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text 2019-01-01 12:45
Char's Horror Corner: Top Ten Novels of 2018
Creature (Fiction Without Frontiers) - Hunter Shea
The Woman in the Woods - John Connolly
The Listener - Robert R. McCammon
Give Me Your Hand - Megan Abbott
We Sold Our Souls - Grady Hendrix
Providence: A Novel - Caroline Kepnes
Behind the Door - Mary SanGiovanni
Husk - J. Kent Messum
Cold in July - Joe R. Lansdale
Tarnished City (Dark Gifts) - Vic James

Welcome to my Top Ten Novels List!

 

I read 157 books over the course of this year and here's what I thought were the best of the best novels.

(These are books that I read this year, not necessarily published this year.)

Click on the cover to read my review.

Let's get started!

 

 Creature (Fiction Without Frontiers) - Hunter Shea  

 

CREATURE was not what I expected at all. 

Hunter Shea is great for creature feature novellas, and that's what I expected from this book. Instead, I got punched in the gut and my heart was torn out!

 

The Woman in the Woods - John Connolly 

 

The Charlie Parker series continues with what I think was the best entry yet!

Sixteen novels in and at this point, I can't imagine a world without a new Charlie Parker book every year. 

 

The Listener - Robert R. McCammon

 

Robert McCammon, author of BOY'S LIFE, (my favorite book of all time), crushes my heart again with this book about an exceptional young black man. (Technically, I read this book in 2017, but it didn't come out until 2018. So sue me!) This book is beautiful and brutal all at once, and features characters both good and bad, that you'll never forget. (I love you, Curtis!)

 

 

Give Me Your Hand - Megan Abbott 

 

Megan Abbott is a recent discovery of mine thanks to author Randy Chandler. Now I'm lined up every time she has a new book out. She writes about women like no one else. 

 

 

We Sold Our Souls - Grady Hendrix 

 

With this entry Grady Hendrix became one of my favorite authors. MY BEST FRIEND'S EXORCISM was great, but this book knocked me out. Maybe because I loved Metal back in the day, and also because the protagonist reminded me of Joan Jett. Whatever the reasons, I LOVED this book!

 

Providence: A Novel - Caroline Kepnes 

 

 

Caroline Kepnes hit my list of favorite authors in 2018.

I listened to both YOU and HIDDEN BODIES, (both of which are on my TOP TEN AUDIOBOOKS of the year list), and then I read this one back in June. All I can say is I know that I will read anything she puts out. She could write out a grocery list and I would read it with pleasure!

 

 

Behind the Door - Mary SanGiovanni

 

 

After reading BEHIND THE DOOR this year, I know that I will be catching up on more of Mary SanGiovanni's  backlog while staying up to date with her latest releases. With a distinct voice and style, she causes me to think-and her characters in this one are quite memorable!

 

Husk - J. Kent Messum  

 

This is probably my most recent read that made it to this list. Fast paced, imaginative and adventurous, this book has more of a science fiction base, but there are horrific aspects as well. I was really impressed!

 

Cold in July - Joe R. Lansdale 

 

The Champion Mojo Storyteller strikes again!

 

Tarnished City (Dark Gifts) - Vic James 

 

This was more of a dark fantasy than horror, but I don't really care for labels as much as I care about a good story and mark my words this was one.A follow up to the previous year's GILDED CAGE, I thought this was an imaginative story about young adults, but so, so dark that it surprised me. Who doesn't love a good surprise?

 

 

Thanks for staying with me this far if you're still here. I appreciate you!

I hope you'll join me again at the end of 2019 for another list of my favorite books of the year. I hope that your New Year is also filled with outstanding and amazing reads!

 

 

 

 

 

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text 2018-12-28 12:45
Char's Horror Corner: Top Ten Novellas of 2018!
I'll Bring You the Birds from Out of the Sky - Brian Hodge
Wylding Hall - Elizabeth Hand
Blanky - Kealan Patrick Burke
Stirring the Sheets - Chad Lutzke
Rattus New Yorkus - Hunter Shea
Exit Strategy - Martha Wells
The Mirror of the Nameless - Leesa Wallace,Graeme Parker,Luke Walker
The Sea Dreams It Is the Sky: A Novella of Cosmic Horror - John Hornor Jacobs
Out Behind the Barn - Chad Lutzke,John Boden
October - Michael Rowe

Welcome to my Top Ten Novellas List!

 

This was a great year of reading here at CHC. I read a ton of novellas in 2018,

(as usual), and here are what I thought were the best of the best!

(These are books I read this year, They were not necessarily released this year.)

Click on the cover to read my review.

Let's get started!

 

I've adored the work of Brian Hodge for many years now, and thanks to my friend Andi, I now happily own a copy of this beautiful, dark novella. It's out of this world!

 

 I'll Bring You the Birds from Out of the Sky - Brian Hodge  

 

 

WYLDING HALL by Elizabeth Hand was a phenomenal ghost story in the perfect length. 

Just the way I like them, short, dark and creepy. 

 

Wylding Hall - Elizabeth Hand

 

 

Kealan Patrick Burke is one of my very favorite dark fiction authors. Sometimes in your face gritty and other times, subtle and grief ridden. In which category does BLANKY fall? You should read it and find out.

 

Blanky - Kealan Patrick Burke 

 

STIRRING THE SHEETS by Chad Lutzke is a beautiful and poignant novella and I just adored it. Mark my words people, Chad Lutzke is the REAL DEAL.

 

Stirring the Sheets - Chad Lutzke 

 

RATTUS NEW YORKUS 

I love me a good creature feature and this is definitely one of the best I've read this year! 

If you're not reading Hunter Shea, you should rectify that ASAP!

 

Rattus New Yorkus - Hunter Shea 

 

I read a lot more science fiction this year, and Martha Wells' Murderbot Series is definitely part of the reason why. This, the fourth novella in the series was my absolute favorite. I think the novellas got better with each entry. (I cannot get Booklikes to locate the copy of the book I reviewed, this is the cover of the audio.)

 

Exit Strategy - Martha Wells 

 

 

I've been reading the work of Luke Walker for a few years now and it's my opinion that he deserves to be more well known. I particularly enjoyed this book which featured insane creatures running around and a world that accept them. 

 

The Mirror of the Nameless - Leesa Wallace,Graeme Parker,Luke Walker

 

THE SEA DREAMS IT IS THE SKY was a deep,  dark novella featuring gorgeous prose. It was difficult to read at times, but also beautiful.

 

The Sea Dreams It Is the Sky: A Novella of Cosmic Horror - John Hornor Jacobs 

 

Chad Lutzke appears AGAIN on my list, this time co-writing with another favorite author of mine, John Boden. A creatively told tale that takes its time to unfold. And then when it does, your heart snaps. 

Out Behind the Barn - Chad Lutzke,John Boden 

 

Lastly, one of my favorite horror authors: Michael Rowe. (One that I wish would write more in the genre.) A respected author and journalist, OCTOBER blew my mind. Maybe it could blow yours too?

 

October - Michael Rowe 

 

Thanks for staying with me this far if you're still here. I appreciate you!

I hope you'll join me again at the end of 2019.

 

 

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review 2018-12-12 16:49
Creature by Hunter Shea
Creature (Fiction Without Frontiers) - Hunter Shea

CREATURE surprised me. I’ve only read one Hunter Shea book, THE JERSEY DEVIL, and that thing was pure madness from beginning to end with its out of control body count and frenetic pace. I was expecting a crazed people eating monster to pop out of the woods and eat everyone and the pup before moving on to town and slaying more innocents but this is a completely different type of horror story. This one is about the physical and emotional toll an incurable disease has on a woman and those who love her. It’s slower paced and allows the dread to slowly creep in as the characters face an ever present and unconquerable monster.

 

Kate has Lupus and Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, both are incurable diseases that are managed with pain medication and surgery to fix body parts as they break down. The diseases and multiple surgeries have all but stolen her life. She’s housebound with her dog Buttons and a devoted husband who has turned into her caretaker. After a grueling trial of an experimental treatment, Andrew takes a leave of absence from work and surprises Kate with a getaway to a cabin in Maine where she can recuperate and they can spend some quality time together with Buttons. But it’s not long before strange events begin to taint their tranquility.

 

This book was incredibly hard to for me to read. My sister and two family members suffer from EDS, have all had multiple surgeries and were all disabled in their 30’s. Shea’s portrayal of Kate’s pain was heartbreaking and grueling and viciously accurate based on everything I’ve heard and seen. This is why it was a difficult read for me but I imagine it will be the same for most anybody who picks up this book because it is a punishing depiction of chronic pain, that insidious destroyer of lives.

 

If you’re looking for a stomp ‘n’ chomp this isn’t it, for the most part, but it isn’t any less of a horror novel than The Jersey Devil. It’s a different kind of horror novel. One that is slower paced and thoughtful and full of all the emotions. There is so much pain and suffering and guilt and love that when the slow creeping dread begins to interfere on the couple’s idyllic sabbatical, you’ll need to hang on tight to your heart. It’s breathtaking how well the author weaves it all together. I wasn’t expecting this type of story at all but I wasn’t disappointed. Very highly recommend if you enjoy a book that’ll tear you to pieces.

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review 2018-11-09 23:39
Giveaway & Review – Devil’s Fingers by Hunter Shea @huntershea1
The Devil's Fingers - Hunter Shea

 

 

 

 

 
The Devil’s Fingers
One Size Eats All #3
by Hunter Shea
Genre: Horror
.
MY REVIEW
.
Hunter Shea’s humor shines throw the blackness of the horror he created in Devil’s Fingers. They had gathered together to wish Seth’s dad bon voyage into the next world. Their teenage antics are fun…until…Autumn, miss know it all Autumn…I will  think twice about entering the woods, and will definitely stay away from any funny looking stuff! Hunter Shea loves to kill off his characters, so be careful who you get attached to because you don’t know who or if anyone will make it out alive. Cryptozoology at its finest.
 
I voluntarily reviewed a free copy of Devil’s Fingers by Hunter Shea/
 

Animated Animals. Pictures, Images and Photos 4 Stars

ENTER THE GIVEAWAY HERE

 
 
MY HUNTER SHEA REVIEWS
 
 
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Source: www.fundinmental.com/giveaway-review-devils-fingers-by-hunter-shea-huntershea1
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review 2018-10-07 00:57
Review of Creature by Hunter Shea
Creature (Fiction Without Frontiers) - Hunter Shea

Hunter Shea has been a favorite of mine for a while now, so typically my liking the current book from him is not surprising. Several people warned me that this one was not like his other books and I still can't tell you how much I wasn't expecting this. Shea, who to me, has been known for his quick and fun reads hit it into an entirely different ballpark with Creature. This book was neither quick nor easy for me to read but it was amazingly worth it.

 

I think it's easy for people who don't live with chronic pain to look at this and decide that it's too monopolizing to the story or that maybe it's even over exaggerated. People who live with chronic pain and autoimmune diseases don't have that luxury, it's with them every moment of the day, and for me that was the hardest part to get through. I don't have either of those things and this book made me realize just how much I take that for granted.

 

It's hard to sum up a book that absolutely guts you. If you're looking for mindless gore, this isn't your book. However, if you want something that takes what you thought you knew about horror and flips it upside down- amplifies it, this one is for you.

 

I received an ARC of this from Flame Tree Press and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

© 2018 by Andi Rawson of Andreya's Asylum

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