October 16, 2010

Season of Death by Eric S. Brown Review

by Eric S. Brown
Pill Hill Press
Hardcover Ed
Review by: Gina Desory
Review Posted: 10/16/2010

Season of Death is another novellas collection by author Eric S. Brown. The four novellas are Undead down Under where a character named Kyle who you met in Season of Rot one of another novella collection that came before, fights the crocodile-demons in Australia. In How the West went to Hell is a horror western that a book editor travels to the small town of Reaper's Valley to research a dead author's manuscript where he discovers more than just some kind hospitality, plus a yellowed-eyed demon. Kinberra Down is the science fiction novella that is co-authored with Jessica Marie Roberts where Kinberra crew stumble upon an icy planet that is loaded with creatures beyond their imagination. Ragnarock Island is the sequel to the Queen story Eric S. Brown wrote dealing with the survival of the character Scott races through the undead and the troubles that come everywhere he looks.

This is a collection that has many twists and turns. The most noted novella that had a wonderful twist was How the West went to Hell. Eric S. Brown took a western, wrapped it with horror situations and turned the story into a gem.

I found that Kinberra Down lacked holding my interest for very long. There were some really good parts to the story, but the first section dragged a bit. It was not typical Brown writing and perhaps reading Science Fiction by this author is not what readers maybe used to. It is not to say lovers of Science Fiction may not like this, but I found it to be a bit simplistic.

Ragnarock Island took my breath away. If you have read his story called the Queen, you will see the brilliance that came about when this story out of Season of Death was done. The thrill of seeing what the characters were going to do next, what leaped out here and there, it gave chills down my spine waiting to see what would happen as I read. This story certainly is at the top when it comes to this collection.

Undead down Under left a bit of a hole as I read it. It did not present itself as a separate novella. If you didn't read the original story, you as a reader could be lost. Was it good, yes, only because I had read the original story. The strange demons and such portrayed in this story left me craving for me.

Should you buy this collection? I give it a yes and yes. There are some parts where you maybe sighing a bit, however, this is a must buy for Eric S. Brown fans and if you have not read any of his stuff, make sure to get Season of Rot and Season of Death, but reading Season of Rot first to get a grasp of some of these characters.

Buy from Amazon below:

Season of Death

Zomblog by T.W. Brown Review

by T.W.Brown
May December Publications
Review Posted: 10/16/2010

Samuel Todd on his spare time starts a daily blog. He had no idea that his life would suddenly change and his accounts of what seemed to be a weird infection break-outs he would be documenting in his online diary format.

I normally don't like any story that has to deal with blog type or even diary types formats. However, this one not only caught my attention by its name of Zomblog, but pulled me in right from the start.

Brown handles Samuel Todd the character who writes in the blog in the most amazing way, he makes him human. Todd goes through these dates of about a year's time describing what happens to him and his family during an infection outbreak. This is done with the dates of a blog. What Brown does with these is allow the reader an insight to what a person could and most likely would do during what is thought of as a zombie outbreak.

Brown writes the character of Todd with precision. There is Todd thinking twice about helping someone because he is scared. Well, who wouldn't be in such a situation? This is just one of the things I love about this book.

Then there is the way the blog posts are written. There is not a dull moment as sometimes you read with certain posts about whatever they did that day. The posts are the thoughts of Todd yes, but a glimpse into a scary situation that can be felt through each word.

Zomblog is a story that has such human heart to it that you will be feeling each moment with Todd and then have to wonder and look outside to make sure the outbreak is not occurring by you.

October 15, 2010

Eye Witness Zombie Anthology Review

Edited by T.W.Brown
May December Publications
Review Posted: 10/15/2010

Now before you say 'not another zombie anthology,' let me tell you this:
Eye Witness Zombie is an eclectic taste of brilliance. First we start off with the cover. I normally don't mention covers unless they are so striking or bring attention to the book; this one does. I mean nothing says eye witness like a news station, but not any news station but one filled with zombie reporters.

And the cover needs to be opened. Inside you have the 15 stories that will make you laugh, make you squirm and just feel your thoughts with delightful tales of zombies. There are even character drawings of each of the authors before they stories along with their signatures below it.

What makes this anthology so pleasing to read is it is not your typical end of the worlds scenario. It has well established characters, sometimes more sarcastic than most, but hey end of the world time here people, and amazing situations that you gasp out, laugh at and go wow at. Nothing says a good zombie anthology such as Eye Witness. Normally I would have a favorite story, but I loved them all.

This is a great anthology to pick up for Halloween or any time that you need to be reminded that zombies can be gory, but they can also be interesting, funny and out right dangerous.

October 12, 2010

People Live Still in Cashtown Corners by Tony Burgess Review

by Tony Burgess
ChiZine Publications
Review done by Dana Bell
Review Posted: 10/12/2010

A chilling and sometimes confusing fictional look into the mind of a mass murderer loosely based on an actual case. Mr. Clark, for no reason that he can fathom, goes on a killing spree in a small town. The first is someone he doesn't know and thankfully, the reader is spared the grisly details. The second is also a woman told in cold specifics. The third is simply shot inside his own car.

Fearing he is about to be caught after revealing is secret to his gas station employee; Bob flees through a cornfield where he experiences a type of 'rebirth'. After emerging on the other side he is ready to kill yet again. This time, his victims are a family living in an old Victorian house. The mother and grandmother are shot while preparing breakfast. He prowls the interior of their home and readies himself, although unwillingly, to murder the children when they come from school. When the deeds are done, he lays the bodies out in the ballroom cocooned in sleeping bags.

Later, guilt ridden, Bob fools himself into thinking one of the children survived his attempt. First he hears noises as if someone is walking around. Second, he finds one of the sleeping bags empty. Third, there is music and when he investigates he finds a damp towel in the bathroom. Fourth he has a conversation with her and apologizes for trying to shot her. She leaves for school and he disposes of the bodies of her family behind the house.

The delusion goes on for days. He calls the school to check on her and talks to teachers on how she's doing in class. He's told not well and how did she get that gash in her forehead? Also, she wasn't eating. He tries to feed her and blood comes out of her mouth. Eventually, he tires of her company and again, brutally, murders her.

Although a somewhat interesting account, there are many confusing aspects to the book. The wandering from subject to subject in the first chapter does not entice the reader to continue further. Once the story starts often the main character goes off on a tangent that seems to have nothing to do with main plot and doesn't really explain the motive or reason behind the killing spree.

Perhaps 'People still live in Cashtown Corners' makes a type of sense to those familiar with the original case, but the reviewer can not recommend this book to readers.

Dead The Ugly Beginning by T.W.Brown Review

by T.W.Brown
May December Publications
Review done by Rob Walter
Review Posted: 10/12/2010

Dead The Ugly Beginning starts out with Steve who while lounging about gets a call from one of his friends who informs him that something nasty is going on. Steve turns on the television to see reports of people doing what he would watch with movies, eating each other, being zombies. Yet Steve does not believe it and falls asleep, waken later by the darkness and a strange noise he is soon to discover that it is not only the darkness he needs to worry about. This is only the beginning as several other characters come into play.

There is a lot of hardcore zombie action. Fans of this horror genre will not be disappointed in that. There are a lot of moments where reading this you will want to yell out 'watch out they are right there!'

However, this book falls a bit short in follow through. It jumps around a lot and at times very hard to follow on what character is doing what. In the beginning there is too much of little interludes of Steve's thoughts that after awhile distracts from reading on.

Overall the book as said has a lot of Zombie action and was fun to read those specific parts. If you can manage to stay through the book jumping around as I did, it maybe worth the read.

October 10, 2010

MonsterMatts Bad Monster Jokes Vol 1 Review

by Monster Matt Patterson
May December Publications
Review Posted: 10/10/2010

I have always liked horror with humor. I think when people say it can't be done they are wrong. In this collection of jokes that not only include general horror, but horror icons and some science fiction as well, gives people a taste of what humor can be like.

This is a book in which some of the jokes are great, others make you groan and yet some you would have never thought of. However, MonsterMatt did. You will laugh at some of the strangest things combined you can think of. While other times you are rolling your eyes at what is an obvious answer to the joke given.

What is purely enjoyable about this book is that all ages can read it. Horror fans who need a break from the gore and scared writing they do or watch will be delighted to relax to these pages of sometimes dry humor. Kids who love jokes will love this book, but be warned they may repeat the jokes over and over to you, so you better read this book to know what to watch out for.