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review 2019-12-22 17:58
E is for Exterminator by Ian Rob Wrigh
E is for Exterminator (A-Z of Horror Book 5) - Iain Rob Wright

I received a complimentary Kindle copy of E is for Exterminator by Ian Rob Wright in an Amazon promotion. It is found in A-Z of Horror: Complete Collection: Fear from beginning to end.

 

That did not change my opinion for this review. I gave this book four stars.

 

It is a compelling horror story.

 

Link to purchase: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01BA0E680

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review 2019-04-11 15:41
Great collection of Scottish and International horror
Book of the Dead: A Horror Anthology - Jan-Andrew Henderson,Anita Sullivan,Catherine Macpahail

This was a thoroughly enjoyable collection of short stories published by City of the Dead Tours. Many of the stories contain very dark humour and are all the stronger for this. I have added some of the writers' names to my watch list.

 

"Bunny Wunny Woo" was funny; "Lambent Lights" was a clever cautionary tale; "Mr Quibbly's Brain Emporium" was delightfully weird; "The Tunnel" was a satisfying short; "What's the Story Morning Star Glory?" was exciting and fun; "There's Something Wrong With the Baby" was chilling and one of my favourites in the collection. I'll be looking out for more from Samantha MacLaren. "The Tenant" was my favourite. I was blown away by the cleverness and originality of this story by Anita Sullivan about a tenement that somehow erases tenants and people's recollection of them. "Reverend Pea Pod and the Bloated Corpse" is brilliantly funny; "Skinner's Box" was very clever with a great twist in the tale; "Green Ladies" was a sweet, slightly creepy tale, set in a location I am familiar with and wrote my own short story about - Duff House in Scotland. Finally "The Plodder" was a satisfying short story that enchanted me. There are fourteen tales in total and none of them are badly written.

 

In summary, a delightful collection of short horror and one to check out.

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text 2019-01-02 22:30
December 2018-That's A Wrap!
The Sea Dreams It Is the Sky: A Novella of Cosmic Horror - John Hornor Jacobs
Scapegoat - Adam Howe,James R. Newman
The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories, Volume Three - Charles Beaumont,J.B. Priestley,James Purdy
Becoming - Michelle Obama
Winter's Bone - Daniel Woodrell
In the Night Wood - Dale Bailey
Mourning Jewelry - Stephanie M. Wytovich
Husk - J. Kent Messum
Saga Volume 9 - Fiona Staples,Brian K. Vaughan
Where the Crawdads Sing - Delia Owens

I read 13 books in December!

 

Audiobooks

 

BECOMING written and narrated by Michelle Obama 5*

WINTER'S BONE by Daniel Woodrell 4*

MOURNING JEWELRY by Stephanie Wytovich 4.5

WHERE THE CRAWDADS SING by Delia Owens 5*

 

Total: 4

 

ARCS/Reads for Review

 

THE SEA DREAMS IT IS THE SKY by John Hornor Jacobs 4.5*

SCAPEGOAT by Adam Howe and James Newman 4*

IN THE NIGHT WOOD by Dale Bailey 4*

HUSK by J. Kent Messum 4.5*

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES, V.3 edited by James Jenkins and Ryan Cagle

 

Total: 5

 

Random Reads

 

THE TRAVELING VAMPIRE SHOW by Richard Laymon 2.5*

 

Total: 1

 

Graphic Novels

 

SAGA, VOLUME 9- by Brian Vaughan 5* YOU BROKE MY HEART!

SANDMAN: OVERTURE by Neil Gaiman 5*

KILL OR BE KILLED, V. 1 by Ed Brubaker 4*

 

Total: 3

 

 

Horror Aficionados Mount TBR Challenge:

Challenge: Read 40 Books Already on my TBR

 

(I failed but had fun trying!)

 

1. City of the Dead by Brian Keene

2. The Warblers by Amber Fallon

3. October by Michael Rowe

4. It's A Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad World by Curtis Lawson

5. Bad Pennies by John Leonard

6. Cold in July by Joe Lansdale

7. Sea of Rust by C. Robert Cargill

8. Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury

9. Hex by Thomas Heuvelt

10. Bird Box by Josh Malerman

 

Running Total: 157

Total Goal: 150

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text 2018-12-31 12:45
Char's Horror Corner: Top Ten Anthologies and Collections of 2018!
Darkest Hours - Mike Thorn
Figures Unseen: Selected Stories - Steve Rasnic Tem,Matt Godfrey
Pardon My Ghoulish Laughter - Donald E Westlake,Fredric Brown
The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories, Volume Three - Charles Beaumont,J.B. Priestley,James Purdy
Occasional Beasts: Tales - John Claude Smith
Welcome to the Show: 17 Horror Stories – One Legendary Venue - Somer Canon,Rachel Autumn Deering,Brian Keene,Jeff Strand,Matt Hayward,Glenn Rolfe,Patrick Lacey,Matt Serafini,Adam Cesare,Jonathan Janz,Kelli Owen,Doug Murano,Mary SanGiovanni,Robert Ford,Bryan Smith,Booth Tarkington,John Skipp,Alan M. Clark
Splatterpunk Fighting Back - Jack Bantry,Tim Curran,Glenn Rolfe,Bracken MacLeod,Kristopher Rufty,Adam Millard,John Boden,Matt Shaw,W.D. Gagliani,Elizabeth Power
Hark! The Herald Angels Scream - Christopher Golden
Doorbells at Dusk: Halloween Stories - Adam Light,Gregor Xane,Josh Malerman,Jason Parent,Evans Light
All the Names They Used for God: Stories - Anjali Sachdeva

Welcome to my Top Ten Anthology and Short Story Collection List!

 

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

I happen to believe that novellas and short stories are the perfect length for horror stories, so I tend to read a lot of them over the course of a year. This year I read 14 collections and anthologies that rated over 4 stars. Here are what I thought were the best of them! (Click on the book cover to see my original review.)

 

Darkest Hours - Mike Thorn 

 

DARKEST HOURS by Mike Thorn

An incredible collection, especially for a first effort by an author. I can't say enough good things about it!

 

Figures Unseen: Selected Stories - Steve Rasnic Tem,Matt Godfrey 

 

FIGURES UNSEEN: SELECTED STORIES

by Steve Rasnic Tem, narrated by Matt Godfrey

Steve Rasnic Tem is a national treasure and I've been reading his short stories since I turned old enough to go to the library myself. (We won't say how long that's been, but it's in decades.) It's always been a mystery to me why he isn't more well known. This collection was narrated by the always excellent Matt Godfrey. 

(The story CITY FISHING still haunts my mind.)

 

Pardon My Ghoulish Laughter - Donald E Westlake,Fredric Brown 

 

 

PARDON MY GHOULISH LAUGHTER by Fredric Brown

This book was a gift to me from my Booklikes friend Tigus. I've read a story or two from Brown before, (THE GEEZENSTACKS!) but this collection opened my eyes to a wider variety of Brown's work. Thanks again, Tigus!

 

The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories, Volume Three - Charles Beaumont,J.B. Priestley,James Purdy 

 

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES, VOLUME 3

Edited by James Jenkins and Ryan Cagle

 

Another solid entry from the gentlemen over at Valancourt Press. 

The two things I like most about these anthologies are that I've never read any of the stories before, and they are ALL good.

 

Occasional Beasts: Tales - John Claude Smith 

 

OCCASIONAL BEASTS: TALES by John Claude Smith

Written by an author I've come to admire a lot over the last few years, this collection spotlights John Claude Smith's penchant for the dark and weird. LOVED it!

 

Welcome to the Show: 17 Horror Stories – One Legendary Venue - Somer Canon,Rachel Autumn Deering,Brian Keene,Jeff Strand,Matt Hayward,Glenn Rolfe,Patrick Lacey,Matt Serafini,Adam Cesare,Jonathan Janz,Kelli Owen,Doug Murano,Mary SanGiovanni,Robert Ford,Bryan Smith,Booth Tarkington,John Skipp,Alan M. Clark 

 

WELCOME TO THE SHOW edited by Doug Murano

The authors featured within such as Brian Keene, Matt Hayward,Kelli Owen, Mary SanGiovanni and others should give you an idea of the quality of these tales. All of the authors joined us over in the Horror Aficonados group at Goodreads and answered our questions. That only added to my reading enjoyment!

 

Splatterpunk Fighting Back - Jack Bantry,Tim Curran,Glenn Rolfe,Bracken MacLeod,Kristopher Rufty,Adam Millard,John Boden,Matt Shaw,W.D. Gagliani,Elizabeth Power 

 

SPLATTERPUNK FIGHTING BACK edited by Jack Bantry and Kit Power

Another anthology where the authors joined us in HA for a group read. What made this anthology unique was that the profits were donated to charity. Featuring authors like Tim Curran, Bracken MacLeod and Kristopher Rufty among others-the variety here was stunning. 

 

Hark! The Herald Angels Scream - Christopher Golden 

 

HARK! THE HERALD ANGELS SCREAM edited by Christopher Golden

 A fun anthology with stories centered around Christmas. Even though there was a central theme the variety of the stories ranged from poignant and sad to downright scary. What fun!

 

 

Doorbells at Dusk: Halloween Stories - Adam Light,Gregor Xane,Josh Malerman,Jason Parent,Evans Light 

DOORBELLS AT DUSK edited by Evans Light

A super fun anthology centered around my favorite holiday, Halloween!

 

All the Names They Used for God: Stories - Anjali Sachdeva 

 

ALL THE NAMES THEY USED FOR GOD: STORIES by Anjali Sachdeva

A diverse debut collection! Spanning different areas of the world and different time periods, this was an impressive book!

 

 

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 2018-12-11 18:45
THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES VOL. 3 ed. by James Jenkins and Ryan Cagle
The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories, Volume Three - Charles Beaumont,J.B. Priestley,James Purdy

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES: VOLUME THREE is the latest entry in Valancourt Books' excellent anthology series. I certainly hope they continue this outstanding tradition next year!

 

What I like best about all of these anthologies is the fact that I haven't read any of the stories before. Introducing me to new authors, some I enjoy, some not so much, Valancourt has expanded my reading horizons and for that, I will always be grateful.

 

I can't get into all of the stories but I will mention those that had the biggest effect on me:

 

THE PARTS MAN by Steve Rasnic Tem. This man is a legend and he's a national treasure as far I'm concerned. This short story had wonder and grief all mixed together and I thought it was somehow both beautiful and sad. BRAVO! (This story is original to this collection.)

 

DON'T GO UP THEM STAIRS by R. Chetwynd Hayes. I loved the tone of this tale so much I bought one of his other books from Valancourt as soon as I was done.

 

THE FACE IN THE MIRROR by Helen Mathers. A terrific little ghost story wherein the lady saves the day!

 

THE LIFE OF THE PARTY by Charles Beaumont. A sad tale of an acne-ridden boy at a school dance. The introduction to this one states that it's partly autobiographical.

 

BLOOD OF THE KAPU TIKI by Eric C. Higgs. A creepy little story with an ending that made me chuckle.

 

THE BOTTLE OF 1912 by Simon Raven. A man returns home after WWII after serving as a spy. He returns with the hope of seeing his family again and celebrating with a special bottle of wine.

 

BEELZEBUB by Robert Westall. Next to THE PARTS MAN , this was my favorite story in the collection. Robert Westall was super talented and I wish he had written more tales in the dark fiction vein because I've loved every one of them I've read.

 

Once again, Valancourt Books knocks it out of the park! Consistently full of rare stories that offer up a diverse range of horrors-this anthology has something for everyone. This, the third in a series of anthologies containing authors that Valancourt has already published, is as much of a MUST-READ as the first two.

 

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES: VOLUME 3 receives my highest recommendation!

 

You can order it and other fine books directly from Valancourt here, with FREE shipping from now until the end of 2018: VALANCOURT BOOKS 

 

 *I received an e-ARC of this book in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.* 13 likes

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