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review 2020-07-05 17:32
THE BONE MOTHER by David Demchuk
The Bone Mother - David Demchuk

I can sum this one up in two words: LOVED IT!

 

Told as a series of short stories, I adored the way THE BONE MOTHER was presented. Each tale was preceded by a photograph and I found that those photos gave a face to the characters in each vignette. 

 

The tales themselves were very dark. They all came together,( mostly), at the end, to tell a story of pure evil. Told from Ukranian/Romanian points of view, these characters named horrors that I admittedly know little about: The Holodomor, for instance. Easily over 3 million dead, yet most Americans I've met know nothing about it. Why? References to Kristallnacht, and other horrific events in history also appear, all of which add to the darkness of this volume.

 

In some ways, though, these tales do have a lighter side to them-isn't it often the darkest of times that bring out the best in people? These characters sacrificed and loved each other, despite the often miserable lives and events they faced. In that way, this book SHINES. 

 

The writing was gorgeous and descriptive without being overly wordy. The presentation just blew me away. The photographs, the stories, the horror, the love and finally the darkness of it all-combined they make THE BONE MOTHER. 

 

My HIGHEST recommendation!

 

*I received this paperback from the author with no strings attached. I read it, loved it and here we are!*

 

 

 

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review 2020-06-27 23:54
NIGHTBLOOD by T. Chris Martindale
Nightblood - T. Chris Martindale

3.5/5 stars!

 

This was total 80's, cheesy, horror fun. Uzis and vampires in a small town. There's so many horror tropes involved I don't know where to begin, so I think I'll just leave it at that.

 

My complaints mostly focus on the fact that the book is a bit too long. If you don't take things too seriously, and you enjoy that fun, silly Rambo-like type of horror, than this is for you!

 

 

Recommended!

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review 2020-06-25 21:37
The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
The Only Good Indians - Stephen Graham Jones

I kept hearing whispers about this book. People were SO excited and wanted it so badly and those whispers stuck in my head but I hadn’t read the author and I REFUSED to visit Netgalley because I have absolutely zero willpower when it comes to their offerings. But then a few super early reviews came in and naturally I had a weak moment and hit up NetGalley and I am not at all sorry. Well, perhaps a wee bit because there was some animal stuff in here that was hard to read (prepare thyself) but trust me when I say this book is an experience that has the power to take your damn breath away. I don’t say that about a lot of books, hardly any at all actually, but this one managed to do it several times.

It’s about a horrifically bleak and terrible dark deed done by a few over-zealous young punks on a part of the reservation that did not belong to them. This memory will follow and haunt them (as well it should if you ask me). This book is painful to read but truly hard to put down at the same time. Whenever I had to put it aside to return to reality it lingered at the edges of my brain.

“When the whole world hurts, you bite it, don’t you?”

I struggled with this review. I kept starting it and stopping it fearing I’d never be able to do any kind of justice to it without spoiling the hell out of it and I am not going to do that. This book shocked me even though I was warned that it was going to do just that. I figured, “Nah it’s not going to get ME” but I was wrong. The writing is engaging and harrowing, the characters flawed and hard to look away from and it’s simply a beautifully tragic masterpiece of horror on so many levels with anguish so strong you can feel it stain your soul. Read it if you want your heart ripped out of your chest, chewed up, spit out, rubbed in the bloody dirt, and then super glued back together with your tears.

Brilliantly breath-stealing. Just go read it if this is at all something that you think you’re into. I'm giving this one a rare five star because it is deserving and this book is the reason why I am so miserly with my five stars!

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review 2020-06-21 19:08
THESE EVIL THINGS WE DO: THE MICK GARRIS COLLECTION
These Evil Things We Do: The Mick Garris Collection - Mick Garris

THESE EVIL THINGS WE DO is chock full of disgusting, weird, obsessed people. I loved every second of it.

 

This is a collection of novellas followed by a final short novel. Each one of them is unique:

 

FREE-Are there any moms out there that can honestly say they've never thought of just walking away? Maybe just jumping into their car and driving away for awhile? This is the tale of one woman who did.

 

UGLY-A story of a really terrible plastic surgeon. Well, he's a good surgeon, but a terrible person. And ugly people do not have the right to live, tarnishing his personal scenery.

 

TAYLOR'S THIRD ACT-This was my favorite novella. It was totally insane but kind of hilarious all at once.

The sentence "I'm home base." made me laugh so freaking hard.

(spoiler show)

I'm pretty sure that statement won't reflect well on me, but hey: it was funny!

 

SNOW SHADOW-A student and a professor both fall for the same teacher. That never ends well.

 

SALOME- This novel was a tragic story of a marriage turned bad. But even if spouses can no longer stand each other, that doesn't mean they no longer love each other, does it? This had an excellent mystery at its core and it was fun to unravel.

 

Prior to being offered this ARC from Fangoria, not gonna lie: I hadn't heard of Mick Garris. I've since researched him a little bit and now I'm not sure how I've never come across his name before. I've surely come across some of his films, (now that I know they were his.) Regardless of his film work, this volume stands as evidence that the man can write a horror story. Or 5, as the case may be.

 

HIGHLY recommended!

 

*Thanks to Fangoria for the e-ARC in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it!*

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review 2020-06-18 23:00
LET'S GO PLAY AT THE ADAMS' by Mendal W. Johnson
Let's Go Play At The Adams' - Mendal W. Johnson

LET'S GO PLAY AT THE ADAM'S has quite the reputation, so I was excited to finally read it. In some ways, the book lived up to the hype, and in other ways, not so much.

 

I'm not going to run down the plot because it's pretty apparent even by just looking at the cover. This book was loosely based on a real case. The young woman's name was Sylvia Likens, and I know that I'll never forget her. I've read about her in another book: THE GIRL NEXT DOOR by Jack Ketchum. A book that I forced myself to finish. It was brutal in its descriptions of what happened to her, and I felt like I somehow owed it to her to keep reading until the end. I expected this book to be a kind of rehash of that one, but it wasn't. I also expected it to be rather trashy, and it wasn't that either.

 

LET'S GO PLAY has a different set up but it gets to the meat of the story right off the bat. This was where I began to realize that there was going to be a lot of psychology in this book. Not only in the captive's head, but in the heads of the children as well. We have kids varying in age from 17 down to 10. We get to peek inside the heads of all of them. I'm no expert, but I read a lot of psychological horror, and the thoughts going through all of these different heads seemed spot on to me. Everyone here acted their ages, and their inner thoughts reflected their later actions.

 

I have to say LET'S GO PLAY AT THE ADAMS' surprised me. It was more well written than I thought it would be, and the psychology seemed spot on. The facts remain however, this denouement was the same as in Ketchum's book, and as in real life. It was a tragedy and these kids were monsters.

 

Recommended!

 

Trigger warnings:

Rape and Torture

(spoiler show)

 

*Thank you to Valancourt Books for the e-ARC in exchange for my honest feedback.*

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