Posts Tagged ‘Horror’

Cage the Dead by Gary F Vanucci

September 16, 2018 - 5:56 pm No Comments

Cage the Dead by Gary F Vanucci
Published 3rd July 2014
208 pages

Happy with her life, Gaia loved her boyfriend and had a great job working with the primates at the local zoo. Going to work like any other day, but on this day, folk began to act weird and before she knew it she was running for her life.
As soon as you start this story you are hit with the walking dead, set in a zoo, you can imagine how many people were wandering around. Gaia threw herself straight into the action, and whilst at the start she found it hard to kill the zombies, she eventually desensitized herself. However, her love for the animals was strong. The arrival of Justin, a young lad on a school trip brought out her maternal skills, but when Justin met Solomon, the giant silverback, the bond between them two was unbelievable.
This was a quick read as I wanted to see if Gaia survived. It was fast paced as there was always something going on. There were some shock moments, as the more you read the more you start to care, but this is a zombie apocalypse and not everyone survives.
The ending completed this story and I did let out a little cheer, I would love to know who survived and where they went next.

The Mourner’s Cradle by Tommy B Smith

September 14, 2018 - 8:21 pm No Comments

The Mourner’s Cradle by Tommy B Smith
Published by Crystal Lake Publishing on 14th September 2018
140 pages

When Damon, Anne Sharpe’s husband suddenly passed away, all she wanted to do was to prove his name. Ridiculed in his academic field, Damon was trying to prove that the Mourner’s cradle, an old burial ground was real, and he thought he found it. Traveling to Peru, she not only has to battle the cold but other’s out for the research.
Whilst she did not know exactly what Damon was trying to do, her determination and sheer stubbornness, helped her through this trying time. Going with her was Ruben, a work colleague and friend of Damon. Whilst he did not believe the myth about the Mourners Cradle, he felt that it was his duty to protect her.
As you are reading this story you are following Anne on a perilous journey. Her grief is raw and shows the dedication that Anne had for her husband. Whilst this is not horror it the scary monster sense, it shows the true horror of human nature and there are some heart stopping moments. Especially on the mountain. Once I started this story I could not stop as I wanted to see if Anne survived. The intensity continued to the end of the story and when I finished I felt mentally drained and felt that I had took the journey with Anne.
This was the first story that I had read by this author and will look out for others.

The Outsiders by Stephen Bacon, James Everington. Gary Fry, VH Leslie and Rosanne Rabinowitz

September 4, 2018 - 9:15 pm No Comments

The Outsiders by Stephen Bacon, James Everington. Gary Fry, VH Leslie and Rosanne Rabinowitz
Published by Crystal Lake Publishing on 4th May 2015
226 pages

For about a year I have read every new anthology Crystal Lake has published, however, having not read any of the early publications, I thought I would rectify this by reading The Outsiders. 5 authors writing about The Priory, a secluded estate set in the UK and home to a Lovecraftian cult and run by Charles Erich.

Opening with an introduction from Kevin Lucia, which sets the scene and gets you in the mood to sit and enjoy these 5 stories.

The Subprime by Gary Fry: Finance is a cut throat industry, but Lee at the age of 19 was doing well except for one thing he had a conscious. Mr Philips, his boss hopes to persuade him not to leave by inviting him to a dinner party at his home in the Priory. This is our first meeting with the folk at the Priory and whilst the author at the start made them seem pretty normal as the story continued you could sense they were itching for a kill.

Impossible Colours by James Everington: Michala Bruce is a community officer patrolling Exham and takes an interest in the Priory after Marty Young kills himself. The story describes the effects of the cult, strange flashing colours and the residents being more in a trance. Telling part of the story through Marty’s journal enabled the reader to see both sides of the story and you are left wandering what happened to Michala.

Stolen from the Sea by Stephen Bacon: Ryan was the salesman for the Priory, getting donations for the cause and persuading to join them. A chance meeting with Natalie starts out as friendship, but when Ryan’s son tragically dies their friendship turns into so much more. Written with sensitivity this story looks at grief and religion and regardless of the religion, people will question their faith at times of sorrow.

Precious Things by VH Leslie: Petra and Bernard both retired, moved into the Priory. Married for a long time Petra was used to Bernard’s eccentricity and his love of rocks kept him busy for ages. But when he started locking himself in his study for a long period of time and having secret meetings with Charles Erich, she became worried. This story built up to a dramatic ending and showcased the power of love that Petra had for her husband

Meat, Motion and Light by Rosanne Rabinowitz: Claudia was away at University when her mom asked her to return to the Priory. Reluctant to give up her freedom, she went home to find out what was going on. Following Claudia’s story, you get an understanding that her childhood was not fun. More was written about the creature and the effects it had on the residents. With references to characters and incidents from the previous stories this was the perfect story to finish this anthology.

This was a quick read and whilst it is horror, it wasn’t usually from the creature that lived under the grounds. These stories showed the good and bad of human nature and the effects of the cult on everyone who encountered them. A good read which enabled me to get my fix of short stories

Sherlock Holmes vs. Cthulhu: The Adventure of the Neural Psychoses by Lois H Gresh

August 26, 2018 - 8:31 am No Comments

Sherlock Holmes vs. Cthulhu: The Adventure of the Neural Psychoses by Lois H Gresh
Published by Titan Books on 14th August 2018
400 pages

The story continues after Holmes and Watson escaped the tentacle creatures and stopped the tram machine. Now the River Thames is not safe and there is a new craze in the slums of London. Appearing in the dens were Eshockers, a device to zap the willing participant with an electric shock
Holmes and Watson were still trying to battle the strange creatures and as things got more serious, Holmes had to user every part of his brain to understand the situation. Professor Moriarty played a bigger role and whilst he was not working against Holmes, he was using the situation for his own monetary gains. The scenes in the Whitechapel Lunatic Asylum showed just how bad Victorian asylums were. The proprietor of the asylum Dr Reginald Sinclair and the inventor of the shocker was a character that I could not decide whether he was Dr trying to do the best for his patients or sadistic maniac. More was understood about Amelia Scarcliffe and I could understand why her back story in book 1 was important
The story flowed a lot more smoothly and because of what was going on made the story easy to get into. It was full of action and the death scenes were gruesome and graphic, just what I like. The back stories in the book helped you understand how serious the situation was, whether it was in Whitechapel or Half Moon Bay. The only thing that got on my nerves was Willie Jacobs and his nose jabbing and I just wanted to chop off his hands. The author yet again nailed Holmes and Watson’s personality and there were times that you could see how much Holmes needed Watson. Some people may find the scenes with the animals disturbing but it was relevant to the story. I cannot wait for the final book in this series and hope that Homes will get to battle the Cthulhu. This series just got better.

Abduction of Two Rulers (Thrones of Blood Book 3) by Nancy Kilpatrick

August 17, 2018 - 5:53 pm No Comments

Abduction of Two Rulers (Thrones of Blood Book 3) by Nancy Kilpatrick
Published by Crossroad Press on 14th June 2018
309 pages

Serene is still imprisoned in her grandfather’s land and Sapien Queen, Blanka and the Vampir King, Thanatos have been captured by parties unknown. But when information is uncovered that one of the Vampire and Sapien kingdoms are working together to takeover the country, the others have to work together to stop it happening.
Queen Blanka was a likeable character and whilst naïve with the ways of the other kingdoms, she was quick to find an ally in Thanatos who ruled his Kingdom fairly. With King Moarte, still trying to reinforce his defences against his Sapien father in law, he has not got much time to help rescue the others. Although it was good seeing the Belladonna, Valada and Serene all working together ready to kick ass
This series just got better. I was able to get back into the story quickly as it continued where the second book finished. Whilst there were sex scenes, there were not as many due to the story concentration on the upcoming war. The story was full of action and the torture scenes were dark and graphic, there were times that even though he was a vampire, you wander how Thanatos could survive.
A great read and hope to read more