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review 2017-12-05 22:30
Talulla Rising by Glen Duncan, narrated by Penelope Rawlins
Talulla Rising - Penelope Rawlins,Glen Duncan

 

When I was listening to THE LAST WEREWOLF, I wasn't sure I would continue on with the series. I liked the bloodiness of it, and I enjoyed the world building, but was less than thrilled with the tons of graphic sex going on.

EAT, FUCK, KILL is the werewolf mantra.

(spoiler show)

 

However, there was such a great hook at the end of the narrative AND the library had the audio of this one in stock, and here we are!

 

Right now, I feel the same way as I did when I finished the first book in the series. Here there were many surprises, (maybe too many to be believed, but hey-it's a werewolf book), and a good amount of action. However, I didn't feel that the quality of the writing was quite as good as THE LAST WEREWOLF.

 

Once again, close to the end, there is another surprising tidbit that makes me want to continue on with the series. This time, though, I'm going to read a few books in between, and then see if I still feel like continuing.

 

*I checked this audio out from my local library for FREE. LIBRARIES RULE!*

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review 2017-11-27 18:45
Red Room Magazine of Extreme Horror and Hardcore Dark Crime: Issue 1
Red Room Issue 1: Magazine of Extreme Horror and Hardcore Dark Crime (Red Room Magazine) - Universidad del Valle Jhon Saul GilTestimonio: Jhon Saul Gil en programa "Tiempo de Letras",Meg Elison,David James Keaton,Cheryl Mullenax,Randy Chandler,Jack Ketchum,Tim Waggoner

RED ROOM ISSUE 1: MAGAZINE OF EXTREME HORROR AND HARDCORE DARK CRIME contained a ton of variety not only in the stories showcased, but also in their cool features such as: Barfly Bob's Highballs and Lowballs. This is an article which talks about some of the most disgusting adult beverages I've heard of. I mean, really, how many magazines have articles featuring 3 dick cocktails?  Not too damn many!

 

The stories here were also quite entertaining: my favorite probably being MEAT CUTE by Larry Hinks. This is an hilarious flash fiction piece which left me getting looks at the coffee shop because I was laughing out loud so damn hard. (Not that it wasn't bizarre or horrifying because it WAS, I am just a sick person.)

 

Jack Ketchum's MEGAN'S LAW came in a close second, with a last sentence that kicks you HARD right in the gut. In a weird development, I listened to the latest episode of The Horror Show with Brian Keene on Saturday morning, and there was a feature where Phoebe, (a show regular), interviewed a bunch of authors at the last Scares that Care convention. She asked all of them what their favorite short stories were and why. MEGAN'S LAW was mentioned in those interviews, so imagine my surprise when I neared the end of the magazine and there the story was. I can't remember which author chose this as their favorite story, but I can easily see why they did. Bravo to Jack Ketchum! (And a big FU to child molesters.)

 

THE MIDDLE CHILD by Meg Ellison was a nice surprise. A sly commentary on the state of affairs in this country as regards reality television and what people will do to be even a small part of it. I think it also comments on the people watching this stuff, without whom there would be NO reality TV. I like to discover new authors through anthologies and magazines like this one, and Meg Ellison is one to watch, I think. (There's also an interview with her included at the end of the story.)

 

SICK JOKES by Josh Scott Wilson was an innovative story in that I couldn't really tell where it was going for most of the time I was reading it. And then I agreed: Sick Jokes indeed!

 

The Video Nasties feature by Duane Bradley talked about how difficult it was to get VHS versions of some films in the UK. I had no idea this type of censorship occurred over there during the VHS movie boom, so I found this article enlightening.

 

Even though my days of enjoying bizarre and/or extreme horror are winding down, I thought this magazine was well put together, with beautiful artwork and stories that were chosen with care and quality in mind. Even a "quiet horror" fan such as myself admired the talents of the authors herein and will probably make an exception in my reading habits for the next issue.

 

Highly recommended, especially for fans of extreme horror!

 

You can get your own copy here: Red Room Magazine Issue 1 *I received a free digital ARC of this magazine in exchange for my honest review. This is it!*

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review 2017-08-22 18:40
The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
The Talented Mr. Ripley - Patricia Highsmith

 

**Please note that this review is LOADED with spoilers! If you plan to read this book in the future, you should! But you should NOT continue to read this review.**

 

To Tom Ripley, being bored, being around dull people and having nothing to do are among the WORST things in existence. Of course, he never has to be bored again after brutally murdering his friend and assuming his identity.

 

Tom is recruited by Mr. Greenleaf, (the father of Tom's acquaintance, Dickie), to bring his son home from Italy. Tom is even given a hefty sum with which to support himself in Italy while working his come-home-magic on his friend. Unfortunately, Ripley has no luck persuading Dickie to do anything, other than to get stumbling drunk nearly every minute of the day. Then, shortly after an awkward scene where Tom is caught trying on Dickie's clothes, Tom decides to whack Dickie and that's where this story really begins.

 

I'd seen the movie with Matt Damon a long time ago, but I've always been fascinated with the character of Tom Ripley and wanted to read the book for myself. In the 50's, stories from the viewpoint of the murderer were rare, not like today. I think it was also rare, (feel free to correct me), to have the antagonist be likable at times. I mean, there you are, in Ripley's mind- rolling along thinking about your afternoon cocktails and that evening's parties and then BAM! He's whacking someone across the head with an oar. And then whacking them again. And then across their neck. And then stabbing them with it as if it were a sharp instrument. He's wheezing and out of breath and he's still going. And there's the reader, a bit stunned, wondering how we got to this point and where did everything go wrong? This right here is what I liked best about the story.

 

Now we have Criminal Minds and FBI profilers that write books about serial killers, sociopaths and the like. In the 50's when this book was written, that was not the case. I think Patricia Highsmith had the thought processes of Ripley down pat. Nothing is ever his fault. He is just so clever and everyone else so dull and stupid. The depravity of his thoughts are presented so matter-of-fact-ly that they could almost pass for normal. His ability to read the emotions and thoughts of others and anticipate what they'll do and how they'll react in certain situations is astonishing. It's almost like Ripley was not a person at all, but instead just a collection of facial expressions and witty banter wrapped around an all encompassing greed. He was a mimic of a person. He had nothing within himself-all that he was came from outside.

 

"He loved possessions, not masses of them, but a select few that he did not part with. They gave a man self-respect. Not ostentation but quality, and the love that cherished the quality. Possessions reminded him that he existed, and made him enjoy his existence. It was as simple as that. And wasn't that worth something? He existed."

 

He was so good at his machinations that he, himself believed them. He would imagine scenes in his head over and over again-so they would become real. To him, real in his head equated to real in reality. He believed so totally and utterly that it was easy for him to make others believe too. To me, this is where the strength of this book lies-the creation of Tom Ripley. He is such a fascinating character that I can see myself reading this again in the future.

 

This story really wouldn't work in today's world, with all of our phones and cameras and facial recognition software: in that regard The Talented Mr. Ripley is dated. However, as far as the creation of a believable sociopath, Tom Ripley would be right at home in an episode of Criminal Minds-and he would give the investigators a good run for their money.

 

Highly recommended!

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review 2017-08-22 02:11
Mr Ripley!
The Talented Mr. Ripley - Patricia Highsmith

 I need a massage from all that tension Mr. Ripley caused in my neck!

 

More tomorrow because it's Preacher time. 

 

 

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review 2017-08-13 16:23
Mass Hysteria by Michael Patrick Hicks
Mass Hysteria - Michael Patrick Hicks

 

Mass Hysteria was a brutal horror novel, which reminded me of the horror being written in the late 70's and, (all of the), 80's. Books like James Herbert's The Rats or Guy N. Smith's The Night of the Crabs. There are a lot of similarities to those classics here-the fast paced action going from scene to scene-with many gory deaths and other sick events. In fact, I think Mass Hysteria beats out those books in its sheer horrific brutality.

 

I'm not going to go into the plot very much-it's there in the synopsis for you. As a set up for the savage action to come, meteor showers are as good as anything else. The fact that the sickness hits the animals first and turns them from wonderful pets, police dogs, etc...and turns them into violent killing machines was heartbreaking. I felt more sympathy for the animals in this book than I did for most of the humans. Almost all of the people in this book were not likable. In fact, many of them were abhorrent, promiscuous or just plain stupid. That was okay though, because they got exactly what they deserved.

 

There was a good amount of sex here, interspersed with the horror, and the word "empurpled" was used a few times. (It made me chuckle every time!) Be prepared though, as the sex was not always with live humans.

 

Which brings me to my next point, this book is not for the easily offended. It's not for the horror novice who is new to the genre and all its various offerings. I think Mass Hysteria is best enjoyed by the experienced horror fan. Humans and animals alike are killed in all kinds of nasty ways. There is necrophilia, there is bestiality...are you seeing my point here? If even the very thought of these things disgusts you, this is not the book for you.

 

My last thought to share with you is about the ending: LOVED. IT. !! Keeping in tone with the style of the book up that point, Mr. Hicks did not shy away from the, (what I thought was), inevitable finish. I like and respect that!

 

If the subjects I mentioned above tend to make you shy away from a story, this one is probably not for you. However, if these subjects and the brutal kills and gore ARE your cuppa, then you should head over to Amazon right now and one-click this bad boy.

 

Recommended for hard core fans of the genre!

 

You can get your copy here:Mass Hysteria

 

*Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.*

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