Posts Tagged ‘Horror’

Friends Like Us by Rob Shepherd

October 13, 2017 - 9:53 pm No Comments

Friends Like Us by Rob Shepherd
Published by Stanhope Books on 21st November 2015
130 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies


When Ryan, Caitlin, Lucas, Kayla, Mia and Oliver, friends since childhood go on holiday in a secluded cottage, what they want is a relaxing break away, what they got was a night of terror.
From the start of the story, you sensed that Oliver was always on the edge of the group. Suffering from depression, you knew that something had happened in his life, but it was not until he spent time with Caitlin that he opens up and tells her about his past, it was after this that he wanted to start living.
When the group was looking for something to pass the time, I was expecting the complimentary Ouija board to make an appearance, so I was surprised when it was a book that caused the problems. When something went wrong with Oliver, you could feel the group’s anguish and whilst I did not agree with their decisions, you had the feeling that they had no choice. The group’s death scenes had a twist and were vivid, it was like watching the action through a camera lens.
This book had the feel of “I know what you do last summer” to it, but the action happened all in one night. Whilst this is a horror story, it is also a story about unrequited love and guilt. This is a quick read, with an emotional charged ending.

 

Songs of Dreaming Gods by William Meikle

October 11, 2017 - 9:10 pm No Comments

Songs of Dreaming Gods by William Meikle
Published by Crossroad Press on 8th September 2017
178 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

Called in, whilst on sick leave, Detective John Green is asked to head up the investigation to a gruesome multiple murder. On his team is Janis Lodge and Todd Wiggins and whilst they worry that he is not up to the job, they will always have his back. The house where the murders happened has history, but as the investigation unfolds, they not only find out about the cause of the murders but things that were hidden in themselves.
John Green was a no-nonsense copper; however, he was willing to put himself in danger to save others. Injured in the line of duty, he was on sick leave when he had the call. The further John investigates the more you find out about his past, and you realise what a troubled childhood he had, tormented by demons, but always wanting to do the right thing. Janis Lodge thought the world of John Green and even when there was doubts that he was up for the job, she always had his back. Even when he was recovering from his injuries, she was always there for him.
This story started out like any murder/thriller, but as the story progressed it became more sinister. The house had a life of its own and the flashback scenes were used to explain its history. John’s journey through the house and his confrontation with his childhood demons the Reapers, made me feel that there was no hope for John and that he was fighting a losing battle. Although I did find a bit of humour with John’s dialogue with Death. Some of my favourite scenes involved Janis and the porcelain dolls. Tapping into Janis’s childhood phobia, the dolls stalked her wherever she went. There was a lot of minor details, that all played an important part to the story and it was when items were removed as evidence that the scenes in the Police station became graphic. This story draws you in and you feel the oppression of the house. The repetitive song “He Sleeps in the Depths” really plays with you mind and I had it running through my head for days. The ending tied up the story perfectly.
This book grabbed my interest from the blurb and whilst I recognised the author this is the 1st book that I have read, but will not be the last.

Blanky book tour- Blanky by Kealan Patrick Burke

September 18, 2017 - 6:31 pm No Comments

We are honoured here at Terror Tree to be involved in the Blanky book Tour. written by Kealan Patrick Burke. Today is the review of the creepy, heartbreaking book. Come back tomorrow to find out more about the author. If you like what you read, you can pick up a copy here. http://amzn.eu/cWldM42

Blanky by Kealan Patrick Burke
Published 12th September 2017
73 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

After losing their baby Steve and Lexi’s marriage fell apart. Not wanting to stay in the house, Lexi moved out leaving Steve alone. Living on alcohol and trash TV, Steve just wanted drink himself to an early grave. Until one night, he heard a noise from his daughter’s room, a room that had been empty for 6 months. After investigating he found Blanky, the blanket that his baby daughter took to bed.
Steven’s grief was raw, and you knew that is whole life had fell apart. However, he had a purpose once he found the blanket. He was getting his life back track, going out with his work mates and rekindling his marriage, but fate has an evil streak. After he started having the nightmares and disaster strikes again, he became a man possessed and he only has the blanket on his mind.
This story is enthralling, how something so innocent like a baby’s blanket can be made so creepy. Steven’s grief was real and as a mom I would not wish this on anyone. As you are reading this book, you are following Steve’s journey as he comes to terms with his loss and whilst you are feeling sorry for Steve, the author adds a twist that has you doubting your loyalties and I finished the book not knowing who I believed.
As this is a short story, it can be easily read in one sitting. Reading this it will have you displaying so many emotions and at the end I felt that I had ran an emotional marathon. Although, this is a horror book, it is also a story about grief and loss. This is the 1st book I have read by this author but it will not be the last. I have just downloaded a couple more to read.

Ugly Little Things by Todd Keisling

September 15, 2017 - 6:46 pm No Comments

Ugly Little Things by Todd Keisling
Published by Crystal Lake Publishing on 15th September 2017
287 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies


Having not read anything by Todd Keisling, I didn’t know what to expect, but with titles like House of Nettle and Thorn and Saving Granny from the Devil, I wanted to find out. With 11 short stories to read you will encounter creepy dolls, an imaginary friend called Harvey and even a group of up and coming rock stars.
A Man in your Garden: Written from the 1st person POV, about a resident, that thinks there is a man in their garden. This story captured the person emotions after something catches their eye, ranging from doubt, anger, drunken ramblings and more. A gentle start to the book.
Show me where the Waters fill your grave: Jonathon spends his time watching the weather channel, waiting for news of a large rain storm. A widower of 4 years, he really misses his wife, but what happens when the land begins to flood. Throughout this story you can really feel Jonathon’s grief and the love he had for his wife and whilst the story concentrates on the current rainstorm, you learn more about their romance and the incident after Jonathon’s wife death. Throughout this story you know something is going on and that Jonathon is waiting for something to happen but what went on is not what I expected.
Radio Free Nowhere: Conrad and Ashley were on a road trip and like most of families cannot agree on the music for the journey. However; when Ashley hears a song, she cannot get out of her mind, it takes on an unexpected journey. Reading this story, I felt that Conrad was a bit of control freak, and on this journey Ashley found smalls way to defy him. When she heard the song for the 1st time, it reminded me of sailors hearing the sirens sing.
The Otherland Express: Gregory was running away after finally having enough of his abusive father. Meeting John Doe, he learns the secret of being invisible to others. Gregory teenage life was so sad and I could understand why he ran away and why he wanted to board the coach with John Doe. How he became invisible had an alien feel to it and it just shows how brave Gregory is.
Saving Granny from The Devil: Toddy’s best friend was his great grandma, spending most of his time with her, he would do anything for her. When Harvey a mysterious man rescues Toddy from bullies, it takes time for Toddy to realise who he is and when Toddy’s grandma falls ill, the deal he makes shapes his life. This was one of my favourite stories, and I enjoyed how a short story catalogued most of Toddy’s life, how he grew up, what he became and his regrets all because he loved his grandma and made a deal with Harvey.
The Darkness Between Dead Stars: Written by a member of the committee, this story tells us what really happened to Maxwell Foster on his one-man expedition in space. This story had the feel of a dying man’s confession and you could feel how guilty he was sending Maxwell into space. Reading how Maxwell was cracking up, I did keep wondering what was causing him to lose his mind.
Human Resources: Written in the style of an email, this is Alex’s resignation. The 1st paragraph was not what I was expecting for his reason for his resignation and I had to admit I did have a snigger when I read this. As he goes on explaining what else he had done, he does sound like a man possessed. The ending had me believe he was in some sort of cult and that he had gone mad. A different style of short story.
House of Nettle and Thorn: Jim and Nick have been invited to a party at a sorority house by a girl Jim had me online. They were typical hormonal lads, especially when they saw the girls at the house, think the brides of Dracula. Even when Nick sensed he was in danger he ignored it for a good time. Whilst there were hints on the identity of the girls from the start, their true form was not revealed till later into the story, this added suspense to the story and when it was discovered why they really wanted the boys, you just knew that Nick and Jim had no chance. A chilling story.
When Karen Met Her Mountain: Karen and Martin journey home soon turns into a matter of life and death. The story charts Karen’s recovery from depression, and whilst she was with Martin was vulnerable and relied heavily on him for support. However, when her life was in danger, she was a different person, strong, resourceful and focused on her task. I was surprised at how violent she could be and the unexpected twist at the end was graphic an a just ending.
The Harbinger: Felix a reporter for Toys in the Attic had an interview with the Miss Maggie Eloquence, a doll manufacturer. Renowned for their dolls, people travel far and wide to visit the town called Dalton. From the moment Felix arrived in the town, he knew something was wrong, a rancid smell and creepy dolls.
Porcelain dolls are one thing that creeps some people out and this story plays on those fears. The story had a slow build, a slight movement out of the corner of your eye, a head turned to watch, this really played on Felix’s mind and through all this was a terrible smell of pigs. The story intensified when Felix met Maggie. I had an admiration for Felix as with everything that happened to him, he never once turned back to alcohol. One of favourite scenes was when Felix fought against Noah and all I could think of was Chucky. This is one story I would like to know what happened when Felix drove away.
The last story is the novella The Final Reconciliation, previously released in February, this tells the story of an up and coming rock band The Yellow Kings. Johnny, Aidan, Hank and Bobby, all friends with a love of music. Embarking on a small tour, they quickly built up a dedicated fan base. After one gig they met Camilla, and from that first meeting, she took the band to a horrific high.
The story was written from Aidan’s POV as he gave an interview to a reporter 30 year after the tragic event. Reading this story, you could see how loyal Aidan was to his friends. Whilst he did not like the direction that Johnny was taking the band, he still stuck with them. Throughout the story there were hints to what Camilla is, but it was not until Aidan started having his dreams and the band started to record their album, that things start to get macabre. The secret gig was savage and a gory and when Aidan thought he had closure the reporter told him something that would make him lose his mind.
Whilst this story was gory in parts, the descriptive writing, made you live Aidan’s story. Carcosa even though a horrific place also had a beauty to it. The smaller details like the Chapter list, listed as song titles on an Album, and the reference to heavy metal made this a must read for horror and metal lovers. A great novella.
This is another book published by Crystal Lake that did not disappoint. Another great read

You Only Get One Shot: A Horror Novella by Kevin J Kennedy and JC Michael

August 30, 2017 - 8:24 pm No Comments

You Only Get One Shot: A Horror Novella by Kevin J Kennedy and JC Michael

Published 17th July 2017

134 pages

Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

 

When 4 Indie authors receive an email, write the best story of your life and I will decide which one will live. Is it serious or is it a prank? Not wanting to risk it they all write what they think is their best story.

The sender of the email, was very sure that the authors would write their story and that just showed how confident she was with herself. At the start of the story I did feel that she was getting revenge for her loss. As the main story progressed you could sense how sadistic she was.  

What was different about this book was that we had the 4 authors stories interwoven into the main story. Each of the authors stories were completely different, although they all had a horror feel to them. Prior to each of their stories, we learnt about the author behind the creation, their writing style and more about their lifestyle.

This is the first book that I have read by these two authors and I am now trawling Amazon to purchase more. The story was fast paced and as it is a novella I read this pretty quick. Each story had its own twist and the ending of the main story was unexpected. If you want five stories for the price of one, then this is a great book to read.