde written by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi

Stoker’s Wilde by Steven Hopstaken and Melissa Prusi

Published by Flame Tree Press and will be out on 30th May 2019

384 pages

Even if you are not a horror lover, you would have heard of Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde. Two successful and popular authors, but where did they get their ideas for their most famous books. This story will hopefully explain all this and more.

As soon as you start reading this book, you notice that the story is told using correspondence, journal and diary entries and even an interview to tell Stoker and Wilde’s adventure. This was a new way for me to read a story and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The story flowed smoothly and as some scenes were written from a few characters perspective, you get the whole story. Some of my favourite scenes were reading Stoker and Wilde’s journal entries and I did have a snigger to myself reading the entries when they were bitching about each other. In fact, at times you can really tell just how much they despised each other.

From the first page, you are taken on a supernatural adventure where you come across werewolves, visions and nests of vampires. The subject matter was well researched and as I was reading the book I would google every new character I came across, to see if they had any connection to Stoker and Wilde. There are hints to some of their popular stories throughout this book and I loved how these were linked to the hunt for the Black Bishop. The descriptiveness of the scenery had me feeling that I was there, watching the performances at the theatre or following them as they were hunting for vampires.

This was a fast-paced read with some unexpected twists and whilst I read it fairly quickly, I did not want it to end. I hope that the authors will write a sequel as I would love to see where Stoker and Wilde end up. This is a must-read for Horror lovers 

Meet the authors

 Steven Hopstaken was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he spent his formative years watching and reading science fiction and horror. He has a degree in journalism from Northern Michigan University and spends his free time travelling; writing screenplays, short stories and novels; and practising photography. Melissa Prusi Melissa Prusi was born and raised in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (often mistaken for Canada), and studied video and film production at Northern Michigan University and the University of Michigan. She’s been a video editor, a semi-professional film reviewer, a three-time champion on the quiz show Jeopardy!, and a Guinness world record holder (1990 edition, for directing the longest live television show). They met in a college screenwriting class and married three years later. They spent a brief time in Los Angeles, where they both worked for Warner Bros. television. They eventually ended up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where they love the arts scene but dread the winters. While they both currently make a living as website content managers, they have sold two screenplays, which have been lost to development hell. They’ve indulged their fascination with Bram Stoker and Oscar Wilde through trips to Dublin and London to research their lives and visit sites mentioned in Stoker’s Wilde. They live in St. Louis Park, Minnesota with their two cats. If they’re not writing, you can usually find them at a movie, local theater production, improv show or pub quiz.

I was Jack the Ripper by Michael Bray

April 9, 2018 - 7:55 pm No Comments

I was Jack the Ripper by Michael Bray
Published 30th October 2017
371 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

One of the biggest unsolved crimes were the brutal murders of 5 prostitutes in Whitechapel London. Even today there is still speculation to that one unanswered question Who was Jack the Ripper?
When the author Charles Hapgood was planning his next bestseller, he didn’t expect a mystery visitor. In steps Edward Miller, with a horrific story to tell.
The story is written from the 3rd POV, when Miller and Hapgood were in the study discussing the crimes, when it came to Miller telling his story, it changed to 1st POV. This made the story flow and drew you into the tale. Each murder was told in detail, with Miller always having his reasons behind them. What I enjoyed most was the story after the killings had stopped, and it could be a valid reason why Jack the Ripper was not caught. Whilst I had my suspicions of Miller I still did not see the ending, but I thought it ended the story perfectly.
Writing about a prominent figure is a brave thing to do as people have their own ideas what this person was like, but this author pulled it off. Whilst I was reading this book, I had to keep reminding myself that it was a work of fiction as it seemed so real. The scenes were so vivid that you felt that you were walking in Jack’s steps.
If you have a fascination with Jack the Ripper or just want to read a good tale than pick this book up. This had rekindled my fascination interest in Jack

Tip of the Iceberg by Ash Hartwell

March 31, 2018 - 11:15 am No Comments

Tip of the Iceberg by Ash Hartwell
Published by Stitched Smile Publication LLC on 6th September 2017
231 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

Whether it be via the film or a history class, we all know what happened on to the Titanic on its virgin voyage to America, but could there be an alternative theory why the Titanic was hit by an iceberg.
The story mainly follows Esme, a newly hired chambermaid. Patrick and “Sir Bernard Astor” both wanting to make a fresh start in America, Pandora the monkey brought on board by Patrick, Mrs Bridget Grafton, newly wed to Captain Grafton a manipulating bully and the crew of the RMS Titanic.
The first part of the book really sets the scene. You get to know about all the major characters and as I knew the history of the Titanic, I was making a mental note who I wanted to meet their end and when you read this book I am sure you come up with one character in particular.
The story was well planned the start of the virus was not your usual zombie bite. If you have seem the film Outbreak then you know what I mean. Having the horror on a ship afloat, made it more intense as you know that there was nowhere to go. From the initial attack the action was non stop but whilst panic was aboard, people still went on with daily business eating, drinking and socialising. The story was well descriptive and you could picture yourself being on board, as you followed the lives of the first and second class passengers. The horror element was full on showing how serious the situation was and as the story was coming to an end you could understand the Captain’s desperation to sink the ship.
This is the first story I have read from this author and I will definitely read more. Whilst we all know what happened to the Titanic, we do not know what happened to the survivors but I hope that will be another story. A must for horror lover who love an alternative history.