Sunday, May 20, 2018

Trail of Blood – Murder Short Stories

Trail of Blood – Murder Short Stories: The Best Horror Classics is a selection of the finest short fiction by the all-time horror masters. Featuring short stories from the best writers of the horror genre, including Edgar Allan Poe, H. P. Lovecraft, Franz Kafka, William Hope Hodgson, and Ambrose Bierce. Every horror story is a visit to a nightmare world. What's interesting is that these are nightmares we enter by our own will.
 Mountain City Books is a publisher specialized in anthologies of the best short stories throughout history. Our mission is to offer hard-to-find titles at affordable prices.

This book contains 6 classic stories by various authors. The first 2 are  Edgar Allan Poe tales "The Tell-Tale Heart" which has always been one of my favorites and the slightly lesser known "Hop-Frog" which I also enjoyed
The third is "From Beyond" by H.P. Lovecraft. I have never really been a Lovecraft fan but I know many will love this story.
"The Moonlit Road" by Ambrose Bierce was the only story I had never heard of before. In it a man recalls the day he learned of his mother's death, and then we hear the circumstances from both parents point of view. "The Goddess of Death" by William Hope Hodgson is a chilling tale of a small town living in fear of a statue that is said to come to life and murder the residents. "The Penal Colony" by Franz Kafka is the longest of the stories and just not suited to my taste. This is a decent collection for those who are just discovering the classics or those who would like to revisit them.
3 out of 5 stars
I received a complimentary copy for review.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Jurassic Florida by Hunter Shea

Welcome to Polo Springs, a sleepy little town on Florida’s Gulf Coast. It’s a great place to live—if you don’t mind the hurricanes. Or the flooding. Or the unusual wildlife . . .

Maybe it’s the weather. But the whole town is overrun with the little green bastards this year. They’re causing a lot of damage. They’re eating everything in sight. And they’re just the babies . . .

The mayor wants to address the iguana problem. But when Hurricane Ramona slams the coast, the town has a bigger problem on their hands. Bigger iguanas. Bigger than a double-wide. Unleashed by the storm, this razor-toothed horde of prehistoric predators rises up from the depths—and descends on the town like retirees at an early bird special. Except humans are on the menu. And it’s all you can eat

When I saw this cover and read the description I was hoping it would be along the lines of Hunter Shea's Mail Order Massacre trilogy. (which I loved) This one was just not as fun for me. Even though I just this minute finished reading it I can not even remember the name of a single character. I think of them as the old man, the teenage mayor, the family, and the gardening lesbian couple. This was just an ok read for me. It lacked the humor and the terror I was expecting.
3 out of 5 stars

I received an advance copy for review.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Rust & Stardust by T. Greenwood

Camden, NJ, 1948. When 11 year-old Sally Horner steals a notebook from the local Woolworth's, she has no way of knowing that 52 year-old Frank LaSalle, fresh out of prison, is watching her, preparing to make his move. Accosting her outside the store, Frank convinces Sally that he’s an FBI agent who can have her arrested in a minute―unless she does as he says.

This chilling novel traces the next two harrowing years as Frank mentally and physically assaults Sally while the two of them travel westward from Camden to San Jose, forever altering not only her life, but the lives of her family, friends, and those she meets along the way.

Based on the experiences of real-life kidnapping victim Sally Horner and her captor, whose story shocked the nation and inspired Vladimir Nabokov to write his controversial and iconic Lolita.

While not a "true crime" this compelling work of historical fiction based on real people and events broke my heart in a million pieces. In 1948 when 11 year old Sally Horner was abducted and held captive for 21 horrific months, news did not travel so quickly then as it does today. There were no amber alerts to cell phones, no world wide web on which to upload pictures of the missing and their captors, no national sex crime registry in which to keep track of the location of known child molesters. So although some characters are the invention of the author it is all to easy to imagine the real Sally losing all hope as her captor is able to keep her in his control for nearly 2 years staying one step ahead of the police and running to another state every time they get a lead on what state she might be prisoner in. This must be only a glimpse into the true heartache and suffering of Sally and her family which the author so deftly brings to life. With that I would like to leave you with this actual newspaper clipping of the real Sally, that you may think of her as you read.
5 out of 5 stars

I received an advance copy for review.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Chasing Ghosts by Glenn Rolfe

The Cobbs were ignorant woods-people that died off and left nothing to fear. Locals in Naples, Maine think they know this story. But are they wrong?

Luke Howard and his mom move to Naples and Luke’s eager to make new friends. When Jason and Davey invite him out to the abandoned Cobb place for a game they call “chasing ghosts,” he’s ready and willing. However, the boys will come to discover that some vacant houses are better left to die alone.

Meanwhile, a punk band set to play in a rented cabin out of town feel eyes upon them. Somebody’s watching, but not their usual audience. When their lead singer strays too far from the group and disappears, his band mates set out in the darkness to find him.

Police Chief Walt Henderson is about to discover that there’s more going on out in the woods of his town than he ever imagined.

Chasing ghosts is more than just some children’s game.

If you are into slasher in the woods type horror this one's for you.
There's another party at the Marston cabin in the woods tonight. Everyone is welcome, but be warned, all this loud music and activity has attracted the attention of someone else hiding in the woods. Someone who likes to party in a much deadlier way. This was a quick read and the action starts nearly immediately.

I received an advance copy for review.